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Hotel de Glace in Canada: Guide to the absolute coolest experience

Ice Hotel de Glace in Canada

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Guide to Hotel de Glace in Canada

The Hotel de Glace in Canada, just 35 minutes from Quebec City, is one of the COOLest experiences – literally! It’s an entire hotel built out of ice, and each year the Hotel de Glace in Canada is built with a new theme in mind and features art installations by sculptors from around the world. This year’s theme is Historic Timeline and showcases the earth from different eras.

Sarah relaxing in the private hot tub in our Deluxe Suite at Hotel de Glace

Here’s how the stay works. Guests check in to the Hotel Valcartier and get access to a normal hotel room at 4 p.m. They can also access the Hotel de Glace lobby at this time. Your room at Hotel Valcartier is where you’ll leave your belongings and access a private bathroom. At 9 p.m. the ice hotel room is ready for check in! Leave your belongings in your hotel room at Hotel Valcartier to avoid freezing.

Sarah enjoying the fireplace in our Deluxe Suite at Hotel de Glace

Guests are provided with a super thick sleeping bag in their room at Hotel de Glace. It is recommended to wear more than your typical pyjamas. Full winter gear / layers are essential for inside your sleeping bag to ensure a warm and comfortable sleep in your ice hotel suite.

We geared up for Hotel de Glace with:

  • thick wool socks
  • gloves or mittens
  • heated pads inside our socks and mittens
  • base layer leggings and long sleeve top
  • fleece sweater 
  • snow pants
  • winter jacket 
  • winter hat 

These layers allowed us to have a comfortable night sleep that kept us warm and cozy, with a slight chill on our nose in the morning. A small price to pay for such an epic experience.

Lounge area in the Hotel de Glace lobby

Each suite has its own theme, and we stayed in a Premium Deluxe Suite with a yoga theme. This suite (the top tier suite) has a fireplace, hot tub and sauna! There are less expensive rooms available with fewer amenities for those looking for a more budget-friendly experience. Check out time is 9 a.m. but guests can still access the hotel lobby and their room at Hotel Valcartier until 11 a.m.

The hotel has an on-site bar with a DJ spinning every Saturday night. Our favourite thing about Hotel de Glace in Canada was the giant ice slide! Drinks at the bar are also served in ice glasses! Visiting Hotel de Glace is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience you must add to your winter bucket list! If you don’t want to stay overnight, day passes to tour Hotel de Glace in Canada are available here.

Things to do near Hotel de Glace in Canada

The Quebec Winter Carnival (Carnaval de Quebec) will happen February 7-16, 2025

Check out Carnaval de Quebec. Experience Quebec City’s largest annual event, celebrating winter and the snow capital of the world. There are tons of events happening throughout the city during Carnaval including live music, children’s activities, a night parade and of course you’ll get to see Bonhomme, Carnaval’s infamous ambassador.

Go snow tubing at the Winter Playground. The Village Vacancies Valcartier has so much to do in the winter including an incredible Winter Playground with 25 snow tubing runs and a beautiful outdoor skating rink. It’s such a fun place to getaway with family or friends.

Visit the Aroma Spa. The Aroma Spa inside Hotel Valcartier is a lovely way to relax, unwind and warm up during your stay at Hotel de Glace in Canada. You could spend an entire day here getting pampered and immersing yourself in a thermal experience with hydrotherapy and hot and cold tubs. You don’t have to be a guest at the hotel to enjoy the Aroma Spa! Guests of Hotel de Glace get 10% off at Aroma Spa.

Sarah at the Strom Spa Nordique in Quebec City

Strom Spa Nordique. Stay warm AND enjoy winter! This indoor-outdoor hydrotherapy spa overlooks the St. Lawrence River, and is a 10 minute drive from Old Quebec and 35 minutes from Hotel de Glace. For more Quebec spas check out our post 10 Amazing Nordic Spas in Quebec.

Au 1884 Toboggan Ride. For a budget-friendly thing to do (just $4 per ticket), take a wild ride down one of these toboggan hills and hit up to 70km in speed! What a rush!

Onhwa’ Lumina Night Walk. Just 30-minutes from Quebec City and 15-minutes from Hotel de Glace, this enchanted forest night walk celebrates the Huron-Wendat Nation with a 1.2km immersive pathway. It’s very educational, and for some may be emotional, as you feel a strong connection to nature and have an opportunity to meditate as you get fully immersed in the experience.

Sarah exploring Old Quebec

Explore Old Quebec. This old cobblestone city will make you think you’re in Europe. It’s a fabulous place to shop, admire the architecture and grab a bite to eat. Check out our blog post Quebec City things to do: Epic Summer edition for some of our favourite places to visit here!

Sarah skating at Place D’Youville

Go Skating at Place D’Youville. Located in the centre of Quebec City, Place D’Youville has an outdoor skating rink operating all winter. Quebec’s unique architecture can be admired while you’re skating! Outdoor skating here is free.

Where to eat nearby

Sarah hanging out at the outdoor lounge area at Hotel de Glace

Restaurant La Traite. Located in Wendake, Quebec, La Traite is the perfect place to experience Indigenous cuisine. The menu is inspired by the culinary traditions of the Quebec First Nations and the decor features indigenous art. Their Sunday Brunch is an absolute feast, you don’t want to miss it!

Bistro L’Orygine. Located in Quebec City, just 35 minutes from Hotel de Glace, Bistro L’Orygine is an organic restaurant that serves creative meals with simplicity and freshness in mind. Their cocktail menu is to die for, and their brunch menu is delicious. This is one of our favourite places to eat in Quebec City!

Bloom Sushi. A unique vegan sushi restaurant in the heart of Quebec City. Our sushi was not only delicious, but the presentation was stunning and the ambiance in the restaurant was nice and relaxing. We enjoyed some yummy cocktails adorned with edible flowers too!

Where to stay in Quebec City

Christine enjoying the view from her suite at Hotel Nomad

Hotel Nomad. A beautiful boutique hotel in the heart of Quebec City, Hotel Nomad has a warm feeling the moment you walk through the front doors. A perfect place to stay any time of year, it’s also the perfect spot to stay before or after your visit to Hotel de Glace in Canada. Hotel Nomad has been certified carbon neutral since 2021 and is aiming to achieve zero emissions by 2027. We love that!

The gorgeous ensuite bathroom at Hotel Nomad

For more things to do in Quebec City check out our blog posts Quebec City things to do: Epic Summer edition and 10 Amazing Nordic Spas in Quebec.

FAQs

What if I find it too cold to sleep at night?

Overnight guests are given sleeping bags and are encouraged to sleep in layers as your body gets warmer through the night. Guests are also given a room at Hotel Valcartier across the street to store their stuff, shower and sleep in if they can’t make it through the night.

Is the hotel open year round?

No, Hotel de Glace in Canada is only open January through March.

Is the Hotel de Glace rebuilt each year?

Yes it is, and each year it’s designed with a new theme in mind.

How far is Hotel de Glace from Quebec City?

It’s a 35 minute drive from Quebec City!

What time can I check in at Hotel de Glace?

You can check into your room at Hotel Valcartier at 3 p.m., tour the ice hotel lobby and then check in to your room at Hotel de Glace at 9 p.m.

Can I visit Hotel de Glace for the day?

Yes, you can purchase a day pass ticket. It is open for day pass visitors from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Buy a day pass here.

How many nights can I stay?

It is recommended that you stay one night. Rooms are available at Hotel Valcartier for the nights before and after your stay, or drive 35 minutes to Quebec City to experience the magic of this beautiful city!

Is there a bathroom in your suite at Hotel de Glace?

If you need to use the bathroom during your stay there is a heated outhouse for guests of Hotel de Glace.

Christine and Sarah checking out their suite at Hotel de Glace in Canada

If you haven’t yet, add the Hotel de Glace and Quebec City to your winter bucket list. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience getting to sleep in an ice hotel in Canada, and adding on a few nights in Quebec City makes the perfect winter getaway. If you go, make sure you tag us on your posts on Instagram and let us know if you made it through the night at North America’s only ice hotel.

This blog was written in partnership with Quebec City Tourism.

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