Cold, crisp air and snow flakes falling onto your head as you gently slide across the ice. I cannot imagine a more stunning setting for ice-skating in the world. From now until 6th January 2010, every day from 10am until 10pm, you can skate at the foot of the Estates Theatre (Stavovske Divadlo), where W.A. Mozart premiered his opera “Don Giovanni” in 1787, dedicating it to the “Good People of Prague”.
The ice rink is located at Ovocny trh, which is smack in the middle of town. So while you are out and about shopping or strolling through the streets, this is a great place where you can take a break and let your hair down.
Skating is for free if you have your own skates. Otherwise, you can just hire a pair (sizes range from Small to Extra Large) from the little hut which is located right at the entry to the rink. The cost is 50 CZK per pair, per hour and you will be required to provide your ID card or passport as proof of identity. If you do not have any of these documents, then you may still hire a pair of skates by providing a fully-refundable deposit of 600 CZK.
Please note, that only people aged 15 years and over are allowed to hire out skates by themselves. Anyone younger needs to have a person who is 15 and over to get the skates for them.
There are several benches at the entrance to the rink, where you can sit down, get changed and then leave your shoes. This is also the place where you can get some refreshments such us hot dogs and mulled wine or hot chocolate.
One thing which I found unusual about this particular rink was the transparent barriers surrounding it, which made me feel as if I was almost skating on the ground. Another noteworthy fact is that the ice has been especially prepared to be able to withstand very warm temperatures, up to 20 degrees Celsius. So, if the weather should suddenly turn warm between now and 6th January (highly unlikely), you could still come ice skating in your shorts and T-shirt!
After this date, you can go skating at Stvanice Island: http://www.stvanice.cz (in Czech only) during the winter months or at Letnany Ice Arena: http://www.icearena.cz (in Czech only), which is open all year round.
OPEN: From 5th December 2010 until 6th January 2011. Hours: 10am to 10pm Monday to Sunday.
ADRESS: Ovocny Trh, Prague 1 (In front of Myslbek Shopping Arcade).
DIRECTIONS: By Metro: Yellow Line B to Mustek (5 minute walk) or Yellow Line B to Namesti Republiky. By Tram: Take no: 8, 14 or 26 to tram stop Namesti Republiky. By Car: Parking at Kotva or Palladium Shopping Centres at Namesti Republiky (about a 10-minute walk, max).