Lonely Planet Writer

Top 5 Christmas ice rinks

Classic cities. Christmas. What a cocktail!

Our London office have been talking Christmas cities, and just couldn't stop thinking about ice rinks.

Christmas in the Northern Hemisphere just wouldn't be the same without wrapping up warm, pulling on those ice skates and, dependent on ability, either sailing glamorously across the ice or gripping tightly to the railings before falling flat on your face.

Whatever your skills, you're spoilt for choice come December. These are our favourites:

Eiffel Tower

Falling over aside, ice skating conjures an air of romance and the Eiffel Tower is perhaps the most romantic setting imaginable. Open until mid-February this is the place to come with a partner for classic views and a smooch on the ice.

New York's Rockefeller Center

Synonymous with Christmas, New York knows how to put on a show and the Rockefeller Centre is no different. Probably the most famous ice rink of them all, this is a fantastic place to come and soak up the New York holiday vibe (though take US editor Robert Reid's word of advice: save the skating for January if you don't want to pay a premium and are keen to avoid queues).

London's Natural History Museum

Set outside one of London's most iconic buildings, the Natural History Museum's ice rink is one for the family. Visit in the daytime, head into the museum and visit the dinosaurs, then join the Christmas crowds out on the rink.

Narvisen, Oslo

Oslo's Narvisen outdoor ice rink sits at Karl Johans gate. It's a natural rink and you can skate for free here whenever it's cold enough to freeze over. Due to the cooler weather conditions, this rink is usually open for a longer time so if you miss out in December and January, you'll have until the end of March to skate here most years.

Gorky Park, Moscow

As you might imagine, Moscow has plenty of ice skating spaces available in winter. Gorky Park almost becomes one big ice rink with frozen over ponds and icy tracks running across the park. Make the most of it by hiring not only skates but some cross-country skis too.

New York can be anything you want it to be - it's why countless people have pinned their dreams on the place, thrown caution to the wind and shown up on its doorstep.