Ice Skating in Toronto

Top Skating Rinks in Toronto

It’s one of winter’s best activities and my personal favourite thing to do in the winter – ice skating. In Toronto, we’re spoiled with choices. From neighbourhood skating rinks to skating trails through nature, there are so many spots to choose from. But what are the top skating rinks in Toronto? Keep reading, because below I’m diving into the top 5 skating rinks in Toronto, and the best part, they’re all free to enjoy!

1. The Bentway Skate Trail

The Bentway Skate Trail
Skating under the Gardiner Expressway at The Bentway Skate Trail.

First up, it’s one of the most unique top skating rinks in Toronto – The Bentway Skate Trail. What makes it so unique is that it’s built right under the Gardiner Expressway, beside the Fort York Visitor centre. The 220m skating trail weaves it’s way around the pillars of the Gardiner Expressway and you get this amazing cathedral affect with the Gardiner towering above you. The Bentway does a wonderful job of incorporating community events, offering free skate rental nights, free hot chocolate nights, skating lessons, and more. You do have to register for the free skating lessons, so be sure to visit The Bentway’s website for more.

The Bentway Skate Trail is open 7 days a week, though during the weekdays it’s only open in the evenings. Skate rentals and sharpening are available, and some skate-aid devices can be used on a first-come-first-serve basis. There are washrooms onsite plus a small concession stand for a quick pick-me-up.

In Summary:
Hours: open evenings and weekends
Programming: Free Hot Chocolate Mondays, Free Skate Lesson Tuesdays, and Free Skate Rental Fridays
Skate Rentals Available: $12/adult, $10/youth (includes helmet)
Washrooms and a small concession stand onsite

2. Colonel Samuel Smith Skating Trail

Top skating rinks in Toronto
The 250m figure-eight loop trail at Colonel Samuel Smith Park.

Next up is my personal favourite skating rink in Toronto – Colonel Samuel Smith Skating Trail. It’s located along the waterfront in the city’s west end. This figure-eight shaped trail near the historic Power House Recreation Centre takes the claim as Toronto’s first ice skating trail. It’s also one of only a few spots in the city where you can skate in nature. The 250m trail will have you skating your way past trees and wetlands. Inside the Power House Recreation Centre you’ll find washrooms, a change room and cubbies to store your things, but there are no skate rental facilities. The Colonel Samuel Smith Skating Trail is open 7 days a week.

In Summary:
Hours: open 7 days a week
No skate rentals available
Washrooms, changeroom, and cubbies onsite

3. The Barbara Ann Scott Ice Trail

Barbara Ann Scott Skating Trail at College Park
The Barbara Ann Scott Skating Trail is tucked in amongst the towers at College Park.

This next spot brings us back to downtown Toronto – the Barbara Ann Scott Ice Trail. Although it’s located in downtown Toronto, it doesn’t feel like you’re in downtown Toronto. There’s certainly a cozy vibe to this spot at College Park, which makes it one of the top skating rinks in Toronto. The oval-shaped skating path is tucked in amongst the towers at Yonge and College Streets and is named after the Canadian figure skater who won gold at the 1948 Winter Olympics. There is a 1,500-square-foot wood and glass pavilion where you’ll find washrooms and a warming centre. There are no rental facilities available so you do have to bring your own skates. The Barbara Ann Scott Ice Trail is open 7 days a week.

The Downtown Yonge BIA will be bringing back their #SkatesAndSounds DJ Nights every Friday night from 5pm-8pm in the month of February. Each Friday, a different DJ will be spinning the themed-tunes which will also include a free skate-lending program, family programming, and more.

In Summary:
Hours: open 7 days a week
Programming: #SkatesAndSounds DJ Nights every Friday in February from 5pm-8pm
No skate rentals available
Washrooms and changeroom onsite

4. The Evergreen Brick Works Skating Rink

Evergreen Brick Works Skating Rink
Skating inside one of the old brick factories at the Evergreen Brick Works.

In the east end of the city, you’ll find another top skating rink in Toronto – The Evergreen Brick Works Skating Rink. It’s located on the site of a former quarry and brick factory. The skating rink takes over one of the old brick factory buildings with only the exposed beams left overhead. You’ll weave your way around snow-covered gardens on an ice surface that features a sustainable cooling system call ECO Chill. Skate rentals and skate sharpening services are available and when you’re finished, pop into the Picnic Café for a tasty bite afterwards. The Evergreen Brick Works Rink is only open on the weekends and there is paid parking onsite and even a free shuttle service to and from Broadview Station.

The Evergreen Brick Works skating rink will be hosting DJ Skate Nights on Saturdays for the first time this year. From 6pm-10pm until February 17, 2024, skate to some of your favourite tunes. There will be food and beverages to purchase, plus lawn games, smores and firepits. There’s also an Apres Skate Lounge in the Young Centre where you can warm up in after skating.

In Summary:
Hours: Public skating open 9am-12pm on Saturdays and 1pm-5pm on Sundays
Programming: DJ Skate Nights every Saturday from 6pm-10pm until February 17th, 2024
Skate rentals available: $5 suggested donation
Washrooms, concession stand and dine-in cafe onsite

5. Nathan Phillips Square Ice Rink

Top skating rinks in Toronto.
Enjoy skating at Nathan Phillips Square day or night.

And last but not least – Nathan Phillips Square Skating Rink. Located right in the heart of downtown Toronto you’ve got City Hall and the iconic Toronto sign as it’s backdrop. It’s hands down, the most popular rink in the city, so consider visiting during the week if you want to avoid the crowds. At night it’s particularly magical with all the twinkly lights overhead. There are benches all around the rink to lace up but not much in the way of lockers, so don’t leave valuables unattended. Washroom facilities are not available onsite either, the closest public washrooms can be found in the Eaton Centre just east of Nathan Phillips Square. There are skate rentals available as well as skate sharpening services during the week. The Nathan Phillips Square Rink can be enjoyed 7 days a week.

In Summary:
Hours: open 7 days a week
Programming: DJ Skate Nights every Saturday from 6pm-10pm until February 17th, 2024
Skate rentals available: $15/adult, $10/children
No washrooms
Concession stand onsite

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