Cold-but-clear winter days are made for ice skating outdoors. Luckily, there's Lasker Rink in Harlem. Located on the quiet northern edge of Central Park, it's open every day–and blissfully free of the crazy crowds found at most of the city's other outdoor rinks.
A short walk from the 110 Street Station on the 2 and 3 lines, the spot features twin rinks: one for public ice skating, the other for separate events such as parties and ice hockey games. Whichever oval you end up in, there's nothing to keep the sun from warming your face on a bright winter's day (the facility doubles as a pool in the summer).
Looking for a special reason to go? Don't miss Figure Skating in Harlem's annual winter skating party at Lasker Rink on Saturday, February 2, complete with food, music, raffle prizes and ice skating demos by the members of the skating-focused non-profit club for girls.
And while there is a concession at the rink, there's a lot to be said for unlacing your skates, taking a scenic walk past the Harlem Meer, and grabbing an artfully prepared hot chocolate at Little Bean Coffee across the street. As a bonus, the cafe's bright yellow cups will serve a nice reminder of your sunny day on ice.