Slumbering trees under a thick blanket of snow and fields of ice crystals glistening in the sun. Red, tingling cheeks and feet hiding in thick, knitted socks by a warm and crackling fire. That’s how we started this year; With a cozy winter weekend in beautiful Furudal in Dalarna.
Usually summer is when we find ourselves in Dalarna, but at the end of last year we decided to start 2022 with a weekend away. After a few intense months at work our Christmas holiday was spent winding down and mostly doing nothing. So it felt nice to go someplace and enjoy outdoor activities before heading back to work.
Snowshoe hike at Koppången
Our first day in Dalarna started of really good with a most spectacular outing; A snowshoe hike in a magical, glistening winter wonderland.
Koppången is a nature reserve and the largest marsh area in Dalarna. In winter time this place offers a magnificent natural scenery and good opportunities for skiing, snowshoe hiking or dog sledding.
The contrast of pulling off the road, stepping out onto a parking lot and then into what seemed like a scene from Narnia was amazing! The trees were quiet, their branches heavy with snow that created tunnels for us to walk through. The sun made everything glisten and it was like walking through fields of crystals.
We followed the signs towards Tunturi, a shelter where we stopped for lunch. Evy, the other half of The Mangevie, had prepared sandwiches with a very tasty filling for us that we grilled over a fire. This hike is part of the winter package offered by The Mangevie which I can highly recommend!
As always, gathering around a fire really brings people together and we had many good conversations and laughs with our group.
Unique accommodation – Sleep in a treehouse
Having a warm, welcoming place to stay is to me more important in the wintertime. After a day outside in the cold it is so nice to come inside, and to have a place where you can wind down and warm up is key. Staying in the Tree House at The Mangevie was magical and exactly the type of space I wanted to come home to in the evenings.
Our first night it was below -20 and that was perhaps slightly too cold, but the other nights were better and we just made sure to keep the fire going. It’s something so satisfying about splitting firewood, loading it up next to the stow and start a fire. While it get’s going you put on dry, warm socks, sip on a beer or glass of wine and then you just keep feeding the fire. It’s a small space so it warms up fast and when it’s time to go to bed there are so many blankets to snuggle up under!
And after a super cozy night snuggled up close together under several layers of blankets it’s lovely to walk up and walk through the quiet morning and thick snow into the main building for breakfast.
Put your socks and base layers in the bed, by your feet and under the blankets.
That way they’re warm when you go to put them on in the morning!
Dogsledding through the forest
Another day, another adventure. This time we headed out to go dogsledding through the forests with Below Zero Husky Tours. I had never done it before and it was a very unique experience, and a great way to see more of a forest or area while being very comfortable.
Cozying up in the sled under blankets and zooming through the forest was super fun, but what I enjoyed the most was getting to know the dogs and learning how dogsledding works. Our sleigh ride was very chill and we were able to talk to our driver Josefine while soaring through the forest.
It’s amazing how much energy the dogs have, and that they need to run and work hard to be happy. Just like us they’re also very individual and work better with some dogs than others, so it’s important to get to know them and pair them well. On their website you can meet all their dogs! I could stare into their eyes forever, they are all so beautiful.
When we came back from the ride Evy had prepared a stew that we enjoyed around the fire in a little cabin on the property. We sat slurping it from enamel cups and dipping bread while the dogs tried to get in to get a taste.
With our bellies full of warm food, and me having hugged enough dogs to last through the year it was time to end our winter weekend and start the journey back home. Once again we had explored a new part of Dalarna and were loaded up with energy from taking part in amazing experiences and meeting awesome people.
Have I started looking at houses or cabins in Dalarna since I keep returning? Maybe…
Wishlist for next winter
Winter in Dalarna was truly an amazing experience and I can’t believe I haven’t done it before. I definitely want to come back for more winter activities, and after having a look at Visit Dalarnas website there’s a lot to do!
Here’s my wishlist of things to come back for:
❅ EXPLORE GRÖVELSJÖN
Grövelsjön is a place I hear people talk about all the time, and I’ve never been there! It seems to be the perfect area to enjoy the mountain world with all of its beauty, down hill skiing or snowboarding, seeing reindeer and enjoying good, local food. Winter-hiking here seems amazing as well.
❅ MORE COZY WEEKENDS
I love escaping the everyday life for a cozy weekend tucked away in a cabin, enjoying daily excursions and slow evenings. I feel like there are so many good spots for weekends in Dalarna – I’d love to explore more of them!
❅ SNOWBOARD AT IDRE FJÄLL
I am learning to snowboard, and once I am a bit better (which is hopefully next winter) I would love to go explore some bigger hills with beautiful scenery. Dalarna is home to Idre Fjäll which seems to be the perfect location to do just that, mixed with other lovely outing when I need to rest my legs (or sore bum). I’t would be amazing to stay at Pernilla Wiberg’s hotel and enjoy the spa and high quality, local food after long days in the slopes!
❅ SNOWSHOE HIKE
I love hiking, and it’s really nice to do in the wintertime as well. I’d love to go on more snowshoe hikes both in the mountains and forests of Dalarna. It’s such a nice way to gain access to, and explore, beautiful locations during winter.
There’a a lot of places to explore on snowshoes. But a spot I would love to see in wintertime and where I think snowshoes would be really good is Fulufjällets National Park. I’ve been there in the fall but winter would be magical!
I will be back next winter, but if you are looking for things to do this season they can have snow up until, or shortly after, easter – so there’s still time. Let me know if you end up going!