Where To Go Ice Skating in Paris This Winter
Come the holiday season, Paris turns into a winter wonderland. Each neighborhood puts up its very own street lights, café terraces are heated again, store windows take on a Christmas vibe, and there’s just an overall feeling of cheer.
And of course, one of the Parisian’s favorite winter past times is ice skating, or patin à glace as we could say in French. If you’re new to the city, or perhaps just visiting it can be hard to know where to go ice skating. Here’s a list of the best places where you can go ice skating in Paris this winter!
Le Grand Palais des Glaces
Ever dreamed of ice skating on the biggest indoor rink in the world? Well, the Grand Palais is just that. Every winter, one of Paris’ most recognizable monuments is turned into an ice skating palace. Measuring an impressive 2,700 square meters, the ice skating rink has plenty of room for beginners and adept skaters alike.
What’s special about ice skating rink is that they have a nocturne (or late night session) when the rink is transformed into a skating dance floor. Music blasts from a live DJ booth, and an impressive light show dances across the icy canvas while you twirl the night away.
Entry prices vary depending on the time of day you want to go skating, and there are three time slots each day. The morning session is cheapest, and the late night is the most expensive. All entry prices include skate rentals, but if you have your own, feel free to bring them.
grand palais – 3 avenue du general eisenhower 75008
open from december 13th 2019 – January 8th 2020
morning session 10:00-13:00 costs 17€ adults/ 12€ Children
Afternoon session 14:00-19:00 costs 25€/ 12€
nocturne session 20:00-2:00 costs 29€ for everyone
Le Plaza Athénée
This winter, you can try ice skating in one of Paris’ most luxurious locales. The Plaza Athénée is a world-class luxury hotel, and is usually filled with international stars. Their famous façades showcase the signature bright red window boxes and balconies which provide sumptuous vistas of the city.
Inside, there’s a secret garden where you can sip tea or cocktails during summer, and go ice skating in winter. While the ice skating rink is decidedly smaller here (100 meters squared), the setting is pretty hard to beat. Plus, this rink is made especially with kids in mind.
The heart of the hotel is transformed into a Parisian chalet, where you can show off your best ice skating moves, or simply cozy up with a hot chocolate. And if you’re brand new to the skating game, not to worry! There are trained professionals on-site who will help teach you to skate in no time.
plaza athénée – 25 avenue montaigne 75008
open from November 14th 2019 – February 17th 2020
hours wednesday – sunday 15:00-19:00
cost: 60€ per person includes equipment and a hot drink
La Grande Arche de la Défense
Now this ice skating rink is a little unusual, and that’s because it’s on a rooftop! Located 110 meters above ground, the ice skating rink on top of the Grande Arche de la Défense is an experience in and of itself. Here, you can skate to your hearts’ content all while enjoying panoramic vistas of Paris.
The Grande Arche is especially interesting because it is perfectly in line with not only the Arc de Triomphe on the Champs-Elysées, but also the arch in the Tuileries Garden. You can spot both arches and other monuments like the Eiffel Tower from the top. How cool is that?
While this skating rink isn’t located inside Paris proper, you can be there in just fifteen minutes on the metro line one. This rink is one of the most affordable on my list and at 15€ per person, it’s suitable for any budget. Children and students have discount prices, and you can purchase tickets in advance on their website.
la grande arche de la défense – 1 Parvis de la Défense, 92800 Puteaux
metro: gare de la défense
open from december 20th 2019 – January 5th 2020
open daily from 10:00-19:00
cost: 15€ per person
Espace Sportif Pailleron
The next ice skating rink on my list is situated in Paris’ 19th arrondissement, just next to the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont. The rink at Espace Sportif Pailleron is located under a huge glass dome, proving a snowy, winter feeling when you’re gliding across the ice. They have a special space for little ones (jardin d’oursons for children under 12) and there is even a designated area for beginners.
So, if you’re a beginner or want to practice your ice skating moves in a relaxed environment, this is the place for you.
This ice rink is open all year round, and is very affordable. Entry will set you back just 4,30€ per person, plus you have the option to rent skates there (from 3,50€ a pair) or bring your own if you have them. That totals less than 8€ for a day full of ice skating in Paris. Hard to beat if you ask me!
espace sportif pailleron – 32 Rue Edouard Pailleron, 75019 Paris
open monday – saturday 13:00-22:30
cost: 7,80€ includes skate rental
Galeries Lafayette Rooftop
Galeries Lafayette is known for being one of the most luxurious department stores in Paris, and lately, they have become famous for their rooftop too. Providing unmatched views of the city, the glass-lined rooftop of Galeries Lafayette promises to install a 160 square meter ice skating rink for this Christmas season.
The rooftop is open year-round, but the ice skating rink will open come November. So dust off your skates and head to the top of Galeries Lafayette for an unforgettable ice skating experience. From the top, you’ll enjoy amazing views of the gilded Opera Garnier, Parisian rooftops, and of course, the Eiffel Tower. I recommend going after dark to witness the Eiffel Tower sparkle (on the hour for five minutes after dark).
practical information: galeries lafayette – 40 boulevard haussmann 75009
metro: grands boulevards
open from november 20th 2019 – december 31st 2019
hours: daily 9:30-20:30
cost: free to the public