Mars is known for its sandy Martian surface, so who would have thought that it was actually home to a massive winter wonderland? New photos released by the European Space Agency (ESA) revealed that the Red Planet has a 50-mile-wide icy crater.

ESA's Mars Express spacecraft captured and shared the images of the crater filled with ice that they now call Korolev crater. In a tweet shared last week, ESA said that the Korolev crater is 82 kilometers across and can be found in the northern lowlands of Mars. The icy crater is consistently covered in a sheet ice that is around a mile thick. 

The stunning photo of the icy Korolev crater was actually formed from five different images taken by the Mars Express High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) in the unnamed Mars Express spacecraft. The still also shows topographic views, which reveal the complete circular depression on the planet's surface. 

According to the ESA, the Korolev crater is filled with ice instead of snow and is a "well-preserved" example of a martian crater. The constant presence of ice was apparently possible due to a phenomenon called "cold trap."

"The very deepest parts of Korolev crater, those containing ice, act as a natural cold trap: the air moving over the deposit of ice cools down and sinks, creating a layer of cold air that sits directly above the ice itself," the ESA explained.

The additional layer of cold air above the crater acts as a shield and prevents the ice from ever melting, creating an everlasting winter wonderland. It also helps that the Korolev crater isn't a completely isolated case. It is "just south" of Olympia Undae, a vast dune field and a well-known polar cap of Mars. 

The University of Arizona's Phoenix Mars Mission said on its educational website that just like Earth, Mars also has a North and South Pole. However, unlike our polar ice caps which are made of water, Mars' ice caps are composed of water ice and carbon dioxide ice.

But if you're expecting to see more icy craters in Mars in the future, you may be disappointed. Martian expert Kirsten Siebach, assistant professor in Rice University‚Äôs Department of Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences, told Fox News that only a small area in Mars can sustain ice. 

"The areas where ice is stable are highly dependent on both latitude and elevation, so there is only a small area on Mars where it is cold enough for ice in the shadowed interior of craters but it isn't present on the surface," Siebach told the outlet via email.