Couple Spends $700 for Night at Norway’s Snowhotel Kirkenes, Chooses Warm Chalet Instead

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In the heart of a frosty Norwegian winter, a couple’s quest for adventure led them to the Snowhotel Kirkenes, a destination known for its unique accommodations crafted entirely from ice. Ulrike Lemmin-Woolfrey and her husband set out to embrace the cold, embarking on a journey that tested their limits and ultimately had them seeking warmth. What initially seemed like a thrilling experience at a snow hotel turned into a night of unexpected challenges and decisions, highlighting the fine line between adventure and comfort in the arctic wilderness.

Ulrike Lemmin-Woolfrey and her husband, hungry for adventure, chose the Snowhotel Kirkenes in Norway for a unique overnight experience as part of their winter travel tradition. With plans to continue their journey to Lapland for some skiing, the couple was no stranger to the cold.

Yet, despite their enthusiasm for embracing winter’s chill, they found themselves unprepared for the biting cold of their icy accommodations. The adventure, costing $600 for a night, seemed like a fair price for an unforgettable experience—until the harsh reality of sleeping in an igloo-like environment pushed them to seek refuge in a warm chalet, an added expense that brought an unexpected $100 to their bill.

Set against a backdrop of stunning natural beauty, the Snowhotel Kirkenes offered more than just a place to stay; it was an experience wrapped in the icy embrace of Norway’s winter. Located near a frozen lake, the hotel presented its guests with the opportunity to explore the pristine arctic landscape. Among the highlights was the chance to partake in husky sledding trips, an adventurous activity that allowed guests to connect with the rugged outdoors and experience the exhilaration of racing across the snow under the guidance of spirited dogs.

The hotel itself was a marvel of ice architecture, boasting rooms that were each a work of art with individually themed decorations. From the walls to the beds made of ice, covered with reindeer skin for warmth, the interior was a testament to the beauty that can be crafted from the cold itself. Yet, despite its mesmerizing beauty, the inside of the hotel was even colder than the outdoor arctic air, a stark reminder of the challenges of living in harmony with nature’s most extreme conditions.

Upon arrival, guests were greeted with warm berry juice, a small but meaningful gesture that set the tone for their stay. The hospitality extended into the evening, with a three-course dinner that featured local delicacies such as cured reindeer, served in the hotel’s cozy restaurant. This warm and inviting space provided a stark contrast to the chilly accommodations and offered a semblance of comfort in the midst of the frozen landscape.

Despite the initial allure of sleeping in a bed made of ice, the reality proved to be less enchanting for Lemmin-Woolfrey and her husband. The novelty of the ice bed, surprisingly comfortable at first under the layers of reindeer skin, soon wore off as the cold crept in.

Faced with the discomfort and the practical implications of lacking an en suite bathroom, the couple made the decision to move to a warm chalet. This decision, while forfeiting the full ice hotel experience, allowed them a night of more restful sleep and the comfort of modern conveniences.

The adventure at the Snowhotel Kirkenes was a testament to the allure and challenges of Arctic travel. While the icy accommodations offered a once-in-a-lifetime experience and the opportunity to immerse themselves in the beauty of the Norwegian winter, Lemmin-Woolfrey and her husband learned that there are limits to how far one can comfortably venture into the realm of ice. Their story is a reminder that the pursuit of adventure often comes with unexpected hurdles and that warmth, in the end, may be the most welcome luxury of all.


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