Hundreds of people of all ages took part in traditional Christmas swims across Europe despite freezing temperatures. Dressed in festive attire, participants braved the bitter waters in the UK, Russia, France, Germany and the Czech Republic in what has become a long-standing tradition.

Christmas swim
Swimmers participate in the annual Christmas winter swimming competition in the Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic on Boxing Day David W Cerny/Reuters

With the air temperature at roughly minus 34 degrees, members of the Krasnoyarsk Cryophile amateur winter swimmers club took a bath in the icy waters of the Russia's Yenisei River. Winter swimmers in France took a dip in the Canal de l'Ourq in Pantin where the water was a mere 5 degrees Celsius and the Serpentine lake in London's Hyde Park hosted the annual Peter Pan Christmas day swimming race. IBTimes UK presents some of the best photos from the icy cold festivities across Europe;

Christmas swim
Winter swimmers enjoy a Christmas bath in Carantec, western France on 27 December 2016Benoit Tessier/Reuters
Christmas swim
Winter swimmers enjoy a Christmas bath in Carantec, western France on 27 December 2016Benoit Tessier/Reuters
Christmas swim
Swimmers participate in the annual Christmas winter swimming competition in the Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic on 26 December 2016David W Cerny/Reuters
Christmas swim
A swimmer participates in the annual Christmas winter swimming competition in the Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic on 26 December 2016David W Cerny/Reuters
Christmas swim
Swimmers participate in the annual Christmas winter swimming competition in the Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic on 26 December 2016David W Cerny/Reuters
Christmas swim
Swimmers participate in the annual Christmas winter swimming competition in the Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic on 26 December 2016David W Cerny/Reuters
Christmas swim
Swimmers prepare to start the annual Christmas day race in the Serpentine lake in Hyde Park in London on 25 December 2016Toby Melville/Reuters
Christmas swim
Swimmers dive into the water for the annual Christmas day race in the Serpentine lake in Hyde Park in London on 25 December 2016Toby Melville/Reuters
Christmas swim
Swimmers leave the water following the annual Christmas day race in the Serpentine lake in Hyde Park in London on 25 December 2016Toby Melville/Reuters
Christmas swim
A winter swimmer enjoys a festive dip in the Canal de l'Ourq in Pantin outside Paris, France on 24 December 2016
Christmas swim
Swimmers leave the water following the annual Christmas day race in the Serpentine lake in Hyde Park in London on 25 December 2016Toby Melville/Reuters
Christmas swim
A member of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club wears a Father Christmas outfit during their traditional Christmas swim at the Orankesee lake in Berlin, Germany on 25 December 2016Tobias Schwarz/AFP
Christmas swim
Members of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club with Father Christmas outfits pose for a picture during their traditional Christmas swimming at the Orankesee lake in Berlin, Germany on 25 December 2016Tobias Schwarz/AFP
Christmas swim
Members of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club wear Father Christmas outfits during their traditional Christmas swim at the Orankesee lake in Berlin, Germany on 25 December 2016Tobias Schwarz/AFP
Christmas swim
A member of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club poses for a picture during their traditional Christmas swim at the Orankesee lake in Berlin, Germany on 25 December 2016Tobias Schwarz/AFP
Christmas swim
A member of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club reacts during their traditional Christmas swim at the Orankesee lake in Berlin, Germany on 25 December 2016Tobias Schwarz/AFP
Christmas swim
A member of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club poses for a picture during their traditional Christmas swim at the Orankesee lake in Berlin, Germany on 25 December 2016Tobias Schwarz/AFP
Christmas swim
Members of the Cryophile amateurs winter swimmers club, accompanied by a man dressed as Ded Moroz, the Russian equivalent of Santa Claus, walk before taking a bath in the icy waters of the Yenisei River on 24 December 2016Ilya Naymushin/Reuters