Husky Sledding & Sleeping on Ice, Lapland

Getting up in what feels like the dead of night and heading off to breakfast, feels a little odd.

There’s no sunrise, no twittering birds, just the gentle crunch of snow beneath your feet and glowing Narnian lamp posts sprinkled along the way.

We made our way through the Ice Hotel grounds and over to the restaurant.

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Twinkling welcomingly in the twilight.

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After an unremarkable but mostly edible breakfast buffet, we trotted off for a new adventure.

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Marvelling at the frozen landscape along the way.

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We slipped all the way down through the estate.

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Canada Goose jacket // Canada Goose salopettes

Snow boots

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And indulged in a little snooping while we waited for our guides.

Marvelling at the creations emerging from the ice.

Particularly the Ice Bar, made by pouring water over a huge balloon and letting it freeze. It draws you to it like a moth to a flame.

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Soon enough we heard the tell tell signs of our guides arriving.

The sound sound of howling whistled through on the wind, filling us with a tingle of anticipation!

Our ride had arrived.

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Teams of trained huskys, all howling, barking and wriggling to get going.

Keen to get out on the open snow again.

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The sleds are still made the way they always have been, bent wood with reindeer hide for cushions.

We took our surprisingly comfy seats, held on tight and off we shot!

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Racing along the frozen river.

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Past riverside huts, houses and the local wooden church; glowing in the dull morning light.

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We made for the woods, dodging along the path at a dizzying pace.

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Snow dusted Christmas trees zipped past and wildlife barely took any notice of us at all.

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Compared to the shrill howling and ceaseless noise of the dogs before they run, the silence once you get going is almost deafening.

Nothing but the gentle swoosh of the sleigh on the snow as you race through the most spectacularly beautiful Christmas card.

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Eventually we came to a clearing in the trees, filled with nothing but knee high, champagne powder.

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We stopped for a break, and got a chance to meet some of our drivers.

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And play in the snow, of course!

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Inside the only hut for miles around, a fire crackled and kettle whistled.

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No Brit can resist the call of a whistling kettle.

It’s biological.

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We sat beside the fire with cups of tea, rosy cheeks and grins that wouldn’t budge.

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It wasn’t long until the dogs started getting restless, a howl went up and it was time to leave.

With one final look at the wonderland we’d found in the middle of the woods.

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And the gentle signs of the sun rising, a long way away.

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We packed up the sleds as our impatient hounds looked on.

We saddled up, the driver pulled the peg, and off we went!

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Homeward bound, through the mid-day glow.

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When we got home, we thanked the pups, but they weren’t interested.

A quick roll in the snow to cool off, and they were ready to run again.

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They live for the race.

It’s pretty special to see animals at work, loving every second of it.

Custard would be horrified, I’m sure!

If you make it to The Ice Hotel, a Husky Tour is a must.

Safely home, we explored a little more of our new frosty home.

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Snug as a bug in the warmest boots I have ever worn!

Cosy Jimmy Choo Moon Boots, lined with a sort of memory foam that moulds to your foot.

So. Snuggly.

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Just the ticket for snow days.

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Aviator hat

Snowflake jumper // Skinny snow pants

Moon Boots

We walked out along the frozen river’s edge, clambering up snow drifts and flinging snowballs at each other, and trying (unsuccessfully) not to fall ass over tit!

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After lunch we made friends with a couple of shy locals.

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Wrapped up warm again, and took ourselves for a stroll through the town.

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Ending up in the Ice Bar, for a few pre-supper frosty tipples.

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We popped along the road (about a 15min walk) to the Homestead Restaurant.

A traditional timbered building and the “chilled out” restaurant option.

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Here we had the best meal of our trip so far.

Very simply cooked, delicious steaks with a trio of sauces.

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And little pots of pudding, topped with lingonberry.

(Swedes will put lingonberry on anything given the chance!)

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After supper we strolled home, mitten in mitten.

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Full, tipsy and ready for bed!

Ready for our first night on ice.

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We collected our giant double sleeping bag and listened carefully to the instructions;

  • Don’t wash your face before bed- you need the oils to protect your skin.
  • Have a pee before you go!
  • Only wear a thin layer, don’t wrap up or you’ll be too hot.
  • Leave your phone behind, anything you take in will freeze over night.

We peered our way around the iced corridors, clutching the sleeping bag and looking for our room. Grinning like two excited kids on Christmas Eve!

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We opted to share a sleeping bag, rather than separates. (Purely for warmth, dad.)

Snuggled down…

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Turned the lights off (there’s a switch on each of the beds so you don’t have to race back in the dark!) and slipped off to sleep, in the cool, dark, utter silence of our ice cave.

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  • That Ice Hotel looks like such a awesome place to spend the night!! I went dog sledding a few years ago in Canada and it was amazing to see how excited the dogs got to pull the sled!

  • What an absolute adventure!!! Lovely pictures and a great post as always!

  • Wonderful and whimsical

    Looks so cozy! Definitely on my to do list!!

  • Wonderful and whimsical

    Looks so cozy, definitely on my to do list!

  • Oh wow taking part in a husky sled ride is on my bucket list, they just look so in their element out there! Gorgeous post!!

    Laura xx |

  • Catarina Neves

    Absolutely Breathtaking!!!

  • I always wondered about the practicalities of sleeping overnight in the Ice Hotel. Never would have thought not washing your face would be a good thing! xx Halee

  • Carly Smith

    Those are the happiest puppies I’ve ever seen! So beautiful! What an amazing experience!

  • This looks like an absolute dream! I couldn’t stop thinking of Narnia as I looked through all your enchanting photos. Its a must that I visit Lapland soon! Amazing post!

  • Rebecca

    What an amazing experience!

  • Kari Guastella

    What an absolutely amazing experience! I’m doing a dog sledding class in Iceland soon. Super excited!

  • I want to go husky sledging so bad, looks a lot of fun! x

  • This looks amazing!! I wish I was so lucky!! Great post!! 🙂

  • What a winter wonderland! I’m so envious. We’re still waiting for the first snow here in the US. All we’ve had so far is freezing cold temperatures!

  • Jacqueline Sin

    Oh my gosh this looks amazing! I have always wanted to get on a husky ride/ tour (it is on my bucket list!) and you look like you are having a lot of fun <3

    Jacqueline | Sail Away to Neverland ♡

  • These photos are incredible! It would be amazing to do the husky tour and sleep on the ice beds like that! Plus, those Jimmy Choo boots are AMAZE!

  • The place looks amazing! The Ice Hotel also looks amazing and looks surprisingly cozy. The pictures on husky sledding was just wonderful, I feel like I could wake up to that kind of view every morning and just sled with the excited dogs.

    Mia |

  • Wow!! It looks like a dream!!!

    Thanks for sharing! :))

  • Johanna Tawe

    Looks amazing! Been a fan of your blog for a long time and it was great to see that you visited the church were my grandfather worked and I even saw a picture of my dads childhood home.

  • thing2gether

    Excellent! The husky ride has been on my list forever. Thanks for the inspiration. Will get this off my list soonish.

  • The slow pace

    What an experience! I would love to meet some of those athletic dogs! They look so focused! I’m sure that silence must have been very calming and soothing.

  • The dog sledding looks AMAZING – that would be the trip highlight for me! How did you find not seeing daylight Rosie?
    Neeeeeed a pair of those moon boots in my life!
    Hugs Adele xoxo

  • ninegrandstudent

    I would love to experience both the sledding and the ice hotel – so jealous of you! x

    NINEGRANDSTUDENT: A Student Lifestyle Blog

  • Sarah Hotel Rater

    Mitten in mitten – SO cute.

  • Emma Sales

    Amazing, this looks like the most magical place for Christmas time – definitely on my bucket list.

  • Husky sledding looks so much fun! I absolutely hate being cold so I couldn’t think of anything worse than sleeping in an ice room, in an ice bed!!

  • The Ice Bar is so beautiful! This place just looks like a magical fairy kingdom. Would love to go husky sledding too, very jealous! Lots of love, Andrea xxx

    Andrea’s Passions

  • Jeanne

    Wow – Fabulous! What an adventure!

  • Such incredible photographs! I would love to enjoy an adventure like this, looks like so much fun! You look ever so happy here. A lovely post as always.

    Laura x

  • The ice hotel is cool and that but all i really want to do is pet those dogs x

  • Ashlee

    Seems so fun there I still feel like id be so cold to sleep in that room!! The dogs are cute, I want to visit here!

  • Madison

    Gorgeous photos! The pups look so happy, which is a relief!! I’ve always wanted to go dog-sledding, and this is just fueling the fire!

  • Such a cool opportunity! Those dogs look so sweet 🙂 -Maireem

    My Fair Autumn | Instagram

  • I’m sat quite literally (yep) melting in 45 degree heat pining to be here right now! Looks so so amazing.

    we are dannah | australian lifestyle blog

  • Kari

    This looks amazing, definitely on my travel wish list! 🙂 Going Husky Sledding in Norway in February, and I can’t wait now 🙂 xx

  • I will say, as someone who positively hates the cold, I would need to be extorted, bribed, or kidnapped to go something like this. BUT you’ve absolutely sold me with the photos of the husky tour — such an incredible perspective, and absolutely captures the mood (the best photography conveys feelings, not sights, right?). Thank you for sharing these Rosie!

    Michelle Marie

  • Those boots and that snowflake sweater are beautiful! Husky sledding looks so much fun.. can’t wait to read about what a night sleeping in ice was like 🙂

  • Those dogs look so sweet! Racing all day doesn’t sound like an appealing job to me, haha. That ice room looks awesome though! I’d love to experience it!

  • Helen Ramage

    Just a quick question. I’m going to Tromsø in Norway in December but I’m worried it’s going to be dark all the time. How much daylight did you get in Sweden (which looks amazing by the way).