skating trails ontario

5 magical trails and rinks for ice skating near Toronto

Skating trails and natural ice rinks are some of the top winter adventure destinations in Ontario. And fortunately for Toronto residents, there are plenty within a reasonable drive of the city (and more on the way). From frozen canals to wooded trails, ice skating has never been more fun.

Here my picks for ice skating destinations to visit this winter near Toronto.

Arrowhead Provincial Park

The most popular ice skating trail in the province is about a two and half hour drive from Toronto, so a good candidate for a weekend getaway. The trail generally opens during the first week of January once it's completely frozen. Admission to the park is $17 per car. Arrive early!

MacGregor Point Provincial Park

Although this one gets less attention than Arrowhead, it's equally stunning. This 400-metre skating oval is located just off the coast of Lake Huron where you can rent a yurt and take part in the other winter activities they offer for the ultimate winter getaway.

Island Lake Conservation Area Skating

There are multiple options for skating here, including a 1 km trail on the main lake and a pond turned into a rink for a game of hockey or a skate. After an hour and a half drive, you can be on beautiful skating trail free from all of your worries - except for finding your next hot chocolate.

Valens Lake

Conservation Hamilton tried out an ice skating trail through the woods last winter, but it proved tough to maintain, so the focus will be on the lake this year, which will feature both a rink and a loop cut through the snow banks. This is pond skating at its finest and just a short drive from Toronto.

Trent Canal

Skating under the Peterborough Lift Lock along the Trent-Severn Waterway is a spectacular experience. Sometimes you'll even see impromptu games of shinny break out. In a typical winter, ice conditions are safe for skating in early to mid January. Look for the green flag.

Lead photo by

@larissagramz at Arrowhead Provincial Park. With files from Mallory Warren.


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