On your ice bikeBeijing, China
Are thoughts of razor-sharp blades through splayed fingers too much for you to consider ice-skating? Then this might just be the new winter activity for you. Take a normal bike, replace the front tyre with a blade and find yourself a good stretch of frozen ice.
Ice-biking seems to be particularly popular in China, where you can hire the unusual contraptions at South Lake in Changchun (capital of the north-west province of Jilin) and in Beijing, either at the Zizhuyuan Park skating rink or on Lake Houhai. While you’re attempting to pop slick monos, you might also notice another unusual mode of transportation: the chair sled, which basically consists of two wooden seats strapped together and propelled forward using fire pokers.
- Getting in touch with your childish side
- The surprising number of people who take part – sometimes hundreds at a time
- You can actually get some speed on these things
- Just because you have your vehicle under control doesn’t mean everyone around you also does
- The winter temperatures in Beijing can be ghastly
The closest subway station to Houhai Lake is Gulou Dajie.
An hour on a bike costs about US$5 and there’s a US$15 deposit, too.
Don’t try to pull off any trick moves on these humble steeds.
Skating in Beijing is usually open from late December to early February.