Winter Skating 

The Bentway is pleased to welcome back neighbours and fun-seekers for one of winter’s best activities, outdoor ice skating under the Gardiner! Skaters are invited to cruise our 220m figure-eight skate trail, surrounded by colourful woven arches inspired by the northern lights. Skate rentals available.

For our sixth year, perennial festive favourites return, including free skate rental nights, free hot chocolate nights, skating lessons, our Polar Bear Skate, and more.  

Skate rentals are available for a fee; skate sharpening is also available during all opening hours. 

You can make a donation to The Bentway’s Winter Care Kits, supporting the unhoused community, at our Concessions Stand or Skate Rental stand. 

On Free Hot Chocolate Mondays, starting January 8, enjoy free hot chocolate every Monday evening (5:00pm-9:00pm) and explore the local neighbourhood. Special thanks to the generous support of CityPlace Fort York BIA. 

On Billy Bishop Free Rental Fridays, starting January 12, enjoy free skate rentals every Friday evening (5:00pm-8:00pm) thanks to the generous support of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. 

Skate lessons will be offered in the new year. Registration for the first 3 sessions opens in early January. Learn more about skating lessons here.


Please note: One half of the skate trail will be closed on Tuesdays between 6:00pm-8:30pm for skating lessons.

December 16 to January 7 

Daily12:00pm – 9:00pm 

The Concession Stand is open daily between December 16 to January 7 from 12:00pm – 9:00pm.

January 8 to February 19 

Monday to Friday5:00pm – 9:00pm
Saturday, Sunday, Holidays12:00pm – 9:00pm

The Concession Stand is closed on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from January 8 to February 19. It is open on Mondays, Friday – Sunday, and Holidays with the same hours as the Skate Trail.

Special Dates

December 31, Polar Bear Skate12:00pm – 9:00pm (event at 1:00pm)
Friday, January 19, TDSB PA Day12:00pm – 9:00pm
Friday, February 16, TDSB PA Day12:00pm – 9:00pm
Monday, February 19, Family Day12:00pm – 9:00pm 

The final day for skating for the 2023/2024 winter season will be February 19, 2024. 


Skate rentals are available every day that the trail is open. The last time to rent skates is 8:00pm and all skates must be returned by 8:45pm. 

  • Rentals are for a maximum 2-hour period. 
  • Sizes range from Youth 6 to Adult 12. 
  • Socks must be worn in rental skates. 
  • You must present a valid government-issued ID and sign a waiver to rent skates. 
  • Those under the age of 18 and/or those without a valid government issued ID will not be able to rent skates without their parent or legal guardian present. 


Rental Skates and Equipment:
Adult Skates: $12 
Youth-sized Skates and Helmet: $10 
Adult Helmet: $5 
Youth Helmet: $5 
Skate Sharpening: $10 

Hats: $15  
Gloves: $4.50 
Socks: $4.50 

Hot Drinks: $3 
Snacks: $3 
Hand Warmers: $4 
Laces: $4.50 


  • Only skates are allowed on the skate trail. 
  • Skate Aid devices are available on a first-come, first-served basis and are limited in supply. 
  • The Skate Trail closes for: 
    • Temperatures below -20° or -25° with wind chill 
    • Heavy snowfall 
  • Trail closures are communicated on our website and social media channels. 
  • Ice is maintained during operating hours; Zamboni floods will occur based on ice conditions. 

Skating Dos:

  • Make sure your equipment fits properly. 
  • Skates should be tight enough to support the foot and ankle with little to no movement inside the boot. Skates should be snug, but with enough room in the toes to let you wiggle without pinching. 
  • Laces should be snug through the ankle area and bottom two sets of hooks. The top two hooks can be looser to keep the ankle flexible.  
  • Helmets should be worn without a hat, and fit snugly, low enough to protect the forehead. 
  • Wear clothing that allows you to move freely. 
  • Wear mittens – not only for the cold but they also help protect your hands in a fall. 
  • Wear thin-to mid-weight socks; bulky, thick socks can limit support and make uncomfortable lumps in your skates! 
  • Maintain a safe distance from other skaters on the rink, especially during lessons. 

Commissioned by The Bentway 

The Bentway’s Winter 2023-24 season is generously supported by: