“Don’t go to Europe in Winter” everyone said, “it will be freezing and nothing will be open”.
It’s cold, sure, but it’s not that bad. On the flip side, aside from the obvious perks of having plentiful amounts of accommodation available, and not having to stand wall to wall with other tourists to see the good spots, between the start of December and the end of February every year, two large ice-rinks are created in the middle of Paris.
One rink is in Montparnasse, while the other is at Place de l’Hôtel de Ville. Since we are staying down in the 12th arrondisement (near the Bastille), we headed to Hôtel de Ville which was only about 10 minutes walk.
The skating itself is free. If you have a pair of skates, head down and do some laps. For Jess and I, it cost 5EUR each for the rental of skates – pretty cheap really.
Even if you aren’t game enough to skate, it’s worthwhile heading down for a watch. Some of the local kids are very impressive. There seems to be two very distinct styles of skating – more traditional figure skating, and the now much more popular “street” style.
It’s a great place – it brings happiness to kids and adults, experts and amateurs. Everyone there had a smile on their face!