The place: Moaning Cavern, Vallecito, Calif.
Why there? Why now? In the hot summer months, everyone goes to the beach or the mountains. Few people think to go underground. Far, far underground. This is one of California's largest caves and drops visitors 272 feet below the earth's surface.
Chill factor: No matter the temperature outside, the cave's interior remains 61 degrees. Plus, the cave walls drip with moisture. In fact, the dripping creates the moaning sound that gives the cave its name.
Freeze-frame moment: You are in a climbing harness, dangling from a rope, above a 165-foot cavern, cursing yourself for not taking the staircase instead.
Getting there, getting in: From Los Angeles, drive north on Interstate 5 about 47 miles to Stockton, then take California 4 east for about 45 miles. Turn right on California 49, travel 1.5 miles, then turn left on Route 4. Drive about 10 minutes, then turn right on Parrotts Ferry Road. Go one mile, then turn right on Moaning Cave Road to Moaning Cavern. For info, go to www.caverntours.com.-- Hugo Martín
The place: AT&T Park, San Francisco
Why there? Why now? There's just something appealing about getting chilblains while watching baseball in August. Or, said another way, if you swore you'd never root for the Giants until hell froze over, you can do so now without guilt.
Chill factor: The park, which opened in 2000, faces the water. It's said to be warmer than the old Candlestick. You couldn't prove it by me. Dress warmly -- very warmly. And if the weather at a nighttime game doesn't make you shiver, the bigger-than-life-size statue of Willie Mays at the entrance should. Forget Barry Bonds. Mays is the man.
Freeze-frame moment: At Dodger Stadium, the vendors in the stands sell ice-cold drinks. At AT&T Park, the vendors in the stands sell . . . coffee.
Getting there, getting in: The ballpark is bounded by 2nd and 3rd streets and China Basin. For tickets and info, go to sanfrancisco.giants.mlb.com. -- Catharine Hamm
The place: Icehotel, Jukkasjarvi, Sweden
Why there? Why now? This is a mental chill. Just thinking about staying in a room made of ice, on an ice bed, with an ice lamp, in the winter 120 miles north of the Arctic Circle ought to lower your body temperature.
Chill factor: Every winter since about 1990, sculptors have built a hotel and bar made of ice blocks from the nearby Torne River. When the spring thaw arrives, the facilities melt. New ones are created the next winter, usually opening in early December.
Sleeping in an ice room is an unforgettable -- though not entirely comfortable -- experience. After all, it's apt to be minus 20 or 30 degrees.
For summertime visitors, there's a lodge with chalets and lots of authentic Lapland adventure. The sun never sets for 100 days, and the temperature rarely rises above 75.
Freeze-frame moment: Hanging out in the Icebar, drinking a Bear's Eye, made with Absolut Citron and blueberry liqueur, no rocks needed.
Getting there, getting in: SAS flies from Stockholm to Kiruna, where guests transfer to a bus for the trip to Jukkasjarvi, 10 miles east. For reservations and info: www.icehotel.com. -- Susan Spano
Beat L.A.'s heat by going to these cool places
California, Sweden, Finland, Chile and more have great spots to chill out from the heat.
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