Editors' Picks: Coziest Winter Getaways
Are you dreaming of a white Christmas, hitting the slopes or staying warm by a fireplace ... preferably with a view? Check out our top picks for snowy winter destinations.
Reykjavik, Iceland"It may seem counterintuitive to consider Iceland in winter, but hear us out. It's the off season and therefore surprisingly affordable. The mere 6 hours of daylight only up your chances of witnessing the majestic Northern Lights. And the 40-degree temps shouldn't stop you from taking a dip outside -- it's famous geothermal spa, the Blue Lagoon, offers mineral-rich waters averaging 100 degrees." -- Sara Gilliam, Senior Interactive Producer 960 1280
Telluride, CO"Most places in Colorado offer top-of-the-line skiing and first-class resorts -- Telluride is no different. However, for those who don't ski (like myself) and are still looking for a cozy winter getaway relaxing by a warm fire with a nice glass of scotch or a some hot apple cider, look no further then the Franz Klammer Lodge at the Fairmont Heritage Place. Boasting an impressive private spa, fire pits, an outdoor heated pool, several hot tubs and much more, this may just be the perfect place to keep warm in the cold face of winter." -- Ben Breslerman, Interactive Producer 960 1280
Winter Park, CO"The epitome of cozy, the Zephyr Mountain Lodge is comprised of rustic condos situated right at the base of Winter Park Ski Resort and located mere feet from the lifts. With outdoor hottubs and plenty of fireplaces to gather around with a cup of cocoa, this resort is a perfect escape in the snow-covered mountains of Colorado. And as the gateway to the Winter Park Village, there's no shortage of things to do, from shopping to ice skating." -- Amanda DiGiondomenico, Interactive Producer 960 1280
Hot Springs, MT"Skip glamping, skip glowing posh fireplaces at cozy winter resorts, it’s time to get back to nature … and warm up naturally! This coming winter, I’ll be hot spring-hopping through Montana. Lots of hot springs dot the Big Sky winter landscape, and offer a welcome reprieve when temperatures plummet to 20 degrees … and below. On my list so far are Bozeman Hot Springs, White Sulphur Springs, Chico Hot Springs, Mammoth Hot Springs, the Firehole River Swimming Area and Norris Hot Springs. Bring your bathing suit, no wetsuit needed." -- Lisa Singh, Interactive Producer 960 1280
Quebec, Canada"If you're not afraid of a little cold, then Quebec City is a beautiful place to visit in winter. Last January, I visited this cozy (albeit bitter cold) Canadian city, during a blizzard no less, and even was convinced to spend a night in an ice hotel! While sleeping in an igloo might not sound so inviting, the historic area of Quebec City, surrounded by fortified city walls, is brimming with charming bistros and cafes, and super friendly french-speaking locals. Right outside the old city gates is an ice rink, worth at least one skate around in all your thermal layers." -- Kathleen Rellihan, Interactive Producer 960 1280
Beaver Creek, CO"For the quintessential ski village, my family chooses Beaver Creek, CO. Roughly 2 hours from Denver International Airport, the resort is large enough to cater to the entire family, especially young children – offering activities like Cookie Time, tubing, ski and snowboard lessons (ages 3-14) and a play school and nursery for the young ones (ages 2 months to 6 years)." -- Rani Robinson-Kiganda 960 1280
Grand Marais, MN"Grand Marais is the perfect winter getaway for those who enjoy outdoor activities, including cross-country skiing, snowmobiling and ice fishing. In addition to its quaint lodges, shops and pubs, this small town is a popular destination for spectators who come out to see mushers and their dog teams make the 400-mile trek along the Gunflint Trail for the annual John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon. Take the 2-hour drive from Duluth, MN, along the North Shore Scenic Route, to see amazing vistas overlooking Lake Superior." -- Kwin Mosby, Managing Producer 960 1280
New Paltz, NY"Steal away to Mohonk Mountain House, a stunning Victorian castle resort surrounded by more than 2,000 acres of natural beauty, nestled along the banks of Lake Mohonk in New York’s Hudson Valley. Bundle up and sip your morning coffee from one of the rocking chairs that line the resort’s many porches, skate into the sunset at the open-air skating pavilion, or drink in the house’s turn-of-the-century elegance as you cozy up in front of one of the many stone fireplaces." -- Allee Sangiolo, Interactive Producer 960 1280
Hotel de Glace - QuebecInspired by the original in Jukkasjarvi, Hotel de Glace on the outskirts of Quebec incorporates the same functionality but in even more refined form. The hotel has framed paintings hanging on its ice walls, more elaborate ice furniture and a swankier ice bar. 960 1280
Alta Igloo Hotel - NorwayIf there is such a thing as a rustic ice hotel, the Alta Igloo Hotel in the northeast corner of Norway would be it. The rooms are not very large, and low ceilings make them a bit claustrophobia-inducing. Still, the experience of sleeping in an igloo under the Northern Lights is second to none. 960 1280
Alta Igloo Hotel - NorwayApart from its 80 beds the Alta Igloo Hotel houses suites, an ice gallery, an ice bar, an ice chapel and several lounges. Sculpture work also is present here -- hulking ice sculptures that appear as stone until you touch them and they melt in your hand. 960 1280
IceHotel - SwedenSituated in the village Jukkasjarvi, 125 miles north of the Arctic Circle in Sweden, the original Icehotel has been built every year since 1980. The facility didn't start out as a lodge; at first, it was simply built as a seasonal structure to house an art exhibit.
Aurora Ice Museum - AlaskaThe Aurora Ice Museum, located on the grounds of the Chena Hot Springs Resort 60 miles northeast of Fairbanks, is the only ice hotel in the U.S. Ice-carving champion Steve Brice designed. Visitors don't even have to spend the night; at the hotel's ice bar, guests can down a chilled martini before heading back to Fairbanks for the day. 960 1280
Ice Hotels 14 Photos