London Ice Skating

 
 
 
 
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Skate at Somerset House

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Skate at Somerset House
Natural History Museum Ice Rink
Ice Rink Canary Wharf
Ice Rink Canary Wharf
Winterville
Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink
Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink
John Lewis: Skyline Skating
Christmas at QUEENS Skate Dine Bowl
 

 

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.

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Skylight Rooftop

An urban apres skate bar and London's first rooftop ice rink.

Tobacco Dock, Wapping Lane, London, E1W 2SF

Tube: Rotherhithe Overground Station

 
 

From 1st November 2018, Skylight gets a winter makeover with rooftop ice rink, cosy igloos and huts on top of Tobacco Dock . The winter season brings heated apres skate bars, draped in glimmering lights, serving warming winter cocktails, mulled wine as well as beers and ciders. Set on the top three levels of a former car park in Wapping, the 600 capacity Skylight has multiple bars, indoor and outdoor seating areas, and two street food stalls, all set against some of the finest views in the city - you can see The Shard , The Gherkin and the Walkie Talkie from here. Food wise, Raclette Brothers are bringing their signature Alpine treats with copious amounts of melted cheese and Yiro return with a seasonal menu. DJs, seasonal events and parties add to the offer with New Year's Eve celebrations sponsored by Moet et Chandon and a Burn's Night Ceilidh in January fuelled by Monkey Shoulder whisky drinks.

 
 
 

Tower of London Ice Rink

Skate in the famous moat surrounding the iconic royal palace.

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

Tube: Tower Hill Station

 

Dates: 17th November - 02nd January 2018

 

Nestled in the rounded hollow of the dry moat, the Tower of London's ice rink area forms a wonderfully festive scene. 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. Besides the Ice Rink there are pop-up food and drink stalls as well as a programme of events - details of which are to be announced soon. While you're here it's worth paying a little extra to explore the murky history of the Tower of London too.

 
 
 

Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink

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

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

Tube: Richmond Station

 

Dates: 24th November - 07th January 2018

 

For a truly regal skating experience London has to offer this winter, head to the Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink and take to the ice at Henry VIII's former home. The striking Tudor facade of Hampton Court Palace provides a majestic backdrop to this popular open air ice rink. Located in front of Henry VIII's historic home, the ice rink - measuring more than 1,000 metres square - 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 food stalls serving hot refreshments. 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.

 
 
 

Greenwich Winter Time Festival

This new festive offering features a covered ice rink.

Old Royal Naval College, King William Walk, London, SE10 9LW

Tube: New Cross Station (East London line closed. Bus service operates)

 

Dates: 01st - 31st December 2017

 

This December, Greenwich Winter Time brings Martine McCutcheon, The Snowman and a covered ice rink, set against the beautiful backdrop of Christopher Wren's Old Royal Naval College. Spend three hours at the festival and you'll encounter actors, musicians, jugglers, magicians, wandering performers and a stage adaptation of Nicholas Allan's The Giant's Loo Roll. A special treat for families, the East London Brass perform live to The Snowman, and young ones can meet Father Christmas on his magical 'launch pad' at the beginning of his Christmas journey. On the ice, under a canopy of sparkling lights, freestyle ice-skaters show us how it's done, performing at the start of each session. The Mirror Stage is the place to go for live music from Martine McCutcheon, The Puppini Sisters and The Magnets as well as festival favourites Uncle Funk and Boogie Wonderband, DJs and choirs. Alongside artisan food stalls there's a wonderful Christmas market. On throughout December, the festival culminates in a spectacular closing night gala on New Year's Eve.

 
 
 

Ice Rink Canary Wharf

More than 8km of colourful LED lights are laid beneath the ice.

Canary Wharf Ice Rink, Canada Square, Tower Hamlets, London, E14 5AB

Tube: Canary Wharf Station

 

Dates: 04th November - 24th February 2018

 

One of London's largest ice rinks, the Ice Rink Canary Wharf is back for Christmas 2017 and it comes with more than 8km of LED lights laid beneath the ice. The installation means more than 16 million different colours shine through the ice every hour-long session so skaters can glide on, bathed in pretty lights - perfect for those Instagram pictures. The ice rink is also fully covered by a clear roof so you can skate whatever the weather. For those who prefer to watch on as others do the gliding, there is a large heated outdoor viewing terrace and bar from where you can admire the icy action.

 
 
 
 

Natural History Museum Ice Rink

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

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

Tube: South Kensington Station , Gloucester Road Station

 

Dates: 25th October 2018 to 6th January 2019

 

The earliest of London's winter ice rinks to open, the Natural History Museum's annual icing-over of its gardens kicks off from 25th October. The 1,000 square metre rink outside Alfred Waterhouse's imposing building is surrounded by 80,000 glowing pea-lights dangling from the overhanging trees and a sparkling 30 foot Christmas tree. Additional attractions include a smaller 100-square-metre rink for youngsters and a stylish balcony cafe/bar when you can warm your hands and insides on hot chocolate. Big-foots amongst you will be pleased to know that skates go up to adult size 15, while penguin skate aids are available for £5 on a first come first served basis.

 
 
 

John Lewis: Skyline Skating

On the 7th floor of John Lewis there's a rooftop ice rink overlooking Oxford Street.

John Lewis Rooftop, 300 Oxford Street, London, W1A 1EX

Tube: Oxford Circus Station , Bond Street Station

 

Dates: 20th October to 24th December 2018

 

Following on from the Summer of Sound on the Roof, John Lewis turns the rooftop above its Oxford Street store into a winter hideaway. The 7th floor space has undergone a complete makeover, serving posh hot gin drinks - it's sponsored by Sipsmith - and, for the first time ever, it has a Skyline Skating rink. Book in at one of two 'Hideaways' to enjoy mulled sloe gin and hot G&Ts as well as Scotch eggs, sausage rolls and hearty food by MYPIE. Rooftop gin masterclasses tell of the famous frost fairs of days gone by, inspiration for the juniper-filled cocktail making masterclass. Background Bars are also in residence, serving winter themed tipples and mocktails to warm up from within, including a mulled apple punch and a chamomile fizz.

 
 
 

Skate At Somerset House

Skate yourself dizzy against the spectacular backdrop of Somerset House.

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

Tube: Temple Station

 

Dates: 14th November 2018 to 13th January 2019

 

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 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. If your youngsters need guidance there's the Polar Cub Club for under 8s. But if you're looking for something altogether more grown up, Skate Lates brings a specially curated programme of music to the rink on nights with takeovers from hot names in the contemporary music scene. Get your Christmas shopping done while you're there at The Christmas Arcade, a pop-up version of Fortnum & Mason's occupying 15 rooms in the West Wing of Somerset House filled with hampers, tea caddies, stocking fillers, gifts and games. Now in its 19th year, Skate at Somerset House truly is "one of the great sights of a London winter... a wonderful place to be" (The Times).

 
 
 

Winterville

The first ice rink to come to Clapham Common.

Clapham Common, Windmill Drive, London, SW4 9DE

Tube: Clapham South Station

 

Dates: 15th November to 23rd December 2018

 

Melanie C kicks off the festivities at South London's answer to Winter Wonderland as Winterville returns to Clapham Common for 2018. The sporty one will be DJing her 90s Mixtape in the Spiegeltent where there's a huge musical lineup from the likes of Norman Jay, Soul II Soul's Jazzie B, The Cuban Brothers and DJ Yoda. Basically, it'll be a big old party every Friday and Saturday night, and all for FREE! Also on site are Street Feast, the ice rink, Twisted Wheels Roller Disco, Plonk Golf, the fairground and pop-up pub Bar Humbug. Backyard Cinema introduce The Christmas Labrinth, a huge magical maze which leads to a two-screen cinema in an enchanted forest with a cabaret-themed bar and a hidden tequila bar. Aerial sensationalists Chivaree Circus debut their brand-new production CRASH in the Spiegeltent. And for the first time the Winterville Spiegel hosts comedy with a special showcase of Rabbit Rabbit Comedy's favourite comedians including Kerry Godliman, Fin Taylor and Tony Laws. There's everything from Mexican wrestling to Mighty Hoopla with family fun in a converted double decker bus as Bus King Theatre stages magical puppet show What Is That In My Hat?

 
 
 

Winter Wonderland Open Air Ice Rink

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

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

Tube: Knightsbridge Station

 

Dates: 22nd November 2018 to 6th January 2019

 

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.

 
 
 

Christmas at QUEENS Skate Dine Bowl

For guaranteed snow this Christmas, head to this west London ice rink.

QUEENS Skate, Dine, Bowl, 17 Queensway, London, W2 4QP

Tube: Bayswater Underground Station , Queensway Station

 

Dates: 19th November to 22nd December 2018

 

If you're looking for guaranteed snow this Christmas head to QUEENS Skate Dine Bowl, where custom made snow cannons will create a winter wonderland on the ice rink. There will also be sing-a-long session on the ice every Saturday, with the chance to put your touch on the nation's favourite Christmas classics. Additionally, The Sin Bin, presented by MEATLiquor, will be London's only dedicated curling rink side bar and diner offering guests the chance to refuel, recharge and relax after taking to the ice. A special XXXmas menu will feature pigs in blankets, a roast turkey burger and a turkey cheese stack.

 
 
 
 
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