Great kids ice skating in NYC
Even if the sidewalks are overrun with tourists, your crew will have ample room to skate at the city’s most iconic rink; only 150 people are allowed on the ice at once. Unfortunately, that also means that your family should prepare for long lines—unless you plan on going early in the morning or between 9am and noon on Thanksgiving, expect a one- to two-hour wait. Reservations for the first skate of the day can be made online. Open Oct 7—April. $15–32; skate rentals $12. Group rates available.
When the chill sets in, Bryant Park transforms into a winter village complete with a 17,000-square-foot ice skating rink. Free admission means it can get a bit crowded, but it’s worth it for views of the skyline as you swish your way around the ice. Bring your own skates to enjoy the rink free of charge or just rent a pair. When your legs need a break, stroll through the holiday shops that line the rink or warm up in the indoor pavilion before going for hot cocoa at the Celsius lounge. Open Oct 28–March 4 daily 8am–10am. Free; skate rentals $20, helmet rental $6.
This $74 million project overhauled 26 acres of the park’s southeast corner and now offers year-round fun. The LeFrak Center houses two seasonal ice-skating rinks—one covered and the other open-air—plus a cafe. Kiddos can get in on skating lessons through the Skate School, take clinics with the Hockey Academy, or even try their hand at curling and broomball. 2017 DATES AND PRICING TBA.
Located on the plaza in front of the erstwhile World Financial Center Winter Garden (it's now called Brookfield Place Winter Garden), this rink brings a much-needed cold-weather option to the seasonally popular outdoor spot overlooking the North Cove Marina. At 7,350 square feet, it's even bigger than the Rink at Rockefeller Plaza. The rink offers Learn to Skate classes with Olympic medal–winning husband-and-wife team, Melissa Gregory and Denis Petukhov. The ice-dancing pros will lead Intro to Basics lessons and Parent & Me classes throughout the season. Ice-hockey lessons are on offer too, in case your crew's in need of a little coaching. Rink will open Nov 1. $15; skate rental $5.
At this spiffy center that's home to two NHL-sized ice rinks, skating is offered 365 days a year! No other sports center in NYC can claim that, and we're totally glad it exists. It's also friendly to groups, since group outing pricing and ice-skating birthday parties are available options (in addition to private lessons, of course). Open Mon–Sun at various times. $12, children 11 and under $10. Members: $10.80 children 11 and under $9. Skate rentals $6; free lockers available, but guests must bring their own lock.
The complex hosts two NHL-size skating rinks that welcome skaters all year round. Sign kids up for youth hockey leagues or figure skating lessons to see your little ones twirling and speeding down the ice like a pro. The indoor arena means it’s a perfect day for a skate no matter the weather. Open Thu–Tue at various times. $11, skate rental $6.
If the massive crowds circling Wollman Rink on the southern edge of Central Park, head north for the park’s second rink. Not only will you find more elbow room here, but it’s also a great spot for budding hockey players to test their skating skills. 2017 DATES TBA. Mon-Sun various times. $8.50, children 11 and under $4.50; skate rental $7.50. Cash only.
This go-to skating spot in Central Park is often packed and for good reason—the views are unbeatable. Learn-to-skate, hockey and figure skating programs pair skating coaches with budding skaters of all ages and skill levels. 2017 DATES TBA. Mon-Thu $12, children 11 and under $6; Fri–Sun and holidays $19, children 11 and under $6; skate rental $9. Cash only.
This nearly 50-year-old venue began its life as the Ravenhall Baths, a saltwater swimming pool that was quite the Coney Island hot spot in its day. It was destroyed by a fire in 1963, after which the space was converted into a destination for skaters of all ages. Arrive at the rink promptly at 1pm when it opens; the ice fills fast and it closes at 3:30pm. 2017 DATES TBA. Sat and Sun 1pm–3:30pm. $9; skate rental $5.
Although this rink offers hockey programs and private lessons, families can enjoy free-skate sessions every day of the week. World Ice also hosts inexpensive birthday parties; the fee ($23–28 per child) includes skate rental, pizza and several hours of ice time. Mon-Sun various times. $7 weekdays, $10 weekends; skate rental $6.
The five boroughs’ only rooftop rink stretches an NHL-appropriate 85-by-200 feet under a weatherproof air dome (if it’s good enough for Canadians, it’s good enough for the wussy New York winter). Stop by Wednesdays from 12-4pm or between noon and 2:30pm on the weekends. At other times, the rink is devoted to skating lessons, hockey practice and private parties. Open year round. $7 weekdays, $10 weekends; skate rental $6.
The borough's only year-round ice rink is a skater's dream, offering figure-skating and hockey programs for kids and adults of all levels. Public sessions take place on Fridays from 8–11pm, Saturdays from 2:40–4:40pm and Sundays from 3–5pm. Parties and private rink rentals are also available. $11; skate rentals $5.
Located about 85 blocks north of the midtown mayhem, the covered rink here—part of a 28-acre recreational facility—provides some of the least-crowded weekend skating in Manhattan. Riverbank Park overlooks the Hudson, so your crew will have nice views of the river and the George Washington Bridge too. Bonus: Families celebrating birthdays at the rink can reserve tables for after-skate cake and ice cream. Learn to Skate, Ice Dance, Figure Skating and Ice Hockey programs are also on offer. 2017 DATES TBA. $5, children $3; skate rental $6 per day.
We know what you’re thinking: Yeah freakin’ right. But the trip is sooo worth the scenery: Clove Lakes Park boasts some of New York’s few remaining wetlands. 2017 DATES TBA. Fri–Sun various times; $10, skate rental $5.