Yesterday, I shared some interesting tidbits about the inspiration behind the film Frozen as well as information for families who are looking to visit Norway, the land of Elsa and Anna. For those of us who can’t make the trek to Europe, there is another option!
During my trip to Quebec City last week, Disney immersed us in the world of Frozen by taking us to the incredible Hotel de Glace and arranging for us to experience activities in the surrounding area. Everything tied in quite beautifully and it occurred to me that this would be the ideal trip for families who want to experience the film in an interactive and educational way.
If you plan on visiting Montreal, Quebec City is just a three hour drive away, or you have the option of flying directly in to the Jean Lesage International Airport which is located just 20 minutes from the ice hotel. The two nights and three days that I spent in Quebec were just about perfect and it’s quite easy to replicate! Click below to find out where to go and what to do in Quebec City in order to experience the world of Frozen.
Psst … did you know that Frozen was released on a special Blu-ray/DVD combo pack yesterday? It has some never-before-scenes from the movie and some super exciting additions!
First Stop – Hotel de Glace 1 of 10
Did you know that the filmmakers behind the movie Frozen visited the Hotel de Glace to gain inspiration for Elsa's palace? They wanted to study how the light bounced off the ice, so they spent some time at this hotel for research purposes. The one thing they didn't do was spend the night — but I did! Yes, you can really stay overnight and sleep on a bed of ice both comfortably and safely while staying warm!
Ice Beds 2 of 10
This was the room that I stayed in during my visit to the Hotel de Glace. Children from the age of 6 months and adults up to the age of 95 have slept at this hotel! I know, I know, the main question in your mind right now is, "How on earth do you stay warm?"
When you're ready to retire for the evening, the staff will give you tutorial on how to stay warm in your sleeping bag (rated to -30C). It's important that you follow the instructions to the letter because if you aren't bundled up correctly, the cold can sneak through and cause chills. I'm happy to say that I stayed cozy and warm during my restful evening. The bed's frame is made of glass and there is a mattress that lies on top. You are essentially sleeping on top of the mattress while bundled in your warm sleeping bag.
Check-in begins at 8 p.m. and if you aren't planning on hitting the sack straight away, you can either visit the bar area (where adults and children can enjoy chilled drinks in ice glasses) or take a dip in the hot tub. If you want to warm up, you can visit the hotel's office area at any time where there are couches located by the fireplace.
The "Frozen" Themed Room 3 of 10
As a special kick-off to the release of Frozen, the Hotel de Glace designed an incredible room that features carvings and sculptures from the film. You don't have to stay at the hotel in order to visit this incredible space and tour the facilities. Visitors are welcome during the day and for an admission fee they can take photos, enjoy a ride down the slides and spend the day with their families.
Keep in mind — the Hotel de Glace will remain open for just one more week, so if you want to visit this room, you'd better hurry! After speaking to the hotel's owner, I learned that by March 28th, they will be closing the place down for the season.
Dog Sledding 4 of 10
While you may not be able to meet Sven or ride on a reindeer, you can certainly do the next best thing during your trip to Quebec City! Dog sledding is a popular activity in Canada, however the Pourveoirie du Lac Beauport in the Jacques-Cartier zone is a great spot to go while you're in the area! Located just 15 minutes from Quebec , this adventure center offers excellent dog sledding rides with guides.
Dining at Panache 5 of 10
Located in the Auberge Saint Antoine hotel, Panache is an award-winning restaurant that has been receiving rave reviews for years. It too has been on my "must visit" list for quite some time! We had the chance to dine within this incredible building, nestled in the stone walls of a riverside warehouse that dates back to the 19th century. Our meal was exquisite — particularly the dessert, meringue filled with chestnut cream served with cassis ice cream and black currant puree. The combination of flavors was just incredible!
Although it is a classy restaurant, it's also very cozy and comfortable. Simple yet sophisticated. The Auberge Saint-Antoine and its restaurant, Panache, have received the CAA-AAA Four Diamond Award in both the restaurant and lodging categories.
The House on the Mountain 6 of 10
Do you remember a scene in Frozen where Anna is buying supplies and meets Kristoff? This museum reminded me of that shop. It's located at a traditional Quebecois sugar shack, Ã‰rabliÃ¨re du Lac-Beauport. The Quebec Wildlife Museum will familiarize you with old and modern techniques used by Quebec's trappers.
Sugar Shack 7 of 10
After dining on a breakfast consisting of the traditional French Canadian foodstuffs (maple pie, eggs, bacon, salted pork, crepes, baked beans, potatoes and meat pie) our group headed over to the maple museum where we learned about how maple syrup is made. This is yet another building located at the L'Ã‰rabliÃ¨re du Lac-Beauport.
Maple Candy 8 of 10
If you've never had maple candy, you're in for a real treat! Maple syrup is boiled down and then poured on snow. You then take a popsicle stick and roll it up quickly as it hardens and what you're left with is the most delicious lollipop known to man! They make these at the L'Ã‰rabliÃ¨re du Lac-Beauport for tourists and visitors.
Mountain Man 9 of 10
You may even spot a real mountain man at the L'Ã‰rabliÃ¨re du Lac-Beauport! ;)
Snowmobiling 10 of 10
Although it isn't part of the movie, Skidoos are to Canada what Apple Pie is to America. The Four Points Sheraton Hotel (just minutes from Hotel de Glace) offers snowmobiling for their guests and tourists in the area. I highly recommend taking a ride on one of these super fun recreational vehicles. The ride is fast, fun and you get to tour the Quebec region while riding across snow packed trails.
Disclosure: I was invited to a media event courtesy of Disney in lieu of my coverage. All thoughts and opinions are my own.