Here in Australia, it’s hot. Like, 30-degrees-at-10am hot. But while we all swelter through another heatwave, Finland is apparently preparing for an all-out winter war against the Night King and his army of Whitewalkers.
HBO Nordic has teamed up with Lapland Hotels SnowVillage to build an impossibly cool Game of Thrones-themed ice hotel. Located in Kittilä in Finnish Lapland, about 90 minutes from Helsinki – literally beyond the
Wall Arctic Circle – the special-edition SnowVillage boast 24 rooms, all with GoT-inspired carvings designed by professional ice sculptors from Poland, Latvia, Ukraine and Russia.
The hotel is constructed every year from 20 million kilograms of snow and 350,000kg of clear natural ice and takes about a month to build. Sprawling over 20,000 square metres, it also boasts a restaurant, bar, chapel, movie theatre and vast network of walkways and corridors littered with intricate carvings, including an all-ice Iron Throne and dragon-shaped ice slide.
But, impressive though it is, a stay at the hotel will no doubt have guests dreaming of comparably balmy Dorne – rooms are kept at a brisk -5 degrees Celcius so they don’t, you know, melt. Outside, it’s closer to -12, so the hotel recommends booking one night in the ice rooms before relocating to cosy nearby cabins for the rest of their stay.
The SnowHotel is open from 10am to 10pm until April 8, and guests are welcome to visit without booking a stay at the hotel. Passes cost $23 (€15) per person. Or, if you’re keen to brave the cold, rooms at the SnowHotel start at $250 (€165).
If nothing else, it’s a cool way to pass the time until Game of Thrones returns in 2019.
(All images: Lapland Hotels SnowVillage)[qantas_widget code=HEL]Check out Qantas flights to Finland.[/qantas_widget]
Kristen Amiet is a previous AWOL editor, bona fide travel addict, sometimes whisky drinker and full-time breakfast food enthusiast.