Make the city your winter wonderland and add ice skating in Los Angeles to your list of must-do Christmas events this season. These family-friendly rinks offer more than just skates—from wintry food and drinks to ice tubing and meeting Santa, there’s something for everyone. Plus, if you’re still looking for the perfect Christmas gifts, most of the rinks are located within walking distance from prime shopping destinations and holiday markets.
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Lace up at these outdoor ice skating rinks in Los Angeles
L.A. doesn’t typically seem like much of a winter wonderland, until, that is, you create an ice skating rink right in the midst of Downtown skyscrapers and L.A. icons. Come glide and pretend there’s snow on the ground at Pershing Square’s outdoor holiday skating rink—one of the biggest in the city. Look out for special events throughout the season, like curling lessons, a silent disco skate and DJ nights.
Located just minutes from the Pacific Ocean, ICE in downtown Santa Monica (1324 5th St) is a full-service 8,000-square-foot outdoor rink. Watch broomball games, take up skating lessons or host a party at the rink and get your own private cabana. For $15, rent skates and strut your stuff on the ice alongside children and adults. No need to pack snacks, there’s a concession stand on site, serving hot cocoa and kid-friendly bites.
Cozy up—and make sure to bring your jacket—to the Queen Mary for its annual Christmas makeover. It’s the time of year when the iconic ship is transformed into a winter wonderland, which this year is decking out every facet with classic Christmas decor. Slip on some skates and glide across the rink and around a 26-foot-tall Christmas tree with views of the Long Beach waterfront. The event also includes meet-and-greets with Santa, musical performances, light displays and more.
The annual L.A. Kings ice skating rink once again returns to L.A. Live. Skate around the dazzling Christmas tree that stands in the middle of the outdoor rink, and take in an LED holiday light show on the huge screens around the plaza.
Quench those clichés about the heat in the Valley with a 90-minute session in Downtown Burbank. Winter sports aren’t exactly a pastime in L.A., so little ones—and those of us who look helpless on the ice—can rent Bobby the Seal or Tommy the Reindeer, which are adorable, plastic skating aids. Show up early on Saturdays for skate lessons ($25). You’ll find the rink near Burbank City Hall, on the corner of Third Street and Orange Grove Avenue.
Glendale gets in on the seasonal ice skating action with its first-ever outdoor rink. Set up in the Glendale City Hall parking lot, you can lace up and glade around for as long as you like (though the ice is resurfaced every 90 minutes). Adorable seal and reindeer skate aids are available for rent, if needed, and you can even buy a season pass ($200) or rent out the entire rink for a party.
If you’re in Orange County and dreaming of a white Christmas, the Irvine Spectrum Center is your answer. Located in Giant Wheel Court by Nordstrom, this tented rink offers the perfect time out from shopping. When renting skates, be sure to request a free helmet—recommended for adults and children alike. Head to the adjacent Ferris wheel during the half hour the rink is closed for nonstop fun.