New York Travel Blog› entry 7 of 16 › view all entries
The last of the sweltering summer heat has finally faded into oblivion, giving way to blustery autumn conditions and magnificent fall foliage �" and New York City is already amping up the holiday adrenaline with winter activities like ice-skating cropping up all over the city.
The most famed of the bunch, the ice rink at Rockefeller Center (Fifth Avenue, between 49th and 50th Streets) is encompassed by an impressive display of lights, as well as the magnificent Norwegian spruce Christmas tree that towers above it (to be lit on Nov. 28). Open until April, the skating surface at Rockefeller is surprisingly small (particularly considering the thousands of tourists that visit it annually): At 122 feet long and 59 feet wide, it can only accommodate 150 skaters at any given time. For schedules and skate rental information, call 212-332-7654.
A free alternative to Rockefeller (and our favorite pick for ice skating in the city) is The Pond at Bryant Park (40th through 42nd Streets, between Fifth and Sixth Avenues), a 17,000-square-foot rink with a 500-person capacity that lays in the heart of Midtown just a hop, skip and jump away from Times Square. Skate rentals are $10 per pair, and reservations can be made for corporate events and private parties. The Pond is open daily through mid-January; for a schedule of hours, visit the website.
Central Park’s Wollman Rink (near the 59th Street and Sixth Avenue entrance), featured in scores of movies like Home Alone 2 and Serendipity, is open daily with admission $9.50-$12 for adults, $4.75-$5 for children. Skate rentals cost $5. Another nearby option is the Lasker Rink at the north end of Central Park (107th St. at Central Park), which is generally far less crowded than the rest (and cheaper, too!). Admission is $4.50 for adults, $2.25 for children, and the cost of skates is $3.50 a pair. If you can’t brave the wind, try indoor arena Sky Rink at Chelsea Piers (on the Hudson River between 17th and 23rd Streets, add link).
What are you waiting for? Now that I've given you our two cents, lace up your skates and hit the ice!