Skate at Somerset House

Lace Up For London’s Outdoor Ice Rinks

Culture /


Get your skates on – Christmas is coming

This post may contain affiliate links. Learn more

Whether you’re a pro glider or more of a cling-to-the-handrails kind of skater, a trip to one of London’s outdoor ice rinks is guaranteed to get you feeling festive. From Skylight’s rooftop to the brand-new Glide at Battersea Power Station, here are the ones to book this winter.

The Best Outdoor Ice Rinks in London

Glide

An ice rink at Battersea Power Station

Battersea Power Station is the talk of town at the moment – and there’s soon to be even more reason to visit, thanks to the launch of a brand-new ice rink. A partnership with Jo Malone, and from the team behind the Natural History Museum rink (which had its last year in 2021), Glide will be set against the backdrop of the iconic building, with the River Thames just beside. As you skate, enjoy live music from local independent solo acts, bands and DJs offering a mix of acoustic, pop, R&B and house. Grab a warming drink from the on-site bar, or go all out and book an igloo for you and your friends, which have capacity for groups of four or eight people. And if you visit on a Tuesday, Good Time Gals will be hosting their famed pub quizzes and bingo sessions.

11 November 2022 – 8 January 2023, glidebatterseapowerstation.co.uk

Skate at Somerset House

Skate at Somerset House

David Jensen

Each year, the neoclassical courtyard at Somerset House is transformed into a festive wonderland, complete with outdoor ice rink. It’s a staple on London’s winter scene, once again running in partnership with Moët & Chandon – with a cosy lounge for post-skate fizz and hot toddies. Elsewhere, Hotel Chocolat’s Chocomobile will be providing warming winter cacao tipples, and Chalet Suisse by Jimmy Garcia will offer Swiss-inspired treats – think fondue and Berner Platte (roasted pork belly with sauerkraut and pancetta laced mash). The popular Skate Lates will return, featuring late-night takeovers from a line-up of DJs, kicking off with ESEA Sisters, a platform creating space for women, trans, non-binary and genderqueer people of East and Southeast Asian heritage. If you’re looking to brush up on your skating skills, book into one of the Skate School session – and if you prefer ice-skating on a quieter rink, the Chilled Out skate sessions run at reduced capacity.

16 November 2022 – 15 January 2023, somersethouse.org.uk

Hampton Court Palace Ice Rink

Hampton Court Palace Outdoor Ice Rink

If a striking setting is high on your list, head to Hampton Court Palace to skate with views of Henry VIII’s historic Tudor palace. Little ones in need of a helping hand can pre-book skate aid helpers, and there’s something for all the family at the Ice Rink Café & Bar, which serves food platters, mince pies, hot chocolate and mulled wine.

17 November 2022 – 18 January 2023, hamptoncourtpalaceicerink.co.uk

Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland Outdoor Ice Rink

Hyde Park’s Christmas extravaganza is home to the UK’s largest ice rink, set under a canopy of twinkling lights and built around the Victorian bandstand. It’s open from 10am to 10pm daily, and welcomes all ages and abilities, with wheelchairs also allowed on the ice. Afterwards, soak up the unparalleled festive atmosphere of Winter Wonderland, which features a Bavarian village, funfair rides and numerous street food stalls.

18 November 2022 – 2 January 2023, hydeparkwinterwonderland.com

Skylight

Skylight Rooftop

Come winter, Tobacco Dock’s Skylight transforms into a cosy winter hangout, complete with its own ice rink. Being located on a rooftop means spectacular city views as you skate, and heated après-skate bars serve up winter cocktails, steaming jugs of mulled wine and festive fare from street food traders. Skating sessions are 45 minutes long, with safety penguins available for those who need a helping hand.

Dates TBC, skylightbars.com

Ice Rink Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf Ice Rink

Running for a whopping 18 weeks this season, Canary Wharf’s ice rink has the advantage of being covered, meaning you can visit regardless of the weather. Located in Canada Square, the rink is set beneath the glow of thousands of fairy lights and a giant mirror ball, with an Offpiste Bar for those who prefer to spectate than skate.

22 October 2022 – 25 February 2023, icerinkcanarywharf.co.uk

Main image: Somerset House by David Jensen

Photo 1 of