November 20, 2017

Get into the festive spirit with a visit to London’s winter ice rinks!

As we get ready for the Christmas holiday, I thought it would be great to share with you a guest post from Hostelbookers about the amazing ice skating rinks that have popped up in London!  My family and I have enjoyed some of the rinks that pop up in San Francisco during the holidays and am sure any one of these would be a great addition to any trip to London.

London is well and truly in the Christmas spirit now – traditional Christmas markets line the South Bank, mulled wine stalls are doing a thriving trade across the city, and temporary ‘pop up’ ice rinks are everywhere. There are so many ice rinks to choose from but this is our pick of the best – so that you can get your skates on, whether you live locally,  are staying in some cheap hotels in London, or just wish you were here!

Tower of London

Our first choice is a very iconic location for an open-air ice rink – the famous Tower of London. It’s a very popular attraction in itself, so if you’re visiting the capital, a trip to the rink here could kill two birds with one stone.  The rink is set in front of the imposing fortress on the tower’s moat, so skating here gives some great views of the castle.

Skating by Tower of London England

Skating by Tower of London by Graham Racher, on Flickr

Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum is famous for its dinosaur, planet and human science exhibits. However, in winter it’s also home to a 900 sq meter open-air ice rink.  We love the architecture of the Natural History Museum and, as an added bonus, the outdoor café sells hot chocolate and mulled wine. It’s a good place to take a date with the bars and restaurants of Soho just a short walk away.

Natural History Museum Ice Rink London England

Natural History Museum Ice Rink by iJammin, on Flickr

Somerset House

Somerset House is a very glamorous skating location. The rink is sponsored by none other than the famous jewelers, Tiffany & Co. The house itself is a magnificently proud building and they’ve even erected a sparkling 40 ft Tiffany Tree to add to the decadence. If you’re a little bit of a drama queen, this is the perfect skating location 🙂

Ice skating @ Somerset House London England

Ice skating @ Somerset House by drew_anywhere, on Flickr

London Eye

The iconic ‘eye’, giving 360 degree views of the city, calls its rink the Eyeskate. A little touristy, the Eye is the closest thing we Brits have to the Effiel Tower and, love it or hate it, it does look pretty lit up at night.  The best thing about the Eyeskate is its location on the South Bank – just a short walk away from countless cultural attractions, like the BFI cinema and Royal Festival Hall.

Hyde Park

Not only is the Samsung Galaxy Ice Rink London’s biggest ice rink, it’s also a part of Hyde Park’s famous ‘Winter Wonderland’, which is where the city’s largest open space is transformed with markets, fairground rides and even a circus.  One of the highlights of Winter Wonderland is the ‘carousel bar’ where you can sit on a plastic horse as you sip mulled wine. Winter Wonderland is so popular that it’s worth going just to experience the crowds and the atmosphere.

Skating Hyde Park London England

Skating Hyde Park by Donna_Rutherford, on Flickr

 

So, what do you think about London’s ice-rinks?
Are they a good way to get into the festive spirit?

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Comments

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  2. Kirsten says:

    I went to London right after Berlin (and had just been in London in November) — I kind of love it in winter. Even though it is cold, it is such a festive place!

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      I haven’t been during winter but am looking forward to spending time in Europe during this wonderful time of year.

  3. Scott says:

    As a hockey fan and avid skater, I love an ice rink. Just the smell of the ice gets me excited, lol. We have an awesome outdoor rink here in St. Louis that I go to once or twice a year, but will look all over Europe next winter for these. You really can’t get more of an idyllic winter activity than ice skating.

  4. I love the ice rink at the Natural History Museum, although it’s usually so packed I don’t go on the ice but stand around and enjoy the atmosphere. There used to be an ice rink at Tower Bridge, and also an ice bar, which was awesome!

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      The atmosphere around the rinks in San Francisco must be similar! We find it great to just linger and soak it all in but a nice ice bar would be a great addition 🙂

  5. love your photos 🙂 hope i can experience a truly white christmas in the future… and then skate! LOL 🙂 happy holidays!!!

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      Happy Holidays to you too! I would really like to experience Christmas in a foreign country at some point but am probably leaning toward Bavaria 🙂

  6. I love winter ice rinks. I can’t believe they have so many!

  7. Love the Tower of London Rink. What a great backdrop!

  8. London has more ice skating areas than San Francisco during the holidays….(jealous) =) The scenery there looks very romantic!

  9. jenjenk says:

    i’d love to skate in London!!! that looks like so much fun!

  10. Fun to see ice skating places pop up around the world for a fun out door event

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  11. These look like amazing places to ice skate! 🙂

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