ICEHOTEL – Jukkasjärvi, Swedish Laplands. 18th-20th December 2015
In the far north of Sweden, you’ll find the town of Jukkasjärvi. What’s Jukkasjärvi got going for it then? Not much, except for the world’s first hotel made entirely out of ice!
The ICEHOTEL was founded in 1989 and has slowly been gaining traction as one of those must see places.
Every year, the hotel is built from scratch, using a unique formula of ice and snow (that they named ‘snice’) to create building blocks. Artists and architects are invited to design the various rooms, which range from simple to mind-blowing luxury.
This year’s ICEHOTEL included a room with an elephant made entirely of ice, and a room surrounded by ice sheep leaping around the room and hiding under the ice bed. Imagine sleeping with a work of art embedded into your room. That’s essentially what the rooms in the ICEHOTEL feel like.
How then, does one actual stay in this hotel? Each room is furnished with a mattress (no it’s not an ice mattress), soft pillows, and reindeer skins for hotel guests to wrap themselves in when they stay there.
Despite the outside temperature dropping to lows of -27 degrees Celsius, the temperature within the hotel is kept to a constant of -5 degrees. The main caveat you might want to take note of when staying in the ICEHOTEL is that you can only get to your room at 6pm and have to leave at 7am the next day, because the rest of the day is spent on maintenance and guided tours (100-200 SEK per person).
So that means you’ll have to fill your days with some activities. The ICEHOTEL offers many tours around the region, such as an experience sledding with huskies/reindeers, visiting the reindeer ranch, and of course, a plethora of Northern Lights tours, whether on snowmobiles, cars or even huskies.
Within the area, there’s also an Ice Church which, as you might have guessed, is a church made entirely out of ice. Apparently people do actually get married in there (depending on how elaborate the wedding is, it ranges from an hour to even 3 hours), they even have babies baptized in baptism pools made of ice. Definitely one of the weddings of all time.
If that isn’t quite your thing, there’s also an Ice Bar.
which isn’t a bar made entirely out of ice, though the bar table is, and better still – if you order a drink, you get a glass made of ice, so you can be sure that your drink is kept chilled without being diluted (yup, no ice cubes required). You can keep the glass afterwards as a souvenir too!
If you ever fancied yourself as Elsa from Frozen, then you should definitely give the ICEHOTEL a go. If it’s out of your price range, then consider staying somewhere in the nearby city of Kiruna instead and rent out a car to take a day visit to the ICEHOTEL. Either way, you can be sure to have a ton of Instagram-ready photos after a visit there that will have your followers commenting ‘Cool’ (no pun intended).
WHERE: Marknadsvägen 63, 981 91 Jukkasjärvi, Sweden
For more information, visit Icehotel.com