Every winter, artists from around the world gather in Jukkasjärvi, northern Sweden, for an art project that has become known as “Icehotel”. It is the world’s largest hotel built of snow and ice. The development covers 59,200 sq. ft and is constructed from 2,000 tons of Torne River ice and 30,000 tons of “snice”, a mixture of snow and ice that strengthens the structure. Building the hotel is a year-round process.
Turning in for the night involves slipping into thermal underwear, pulling a woolly hat over your ears, and then climbing into a sleeping bag atop reindeer hides and a mattress covering a block of ice. After your morning wake-up call (a cup of hot lingonberry juice), it’s time for a sauna, followed by breakfast from a well-stocked buffet and a day of activity.
Most guests sleep one night ’on ice’ and a few nights in the warm accommodation also on premise. Among other activities, ICEHOTEL arranges guided Northern Lights tours by snowmobile or bus, dog-sledding and reindeer-sledding excursions, horseback riding to watch moose, ice sculpting, and Raidú – an encounter with the Sami culture.