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London Ice Skating

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Skate at Somerset House

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Skate at Somerset House
Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink
Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink
Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink
London Eyeskate
Natural History Museum Ice Rink
Westfield London Ice Rink
Tower of London Ice Rink
Tower of London Ice Rink
Canary Wharf Ice Skating
Canary Wharf Ice Skating
Canary Wharf Ice Skating
Alexandra Palace Ice Rink
The Bluebird Skating Rink
Broadgate Ice Skating
 

 

Ice Skating in London is a time-honoured tradition that has been drawing in the crowds since the world's first artificial ice rink (known as a Glaciarium) was unveiled in Chelsea in 1876. Nowadays, taking to the ice surrounded by the capital's magnificent historical architecture is a fabulously festive must. In recent years the rink at Somerset House has dominated the skating scene but there are loads of other skating facilities all over the capital, including the Tower of London and the Natural History Museum, as well as Hyde Park's magical Winter Wonderland. Many are centrally located near the city's Christmas shopping hotspots and fabulously festive hotels. So get your skates on.

 
 

Alexandra Palace Ice Rink

The biggest permanent ice rink in London puts on some special events at Christmas.

Alexandra Palace Ice Rink Alexandra Palace Ice Rink Where:
, Alexandra Palace Way, London London, N22 7AY
Category: Activities for Kids

Alexandra Palace Way, London, N22 7AY

Tube: Bounds Green Station

 
 

The ice rink where the Dancing on Ice stars train, Alexandra Palace Ice Rink is an ideal place for a festive skate - not least because it's indoors so you don't have to rely on the weather to ensure a skating session. The biggest (it has a total capacity of 1,250) and best permanent ice rink in London, the grand indoor rink is open all year round and offers a range of other activities, such as ice hockey and figure skating classes (so you can emulate your idols from The Mighty Ducks or, erm, Blades of Glory). There's a soft play area too - ideal for parents and toddlers and open daily for two to five-years-olds - while spectators can make themselves comfortable in the 740-seat stadium or have a drink in the rinkside Phoenix bar. Refurbished in 2010, the ice rink has benefitted from a recent 2 million facelift and, from 13th to 16th December, is transformed into a story book spectacular when 'The Little Mermaid' is performed by a cast of Ally Pally ice rink and skating club members.

 
 
 

The Bluebird Skating Rink

A new ice skating rink for 2013 pops up outside the famous King's Road restaurant.

The Bluebird Skating Rink The Bluebird Skating Rink The courtyard in front of Bluebird restaurant hosts a colourful ice skating rink for the first time this winter. Enjoy the ice skating and warm up afterwards with a cocktail, hot chocolate or meal in the cafe adjacent or in the first floor restaurant overlooking the illuminated rink. As well as being the obvious choice to get in the Christmas spirit, you can combine a skate with some shopping on the Kings Road, a street brimming with gift ideas. And on Thursday 14th November there's a VIP party to celebrate the launch - get your skates on for vodka fuelled cocktails and canapes. 2013-11-112014-01-05 Where:
Bluebird Chelsea, 350 Kings Road, Chelsea, London London, SW3 5UU
Category: Seasonal

Bluebird Chelsea, 350 Kings Road, Chelsea, Chelsea, London, SW3 5UU

Tube: South Kensington Station

 

Dates: 11th November - 05th January 2014

 

The courtyard in front of Bluebird restaurant hosts a colourful ice skating rink for the first time this winter. Enjoy the ice skating and warm up afterwards with a cocktail, hot chocolate or meal in the cafe adjacent or in the first floor restaurant overlooking the illuminated rink. As well as being the obvious choice to get in the Christmas spirit, you can combine a skate with some shopping on the Kings Road, a street brimming with gift ideas. And on Thursday 14th November there's a VIP party to celebrate the launch - get your skates on for vodka fuelled cocktails and canapes.

 
 
 

Broadgate Ice Skating

Broadgate's ice rink moves to Exchange Square.

Broadgate Ice Skating Broadgate Ice Skating Broadgate Ice Skating London's longest-running ice rink has moved to a new location in Exchange Square, but it's still only a couple of minutes from Liverpool Street Station so City workers can still have a whirl in their lunch breaks. Conveniently close to Spitalfields Market, it's also a great place for Christmas shoppers to take a break with a spin on the ice. There's also the Bar BBQ on Ice with a charcoal grill and wood-burning oven for those wanting some grub or a cocktail, craft beer or winter warmer. The Broadgate Ice Rink is London's one and only turn-up-and-skate outdoor rink, with admission purely on a first-come-first-served basis. Some weekends and evenings, however, are set aside for private hire so check dates and times before you go.
2013-11-042014-02-27 Where:
Broadgate Ice Rink, Exchange square, London London, EC2A 2EH
Category: Seasonal

Broadgate Ice Rink, Exchange square, City, London, EC2A 2EH

Tube: Liverpool Street Station, Moorgate Station

 

Dates: 04th November - 27th February 2014

 

London's longest-running ice rink has moved to a new location in Exchange Square, but it's still only a couple of minutes from Liverpool Street Station so City workers can still have a whirl in their lunch breaks. Conveniently close to Spitalfields Market, it's also a great place for Christmas shoppers to take a break with a spin on the ice. There's also the Bar BBQ on Ice with a charcoal grill and wood-burning oven for those wanting some grub or a cocktail, craft beer or winter warmer. The Broadgate Ice Rink is London's one and only turn-up-and-skate outdoor rink, with admission purely on a first-come-first-served basis. Some weekends and evenings, however, are set aside for private hire so check dates and times before you go.

 
 
 

Canary Wharf Ice Skating

Canary Wharf gets into the Christmas spirit with a massive outdoor skating rink.

 

Nestled beneath the world-famous mirrored towers of Canary Wharf, this compact 450-square-metre outdoor ice rink adds a cheerful dose of Christmas spirit to the area's sedate office life. Hundreds of dainty lights transform Canada Square Park into a fairy-tale Christmas kingdom seven days a week from early November right through to mid January. The Wharf's suited and booted office workers will no doubt be the primary type of skater you get here, sampling a little festive fun now the recession seems to be petering out and their bonuses are no longer frozen. But really it's meant for everyone - including those who prefer gawping to gliding (the expanded Rinkside Bar and viewing gallery should keep everyone in good spirits). Fitting for the competitive, testosterone-heavy surroundings, brand new sharpened high quality skates are available this year - so you better be on your toes (so to speak).

 
 
 

Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink

Head to Hampton Court Palace for a festive skate with an unbeatable view.

Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink The striking Tudor facade of Hampton Court Palace provides a majestic backdrop to this popular open-air ice rink. Located on the west front of Henry VIII's historic home, the 900-square-metre rink affords sweeping views of its breathtaking architecture and is easily accessible by train from central London. Sessions last an hour and weary skaters, axel-ed out, can recharge at the adjacent cafe, serving up a scrummy selection of hot refreshments (think mulled wine and mince pies), or have a go on the old-fashioned carousel. Wheelchairs are welcome on the ice except during the last session of the day. The palace itself is adorned with festive decorations at this time of year and it's worth leaving extra time to take a look inside or explore the maze. It's enchanting stuff that will undoubtedly leave you with that warm festive glow.
2013-11-302014-01-12 Where:
Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey London, KT8 9AU
Category: Seasonal

Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, London, KT8 9AU

Tube: Richmond Station

 

Dates: 30th November - 12th January 2014

 

The striking Tudor facade of Hampton Court Palace provides a majestic backdrop to this popular open-air London ice skating rink. Located on the west front of Henry VIII's historic home, the 900-square-metre rink affords sweeping views of its breathtaking architecture and is easily accessible by train from central London. Sessions last an hour and weary skaters, axel-ed out, can recharge at the adjacent cafe, serving up a scrummy selection of hot refreshments (think mulled wine and mince pies), or have a go on the old-fashioned carousel. Wheelchairs are welcome on the ice except during the last session of the day. The palace itself is adorned with festive decorations at this time of year and it's worth leaving extra time to take a look inside or explore the maze. It's enchanting stuff that will undoubtedly leave you with that warm festive glow.

 
 
 

London Eyeskate

Follow a trip on the London Eye with a skate along the Southbank.

London Eyeskate London Eyeskate London Eyeskate In its fourth year on the South Bank this winter is the EDF Energy London Eye open air ice skating rink which has joined the list of the capital's must-do events at Christmas. Customers can combine their skate with a trip on the London Eye, with special Mulled Wine and Champagne Flights providing a perfect way to view the Christmas lights along the Thames. With the Christmas Market reappearing on the Southbank in late November and December, the London Eyeskate (see what they've done there?) does a roaring trade and certainly adds to the wonderfully festival feeling in this part of London. If the sounds and lights of the nearby Christmas carousel fail to get you into the seasonal spirit then those delectable goodies and sweets smells certainly will.
2013-11-272014-01-05 Where:
London Eye , Jubilee Gardens, South Bank, London London, SE1 7PB
Category: Seasonal

London Eye , Jubilee Gardens, South Bank, South Bank, London, SE1 7PB

Tube: Embankment Underground Station, Westminster Station, Waterloo Station

 

Dates: 27th November - 05th January 2014

 

In its fourth year on the South Bank this winter is the EDF Energy London Eye open air ice skating rink which has joined the list of the capital's must-do events at Christmas. Customers can combine their skate with a trip on the London Eye, with special Mulled Wine and Champagne Flights providing a perfect way to view the Christmas lights along the Thames. With the Christmas Market reappearing on the Southbank in late November and December, the London Eyeskate (see what they've done there?) does a roaring trade and certainly adds to the wonderfully festival feeling in this part of London. If the sounds and lights of the nearby Christmas carousel fail to get you into the seasonal spirit then those delectable goodies and sweets smells certainly will.

 
 
 

Natural History Museum Ice Rink

The Natural History Museum's massive ice rink comes complete with twinkly lights and hot chocolate.

Natural History Museum Ice Rink Natural History Museum Ice Rink Natural History Museum Ice Rink The Natural History Museum's annual icing-over of its gardens kicks off again in November - and this winter the main rink will be larger than ever. The 1,050-square-metre rink is surrounded by 76,000 glowing pea-lights dangling from the overhanging trees outside Alfred Waterhouse's imposing building. Additional attractions include a smaller 100-square-metre rink for youngsters, a stylish balcony cafe/bar when you can warm your hands and insides on vin chaud or hot chocolate and a classic fairground carousel. Big-foots amongst you will be pleased to know that skates go up to adult size 15, while five wheelchair sessions are available - see website for details. The Ice Rink and Cafe Bar are available for private hire too for a minimum of 150 guests. Last year there was a Christmas Fair throughout December which proved a great spot to get into the Christmas spirit and do some unusual shopping.
2013-10-312014-01-05 Where:
Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London London, SW7 5BD
Category: Seasonal

Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington, London, SW7 5BD

Tube: South Kensington Station, Gloucester Road Station

 

Dates: 31st October - 05th January 2014

 

The Natural History Museum's annual icing-over of its gardens kicks off again in November - and this winter the main rink will be larger than ever. The 1,050-square-metre rink is surrounded by 76,000 glowing pea-lights dangling from the overhanging trees outside Alfred Waterhouse's imposing building. Additional attractions include a smaller 100-square-metre rink for youngsters, a stylish balcony cafe/bar when you can warm your hands and insides on vin chaud or hot chocolate and a classic fairground carousel. Big-foots amongst you will be pleased to know that skates go up to adult size 15, while five wheelchair sessions are available - see website for details. The Ice Rink and Cafe Bar are available for private hire too for a minimum of 150 guests. Last year there was a Christmas Fair throughout December which proved a great spot to get into the Christmas spirit and do some unusual shopping.

 
 
 

Skate at Somerset House

Skate yourself dizzy against the spectacular backdrop of Somerset House.

Skate At Somerset House Skate At Somerset House Skate At Somerset House The grand 18th-century courtyard of Somerset House makes for a spectacular backdrop for one of the most popular ice rinks in town. Skating around under the Tiffany-decorated 40-foot Christmas tree with a hot toddy to keep out seasonal chills is one of London's most appealing winter rituals - and a superb way to ease yourself into the festive spirit. Just be sure to watch out for the seven-year-old whizz kids skating backwards past you and pulling off a special Somerset Salchow. If your youngsters need guidance there's the Penguin Club for under 8s. But if you're looking for something altogether more grown up, the Club Nights offer the atmosphere of open-air clubbing, on and off the ice, to a soundtrack curated by prominent DJs, iconic clubs and trend-setting festivals. Now in its 14th year, Skate at Somerset House is "one of the great sights of a London winter... a wonderful place to be" (The Times).


2013-11-142014-01-05 Where:
Somerset House, Strand, London London, WC2R 1LA
Category: Seasonal

Somerset House, Strand, Covent Garden, London, WC2R 1LA

Tube: Temple Station

 

Dates: 14th November - 05th January 2014

 

The grand 18th-century courtyard of Somerset House makes for a spectacular backdrop for one of the most popular ice rinks in town. Skating around under the Tiffany-decorated 40-foot Christmas tree with a hot toddy to keep out seasonal chills is one of London's most appealing winter rituals - and a superb way to ease yourself into the festive spirit. Just be sure to watch out for the seven-year-old whizz kids skating backwards past you and pulling off a special Somerset Salchow. If your youngsters need guidance there's the Penguin Club for under 8s. But if you're looking for something altogether more grown up, the Club Nights offer the atmosphere of open-air clubbing, on and off the ice, to a soundtrack curated by prominent DJs, iconic clubs and trend-setting festivals. Now in its 13th year, Skate at Somerset House is "one of the great sights of a London winter... a wonderful place to be" (The Times).

 
 
 

Tower Of London Ice Rink

Glide across the ice at one of London's most dramatic and historic landmarks.

Tower Of London Ice Rink Tower Of London Ice Rink Tower Of London Ice Rink Nestled in the rounded hollow of the dry moat, the Tower of London's ice rink area forms a wonderfully festive scene. Running for its sixth year, this outdoor ice rink offers a grand and historical option for skaters. An ideal winter activity for children, couples and friends alike, visitors can carve their route across the ice while taking in one of the most historical buildings in London as they practice their camel spins, double axels and choctaws (or simply slip and slide aimlessly in circles). Ice guides are available for groups up to 15 people, while cold skaters can thaw out at the Moat Cafe (free for spectators), warming hands around hot chocolates and munching on mince pies. It's worth paying a little extra and exploring the murky history of the Tower too. For the past 900 years the medieval fortress on the Thames has been the setting for an array of famous and gruesome executions. Beefeaters, the Crown Jewels and a gory array of torture instruments make it a fantastically colourful attraction. A word of warning for gentlemen skaters - go easy on the twizzles for a bad landing could damage your own crown jewels...

www.toweroflondonicerink.com
2013-11-162014-01-05 Where:
Tower Of London, Tower Hill, London London, EC3N 4AB
Category: Seasonal

Tower Of London, Tower Hill, City, London, EC3N 4AB

Tube: Tower Hill Station

 

Dates: 16th November - 05th January 2014

 

Nestled in the rounded hollow of the dry moat, the Tower of London's ice rink area forms a wonderfully festive scene. Running for its sixth year, this outdoor ice rink offers a grand and historical option for skaters. An ideal winter activity for children, couples and friends alike, visitors can carve their route across the ice while taking in one of the most historical buildings in London as they practice their camel spins, double axels and choctaws (or simply slip and slide aimlessly in circles). Ice guides are available for groups up to 15 people, while cold skaters can thaw out at the Moat Cafe (free for spectators), warming hands around hot chocolates and munching on mince pies. It's worth paying a little extra and exploring the murky history of the Tower too. For the past 900 years the medieval fortress on the Thames has been the setting for an array of famous and gruesome executions. Beefeaters, the Crown Jewels and a gory array of torture instruments make it a fantastically colourful attraction. A word of warning for gentlemen skaters - go easy on the twizzles for a bad landing could damage your own crown jewels...

 
 
 

Westfield London Ice Rink

The giant West London shopping mall gets a festive addition in the form of an ice rink.

Westfield London Ice Rink Westfield London Ice Rink Westfield London Ice Rink Westfield London is once again home to a 30x15 metre ice rink in its airy atrium bringing a welcome dose of Christmas cheer to Christmas shoppers at the city's largest indoor shopping mall. With capacity for 150 skaters and timed entry, the rink is well run with marshalls on hand to keep an eye on beginners. There are themed sessions including weekday morning for children (who can use a penguin or seal for support), DJ evenings, and 'date' and 'Christmas jumper' nights so there's sure to be something to suit everyone. Pre-booking your tickets online is highly recommended - not only to avoid queuing but also to ensure you get to skate, and to get the discounted rate. Along with the skating rink, Westfield also has a Christmas Grotto and the whole shopping centre is decked out in Christmas lights and decorations.
2013-11-252014-01-05 Where:
Westfield London - Shepherd's Bush, Ariel Way, Shepherd\'s Bush, London London, W12 7DS
Category: Seasonal

Westfield London - Shepherd's Bush, Ariel Way, Shepherd's Bush, London, W12 7DS

Tube: Wood Lane Station, Shepherd's Bush Station (Central), Shepherd's Bush Market Station (Hammersmith and City Line)

 

Dates: 25th November - 05th January 2014

 

Westfield London is once again home to a 30x15 metre ice rink in its airy atrium bringing a welcome dose of Christmas cheer to Christmas shoppers at the city's largest indoor shopping mall. With capacity for 150 skaters and timed entry, the rink is well run with marshalls on hand to keep an eye on beginners. There are themed sessions including weekday morning for children (who can use a penguin or seal for support), DJ evenings, and 'date' and 'Christmas jumper' nights so there's sure to be something to suit everyone. Pre-booking your tickets online is highly recommended - not only to avoid queuing but also to ensure you get to skate, and to get the discounted rate. Along with the skating rink, Westfield also has a Christmas Grotto and the whole shopping centre is decked out in Christmas lights and decorations.

 
 
 

Winter Wonderland Open Air Ice Rink

Hyde Park's Winter Wonderland is home to the biggest outdoor ice rink in the UK.

Winter Wonderland Open Air Ice Rink Winter Wonderland Open Air Ice Rink Don your skates and glide around the glittering ice rink that is set within Hyde Park Winter Wonderland around the Victorian bandstand and illuminated with over 100,000 lights. Those feeling wobbly on the ice can hire an ice guide to escort them and their group on the ice. Each guide can look after up to 15 skaters and will be exclusive to the group for the one-hour skating session. Ice Guides cost £32 per hour skating session. Children of all ages can skate but those aged 12 and under must be accompanied by a person of 16 or over.
2013-11-222014-01-05 Where:
Hyde Park, Rangers Lodge, London London, W2 2UH
Category: Seasonal

Hyde Park, Rangers Lodge, Hyde Park, London, W2 2UH

Tube: Knightsbridge Station

 

Dates: 22nd November - 05th January 2014

 

Don your skates and glide around the glittering ice rink that is set within Hyde Park Winter Wonderland around the Victorian bandstand and illuminated with over 100,000 lights. It claims to be the UK's largest outdoor rink and at 1,600 metre squared it might well be. Live music plays as skaters take to the ice for a spin and those in the giant Observation Wheel next to it get a bird's eye view of the skaters below. Both are part of the annual Hyde Park event which takes place throughout late November and December bringing fairground rides, a giant wheel, Zippos Circus, a Christmas market, food and drink stalls, Santa's grotto and, of course, the ice rink to this corner of Hyde Park for the holidays.