When it comes to a romantic winter getaway, the beach doesn’t have to be your only option. Scott and I are gearing up for a few winter trips to share with you, but in the meantime, here’s a list of a few romantic places we hope to visit together this winter.
Cuddle up close and enjoy the sparkling beauty of each and every room in this Norwegian ice hotel. Built entirely of snow and ice, this spectacular structure houses guests from December to April. Due to its temporary nature, the snowhotel has to be rebuilt every winter—it will never be the same experience twice! The ice bar and guest rooms are decorated with hand-carved ice sculptures and packed snow art crafted by local artists; though the hotel and its art might melt in the spring, the memory of your trip will be one that lasts for a lifetime.
Kirkens snowhotel also offers more traditional lodging year-round with their alpine cabins, and three restaurants offering delicious Norwegian food made with local ingredients, many of which the hotel grows itself or catches in the nearby lakes and fjords; in fact, you can skip the middleman and catch your own meal! The hotel offers both ice fishing and King Crab fishing excursions which include a post-excursion fry-up to enjoy the delicious fruits of your labor.
Banff Hot Springs
Nestled high in the mountains of Alberta, Canada, you and your loved one can enjoy both the warmth of these historic waters (and each other) and the chill of a breathtaking Canadian winter at the same time. After all, nothing beats a hot soak after a day of dogsledding, ice fishing, snowshoeing and more, all of which can easily be found in nearby Lake Louise.
The mineral springs Banff National Park have long been coveted for their relaxing and rejuvenating properties; archaeological evidence suggests the springs’ romantic atmosphere has been attracting visitors for over 10,000 years. In fact, it was an ownership dispute upon the springs’ rediscovery which turned them into the first of Canada’s many National Parks, securing the enjoyment of visitors for ages to come.
Yellowstone National Park
Add a little taste of adventure to a romantic vacation by getting back to nature. We have visited Yellowstone National Park in the summer, but I think it would be a completely different experience in winter. The wild and untamed wilderness of Wyoming’s most famous parklands boasts a number of stunning treks that any intrepid pair of nature-lovers can enjoy. Take on challenging ski trails, explore stunning vistas, learn all about the park’s famous landmarks, and view its native creatures in their natural habitat.
All of Yellowstone National Park’s winter packages include food and lodging at one or both of the park’s full-service hotels, Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel and the Old Faithful Snow Lodge. Each offers a range of activities from guided tours to free activity equipment rental, ski and skating lessons, in-park transportation, and more.
Fall asleep together under the radiant shifting colors of the Northern Lights with a visit to Kakslauttanen Resort in Finland. This Laplandic resort hosts a number of glass igloos for guests who want to share an uninterrupted view of the Aurora Borealis—an indisputably breathtaking sight. The resort is far enough north and a great enough distance away from city light pollution that the elusive aurora is regularly visible. While electric lighting in most cities would obscure this amazing natural phenomenon, Kakslauttanen’s location offers a guaranteed sighting almost every night.
Besides the amazing view, the resort also offers a number of fun wintertime activities to fill your days. Enjoy a day-cruise on an icebreaker boat complete with a chance to swim in the icy Bay of Bothnia (in a dry suit, of course) or learn about Sami culture on a guided reindeer safari. For couples who have and would like to bring their children, a visit to nearby Santa’s House can be booked. (After all, in Finnish culture, Santa lives in Lapland!)
Hoshino Resort Tomamu
This ski-and-spa resort in Hokkaido, Japan is actually two hotels in one. The two parallel high-rises connected by a glass bridge are known as The Tower and are centrally located with regards to the resort’s many ski trails. Mount Tomamu is part of the Hidaka Mountain Range and reaches over 1200 meters at its summit. The 25 runs range from bunny hills for beginners to an experts-only “powder heaven” for serious snowsport enthusiasts. The resort also boasts an ice village with a large skating rink, a wave pool, and a large shopping center.
Its second hotel, Risonare Tomamu, offers a more luxurious experience. While still within easy access of the slopes and the rest of Tomamu resort, each room in the Risonare Tomamu hosts a jet-pool and private sauna, and come only four to a floor to provide complete peace, quiet, and privacy during your stay.