Strolling through Central Park in winter inevitably leads you past the picturesque Wollman Rink. Easily one of the most iconic locations in NYC. Love Story, Serendipity, Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, and Gossip Girl have all filmed at this iconic skating rink.
HOW TO GET THERE
Wollman Rink is nestled in a magical nook, deep enough into Central Park to escape the city’s hustle and bustle, while also being a two-minute walk from 59th street! Enter the park at 59th Street and Sixth Avenue. Follow the footpath and stay to the right. It’s just north of “The Pond” and the elegant Gapstow Bridge. After skating, say hello to the sea lions at the Central Park Zoo(opens in a new tab).
KNOW BEFORE YOU GO
Wollman Rink will make you feel transported back in time, skating in a rink surrounded by trees, oblivious to the city around you. This rink is not Olympic sized nor Olympic shaped but instead, a sort of gumdrop shape, adding to its charm. It can also throw off some hardcore figure skaters and hockey players who come to practice their programs or run skating drills. If it’s an Olympic Sized rink you’re after, check out the Bryant Park ice skating rink(opens in a new tab).
This year, Wollman Rink is offering public sessions daily from 10 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Admission varies based on the day of the week, so check the website(opens in a new tab) for more information. Skate rental and locker rental are also available. Note there is a $5 “spectator” fee to watch the skaters.
A BIT OF HISTORY
Wollman rink opened in 1950 after philanthropist Kate Wollman donated $600,000(opens in a new tab) for the rink’s construction. While Wollman Rink rules winter in New York, in the summer, the space is used as a children’s amusement park, run by the same company that operates Luna Park in Coney Island. Before 1980, it was used as a concert venue hosting outdoor concerts. Artists who have performed there include Billie Holiday, Dave Brubeck, Dizzy Gillespie, and The Beach Boys.