|Ice skating rink on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower.|
People are often surprised when I tell them that I took ice skating lessons when I lived in Indonesia. A tropical country just isn't the place where you expect to find an ice skating rink. Beaches, yes. Large quantities of ice, no. So, when I found out that there's an ice skating rink on (that's right - ON) the Eiffel Tower, I had to see it for myself.
As I had heard that it gets really crowded, I planned to be there as soon as it opened at 10:30 on Sunday morning. But since I was feeling a bit lazy, I didn't arrive at the Eiffel Tower until around 12:30 p.m. and asked for the quickest way to the rink. Pointing towards the South Pillar, the man at the information booth advised me to take the stairs. After waiting a relatively short time to purchase my €4.70 ticket, I climbed approximately 300 stairs, occasionally stopping to admire the view - not because I was tired.
And there it was - 200m² of ice located 187 feet (57 meters) above Paris. The entrance to the rink and the skates are included in the price of the ticket. So, if you're planning to visit the Eiffel Tower prior to January 31, 2012, grab a pair of skates for a uniquely Parisian experience. To avoid standing in line, you can also purchase a ticket online for €8.20 and take the elevator to the first floor. Click here for more information.
Of course, with any skating rink there are always rules. Here are a couple of my favorites taken directly from the Eiffel Tower. The wording is theirs, not mine:
It is not allowed to:
- Charge into guard rails or even pretend to do it,
- Charge into others intending to stop at the last second,
- Try to do somebody else fall down
|Ice skating rink at Trocadero|
If you prefer to skate while looking at the Eiffel Tower, then the rink at Trocadero is the one for you. With a prime position near the Christmas market, it's larger than the rink on the Eiffel Tower. Open from 11:00 am- 9:00 pm until January 2, 2012, the 5€ fee includes skate rental. Please note that the rink will be open from 11:00 am-4:00 pm on December 31. Click here for additional information in French.
|Ice skating rink in front of the Hôtel de Ville|
The ice rink in front of the Hôtel de Ville seems to be the largest of the three that I visited and will be open until March 4, 2012. Entrance is free and you may use your own skates. Skate rental is 5€. It's important to note that you're required to have an identity card to rent skates and to wear gloves while on the ice.
Click here for more information and a complete list in French of all of the ice skating rinks in Paris.
|Looking down at the ice skating rink on the Eiffel Tower from one of the 704 steps that I climbed to reach the second floor.|