Lonely Planet Writer

The skating rink at Rockefeller Center in New York is opening this weekend

While it may seem like autumn has barely arrived, people visiting New York can soon take part in an iconic winter activity with a skate around The Rink at Rockefeller Center.

The Rink at Rockefeller Center.
The Rink at Rockefeller Center. Image courtesy of Patina Restaurant Group

The ice skating rink is one of Manhattan’s most iconic attractions – and it opens on 8 October, with a grand opening ceremony on Tuesday, 11 October. The rink is located outside Rockefeller Center in Midtown Manhattan, and come November, will be right next to the famous Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, which is erected annually outside 30 Rockefeller Plaza. The lighting of the tree is broadcast on NBC, which has its offices in the building.

The Rink at Rockefeller Center.
The Rink at Rockefeller Center. Image courtesy of Patina Restaurant Group

But while Christmas is still months away, the skating rink will be open daily between 8:30 am and midnight for 90 minute skating sessions, which start at $25 for adults. And if a simple skate is not all you want, there are also book-ahead packages for those looking for something a little more unique. One, the Starlight Skate, lets visitors skip the line for the last skate session of the night at 10:30 pm, so they can skate under the stars. Also, for someone who wants to make a romantic – and very public – gesture, there’s a package for a proposal on ice that includes exclusive time on the rink for the pair, and they’ll even play “your song”, if you provide the CD.

The Rink at Rockefeller Center.
The Rink at Rockefeller Center. Image courtesy of Patina Restaurant Group

While the rink draws in of a lot of visitors each year, there is a special occasion to celebrate in 2016 – the 80th anniversary of the attraction.