Swedish Christmas at the ICEHOTEL
Our guest writer, Gabriel Chamoun reviews our 'Christmas Adventure in Swedish Lapland'.
Our guest writer, Gabriel Chamoun gives you a guy's perpective on the Christmas Adventure in Swedish Lapland.
Day 1 - Hotel Rival
Stockholm, day 1…. #freezing. As soon as we got to our deluxe rooms, I did not want to leave. How I do capture modern, Art Deco & Benny Anderson in a sentence?
Day 2 – Kiruna Airport
Did that plane just do a 180 degree u-turn on tarmac? On ice? Give that pilot a beer!! From inside the fuselage, I can see strong winds & snow. Jacket draped over my arm, 30 m walk on tarmac. Who needs a jacket. OMG!!!!
Day 3 – ICEHOTEL hot room
Arrival & welcome dinner. Who would have thought ice is so slippery? I just did the moonwalk and splits. No CCTV cameras, nothing to see! From now on, I am only wearing my Sorrels.
Day 4 – Sami Land
The indigenous people showcased their culture with reindeers, “wow big fella” - an important part of life & survival.
After our tour, and riding the reindeers we were served lunch inside a massive lavvu tent. Salty smoked reindeer with lingonberry on a flat bread – a sami style souvlaki. 2nds? Don’t mind if I do.
Ice sculpting – it started off as a tree, then a rabbit, but ended up looking more like Garfield.
ICEHOTEL - Cold room. Ice bar – frozen cups & cocktails.
PJ’s on, boots on, beany on.. I feel like a Hollywood actor incognito. Grabbed my sleeping bag and off to the ice room. The only thing cold I felt was my breathing. It’s quite snug actually. As soon as I closed my eyes, it was lights out, only to be woken up by the host in the morning with a hot lingonberry drink - yum.
Day 5 – Abisko & Northern Lights
No, not a Swedish biscuit. Abisko is the town, which is home to the Aurora Sky station. Chairlift, the only the means of getting there. Must put on a snowsuit, of course I didn’t…. #frozen.
Greeted with a much-needed open fire & hot lingonberry vodka – Skål! For dinner we had fillet of moose… Awesome. Then got to experience the northern lights – amazing!! It’s like watching a colourful band of smoke, swirling around itself, constantly changing shape and dancing to its own rhythm.
Time to go back down the chairlift. “Can I borrow someone’s snowsuit?”
Day 6 – Christmas Eve at Björkliden
Ahh Christmas…what a better way to begin Christmas with a bit of husky sleighing. “Good boy” – I want to take this guy home with me.
Scandinavians celebrate Christmas on 24th of December & celebrate we did. A Smörgåsbord treat await us. So much food & just outside the most spectacular northern lights appeared for us.
Day 7 - Björkliden
Well this does really feel like Christmas, so much snow outside our cabin, so what better way to spend Christmas day than snowmobiling & snowshoeing?
Ohh look it is snowing!!!
Credit for the Abisko image: Lola Akinmade Åkerström/imagebank.sweden.se