Ben (my husband) and I much prefer cooler, in this case freezing climate, rather than a hot climate. So, it was only fitting that for our honeymoon, we decided to experience the magical ICEHOTEL in Jukkasjärvi, Sweden. Jukkasjärvi is in Kiruna, located two hundred kilometres above the Arctic Circle and is known for its amazing hotel made completely of snow and ice, or ‘snice’.
As we landed at Kiruna airport, the temperature was a freezing -26C… Walking outside, into these freezing temperatures, literally takes your breath away. the ICEHOTEL ‘resort’ comprises of a collection of cabins and huts around the ICEHOTEL itself (middle of the photo). The ICEHOTEL is re-built every year and artists from different countries and artistic backgrounds are chosen to create unique rooms within the ICEHOTEL.
We stayed for 3 nights. The first and last nights were spent in what they call a “Warm Room” which is a regular hotel room with all amenities and heating (very important). The second night we slept in the ICEHOTEL in a “Cold Room”. Since we arrived in Kiruna mid afternoon, and if anyone has been to Scandinavia in winter knows that day light only appears from 11am to 4pm, we decided to explore the grounds to make sure to make the most of the remaining ‘daylight’.
On day two, we explored the 26th rendition of the ICEHOTEL with its 50 rooms: 17 Art Suites and 2 Deluxe Suites, created by different artists; 5 Snow rooms; 12 Northern Lights rooms and 14 Ice rooms. We stayed in an Ice room but here are some photos of some of the Art Suites.
The main entrance and corridor of the ICEHOTEL are also unbelievably stunning with their ice pillars, light fixtures and ice sculptures.
Next to the ICEHOTEL is the ICEBAR, where the building, the bar, the seating (ie: benches and booths) and even the glassware are made of ice.
These buildings are just incredible, as soon as you walk into the ICEHOTEL and the ICEBAR, their calm and serene atmosphere envelopes you. Everything is so quiet and perhaps a little eery, but it is so peaceful.
Here we are in our Ice Room.
I will be honest, it is was not the best night sleep I have ever had, but it is definitely and experience I would highly recommend. If you are wondering how cold it was in there to sleep, it was not as cold as one would expected it to be, as inside the ICEHOTEL the temperature is at a constant -5C, which is a lot warmer than the -30C outside.
On day three we went hunting for the northern lights on snowmobiles in -44C (the coldest it had been in a very long time) and we were so lucky that Aurora Borealis was kind enough to make an appearance (and also that Ben managed to get it all on camera :D).
Even though it is absolutely freezing cold, and you end up wearing the latest ICEHOTEL fashion, this place is truly magical and so peaceful. The light during the few hours of daytime is enchanting. The natural surroundings are breathtaking. This was such a perfect place to spend some of our honeymoon. I am glad I had the chance to tick this off my bucket list.
I cannot wait to go back… as they are planning to build an ICEHOTEL that will be open all year round… we might just have to explore that too 😉