Photos by Cheryl Landes
Explore sculptures, tunnels, thrones, tunnels, slides, fountains, and other objects handmade from thousands of icicles at Ice Castles. The event is held in four cities in the U.S.: Dillon, Colorado; North Woodstock, New Hampshire; Midway, Utah; and Lake Geneva, Wisconsin.
Ice Castles in Colorado and Utah are open already, and the expected opening in Wisconsin is mid-January. The event in North Woodstock, New Hampshire, opens on Thursday, January 14, and tickets go on sale on Monday, January 11. General admission for ages 12 and older ranges from $19.99 to $24.99 and $14.99 to $19.99 for ages 2-11, depending on the day you choose to go.
I went to the Ice Castles in North Woodstock last February during a trip to New England. I expected the display to be larger than it was, but it was still fun to explore. LED lights shine through the ice formations and change colors. The sequence of colors vary in different areas, so from a distance, the sculptures have a frozen rainbow effect.
Tickets are timed, and the staff will not allow guests to park at the site until the exact time on their tickets. I arrived early and was told to leave and return. When I was allowed to park, I understood why the restriction was enforced: the parking lot was small and almost completely full when I arrived.
COVID-19 safety guidelines are in place this year. Maintaining a six-foot distance from others and wearing masks are required. Crawl spaces, tunnels, and canyons have a one-way flow indicated by posted signs. Sanitizing stations are available throughout the display.
The North Woodstock Ice Castles generally runs through late February, depending on the weather. Get more information and buy tickets at icecastles.com/new-hampshire. Tickets sell out quickly, so grab yours soon if you’re planning to go.