The world is filled with extreme temperatures, from deserts to frozen areas. Many of us are content with the warmth of the sun, but there are also those who enjoy the coldness of the coldest places on Earth. These cold spots offer breathtaking landscapes as well as unique experiences that are impossible to find anywhere else. We will explore the top 10 coldest places on Earth, each with its own stunning beauty and bone-chilling temperatures. From frozen tundras to remote villages, these places will take your breath away – quite literally! So, let’s start packing and preparing for our journey across the frozen wonderland of the world.
What are the 10 coldest places on Earth?
1. Dome Fuji, Antarctica
Lowest Temperature: -93.2°C (-135.76°F)
Recording Time: August 2010
Dome Fuji is the coldest place on the globe due to its location on the Antarctic Plateau and its high elevation. Temperatures rarely rise above −30 °C (−20 °F) in summer and can drop to −80 °C (−110 °F) in winter. The annual average air temperature is −54.3 °C (−65.7 °F).
In 2010, recording a reading of -93.2°C, this dry, cold desert was declared the coldest place on Earth, beating the previous record at the Vostok station, which had stood since 1983.
There was a station in Dome Fuji, which was established by JARE (Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition) in 1995 for an ice drilling project to obtain continuous ice samples down to the base of the ice sheet. The station has completed a 3035m deep drilling.
2. Vostok Research Station, Antarctica
Lowest Temperature: -89.2°C (-128.6°F)
Recording Time: July 1983
Vostok Research Station is one of the coldest places in the world, but it’s also one of the sunniest. There are over 22 hours of sunlight at Vostok Research Station Antarctica during the month of December. On the other hand, there are precisely zero hours of daylight on this northern hemisphere winter night, and Vostok set a world record low annual temperature for any weather station.
Vostok Station is located at the southern Pole of Cold and has the lowest reliably measured natural temperature on Earth of −89.2 °C (−128.6 °F). During the long winter, temperatures average about −65 °C (−85 °F); in the brief summer, about −30 °C (−25 °F).
The station was established in 1957 by the Soviet Union and is one of the most exciting sites for research. Scientists have penetrated Lake Vostok, a huge subglacial lake hidden beneath the ice, as well as ice cores and magentronomy. Here they found an ecosystem full of microbes and cellular organisms, which used to be cut off from the rest of the world.
3. Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, Antarctica
Lowest Temperature: -82.8°C (-117°F)
Recording Time: June 1982
The inhabitants of the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station only see one sunrise and one sunset every year, so it shouldn’t surprise them to find themselves in a place where temperatures are some of the lowest ever recorded. It is situated high on the Antarctic plateau, which makes it close to 3000 meters above sea level. Even a summer day will not climb much above -12C in this part of the country. Since the first base was built by the US in 1956, this station has been constantly occupied, and today there is an average of 150 people living here. The scientists at the station work on a range of things, from neutrino research to biomedical science and cosmic microwave background observations, which are all done with the South Pole Telescope.
4. Dome Argus, Antarctic Plateau
Lowest temperature: -82.5°C
Recording Time: July 2005
The largest ice dome on the Antarctic continent, Dome Argus, is situated at an altitude of 1,200 km (750 mi) and is also known as Dome A. It is supposed to be the coldest naturally occurring spot on Earth, with temperatures ranging from 90 to 98 degrees Celsius (130 to 144 degrees Fahrenheit). It has a surface elevation of 4,093 m. It’s one of the driest spots on Earth, with snow falling from 1 to 3 cm (0.4 to 1.2 inches) a year. This has made it an excellent place for the collection of ice core samples in order to learn more about climate history.
Infrared mapping technologies were used by a team from the University of Colorado, Boulder, in 2018 to find out where temperatures could fall below -90°C in eastern Antarctica. These occur on flat topographic depressions near the top of the ice sheet, ranging from 3,800 to 4,050 meters above sea level; Dome Argus is a prime candidate.
5. Denali, Alaska
Lowest Temperature: -73.8°C (-100.8°F)
Recording Time: sometime between 1950 and 1969
There is a magnificent, imposing view of over 6,190 m (20,310 ft) above sea level at the highest mountain peak in North America. It is the paradise of climbers, but if you plan to climb up, it will require an exceptional base layer. The coolest temperature in the US has been found at a weather station set up near the top of the hill: -73.8°C. The average temperature during the summer period is between 33 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. The rainiest months of the year in Denali are June to August.
The US government has changed the official name of Mount McKinley to Denali, a name that is used by Koyukon people living in an area around the mountain.
Denali is the main point of Denali National Park and Preserve, which is situated in the Alaska Range in the interior of the United States State of Alaska. In Denali National Park, there are a lot of things to do. Some popular activities include a field trip to the park from above, an aerial guided tour of the park, hiking, off-roading, crossing rivers, dog sledding, and educational and recreational programs.
6. Verkhoyansk, Russia
Lowest temperature: -69.8°C
Recording Time: February 1892
Verkhoyansk is situated in the Sakha Republic of Russia on the Yana River, just downstream from Sartang. It was established in 1638 as a fort and is now the center of tin and gold mining. Verkhoyansk is known for its freezing winter temperatures, with an average of -49 °C (-56 °F) in January.
A region of cold, dense air called the Siberian High is responsible for its unique climate. The area is subject to temperature inversions, pockets where temperatures actually increase with altitude. Remarkably, Verkhoyansk is known to experience hot summers with temperatures as high as 30 degrees Celsius; the city has one of the most significant temperature changes in the world between winter and summer.
This Russian settlement, which has a population of about 1,000, is one of the locations known as the northern “Pole of Cold,” where the coldest temperatures ever recorded in the northern hemisphere.
Locals kept their cars running all day, afraid they wouldn’t be able to start again until spring. In order to provide water for villagers, blocks of ice are pulled from the river. Each house has outdoor storage of water stored in piles of ice blocks. Then, inside the house, the blocks are melted.
7. Klinck research station, Greenland
Lowest Temperature: -69.4°C (-92.9°F)
Recording Time: December 1991
The Klinck station is an automated weather station positioned in the middle of Greenland’s ice sheet. It was part of a measurement system set up at the University of Wisconsin Madison. It measured the lowest Arctic temperature of 3,105 m above sea level on 22 December 1991, which was -69.4°C. The World Meteorological Organization in Geneva officially recognizes this temperature.
These sites also have recorded some of the most extreme weather in the northern hemisphere, as well as essential climate science. The Klinck Research Station, exposed to the worst of the dry, cold continental climate, is near the highest point on the ice sheet.
8. Oymyakon, Russia
Lowest Temperature: -67.8°C (-90°F)
Recording Time: February 1933
Oymyakon is a village in the Oymyakonsky district of the Sakha Republic, Russia. It is situated in the Yana-Oymyakon Mountains along the Indigirka River 30 km northwest of Tomtor on the highway to Kolyma. It’s the world’s coldest permanently inhabited city by average winter temperature.
Oymyakon, the coldest inhabited region of Earth with a population of just 500 permanent residents, is known as “The Pole of Cold”. The majority of them are indigenous people called Yakuts, but the area is also home to some ethnic Russians and Ukrainians. The government had helped a large number of workers move to the region during the communist era by providing them with decent wages for their work in difficult climatic conditions.
There is only one shop in Oymyakon, but there are other shops, such as the Post Office, Bank, Gas Station, and even a small airport. There’s also a school in the city. These schools, unlike other places in the world, have no intention of shutting down until the weather improves to -60°F. In order to counter the instability of permafrost that runs more than 13 feet deep, every structure in Oymyakon has been built on underground stilts.
A compromise between nature and local populations has been found. Clean air and water, an active lifestyle, and healthy eating are enjoyed by residents of the area. Fish, horsemeat, and milk are their principal source of nutrition. By collecting wild berries, they compensate for the lack of fruit.
9. North Ice, Greenland
Lowest Temperature: -66.1°C (-86.9°F)
Recording Time: January 1954
From 1952 to 1954, the British North Greenland Expedition operated North Ice as a research station on the inland ice of Greenland. The station was situated at an altitude of 2,341 meters (7,680 ft) above sea level.
Before military aircraft dropped food and equipment for a team of scientists and explorers to use, this research center was first reached by dog sleds. The temperature measured in 1954 was the lowest ever recorded in the northern hemisphere. A wide range of research, including geology, seismology, physiology, and glaciology, was carried out during the expedition.
10. Snag, Yukon, Canada
Lowest Temperature: -62.7°C (-80.8°F)
Recording Time: February 1947
Snag is a town located 25 kilometers (16 miles) east of Beaver Creek, Yukon, Canada, on a short, dry-weather sideroad off the Alaska Highway. Snag is situated in a bowl-shaped valley formed by the White River and its tributaries, notably Snag Creek. It was settled for the first time during the Klondike Gold Rush.
Snag, located in the bowl-shaped valley of the Yukon, is an abandoned village where a record low temperature was recorded during an unusual winter in the 1940s. The extreme chill caused locals to complain about their breath freezing midair as they exhaled and fell on the ground like white dust. Stranger still, they discovered that noises traveled significantly further in the chilly, dense air, with voices visible many miles away.
Lastly, the top 10 coldest places on Earth are not all for everyone, but they offer remarkable beauty and the chance to experience extreme temperatures in person. There is a distinctive charm all over these places, which will be sure to make an impression on any visitor from the freezing depths of Antarctica to Siberia’s isolated villages. These frigid destinations are worth braving the cold for, whether you are an adventure seeker or simply fascinated by the natural wonders of the world. The top 10 coldest places on Earth are not all for everyone, but they offer remarkable beauty and the chance to experience extreme temperatures in person. There is a distinctive charm all over these places, which will be sure to make an impression on any visitor from the freezing depths of Antarctica to Siberia’s isolated villages. These frigid destinations are worth braving the cold for, whether you are an adventure seeker or simply fascinated by the natural wonders of the world.
Read More: 100 Best Beaches on Earth 2023