SEASONAL ICE-SKATING au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)

It’s that time of year when the ⛸ seasonal ice-skating rinks begin to appear in town centres throughout the 🏔 Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond) . . . a lovely way to spend some time en famille . . . 

Sometimes, next to the ice-skating rink, you might find yourself rewarded with 🥃 a vin chaud stand or a small 🎄 Christmas market!

[ note: the opening dates and hours of these ⛸ ephemerlal ice-skating rinks are subject to change – 🌧 weather, 🧊 quality of the ice, etc . . . please do check before heading there ! ]

Sallanches Christmas market, next to patinoire © montblancfamilyfun.com

[ for more information about the 🏔 Pays du Mont-Blanc indoor ice-skating rinks, see separate MBFF article here ]


Colour code for listings:

Chamonix Valley (Chamonix, Argentière, Les Houches & Servoz) and Vallorcine

Passy & environs

Sallanches, Combloux, Cordon & Domancy

Saint-Gervais-les-Bains, Le Fayet, Saint-Nicolas de Vérone & environs

Megève, Praz-sur-Arly & environs

Les Contamines-Montjoie & environs

🇫🇷 Further France 

🇨🇭 Switzerland 

🇮🇹 Italia


What to WEAR . . . 
  • ✅ it is a good idea to dress very small skaters in their ❄ WINTER SKI SUITS, in order to keep them warm and water-proofed (in case or when they fall!);
  • ✅ GLOVES very important to avoid a skate injuring the hand, and to keep hands warm and dry!
  • ✅ HELMET for little ones;

AU PAYS du MONT-BLANC & CHAMONIX VALLEY

Stade Olympique (Chamonix)

[ currently shut ! ]

The stade olympique’s ⛸ anneau de vitesse (a reminder of Chamonix’s 1924 Winter Olympics!) opens for ice-skating (weather dependent) over the winter season! Located in front of the indoor ice skating rink, it has FREE access every day from 14h to 17h30 (in maintenance in the morning). You can take your own skates, or rent them at the rink (indoors).

website
© Mairie de Chamonix
Patinoire des Houches (Les Houches)

Located in the heart of Les Houches village, next to the Tourchet pistes, this is ⛸ an outdoor ice-skating rink with a stunning view! It measures 26m x 56m. It used to be entirely natural, thought these days it is artificial!

🗓 FRIDAYS during the holidays: « Nocturnes Givrées » FREE ice skating from 20h to 22h;

🗓 opening dates: from late December until March, 14h until 19h / outside school holidays: Wednesdays and weekends, 14h to 17h / school holidays: every day, 14h to 17h30;

💶 price: entrance: 3€ (FREE for under 6s) / skate hire adults & children 4€ / abonnement saison (entrée + location patins) : 30€ / FREE entrance and skate rental for holders of Via Cham / FREE skate with Mont-Blanc Unlimited 3 to 21 day pass (skate rental: 4€);

good to know: during the warmer months, it is used for roller-blading and roller-skating . . .

🅿️ parking: Le Tourchet / Olca – bus stop: Le Tourchet / La Griaz train stop: Gare des Houches;

website

address: (next to the Le Tourchet pistes) 25 avenue des Alpages, 74310, Les Houches;
Résidence & Spa Vallorcine (Vallorcine)

Nonresidents can also skate here for an entrance fee . . .

🗓 opening dates: from December until March (weather dependant);

💶 price: 5€/pers (entrance and skate rental);

🅿️ parking: Le Tourchet / Olca / bus stop: Le Tourchet / La Griaz / train stop: Gare des Houches;

address: 44 route des Confins du Valais, 74660, Vallorcine;
© Résidence & Spa Vallorcine
Patinoire de La Grenette (Sallanches)

[ now SHUT ! ]

The ice-skating rink sets up in the old grain market La Grenette. In the evenings and on December weekends, you’ll find a small and festive Christmas market here: mulled wine, pretzels, concerts . . .

🗓 opening dates: from 3rd December 2022 until early January 2023;

💶 price: 3€ for the hour;

🅿️ parking: La Frasse car park opposite (FREE) or paying underground car park, or Sallanches parking spots;

address: La Grenette, 74700, Sallanches;
Patinoire de plein air de Megève (Megève)

We experienced ⛸ Megève’s outdoor ice-skating rink for the first time just before Christmas a few years ago. Our then 6year old elder son had a great time; he could have kept going for hours, and we eventually had to drag him away to pick up his younger brother from crèche! The 1600 m² ice-skating rink is located right next to the 🥘 Restaurant Les Voiles, which has a little food hut over the winter the perfect spot for parents or accompanying adults to have a drink while watching the little ones skate (but keep moving!). Across the road, you’ll also find La Yourte and Le Vieux Megève.

🗓 opening hours: from 17th December 2022 until 6th March 2023 / from 13h30 to 19h30 (over the holidays 10h until 19h);

💶 price (skate-hire included!): adults: 6€ / children (5 to 14 years): 4,60€ / skate hire: 3,90 / FREE for under 5s!

🅿️ parking: Le Casino (paying);

website

address: place de la Résistance, 74120, Megève;
Outdoor patinoire Megève © Mairie de Megève
Outdoor patinoire Megève © Megève Tourisme
Patinoire Jean-Christophe Simond (Contamines-Montjoie)

Located near the centre of Les Contamines-Montjoie, in Les Loyers, you can skate at this semi-natural outdoor ice-skating rink (1400m2) with views of 🏔 les Dômes de Miage! / 🌠 themed events and nocturnes during the holidays;

🗓 open from 17th December 2022 until mid March 2023 / exact opening hours, see website;

💶 price: adults 4€ and children 3€ (FREE for under 5s) / skate hire: 3€ / discounts for those with a carte d’hôte! / FREE Friday evenings from 19h (except skate hire), with 80s tunes;

NEW since 2019 a new playground and pumptrack (when not covered in snow!). Also new is the hut, so that you can put on your skates in comfort and warmth!

🅿️ parking: centre of town OR car park at junction of route de Notre Dame de la Gorge and route de Nant Fandraz;

website

address: route de Notre Dame de la Gorge, Les Contamines-Montjoie / tel: +33 (0)4 50 47 06 23/04 50 47 01 58;


🇫🇷 FURTHER FRANCE

Patinoire des Carroz (Les Carroz)

The synthetic (and eco) ⛸ ice-skating rink in Carroz is located in the heart of the village and measures 36m x 18m / why not combine with a go on the Speed Carroz (luge sur rails) ? 

🗓 open from 14th December 2022 until early March 2023;

website

address: chemin du Club, 74300, Les Carroz-d'Arâches;
Patinoire d’Annemasse 

[ now SHUT ! ]

During 🎄 Annemasse’s Christmas celebrations « Bonjour L’Hiver », a small ⛸ iceskating rink is set up in the centre of town;

Patinoire « Bonjour l’Hiver » Annemasse © Ville d’Annemasse
Patinoire de Samoëns (Samoëns)

The artificial ⛸ ice-skating rink in Samoëns (56 m x 26 m) is located in the Grenette, in the centre of town;

website 

address: La Grenette, 155 route des Drugères, 74340, Samoëns / tel: 04 50 34 13 92 (reservations required);
© Patinoire de Samoëns 2022
© Patinoire de Samoëns
Thonon Les Féeriques – la patinoire (Thonon-les-Bains)

[ now SHUT ! ]

note: gloves are compulsory for children AND adults !!!

website

🇨🇭 SWITZERLAND 

Patinoire de Salvan (Vallée du Trient)

Ice skating and ice hockey at Salvan’s outdoor artificial ice rink;

💶 price: under 4s FREE, under 12s CHF 3 and adults CHF 4 / skate rental (+ 4 years): CHF 5;

website

address: Tinderet, 1922, Salvan, Switzerland;
Patinoire de Salvan © Vallée de Trient Tourisme
Patinoire du Parc des Bastions (Geneva)

Ice skating in the lovely Parc des Bastions in Geneva! / be sure to visit the Reformation Monument, the playgrounds and the old town of Geneva, while there!

🗓 opening hours: ⇒ February 2023;

💶 price: FREE (take your own skates!) / skate rental: CHF 2;

website

address: Parc des Bastions, Geneva, Switzerland;
Parc des Bastions © montblancfamilyfun.com
© montblancfamilyfun.com
Patinoire de Carouge (Carouge)

If you visit Carouge over the winter period (lovely Christmas lights!), then you can stop off at the ice-skating rink!

🗓 opening hours: ⇒ 5th February 2023;

website
© Ville de Carouge
Patinoire de Terre Saint (Coppet, Lac Léman)

I’m listing this ice-skating rink as Coppet is a lovely lakeside village, and the winter ice rink ( made with the ” les fondus de glace de toute la région “) is located within the Parc du Château and can be combined with a visit to the Marché de Noel du Château du Coppet.

🗓 opening hours: until 18th February 2023;


🇮🇹 ITALY

Pista di pattinaggio (Piazza Chanoux, AOSTA)

[ shutting 8th January ]

If you are visiting the Christmas market (end of November until January), then you can also pay a visit to the ⛸ ice skating rink set up in the centre of town, in Piazza Chanoux . . .

website
 Pista di pattinaggio Aosta © lovevda.it


🇨🇭🇫🇷 FURTHER AFIELD SWITZERLAND and FRANCE NATURAL ICE-SKATING

None of the accessible 💦 LAKES au Pays du Mont-Blanc freeze over solidly enough to allow for ⛸ ice-skating fun au nature during the winter months . . .

However, look at these fabulous photos of skaters a couple of years ago up at Lac des Cheserys (Tristan Shu Photography). I’ve also seen some photos of skaters up at the Lac d’Anterne!

[ disclaimer: you should NOT attempt to skate on an outdoor lake, unless you are with professionals! / the ice could easily break if not thick enough! ]

If ice-skating on a natural lake is something you would like to try out, then website Loisir.ch has a detailed list of some of the offerings of 🇨🇭 lake skating in Switzerland (among other artificial ice-skating rinks); see « Où patiner en Suisse Romande? » for more details: Lac de Joux (VD); Lac des Taillères (NE); Lac Noir, Schwarzsee (FR);

Vallée de Joux – patinoire © My Vallée de Joux

At nearby 🇨🇭 Lac de Champex (Champex-Lac, VS), when weather permits, the lake ❄️ freezes for ice skating . . . and there is an artificial rink too! It is nicknamed “ petit Canada ” / dimensions: 70m x 150m;

website

address: 1938 Champex-Lac / tel: +41 (0)27 775 23 83
© Champex Lac

In the 🇫🇷 French Jura mountains, several lakes ❄️ freeze over for skating, at the ⛷ ski station Les Rousses for example! / see here for more information;

Lac des Rousses © Montagnes du Jura

⛸ Happy and Safe Skating! ⛸

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