For the ultimate winter wonderland, Sweden’s Icehotel is the first of its kind and a must for those seeking something out of the ordinary. From its opening in 1990, the hotel has set the standard for icy accommodations, and is built anew every single year! Read my guide below on how to visit the Icehotel in Sweden.
- March – in preparation for building the hotel, ice is gathered from the Torne River, one of the world’s cleanest sources of water
- May – various artists from around the world start designing the rooms – there are never two identical rooms from year to year!
- November – artists come from all over the world to create their rooms and bring the designs to life
- December to April – rooms open to guests
- April – rooms melt away and the cycle begins again
When to visit
One of the most important aspects of your plan to visit the Icehotel in Sweden is timing it correctly!
- December to February – Arctic winter with the lowest temperatures and limited daylight
- March to early May – Arctic spring with long days, mild temperatures
- May to August – Arctic summer, with ample daylight due to the midnight sun
- September to November – golden autumn
The best times to avoid crowds are January, March, or April.
The Icehotel is located 200km / 124 miles north of the Arctic Circle.
Fly into Stockholm, then take a short 1.5 hour flight into Kiruna. From Kiruna, take a car or taxi, or I recommend contacting the concierge to organize a dog sleighing ride to the hotel!
The hotel features around 50 cold rooms and 70 warm rooms – take your pick between a classic warm hotel room in a log cabin, or one of the famous ice rooms.
Prepare for a cold, cold night! With temperatures hovering around 23F (-5C), everything is made of ice – the walls, ceiling, chairs, and bed (topped with reindeer furs to keep you warm.) Each room is special in its own way, and ask the staff for a tour to choose which one you want:
- Snow room – the bare essentials. This is a simple bed in a room made of snow and ice
- Ice room – a larger snow room including two ice chairs
- Art suites – themed rooms with cool sculptures and art – think Tron, arctic animals, water, vehicles, food, etc.!
- Deluxe art suite – a large room twice the size of the art suite
They also provide an extremely sturdy, polar-tested sleeping bag that’s so warm, you can easily sleep with one layer on underneath! There is no plumbing, but there is a sauna nearby and a hot tub outdoors that includes bathroom facilities.
The cold not for you? Stay in one of their classic log cabins! These are fully equipped rooms with all your typical amenities, and extremely cozy.
Tip: I would recommend 1 night in the ice room, 1 overnight excursion, and the remainder of your nights in a warm room.
Features and amenities
Though there are branches worldwide, this is the original Icebar. For a one-of-a-kind experience, order a drink “in the rocks!”
For those seeking an extraordinary wedding experience, try getting married at Icehotel’s church. Children can also get baptized here, and couples can renew their vows too. Talk about a ‘cool’ place 😉
There are plenty of winter activities to keep you occupied during the day and night. With limited hours of daylight, learn to make the most out of the darkness – such as going on an aurora borealis tour!
- Northern lights tour
- Dog sleighing
- Horseback riding
- Ice sculpting (yours may even get featured in the hotel lobby!)
- Ice fishing
- Moose watching
- Snowmobile safari
- Exploring nearby town of Jukkasjärvi
Want to visit the Icehotel in Sweden, been there before, or have another favorite wintertime destination? Let me know in the comments section below!