San Francisco, a city known for its cultural diversity and architectural wonders, transforms into a winter wonderland every year, presenting a delightful treat for its residents and visitors. This treat comes in the form of various ice-skating rinks that pop up across the city, offering a unique blend of fun, excitement, and holiday spirit. This article will guide you through the best places for ice skating San Francisco bay area, ensuring you have the ultimate winter experience.
Table of Contents
Union Square Ice Rink
Union Square Ice Rink is perhaps the most iconic rink in San Francisco Bay Area. Situated in the heart of the city, this rink provides a classic San Francisco experience, complete with a gigantic Christmas tree and a lively crowd.
The skating rink operates daily from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., from November 1st through mid-January. Special events like “Let It Go Wednesdays” allow you skaters to have fun while listening to the soundtrack of Frozen, while the “Polar Bear Skate” on New Year’s Day encourages visitors to don their best beach attire for a fun-filled session. Tickets need to be purchased in advance online as there are no on-site sales.
Yerba Buena Ice Skating Center
Open year-round, Yerba Buena Gardens Ice Skating Center caters to serious skaters, skating students, and those interested in a pickup hockey game. During the holidays, the center offers extended public skating hours.
Afternoon sessions are popular, while dinnertime sessions offer a more relaxed atmosphere. Remember to bring some change for a hot beverage from one of the center’s vending machines.
Winter Lodge in Palo Alto
Winter Lodge in Palo Alto has been a tradition since 1956. Its quaint, small-town charm, coupled with its café lights and Christmas trees, create a perfect holiday atmosphere.
Open daily through early April, this rink offers lounge areas and a cozy fireplace, making it a delightful spot for a nighttime skate.
Kristi Yamaguchi Holiday Ice Rink
Named after the Olympic Gold Medal winner, the Kristi Yamaguchi Holiday Ice Rink in San Ramon offers an upscale skating experience amidst views of lush, rolling hills.
Open daily until early January, the rink is surrounded by high-end shopping options and a variety of food choices, making it an ideal destination for a full day of fun.
Five Palms Ice at the Claremont Club & Spa
Five Palms Ice at the Claremont Club & Spa provides a posh ice skating experience at the foot of the beautiful Berkeley Hills.
The outdoor figure skating rink uses synthetic ice, which is easier to skate on than regular ice, making it perfect for beginners. Adjacent to the rink is a wood-fired pizza tent and a vintage Airstream trailer serving cocktails.
Winter Lights Skating on the Square in Santa Rosa
Winter Lights Skating on the Square in Santa Rosa takes you back in time with its historic Old Courthouse Square setting.
Surrounded by twinkling holiday lights and Christmas trees, the ice skate rink uses synthetic ice that is engineered without using power or water.
Merry Meritage Holiday Ice Rink & Winter Village in Napa
Merry Meritage Holiday Ice Rink & Winter Village in Napa offers a super-luxe skating experience amidst sparkling Christmas lights and trees.
Adults can sip wine rink-side while kids enjoy skating.
Enchant San Jose Ice Skating
Enchant San Jose Ice Skating is a Hallmark Channel-sponsored rink where you can glide through a dazzling Christmas tree forest.
The holiday extravaganza also includes an illuminated maze with lighted tunnels, large-scale sculptures, and a 100-foot tall Christmas tree.
Walnut Creek on Ice
Walnut Creek on Ice offers a VIP experience with its option to rent a private cabana.
The outdoor rink is partially covered, making it a great option regardless of the weather.
Ice at the Veranda in Concord
Ice at the Veranda in Concord allows you to tackle holiday shopping and ice skating simultaneously.
The shiny new shopping center is a hit with families, so be sure to reserve your tickets in advance.
Bay Area Discovery Museum Iceless Skating in Sausalito
The Bay Area Discovery Museum’s Iceless Skating rink is a safe bet for the little ones.
The indoor rink allows kids to slide and spin without fear of falling, providing a fun and safe wintertime activity.
Ice skating San Francisco offers an unforgettable holiday experience. Whether you’re a seasoned skater or a beginner, the city’s diverse selection of rinks caters to everyone’s needs. So, tie up those laces and get ready for a delightful winter adventure in the heart of San Francisco!