If you live in Utah or visit often then you’ve likely heard of the Utah Ice Castles in Midway! This incredible experience is located 60 minutes southeast of Salt Lake City in a cute town called Midway. Often referred to as the Park City Ice Castles due to Midway’s proximity to Park City, this serene experience is viewable during the winter season! It’s a wonderful thing to do near Salt Lake City with family and friends who enjoy photogenic art walks!
We knew it was going to sell out fast so we bought our tickets within 15 minutes of tickets opening online! To our surprise, tickets for the first 6 weeks were already sold out by then except for a time slot the very next day! We’re pretty spontaneous and we’re so glad we hopped on this opportunity because it made for some epic photos!
Getting great photos at touristic locations does not come without challenges, so we wrote this ultimate travel guide to the Midway Ice Castles to help photographers, families, and friends travel to the ice sculptures! In this article we’ll discuss how to get to Ice Castles Midway, what time to visit, what to wear, and other FAQ’s to ensure you have the best experience this winter!
What are the Utah Ice Castles?
The Ice Castles are giant ice sculptures made from icicles that drip and freeze overnight for multiple nights in a row until they form an enormous fortress over 15 feet high! The Ice Castle team imports a specific set of decorative ice sculptures and integrates a sprinkler drip-and-freeze system until a tunnel of winter wonderland is born.
Lodged in the ice is multi-colored LED lights that make the ice glow for the evening visitors! Kids (and adults…let’s be real) will love the ice slide and the plenty of snow to make snowballs and snow angels! You’ll be able to forget about work and responsibilities for a few hours and enjoy a winter art walk!
Getting to Ice Castles Midway, Utah
The Ice Castles Utah has to offer is situated 60 minutes southeast of Salt Lake City in a town called Midway, Utah. You’ll want to plan a half day to a full day adventure here because traffic to-and-from Midway during the winter season especially with the Utah snow castles) can be busy and you don’t want to squeeze too many plans in a day! Most people travel to the Midway ice castles by car, these are some estimated commute times from Utah’s popular areas:
From Salt Lake City International Airport
The commute from Salt Lake City International airport to the Ice Castles in Midway, Utah is around 54 miles and takes roughly 60 minutes in no traffic. You’ll pass Park City on your drive which is a noteworthy place to enjoy a whiskey distillery or catch a hike in the mountains.
From Park City
The commute from Park City to the Midway Ice Castles is around 21 miles and takes under 35 minutes in no traffic. Park City is popularly known for Deer Valley ski resort and the Utah olympic park which hosted the 2002 winter olympic games! While you’re in Park City, it’s also worth mentioning to check out High West for their steak and drinks.
From Downtown Salt Lake City
The commute from Downtown Salt Lake City to the Ice Sculptures Utah in Midway is around 49 miles and takes under 60 minutes in no traffic. You’ll pass Park City, Utah on this commute which is a noteworthy stop for hiking, skiing, dining, and lodging!
What time of day should you go to get the best photos at the Utah Ice Castles?
We went at 12 noon and were scared the lighting at the Ice Castles Utah would be too bright and harsh for great pictures! To our surprise, the low-laying sun on the winter horizon was very forgiving! So don’t be bummed if you don’t lock in a time slot at sunrise or sunset!
When it comes to lighting, keep in might that the sun rises and sets at different points in the year. In January and February when the Midway Ice Sculptures open, the sunset is around 5:15 pm. You can use an iPhone app like the Sun Seeker to predict the future angles of the sun.
What should you wear to be most comfortale?
Prepare to be outdoors and dress for the appropriate weather at the Snow Castles Utah! It was cold and sunny so we packed mittens, warm jackets, waterproof boots. Don’t be a fool and show up in converse or vans, your socks will be wet within 5 mins! Remember, it’s an ice castle…outdoors…that melts….and turns to slush…that you walk on!! haha so don’t wear Uggs or anything that will soak water!
How can you get the best photos at the Ice Castles?
If you’re a content creator like us, bring a tripod and take some pictures on self-timer! Don’t get frustrated if there’s lots of people in the background of your photo. There are plenty of photoshop and Lightroom tutorials on how to photoshop people out of your pics!! To be honest, we hate using photoshop so we just waited 10 mins here and there for the perfect photo opportunity!
- Stephen is staying warm as heck in his insulated jacket from Lululemon
How much are tickets to the Ice Castles?
At the time of writing this article, general admission ages 12 and up on Fridays and Saturdays is $22 per person at the Utah Ice Castles. You can save $7 per person if you go to the Midway Ice Castles on Monday-Thursday instead of the weekend! Utah Ice palace tickets for ages 4-11 are $15 on Friday and Saturday or $11 on Monday-Thursday. Check out the Ice Castle website to confirm most recent pricing.
How long does it take to go through the Ice Castles?
It takes 45-60 minutes to go through the Ice Castles in Midway. You’ll spend more time there if you do the ice slide or take pictures with your family and friends.
Are the Utah Ice Castles Returning This Year?
The Utah Ice Castles are returning in 2021-2022 winter season! Check their website for rates on tickets to the ice palace Utah.
Is Ice Castles Still Open?
According to the Ice Castles website, Midway Ice Sculptures will open in January 2022 and stay open for the winter season until March or April.
Can you bring dogs to the Ice Castles?
Only service animals are allowed at the Midway Ice Castles. According to the Ice Castles Website,
“Service animals are defined as working animals trained to perform tasks for the benefit of individuals with physical or mental disabilities – such as guiding people who are blind, alerting people who are deaf, alerting and protecting people prone to seizures, or other tasks directly related to a disability. Guests who use service animals must retain control of their animals at all times and should keep them on a leash or harness while visiting. Event staff are not permitted to take control of service animals.”
What is Cosplay night at Ice Castles?
Cosplay night at Ice Castles is a costume character meetup where Ice Sculpture visitors surround themselves with their favorite anime, cosplayers, costume artists, and comics! Cosplay night at Ice Castles is an imaginative experience!
Where should you stay on your visit to Midway, Utah?
We recommend staying at a cabin or Airbnb in the mountains so you can enjoy nature for a few days! Here’s a list of available airbnbs in the area:
Is Ice Castles better at night or day?
Ice Castles are better during the day in our experience because then you can grab lunch in Midway or do a hike in Park City after your adventurous morning or early afternoon at the Ice Castles.
Are the Ice Castles worth it?
Our overall experience is that the Utah Ice Castles in Midway is well worth it for people who value unique experiences in photogenic areas!
Our Overall Review of Utah Ice Castles
The Utah Ice Castles in Midway did an overall fabulous job on the 2020-2021 winter season! They went above and beyond on the detail of the castles. It felt like something out of Narnia in the C.S. Lewis Book! We had a fun time and felt like it was well worth the money for the experience. We had so much fun that we’d likely go again! The Utah Ice castles team did an excellent job with:
- Designing a picturesque environment out of ice
- Prioritizing guest safety so nobody was climbing on the ice
- Marketing the event early so we could secure a ticket before they sold out
- Picking a location that was close enough to Salt Lake City that we would go for a day trip
- Offering VIP sections for $400 so you could get private pics without the crowd
If we were to give any constructive criticism, we would say the experience was rather crowded! Sure, thousands of people are going to want to view a unique winter art walk like this, but I’d rather pay a little bit extra to get a less crowded feel! The Utah ice castles team could benefit from these tips for the next year:
- Allow less visitors in at each time, charge more per ticket.
- Offer more food and drink options like hot chocolate and pretzels
Ice Castles COVID-19 Precautions
Ice Castles Utah takes Covid-19 seriously – one of the first mentions on their site is that if you or your family members feel sick within a few days of your visit, you can reschedule by reaching out to them via email. The staff at the Midway Ice Sculptures wears masks while working to maximize your safety. It also helps that the entire Ice Castles Midway experience is outdoors! They frequently disinfect common areas like the tablets for ticket purchasing and they also have hand sanitation stations conveniently located near the entrance, exit, restrooms and common areas.
Bree + Stephen are adventurous entrepreneurs based in Salt Lake City, Utah! They’re pioneers of the NO BS Podcast and hosts of their YouTube channel where they share travel videos, business tutorials, and lifestyle content! They live with their German Shepherd, Sequoia and are usually chugging coffee while on their way to a hike! Please contact for business inquiries or questions about the content on our website!