This magical igloo restaurant in Japan looks like something out of a fairy tale

It’s not often that igloos look comfortable. Cold and hard? Certainly. But never cozy or warm – although that is, you know, their purpose. However, these igloos in Japan seem really very welcoming. Just look at these charming little warm and quaint lights. In the cold winter nights of the Japanese Alps, each feels like a haven of warmth and comfort.

Each year, Restaurant Kamakura Village in the small town of Iiyama, Nagano Prefecture (just over an hour by bullet train northwest of Tokyo), sets up tables in more than 20 igloos fleeting. Each can accommodate up to four people, who usually crowd around a serving of the local specialty, nabe noroshi – a kind of miso hotpot, miyuki local pork and vegetables.

But igloos and culinary specialties are not the only things available at the Kamakura Village restaurant. Tucked behind a bright red tori door, one of the igloos (not the one you eat in, obviously) doubles as a Shinto shrine. The region around Iiyama – as well as Nagano more broadly – is also renowned for its world-class ski resorts and toboggan runs.

Photo: Shinshu-Iiyama Tourism Bureau

Lunches at Kamakura Village are 3,700 yen (£23.60, $32) per person and dinners are 4,200 yen (£26.80, $36.40), covering a private igloo, cooking pot and rice balls. The restaurant is open until February 27, when we imagine these igloos are starting to get a little… dripping.

That being said, Japan is currently quite off-limits to international travelers. But if you’re already in Japan and fancy sharing a delicious hot pot in a cozy igloo, you’re in luck. You can reserve an igloo at Kamakura Village Restaurant here.

Have you seen that you can sleep under the Northern Lights in these wholesome “hot igloos” in Alaska?

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