|Location:||On the Mittelallalin. Near Saas-Fee.|
|Fee:||Cable car (funicular) Saas-Fee-Mittelallalin-Saas-Fee: Adults CHF 59, Children CHF 29.50. Group (10+): Adults CHF 47, Children 23.50.|
|Light:||electric and natural.|
|Dimension:||A=3,500m asl, Ar=5,000m².|
|Guided tours:||self guided|
|Address:||Eispavillon, 3906 Saas-Fee, Tel +41-27-9573560 E-mail:|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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The Eispavillon is the biggest artificial ice cave of the world, built inside the Fee glacier by glaciologist Benedikt Schnyder. It is located on the Mittelallalin, below the funicular station and the turning restaurant Allalin. A 71m long tunnel with 120 steps leads down into the glacier, 10m below the surface.
As this ice grotto was made by a glaciologist, it is a little different to the other ones. Of course it shows ice sculptures and the mysterious blue light when sunlight is filtered by meters of ice. But it also shows the scientific background of glaciers, how they were formed and how they are explored. Some real life scenes show glaciologist in a camp and at work. The knowledge they are after, is the climatic history of our planet Earth.
Then the importance and dangers of glaciers for mountaineering are explained. Another display in an natural crevasse of the glacier, called Bergschrund, shows how a mountaineer is rescued after an accident. There are several lookouts allowing a visit of a real ice crevasse.
And another difference to other ice grottoes are the numerous modern art sculptures on display. Huge faces, the head of a pharaoh, pinguines, the snow man and Saint Berhard of Aosta are cut out of the ice. Most of them are in the Glaciarium, a huge circular shaped room which is used for meditation and for weddings.
Even the children will like it, as they have their own undergound playing ground. The Dinosaur Tunnel offers a frozen playground including ice slides.