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12 best Christmassy ice skating rinks in the Netherlands

12 best Christmassy ice skating rinks in the Netherlands

12 best Christmassy ice skating rinks in the Netherlands

Ice skating in the Netherlands is wildly popular. In fact, it can be argued that it's the Dutch national sport. Although the Dutch weather rarely allows enough ice for the legendary Elfstedentocht, the Eleven Cities Skating Tour, ice skating has been held in very high regard in the Netherlands for generations.

Not only is the country full of permanent ice skating rinks - Jaap Eden Baan in Amsterdam, Thialf in Heerenveen, De Scheg in Deventer and De Vechtsebanen in Utrecht, for example - Christmas is a time when temporary festive ice rinks pop up in many Dutch cities from long before the holidays right up until well into the new year.

Christmassy ice skating rinks in the Netherlands

Here are some of the most Christmassy skating rinks coming to a Dutch city near you this winter:

1. Floating Ice Rink, Leiden

As part of the Winter Wonder Weeks in Leiden, you can go ice skating on the Floating Ice Rink, which takes place around the same time as the Floating Christmas Market. After all the skating fun, you can go and browse the stalls and warm up with a hot chocolate and some traditional Dutch snacks

  • Date: December 7, 2019-January 5, 2020
  • Time: 12pm-9pm
  • Where: Nieuwe Rijn, 2312 JB Leiden
  • Tickets: 8,50 euros

2. Ice Amsterdam at Museumplein, Amsterdam

Surrounded by some of the most famous Dutch museums, you can enjoy yourself on the ice at Ice Amsterdam. This scenic outdoor ice rink is adjacent to Ice Village Christmas Market, where you can go and stock up on festive goodies.

  • Date: November 16, 2019-February 2, 2020
  • Time: 10am-8pm
  • Where: Museumplein
  • Tickets: From 6,50 euros

3. Rembrandtplein Ice Rink, Amsterdam

On one of the famous city squares in Amsterdam, in the general vicinity of the Amstel River by the Munt and the Pathé Tuschinski Theatre, Rembrandtplein Ice Rink is the perfect location to spend a few hours in the heart of the city in the run up to Christmas. The ice rink is surrounded by cosy-looking chalets and the trees are adorned with LED fairy lights.

  • Date: November 15, 2019-January 5, 2020
  • Time: 10am-11pm
  • Where: Rembrandtplein, Amsterdam
  • Tickets: 2,50 euros (5 euros to rent skates)

4. Cool Event Scheveningen, The Hague

The 600 square metre ice skating rink in front of the famous old Kurhaus Hotel, is known as Kurhausplein on Ice, which is part of the wider celebration in Scheveningen, Cool Event. The ice rink is surrounded by heated restaurant terraces that offer warm drinks and seasonal dishes. Cool Event Scheveningen has so many fun attractions - visitors can also enjoy the ice sculpture exhibition, snow tubing on the slopes and more. The central activity of Cool Event, though, is by far the ice skating.

  • Date: November 9, 2019-January 20, 2020
  • Time: 10am-10pm
  • Where: Kurhausplein, Scheveningen, The Hague
  • Tickets: 6 euros (10 euros including skate rental)

5. IJsvrij, Rotterdam

IJsvrij has been hailed by Lonely Planet as one of the top three most beautiful ice skating rinks in Europe. Located at Plein 1940, it’s in the heart of the Cool District of Rotterdam, near the most interesting buildings in Rotterdam like Markthal and the Cube Houses.

  • Date: December 14, 2019-January 12, 2020
  • Time: 12pm-8pm (opens at 10am on weekends and holidays)
  • Where: Plein 1940, 3011 TA Rotterdam
  • Tickets: Find out on the IJsvrij website

6. Schaatsbaan at Kralingen, Rotterdam

The 400-metre covered ice skating track at the Kralingen in Rotterdam, better known as Schaatsbaan Rotterdam, is striking with it’s rainbow-coloured roof. There’s also a smaller “Funbaan” for practising your skating skills and for taking part in a game of curling.

  • Date: From November 30, 2019 until early in 2020
  • Time: 9am-10pm
  • Where: Kralingen, Rotterdam
  • Tickets: 6,75 euros

7. Archeon, Alphen aan den Rijn

The ice rink at Archeon will be open from 11am-5pm on certain days between December 14, 2019 and January 12, 2020. However, it won’t be open straight through, so take note of the opening dates: December 14-15, 2019, December 21-31, 2019, January 3-5, 2020 and January 11-12, 2020.

  • Date: December 14, 2019-January 12, 2020
  • Time: 11am-5pm
  • Where: Archeon archeological living museum in Alphen aan den Rijn, South Holland
  • Tickets: Find ticket information on the Archeon ice skating website

8. Magical Maastricht

On the Vrijthof Square in Maastricht, a 900 square metre covered ice rink will shine as the centrepiece of the Magical Maastricht winter village. There’s even a mini ice rink for children, where they can earn their ice skating diploma. 

A standard adult ticket to Magical Maastricht costs 16,60 euros and allows entrance to the covered ice rink, skate rental, two drink vouchers and a ride on the Ferris Wheel.

  • Date: November 29-December 31, 2019
  • Time: 10am-1am (check the Magical Maastricht website for exceptions)
  • Where: Vrijthof Square, Maastricht
  • Tickets: 16,60 euros

9. Winter Station at the National Railway Museum, Utrecht

Winter Station is a fantastic festive celebration at the National Railway Museum of the Netherlands, complete with an ice-skating rink, face painting and other fun activities for kids, parents and the whole family.

In terms of opening times, there are a few exceptions due to the holidays: the museum is closed on New Year’s Day and it closes at 5pm on December 24, 25, 26 and 31.

  • Date: December 22, 2019-January 6, 2020
  • Time: 10am to 7pm
  • Where: National Railway Museum, Utrecht
  • Tickets: 17,50 euros

10. Skating at the Dutch Open Air Museum, Arnhem

Take to the outdoor skating rink at the Dutch Open Air Museum – the skates are free to borrow! You can also go snow tubing on the slopes. There are so many other things you must do when in Arnhem.

  • Date: December 7, 2019-January 19, 2020
  • Time: 10am-6pm
  • Where: Dutch Open Air Museum, Arnhem
  • Tickets: 8 euros

11. Gouda Ice Skating Rink, Gouda

Skate around the iconic 15th-century town hall during December and January. The market square, or Markt, where Gouda Cheese Market takes place is the very same location as Gouda Ice Skating Rink (Goudse IJsbaan).

  • Date: December 18, 2019-January 12, 2020
  • Time: 9am until 11pm
  • Where: Markt, Gouda
  • Tickets: 6 euros (2 euros to rent skates)

12. Flevonice, Flevoland

Flevonice boasts the longest artificial skating rink in the world, with a 3km skating lane. On such an impressive course, you'll feel as though you're on the legendary Elfstedentocht! Along the way, there are two rest areas where you can grab a hot chocolate and take a break from your ice adventures. It also has a smaller (but actually not small at all) 400-metre ice rink as well as a rectangular children’s training rink, where they can learn safely without the risk of being trampled by falling adult skaters.

As its name might suggest, Flevonice is located in the very flat province of Flevoland in the middle of nowhere, between Almere and Zwolle, not far from Walibi Holland, one of the largest amusement parks in the Netherlands

  • Date: From November 30, 2019 until early in 2020
  • Time: 10am-7pm
  • Where: Strandgaperweg 20, 8256 PZ Biddinghuizen, Flevoland
  • Tickets: Standard adult day ticket: 15 euros

Plan your trip to an ice skating rink this winter

There are so many ice skating rinks to choose from. Plan your day out enjoying skating coupled with browsing the Christmas markets. Want to find out more about skating? Then check out the best skating rinks in the Netherlands and vintage 1930s footage of ice skating.

Rachel Deloughry

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Rachel Deloughry

Rachel is a writer, editor and digital content creator, passionate about the arts, culture and lifestyle.

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