Walk through a beautiful sculpture of ice that provides visitors with wonder, fun, and a frozen experience. Be Dillon Colorado’s ice king or queen as you explore the large scale castle filled with slides, tunnels and smaller sculptures. These 6 tips for visiting the ice castles in Dillon Colorado will help you have the best experience.
Visiting The Ice Castles in Dillon Colorado
Over President’s Day weekend we decided to take a family day trip up to the beautiful Colorado mountains and visit the Ice Castles in Dillon Colorado. When we planned this trip we knew we were taking a chance due to the pending BIG snow storm as well as the holiday mountain traffic that is the WORST. But, we decided to go for it and hit the road pretty early on Monday morning to try to beat the snow. We really lucked out on this trip with weather and traffic so I am really happy we decided to make this trip. We had such a great time during our day trip. Like I said, we started out early which meant we were able to stop for breakfast before heading to the castles. It was a really nice way to spend our day off with the kids.
About The Ice Castles:
Ice Castles is a company based out of Utah and now has over five locations. Ice Castles specializes in large scale creations hand crafted from ice. The very first Ice Castle was built in Alpine, Utah, in the front yard of Brent Christensen. He was building an ice cave for his daughter and that is how the Ice Castles concept got started. Their crews grow roughly 10,000 icicles every day and place them throughout the Ice Castle to provide something for the water to freeze to. Over time the icicles just get absorbed into the ice structure.
The Ice Castles are open during the day as well as at night. Each time will give you a new view and experience. During the day you get to see the deep blues that only the natural light will bring out in the ice, as well as the details in the castle. At night you get to see the LED lights light up the castle.
While we are not pros at this yet since this was our first visit. I feel like some of our experiences might help you prepare for your trip to the Ice Castles with your family. Keep in mind that while some of the Ice Castles around the country are closing soon, they do usually return to the same cities next winter!
6 Tips For Visiting The Ice Castles In Dillon Colorado
1. Dress In Your Snow Best. Get those snow pants, snow boots, snow hats, snow gloves, SNOW everything out to insure you and your family will have the best experience. Be prepared to not only be cold (HELLO ICE!) but also be prepared to end up wet. If you do not have snow pants I highly recommend wearing layers so that your bum and legs do not get soaked when you go down the slides or into the tunnels. I have to call out those teenagers we saw in the castles wearing Capri workout pants and canvas shoes…really hope they didn’t end up sick!
2. Purchase Tickets At Home. Tickets will sell out, especially on the weekends and holidays. That being said, if you are driving from the city you do not want to miss out on getting tickets. So, simply buy your tickets before coming up the mountain. We also noticed that when you buy tickets online they are cheaper than waiting until you are in the queue. The site is really easy to use, simply decide your 30 minute block and purchase!
3. BATHROOM Trip. Before getting on all of your snow day gear, make sure you and the kids take a potty break at a local business or at the portable bathrooms near the entrance. There are not bathrooms in the castle!
4. Get In The Slide Line FIRST. The Big Slide is a slide made of ice that anyone over 42″ can go down. My kids LOVED this slide, you use a mat to help you go a bit faster too. That being said, this line can get very long. Once in the castle, I would get into line so you can experience the fun. We lucked out and the kids were able to go on and off of the slide over 5 times each! Great timing for us. I have heard rumors of a wait being over 30 minutes!! YIKES!
5. Smile and Explore. Take pictures!! What an incredible backdrop. I did not take my “big” camera but got plenty of great shots using my iPhone. Make sure you use the map to find all of the little places to explore, those are the best photo ops as well.
6. Watch Your Step. The floor of the ice castle reminded us of shaved ice. It was a bit hard to walk around in and Teagan did fall a few times because she got caught up in the shaved ice.
Other Notes From The Ice Castles:
- Shoes – guys, you will be exploring ICE, as you might imagine, you could slip! Find boots that not only keep your toes warm BUT have great traction so you aren’t that person on the ice!!
- Time in castles – be prepared to spend between 45 minutes to an hour in the castle. This really does depend on how long you will be exploring. We spend about 50 minutes – then Teagan had to go to the bathroom! HA!
- Strollers are NOT allowed! If you need to carry your littles, I suggest wearing them or bringing along a sled that you can pull with you through out the castle.
- Watch your head and your butt – seriously, some of these tunnels and slides are probably made just for the kids but adults are trying them out. Be careful of your head when ducking through out the tunnels. Also, some of the areas are a bit tight so suck it in!
- Stick to your time. Plan on being at the castles during your 30 minute slot, you will not be granted access until your time. BUT they will not kick you out of the castle so spend as much time as you need.
- Parking is plentiful. This area of Dillon has a number of public parking areas. Arrive a bit early to insure you can find parking before your time slot.
- NO re-entry. Follow our tip – BATHROOM trip before going into the castles. They are pretty strict about once you leave you are not coming back in.
- What time is best? We went at noon. It was great, the sun was shining and it was beautiful. We have heard that the evening is great as well. Maybe next year we will go at night.
General Information About Ice Castles Dillon Colorado:
Friday – Sunday tickets:
$16.95 for General Admission (12+)
$12.95 for a Child (4-11)
Kids 3 and younger are free!
Monday – Thursday tickets:
$15.95 for General Admission (12+)
$10.95 for a Child (4-11)
Kids 3 and younger are free!
Ice Castles Dillon Address – 120 Buffalo St, Dillon, CO 80435
Monday, Wednesday & Thursday: 4pm – 9pm
Friday: 4pm – 10pm
Saturday: 12pm – 10pm
Sunday: 12pm – 8pm
Our family day trip was perfect. I am so happy we decided to take this time as a family. It was full of adventure and beauty. I think we will be adding the Ice Castles to our winter traditions from now on.