Umeå – The Coldest Place I’ve Ever Been

Reminiscing about the coldest i’ve ever been!

As January is coming to an end and I’m starting to look forward to Spring. I’m taking a moment to look back at this time last year, when Daniel and I had the opportunity to go away for a weekend. It was our first winter in Sweden so the cold, the snow and the darkness were still a novelty for us. We decided to explore Sweden a little bit more and head north to a really cute university town called Umeå. Which is about 650km north of Stockholm. We could have flown, but as flying is not my favourite mode of transport we decided to take the train. It took us about 6.5 hours from Stockholm Central and I really enjoyed the trip. We got to see more than if we had flown. And I could settle in with a hot cuppa and a good book.

Coldest weekend

the coolest hotel

We spent the weekend at the very beautiful and super cool Stora Hotellet. It had a boutiquey vibe about it, with its cocktail bar, library and amazing rooms. The impressive building was built in the 1800’s and the interior is decorated to show its nautical history. The attention to detail throughout the entire hotel is amazing and there is something beautiful to look at around every corner. The colours and textures of the decorations and fittings throughout just ooze cosy and the rooms are no exception. Plus the staff were really helpful and friendly. Usually when I go away I like to spend most of my time away from the hotel. However at Stora Hotellet I was more than happy to just relax there, it was so relaxing. I know it’s a big call, but I have to say, this is one of my favourite hotels. I really loved it there and it made the weekend perfect.

Braving the freezing cold

I’ve been in the snow before, usually snowboarding or exploring ski towns. But I’ve never been as cold as I was in Umeå! When we arrived at lunch time on the first day it was -14. Which is really cold, but I’d layered up and was pretty happy with how I was coping. We were able to do a little exploring and then warm up with a nice hot cup of chai.

Coldest weekend

The next day however the temperature dropped to -27!!! I really wanted to know what it was like to be outside in that temperature. So I put on as many layers as possible and we headed out. It was freezing! I couldn’t believe how cold I was and how much that cold hurts. Even through my layers my legs and started to tingle painfully. My eyelashes froze as did Daniel’s beard. After a little while I got so painfully cold that I actually started to panic a little. Luckily by then we had seen the sites and were ready to head back inside.

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Amazing food

I was very excited to find out that Umeå is quite a foodie town with 10 of its restaurants in Sweden’s White Guide. We really enjoyed every meal we ate and I wish it was closer so I could enjoy more. Plus the coffee was good, so win win 🙂

So, to wrap up, I have to say that I’m really glad we got to spend some time in Umeå. It’s a really cool town with great food and coffee, plenty to see and do and an awesome hotel. Definitely worth a visit if you’re in Sweden. It was a magical place to be in winter and I’d love to go back. Next time I’ll be more prepared for the cold and maybe I’ll even get to see the Northern lights!

This country really is amazing and I feel very privileged to be able to spend time here. I’m looking forward to exploring so much more of it.

Cheers, Jess