Located in the Inner Harbour area of Kemi, Lapland, by the Gulf of Bothnia, the Lumi Linna Snow Castle is the largest snow fort in the world. Just one kilometre from the town centre, Kemi Snow Castle is a great source of pride for the people of Lapland, and Kemi in particular, and it draws hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.
The Kemi Snowcastle offers a magnificent example of the remarkable skills of local architects and builders. It is completely rebuilt every winter (2015 will be the twentieth consecutive year that the Snowcastle has been reconstructed), only to melt away with the arrival of spring. Inside its towering walls, the castle offers visitors of all ages with a fun and interesting experience.
Construction of the snow fort takes more than five weeks. Snow machines convert seawater into the snow for the fort’s construction. Made entirely from hard-packed snow and ice, the snow fort can cover up to twenty thousand square metres, and reach as high as more than twenty metres and three stories tall. The longest walls of the fort have been more than one kilometre in length.
The main features of the castle remain the same year after year, yet every year brings a new configuration; this means that each year, visitors are surprised with an all-new ice castle.
Guided tours are available to learn about construction of the castle, as well as ice sculpting practices.
The Snow Castle offers the following features:
- Snow Castle – includes a theatre, art gallery with ice art and sculptures, and a children’s adventure land – fully made from snow and ice! Each portion of the fort is lit colourfully with lights to illuminate the ice walls.
- Snow Restaurant – open daily for lunch or dinner, the tables and seats are made from ice, with the seats lined in reindeer fur.
- Ice Bar
- Snow Chapel – couples travel from all over the world to marry in the Snow Chapel. It has between fifty and one hundred seats.
- Snow Hotel – stay in cosy comfort within the ice walls of the Snow Hotel. Prices include entrance fees, a snow room, an arctic rated sleeping bad, a warm shower in the morning, and breakfast in the Castle Lounge. Rooms are double and there is a Honeymoon Suite.
An exhibition for twentieth anniversary of the Kemi Snow Castle opens on January 25th, 2015, and is expected to run until April 6th, 2015.
The surrounds of the snow fort also offer their own attractions. The adjacent Bothnian Bay is frozen over in winter, and offers vast areas of wilderness and opportunities to cross-country ski over natural sea ice. Go snowmobiling or take a reindeer sled ride. Visit the gemstone gallery next door to the snow fort, and don’t miss the chance to cruise on the Icebreaker Sampo.
Make sure you plan your Lapland trip and visit to the Kemi Snow Castle before it melts! Scandi Travel can help you get there in plenty of time to enjoy everything Kemi and Lapland have to offer. Visit our website today!