Skating at Parc Jean-Drapeau
Get away from the city... without leaving the city. Open in tandem with snow festival Fête des Neiges, Parc Jean-Drapeau crafts one of Montreal's most picturesque skating areas, a total of 1.5 kilometres (that's almost one mile) of ice paths lined with wooded areas and a gorgeous view of the city. But these paths are maintained only for a few days each winter season.
Indulge while you can.
In 2018, eight days of skating are possible on weekends January 20 through February 11, 2018.
Skating Season at Parc Jean-Drapeau: It's Short
Outdoor skating season in Montreal tends to run from December to March but at Parc Jean-Drapeau, the season is much shorter. It's held in tandem with Montreal snow festival Fête des neiges from January 20 to February 11, 2018 on weekends only.
And even though Parc Jean-Drapeau's skating paths are maintained only for a short while, don't automatically assume that they're in perfect condition. Since they're composed of natural outdoor ice devoid of an artificial refrigeration system, said paths are at the mercy of weather conditions. A sudden warm spell could thaw them out. It's always best to play it safe and call (514) 465-0594 or check ice conditions online before heading out.
Admission to the temporary skate paths is free of charge. Either bring your own ice skates—you might find a cheap pair here—or rent a pair on location.
The Écorécréo equipment rental office, which is located near the Jean-Drapeau Metro station exit right by the snow festival, is open Saturdays and Sundays from January 20 to February 11, 2018. Skates can be rented for two hours for $12. Fête des neiges Accropasse passport holders pay only $9 for two hours.
Parc Jean-Drapeau Ice Skating: 2018 Rates and Details
Location: Parc Jean-Drapeau
Getting There: Jean-Drapeau Metro
Hours*: same opening hours as Fête des Neiges
Admission*: free admission
Rental Services*: ice skates $12 for two hours, $9 for Fête des neiges Accropasse passport holders
INFO: (514) 465-0594 or the Parc Jean-Drapeau website
Any Other Winter Activities at Parc Jean-Drapeau?
And perhaps most intriguing of all is the opportunity to try out dog sledding. Interested parties are advised to reserve their dog sledding spot ahead of time as the activity is extremely popular given the limited number of runs available in the season. Details.
Here's an overview of Parc Jean-Drapeau's leading winter attractions.
Also consider visiting the Biosphere, an environmental science museum best known as one of Montreal's most recognizable landmarks, as well as the Stewart Museum, an old British military complex turned history museum about a 5- to 10-minute walk from the Biosphere.
*Note that dates, prices and other details are subject to change without notice. The public is encouraged to call (514) 465-0594 to confirm rental office opening hours and skating rink conditions before heading out.