Do you have "Little German Towns" or similar in your area/country?

I mean, in a different country, not in Germany. Here in my state in the US, we have many rural towns that retain some of the identity of the people who originally settled the town. Do you have them in your area or country? Are they always European?

For example, near my home we have German towns, Alsatian towns, Polish towns, Czech towns, etc. The German town will have at least one German church, bakery, restaurant, or store. There will be some German architecture and a yearly “Octoberfest” or something like that. There will be German street names and maybe a “Willkommen” sign put up by the chamber of commerce. A lot of it is touristy.

In my travels I have seen many ethnic neighborhoods in big cities around the world, but I have not see towns.

There is an area of Annandale, VA which is referred to as “Koreatown” and has a plethora of Korean restaurants, bakeries, shops and other businesses. There is even a bank which doesn’t trouble itself to translate the sign into English. But it’s more like the “Chinatown” plopped into the middle of a big city.

As far as rural towns that have a distinctly foreign flavor, I can’t say I’ve ever experienced that in Virginia. Definitely have in Pennsylvania, but that may be a much larger version of what you are describing.

There is a small seaside locality not too far away from where I grew up in New Zealand called Akaroa, which is heavily French influenced. I haven’t been there myself, but the French classes at my High School took an annual pilgrimage there for part of their coursework.

There’s a Korea Town in Wangjing, Beijing.

Here in Washington we’ve got Leavenworth, though their German identity is an affectation adopted in the '60s for tourism purposes rather than a genuine reflection of the town’s history.

I stayed overnight in Filadelfia, Paraguay, a German Mennonite town of 20,000, where today only German is spoken. It was settled in 1930, and there are very few clues that you are not in modern Germany. Very isolated, it is the only notable town for 250 miles, reached by a road that doesn’t go on to anywhere.

There’s a bunch of these in Wisconsin. Little Chute put up a windmill to celebrate Dutch heritage. Brussels: Belgian, New Glarus: Switzerland, Westby: Norway, Pulaski: Poland


(New) Berlin, but I don’t think that counts.

Milwaukee has a large German and Italian Population. I believe there used to be specific areas of the city/county that were mostly German or Italian, but if they still exist, I don’t know where they are. And, the amount of people that only speak German or Italian with little to no English is very rapidly dwindling. We do, however, have a fairly large area that’s mostly Hispanic.

As for festivals, Milwaukee is well known for it’s ethnic festivals. These, for the most part, don’t take place in the area of the city they’d be associated with, but rather, almost all of them take place on the same festival grounds over the course of the summer. Polish, Italian, German, Arab, Irish, Mexican and American Indian festivals all typically use those grounds. Greek and French festivals take place in other places around the city.

Wisconsin is also home to approximately 20% of the US’s Hmong population. They do tend to be concentrated to very specific areas. If you never happen to travel to a city with a large Hmong population, you may never know it, but spend more than a few hours in Wausau or La Crosse and it’s very noticeable. Stop in one or two stores or go to a restaurant and you’ll find the amount of Hmong people can sometimes outnumber the non-Hmong. I’ve never spent more than a long weekend in any of those cities, but I’d imagine there’s Hmong festivals in many of them.

Texas is loaded with Czech and German towns. The area southwest of Houston is Czech central, and the German towns become more common as you move west from the coast toward San Antonio and the Hill Country. A lot of them are hybrids such as Schulenburg, about halfway between Houston and San Antonio on I-10, which has a lot of German heritage but is surrounded by communities known for the “painted churches” - beautiful brightly painted frescoes fill Czech-founded parish churches in communities with names like Praha and Dubina.

That’s the reason you can’t swing a cat without hitting a kolache shop anywhere in Texas :slight_smile:

First place I thought of was Frankenmuth, MI… Even the dang 7 - eleven is Bavarian.

I moved to New Glarus last year!

Here in Missouri, Hermann is well know for it’s German heritage. “The city was founded by the Deutsche Ansiedlungs-Gesellschaft zu Philadelphia (German Settlement Society of Philadelphia) in 1837” October Fest etc. Don’t know whether it will be held this year though. Folks ride there on Amtrak from St. Louis and Kansas City during October Fest.

Several winerys are located in the area. A few miles South on Hiway 19 is the town of Swiss.

Sugarcreek in Ohio is “Little Switzerland” thanks to the Amish and Mennonites who populate it.

There’s only really one of these locally - Franschhoek really goes all-in in its French roots.

And, Little Switzerland (or Little Switz as we call it) is a ski hill in Wisconsin.

In Ohio we have a town named Germantown.

Cincinnati has an area called Over the Rhine.

Both named entirely unironically, as they were settled by German immigrants.

Whereabouts are these places? I’d like to see them if I can.

And Poulsbo certainly aims for a Viking theme.

Modern-day downtown Poulsbo maintains a Scandinavian theme to honor its early immigrant history and is a popular regional tourist destination.

German Village in downtown Columbus is one of my favorite places. It has one of my most favorite book stores in the world—The Book Loft—and a couple of restaurants I love—Katzinger’s Delicatessen and Schmidt’s Restaurant and Sausage Haus.

Orlando, Florida, has a Little Vietnam and some other ethnic districts, but we don’t have any entire towns like that in the area. There’s too much migration to the area for any one national group to dominate. Kissimmee is about 85% Hispanic, but it’s a mix of Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Dominicans, Mexicans and so forth.