City Park Ice Rink and Boating Lake
Ice skating rink in the winter, boating lake in the summer
Budapest, the stunning capital of Hungary, is known for its rich history, breathtaking architecture, and vibrant cultural scene. While the city is enchanting year-round, it truly comes alive during the winter months when a blanket of snow covers the streets and the city’s many outdoor ice rinks become the center of attention. One of the most remarkable ice skating destinations in Budapest is the City Park Ice Rink, located in the picturesque City Park between Heroes’ Square and the magnificent Vajdahunyad Castle. With its long-standing history, majestic surroundings, and vibrant atmosphere, the City Park Ice Rink offers an unforgettable ice skating experience for locals and visitors alike. The rink has been renovated several times over the years and is now a modern facility that can accommodate up to 4,000 skaters at a time.
A Glimpse into the Past: The Oldest Ice Rink in Europe
The City Park Ice Rink, also known as Varosligeti Mujegpalya, holds the distinction of being the largest and one of the oldest ice rinks in Europe. Its origins can be traced back to the late 19th century when the Skating Association of Pest was founded, and permission was granted to create an ice rink on a part of the City Park Lake. The rink’s official opening took place on January 29, 1870, and it quickly became a beloved gathering place for skaters of all ages. Over the years, the ice rink has witnessed numerous historic events, including the first-ever World Figure Skating Championships held in Hungary in 1909 and the hosting of the European Speed Skating Championships in 2012.
What to See and Do at City Park Ice Rink
The City Park Ice Rink offers a wide range of activities for visitors of all ages, including:
- Ice Skating – The ice skating rink is the main attraction at City Park Ice Rink. It is open from November to February and offers a unique opportunity to skate outdoors in the heart of the city. Skate rentals are available on-site, and there are also instructors available to help beginners.
- Ice Hockey – The ice rink is also used for ice hockey games and tournaments, and visitors can watch local teams compete on the ice.
- Curling – Curling is a popular winter sport in Hungary, and visitors to the ice rink can try their hand at this unique and challenging game.
- Food and Drinks – There are several food and drink vendors located around the ice rink, offering hot drinks and snacks to warm up during a break from skating.
Tips for Visiting City Park Ice Rink
If you plan to visit City Park Ice Rink, it’s a good idea to dress warmly and wear comfortable shoes, as there is a lot of skating involved. It’s also important to note that the rink can get quite crowded during peak times, so be prepared to wait in line for skate rentals and access to the rink.