When snow starts to fall, it’s tempting to stoke up a fire – but for a true winter experience, sometimes there’s nothing better than embracing the cold. For centuries, Inuit communities lived in houses built of snow, which – surprisingly – kept them warm.
Reviving the romance of sleeping in structures made of ice, several hotels now offer guests an opportunity to book into igloos for the night.
Whether you want the authentic experience or a modern-day glass interpretation, these are the coolest ones to choose…
1. Levin Iglut Igloos, Finland
If the idea of ice gives you the chills, these glass-roofed igloos are the next best thing. Even better, they provide a 360-degree window to the night sky, making them perfect for viewing Northern Lights.
Although only a 15-minute drive from Kittilä Airport, the 24 domes feel thrillingly remote, with unobstructed views of a fir-trimmed valley.
Electronically heated, they also feature bathrooms, a kitchen, Wi-Fi connection and motorised beds, which can be adjusted for the best position to gaze at stars.
For more information, visit leviniglut.net/igloos.
2. Ice Village Tomamu, Japan
An increasing number of winter sports fans are visiting Japan’s number one ski resort Hokkaido, and now top hotel resort Hoshino Tomamu is giving them even more reason to go.
From December 10 to March 14, when temperatures dip to -30°C, an Ice Village will open, with igloo accommodation and ice skating rinks. Sleep in an ice dome, bathe in a hot tub made of ice, and warm up in an after-bath Ice Lounge.
For more information, visit snowtomamu.jp.
3. Iglu Lodge, Greenland
Featuring five igloos, sleeping up to two people each, the Iglu Lodge in Ilulissat is new for this winter season. Replicating a sleeping environment traditionally enjoyed by Inuits, igloos hover at a 0°C temperature even when it’s much colder outside.
Reindeer skins and sleeping bags provide enough warmth for the night, with bathroom and restaurant facilities located in a separate block.
For more information, visit offthemap.travel.
4. Arctic Fox Igloo, Finland
There’s no risk of frostbite in these cosy glass igloos, recently opened on the scenic shores of Lake Ranuanjärvi. Heated panels keep guests cosy and prevent frost from obscuring the walls, keeping them clear for overhead views of the Northern Lights.
In the back, there’s a bathroom and a sauna, along with a kitchenette and a table set for two. During the day, extra activities can also be booked: Go on a snowmobile safari, take a horse-drawn sleigh ride, or see polar bears at Ranua Wildlife Park.
For more information, visit finnair.com.
5. Igloo Village, La Plagne, France
Set 2,118-metres above sea level, in the shadow of Mont Blanc, La Plagne’s Igloo Village offers visitors a chance to sleep between snow-built walls. After check-in is completed around a fire, which doubles as a reception desk, head off for a meal in the Igloo restaurant decked out with reindeer skins.
Wake up to superb scenery and the smell of a cooked breakfast – the ideal tonic to a night in the ice. Igloos are available from December 15 to April 10, 2019.
For more information, visit easyjet.com.