British Travel | 2nd November 2023
England’s most delightful ice skating rinks for Christmas 2023
Get your skates on for a magical festive escape
Whether you want to take a spin or watch from the side lines with a cup of mulled wine, few experiences can foster that festive feeling quite like a trip to a Christmas ice skating rink.
The UK now offers some extraordinary ice-clad venues that pop up in the weeks running up to the Christmas holidays where you skate to the sounds of rock, pop and traditional Christmas carols, feast on delicious treats and enjoy one of the most cherished yuletide traditions with your friends or family.
Check out our pick of the most fun-packed Christmas ice skating rinks in England in destinations that offer magical festive breaks.
Hyde Park Christmas Ice Rink
17 November 2023 - 1 January 2024
You’ll find the very best ice skating rink in London in the buzzing heart of the city. The Hyde Park Christmas Ice Rink is the largest outdoor rink in the UK and is part of the hotly anticipated Hyde Park Winter Wonderland that pops up every year near the Victorian bandstand in the historic park. The ice skating is spectacular with areas suited to all ages and abilities but this festive extravaganza offers so much more than a memorable winter skate. Other top attractions on site include the vast Santaland fun fair with the Ice Mountain roller coaster and Real Ice Side; Zippo’s Circus, the Bavarian village, and ice sculpting workshops. And in addition to Christmas market stalls loaded with sweet treats, this year’s event will also feature a street food village with tasty snacks from around the world.
Where to stay: Cosy up in one of the most luxurious hotels in London including The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences in Mayfair, The Hari in Belgravia and The Capital Hotel, Apartments & Townhouse in Knightsbridge.
Bath on Ice, Bath
17 November 2023 - 3 January 2024
Ice skating at Christmas is a joy to behold in this beautiful Georgian city in Somerset. The Bath on Ice is a charming pop up ice rink situated in the Royal Pavilion in Royal Victoria Park. Lit up with warm twinkling lights, it offers the perfect venue for seasoned skaters and absolute beginners to glide into the festive season by taking a twirl on the ice and enjoying Christmas drinks in the inviting bar. Now in its 11th year, the event is also offering its popular glow golf experience again for 2023. Located next door to the ice rink, you’ll find Bath’s adventure golf course transformed into a fairy-lit winter wonderland where you can play golf in the dark winter evenings with glow-in-the-dark balls. With fabulous food and friendly vibe, this is a great destination for a family escape.
Where to stay: Situated within easy reach of all of Bath’s top attractions, The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa offers an elegant abode for discerning guests seeking magical festive breaks.
Royal Pavilion Ice Rink, Brighton
28 October 2023– 7 January 2024
The buzzing seaside town of Brighton offers one of the most instagrammable Christmas ice skating rinks in the land. This iconic rink pops up every year in front of the famous Royal Pavilion -— a palace created as the seaside pleasure palace of King George IV by architect John Nash. It’s super twinkly, manages to provide both a romantic setting for couples and a warm welcome for families, and wins extra kudos for the fact that its ice rink is powered entirely by green energy. Come and munch on mince pies and enjoy hot chocolate loaded with marshmallows or a warming glug of mulled wine in the city renowned for fun, inclusivity and warm hospitality whatever the time of year. And take note that Brighton is also a great shopping destination for finding fabulously unique Christmas gifts.
Where to stay: Live it up like a king or queen at Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa, one of the finest luxury hotels in Sussex. This historic hotel offers cosy guest rooms in a selection of Mediaeval-era houses and cottages.
Eden Project Ice Rink, Cornwall
14 October 2023 - February 2024
A top tourist attraction in the UK, The Eden Project is home to the world’s largest greenhouses which nestle in a giant 50 metre deep crater the size of 30 football pitches, forming the centrepiece of a spectacular global garden. A glittering ice rink pops up at the venue every winter offering a unique skating experience in a wonderful and awe-inspiring setting. The Eden Project, which houses the world’s largest rainforest in captivity, offers the opportunity to connect with nature and learn about how we can all help to protect the environment, as well as one of the most magical ice skating rinks in the UK. Please note that entry to the ice rink is subject to an additional charge and skating must be booked in advance.
Where to stay: The Headland Hotel & Spa is a Cornish delight. This five-star hotel in Newquay offers dramatic sea views, sumptuous fine dining and sophisticated guest rooms.
Yorkshire’s Winter Wonderland
17 November 2023 - 7 January 2024
If you fancy lacing up your skates in Yorkshire, the historic city of York is putting on a sparkly yuletide spectacle not to be missed. Yorkshire’s Winter Wonderland is home to The Ice Factor, the largest Christmas ice rink in the north of England with 975 sq m of real ice and a 30ft high Christmas tree as its centre. It’s the perfect place for a festive skate and there’s also plenty of family-friendly attractions, including a fantastic funfair with plenty of rides to suit all ages and a sweet Santa’s Grotto. Log cabins surround the ice rink and you can also tuck into Christmas food and drink at The Chalét, a cosy alpine café that has a rinkside terrace where you can watch the world whizz by.
Where to stay: Middlethorpe Hall & Spa, an elegant country house hotel that has an away from it all vibe despite being within easy reach of all the city of York’s top attractions.