Icehotel and Icebreaker Sampo in Kemi
This Easter Sunday I visited the ice-hotel in Kemi to have a look. I did not intend to stay there overnight, but I was not sure how long it will remain, so this was more or less a visit not to miss it. It did not take long to find it after asking once, it is located downtown at the harbour. There are even signs posted for the 'Lumilinna' as it is called here in Kemi, but somehow I once did not take care while driving, so I got lost. The icehotel can be visted also by 'daytourists', which costs 7 Euros. You can go inside and even the rooms are open to be looked at. It my opinion it is pretty fresh inside (if I may call it so), but I read on the webpage, that they hand out very good sleepingbags.
Walking around in the rooms is nice, but the atmosphere with the lights in the ice is pretty impressive. I enjoyed it there, but staying overnight surely has a much deeper impression on people.
From the icehotel I could see a long chain of people on the frozen sea disappearing at the horizont. There has been a cross-country track prepared, actually there was a complete set of different tracks on the frozen surface. One track had a path for walking people beside, so I decided to spent another afternoon on the sea. I wonder how long this will last, it is almost april and still I haven't seen floating seawater since I arrived here in mid of February. And I guess that's the reason why air is so dry up here. Very curious about how this will go on...
Now in June I have been back to Kemi with my brother who had been here for a visit. As in summer the icehotel is of course gone, we visited the icebreaker 'Sampo' instead. During the summer it has 'holidays' and stays in the harbour where people can come to have a look at it. Inside you can drink a coffee or just have a look at the interior. It is allowed to go up into the bridge where normally the captain is doing his job.
Here some facts about the Sampo according to a flyer which you can get there onboard:
Build in 1960 in Helsinki
Length: 75,68 m
Width: 17,40 m
Ice class: 1 A Super
Height of bridge over waterline: 14 m
Speed in open water: 16 kn
Speed in ice of 50 cm thickness: 6 - 8 kn
Possible icethickness: 80 - 120 cm
Overall Power of main machines (4 pcs): 8800 hp
Sampo was used almost 30 years.
During winter time you can make trips with the Sampo into the massive ice on the sea.
The Sampo can be found in the Ajo harbour of Kemi.
For the tour operations have a look at the Sampo Tour pages.
During the visit of my parents I came back here to show them the Sampo and this time we had the chance to get down into the mashine room. This was pretty impressive as I haven't had much the chance to get so deep inside a ship. The mashine room is a pretty large labyrinth of engines, instruments and pipes. Hard to believe someone has an overview over all this... Have a look at the additional tavelogue below in which I have some of the photos from deep inside the Sampo.