Outdoor skating in the city is a rite of passage for Torontonians. After Wednesday’s surprise snow storm, we have to admit the cold weather has arrived and it’s time to bundle up and embrace this winter wonderland. Whether you’re looking to lace up at Nathan Phillips Square or yearning to play hockey on a community rink, Toronto has plenty of ice skating options. Here are a few of our favourite traditional and non-traditional outdoor rinks in the city.
Brick Works – Opens Dec 17 2014
The Evergreen Brick Works Ice Trail could be one of the city’s coolest skating spots. The ice trail offers an urban escape for daily skating and a Saturday farmers market with local vendors and hot drinks. Skating is available beginning in December but come early, parking is limited.
Christie Pits – Opens Nov 29th 2014
In the winter months, there’s still plenty to do at Christie Pits Park. The outdoor rink located across from the swimming pool is a great place to find a game of shiny or go for a community skate. Additionally, Christie Pits is one of the best venues for tobogganing with hundreds of people sliding down the hills after each fresh snowfall.
Harbourfront Centre – Already Open
Nothing says wintertime like skating at Harbourfront Centre. Overlooking Lake Ontario, the complimentary rink offers onsite rentals, learn to skate and DJ skate nights. No doubt this romantic lake setting has been the site for a wedding proposal or two. The rink is open from November through March (although we’re hoping for milder weather by March).
High Park – Opens Nov 29 2014
Try out one of two outdoor ice rinks in High Park. The hockey rink has recently been outfitted with new boards and nets courtesy of the Toronto Maple Leafs. The rink opens early and closes late for plenty of rink and hockey time. Once the weather gets colder, head over to High Park’s Grenadier Pond for skating too. Opens November 29th to the public.
Mel Lastman Square – Opens Nov 30 2014
Mel Lastman is a great place to take the kids in the city’s north end. Located at North York Subway station, the rink offers daily skating and events in the community space. After skating, try the Douglas Snow Aquatic Centre for indoor swim just right around the corner, or warm up with hot chocolate at the on-site Starbucks.
Nathan Phillips Square – Opens Nov 22 2014
As the website claims “the rink has been a quintessential Toronto experience for generations.” Everyone and their grandparents have laced up at Nathan Phillips Square at least once in their lifetime. The rink lights up with its large holiday tree and it’s the place to be on New Years Eve. The rink opens from November 22 until mid-March.
Ramsden Park – Opens Nov 22 2014
In the winter, Ramsden Park has a large outdoor rink which doubles as a tennis court in the warmer months. Occasionally, a Maple Leaf alumni will stop by for a game of shiny, so make sure you bring your A-game. Also on site is an off-leash dog park and playground. Rosedale Subway is right across the street.
Ryerson Community Park – Opens Nov 29 2014
Located right behind Ryerson’s new Community Learning Centre on Gould Street, the hidden rink is less busy than other well-known skating spots. The great big boulder in the middle of the rink makes it one of the more unique rinks in the city.
Trinity Bellwoods – Opens Nov 29 2014
Trinity Bellwoods, one of the best community parks in downtown Toronto, has a fenced-in rink for hockey and skating. The rink offers special events like family skate days or lace up with a local celebrity.
For you full list of City of Toronto rinks you can go here: City of Toronto Skating Rinks
Did we miss any of your favourite skating spots? Add it in the comments below!