SEASONAL ICE-SKATING 2020 / 2021 au Pays du Mont-Blanc (and beyond)

[ 2020 / 2021 UPDATE – ⛸ the outdoor rinks should be able to open, but with Covid-19 regulations! ]

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

This year, of course, is slightly different . . . ❄ the outdoor ice-skating rinks had to await government announcements to let us know if they could open for the holidays! They have been given the green light, but with Covid-19 restrictions (number of people allowed on the ice, wearing of masks, no spectators . . . ).

[ note: the indoor rinks 🏔 le Pays du Mont-Blanc are SHUT for the time being! They may be able to open from 20th January 2021 ]


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 🇨🇭


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;
  • FACE MASKS – oh, how very 2020 / 2021!

AU PAYS du MONT-BLANC

Chamonix (Stade Olympique)

The stade olympique’s ⛸ anneau de vitesse (a reminder of the 1924 Olympics!) is now open for ice-skating! Located in front of the indoor ice skating rink, it has FREE access at the weekend, and you can rent out skates Monday to Friday 12h until 16h.

© Mairie de Chamonix
Les Houches

Located in the heart of Les Houches village, 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! / website;

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

❄ Covid-19 regulations – ” Location des patins à l’extérieur. Masques obligatoires pour accéder à l’intérieur du bâtiment.
Activité organisée dans le respect des normes de sécurité COVID “;

🗓 opening dates: from late December until March, 14h until 19h;

price: adults & children: 3€ (FREE for under 6s) / skate hire: 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: 3€);

address: (next to the Le Tourchet pistes) 25 avenue des Alpages, 74310, Les Houches;
bus stop: Le Tourchet / La Griaz / train stop: Gare des Houches;
🅿️ parking: Le Tourchet / Olca;
Patinoire Les Houches © OT Les Houches
Vallorcine (Résidence & Spa Vallorcine)

[ SHUT for winter season 2020 / 2021 ]

vallorcine3
Patinoire Résidence & Spa Vallorcine © montblancfamilyfun.com
Sallanches (La Grenette)

[ CANCELLED for winter season 2020-2021 ]

Megève

We experienced ⛸ Megève’s outdoor ice-skating rink for the first time just before Christmas a few years ago. Our then 6-year 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 ice-skating rink is located right next to the 🥘 Restaurant Les Voiles, which has a little food hut this 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, selling take-away food!

🗓 opening hours: from late December until early March, from 13h30 to 19h30 (over the holidays 10h until 19h);

price (skate-hire included!): adults: 9€ / children (5 to 14 years): 7,70€ / FREE for under 5s!

address: place de la Résistance, 74120, Megève;
🅿️ parking: Le Casino (paying);
Preparing the rink 2020 © Megève Tourisme
Les Contamines-Montjoie

Located near the centre of Les Contamines-Montjoie, in Les Loyers, and 🗓 open from December until late March, 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 / website;

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! (not this season though!);

⛸ Matinée des Super-Héros for young skaters – 🗓 on Wednesday and Sunday mornings, 10h to midday, with music and accessories for children / see website;

© Les Contamines-Montjoie

🗓 opening hours: open from mid December until late March, 9h30 to 13h and 16h30 to 20h (opening times and dates may vary, depending on the outdoor temperature) / FREE Friday evenings from 19h (except skate hire), with 80s tunes;

price: adults: 4€ / children: 3€ and FREE for under 5s! / skate hire: 3€ / discounts for those with a carte d’hôte!

address: route de Notre Dame de la Gorge, Les Contamines-Montjoie / tel: +33 (0)4 50 47 06 23/04 50 47 01 58;
🅿️ parking: centre of town or car park at junction of route de Notre Dame de la Gorge and route de Nant Fandraz;

🇫🇷 FURTHER FRANCE 🇫🇷 

Cluses

The ⛸ outdoor ice-skating rink in Cluses is under new management this year, and usually one of the first seasonal rinks to open for the winter season near the 🏔 Pays du Mont-Blanc! Located in the centre of town, its 600m3 of ice hosts plenty of themed events over the season;

🌠 nocturnes and themed evenings – see website for more details / NB – it is obligatory to wear GLOVES!

❄ Covid-19 regulations – “ L’accès à la patinoire est réservé aux patineurs SEULEMENT. Les accompagnants ne sont pas autorisés. Le port du masque est obligatoire, à partir du moment où vous entrez dans la file d’attente de la patinoire. “;

🗓 opening hours: open from 19th December 2020 until early March (opening times and dates may vary, depending on the outdoor temperature and weather!) / ” Les horaires d’ouverture restent les mêmes que pour les vacances de la Toussaint, c’est-à-dire : ouverture tous les jours (séances de 2h). le matin : 10h – 12h / l’après midi : 13h – 15h, 15h – 17h, 17h-19h “;

price: adults: 4€ / children (under 12s): 3€ / skate hire: 1€;

address: place des Allobroges, 74300, Cluses / tel: (+33) 07 68 11 69 44;
© Patinoire de Cluses
Les Carroz

The ⛸ ice-skating rink in Carroz is located in the heart of the village and measures 36 m x 18 m;

🌠 nocturnes during the holidays on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays / why not combine with a go on the Speed Carroz (luge sur rails) ? / website;

address: chemin du Club, 74300, Les Carroz-d'Arâches;
⛸ Samoëns ⛸

The ⛸ ice-skating rink in Samoëns is located in the Grenette, in the centre of town / more information here;

🗓 opening hours: from 19th December;

❄️ Covid-19 regulations – ” Nous avons l’autorisation d’ouvrir en extérieur seulement. Ce sera différent qu’en temp normal, l’accès aux vestiaires est interdit c’est pourquoi nous avons installé plusieurs tonnelles pour vous permettre d’être à l’abris. Interdiction totale de stocker vos affaires personnelles ( sac à dos, chaussures, vestes etc ) venez avec le minimum ou avec un sac à dos vous permettant de patiner avec. Il y aura plusieurs séances de 2h30 par jour limitées à 180 personnes maximum. Nouvelles animations pour cette période le curling et isstock ! Vous pourrez essayer les activités les lundis et mercredi de 9h00 à 10h30. L’accès à la patinoire est réservé aux patineurs SEULEMENT. Les accompagnants ne sont pas autorisés.Le port du masque est obligatoire pour tout le monde dès 6 ans à partir du moment où vous entrez dans la file d’attente de la patinoire.

© Patinoire de Samoëns
© Patinoire de Samoëns

🇨🇭 SWITZERLAND 🇨🇭

The ⛸ outdoor rinks have not opened this winter season in 🇨🇭 Switzerland.


🇨🇭🇫🇷 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 this year 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 later in the season, this is allowed!) – 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), the lake ❄️ freezes for ice skating (weather dependent) and there is an artificial rink too! It is nicknamed “ petit Canada ” / dimensions: 70m x 150m / see here for more information;

© 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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