Day out with the kids: Queen’s House Ice Rink Greenwich – London Christmas Skating Review

15 December 2023

To help us to feel a bit more Christmassy, we decided to have a day out with the kids in London. We wanted to have a wander to look at the Christmas lights, and we booked in some festive ice-skating too at Queen’s House pop-up ice rink in Greenwich – so this is our review. (Including photos and popular questions like: where is it; how much does it cost and is it any good?)

Where is Queen’s House Ice Rink?

Queen’s House Ice Rink is in the grounds of Greenwich’s UNESCO World Heritage Site, surrounded by museums and beautiful buildings, with a stunning view over the Canary Wharf. Skating is available this Christmas at Queen’s House Ice Rink from 23 November 2023 – 7 January 2024.

Day out with the kids, Queen's House Ice Rink Greenwich, London Christmas Ice Skating Review, Frugal mum photo

To save money, by avoiding the main train, we drove up to North Greenwich Tube Station (you can park all day for around £12) and got the bus to Queen’s House Ice Rink, which was about a 10 minute ride. You’ll need the 188 bus – which stops at Trafalgar Estate bus stop, right by the skating rink. Kids under 11 travel for free, and adult tickets are only £1.75 – with a £5.25 price cap if you want to use the buses to get around all day.

There is also a nearby car-park available for the ice-rink, only open until 5pm, where parking is £10 for the day. It’s close to Greenwich pier too, if you’d like to arrive in style by boat! The nearest tube stations are: North Greenwich, Cutty Sark DLR and Maze Hill Station.


How much does it cost?

We visited off-peak at the lower prices. These are the current Christmas 2023 peak and off peak prices:

Tickets prices:

  • Children: £10 off peak / £12 peak
  • Adults: £17 off peak / £19 peak
  • Students: £11.90 off peak / £13.30 peak
  • Carers are free with proof of entitlement

All online bookings will have one £3 booking fee in addition too. Children aged 3-12 must be accompanied by an adult, children aged 13-15 will still need to be supervised by an adult, but they are able to spectate if they don’t want to skate.

Day out with the kids, Queen's House Ice Rink Greenwich, London Christmas Ice Skating Review, Frugal mum family photo

Children’s penguin skating aids are available to pre-book for £5 – however when we skated there were lots of children (for a school trip) so the penguins were just scattered everywhere and kids were able to use them as and when they wanted without pre-purchasing. Helmets are limited but are available free of charge too if required – it may be preferable to bring your own if you’d like to guarantee a helmet for your little one.

Skate hire is also included in the cost – just head inside the main tent to swap your shoes for skates and you’re good to go! If your children are aged 3-6, look at their website for the ‘tiny tots’ skating times – for safer, quieter sessions. These also include two free children per adult booking, so it would be significantly cheaper too.


Is Queen’s House Ice Rink any good?

I’m not a fan of skating, so I stayed on the viewing platform, but my husband and the kids had a brilliant time skating at Queen’s House Ice Rink. Both kids roller-skate but this was their first time ice-skating, and it’s something Finn’s wanted to try for a while. They really enjoyed it and were pretty good by the end of the 45 minute session. (FYI: it does say on their website that you may be able to have an extended open-skate between 11am-2pm during off-peak times, but that is subject to how busy they are and not guaranteed.)

Day out with the kids, Queen's House Ice Rink Greenwich, London Christmas Ice Skating Review, Frugal mum family photo

Our session was booked for 1pm on a term-time December Friday – it was comfortably busy – there were other children there on a school trip but other than that there were very few people on the ice. The kids had enough space to get around without it being too crowded, so I would definitely recommend trying to avoid peak times if possible.

The views are brilliant, and the area is really nice – it was a great experience. And, with Christmas music playing from the speakers, it was definitely a great way to get in a festive mood! The ice rink itself was good to skate on and seemed well maintained, it was resurfaced straight after our session before the next skaters.


What else should I be aware of?

There is a cafe area directly next to Queen’s House Ice Rink for those not skating, or wanting something to warm them up. And, toilets are available in the museum directly next to the rink – though it would be a bit of a faff to go mid-skating so you’ll want to make sure the kids have visited the loo before they begin their skate.

You’ll also want to check out the peak / off-peak days and times to try and avoid the busiest skating days and times. The rink is open from 10/11am to 9pm (last skate 8pm) so you can also choose whether you’d prefer to skate in the daytime or when it’s lit up and dark in the evening. Tickets can be purchased in the nearby museum, but to avoid disappointment it’s probably best to pre-book.

It’s advisable to arrive around 30 minutes before your skate to get organised and avoid delays with queues for skates etc. 

Day out with the kids, Queen's House Ice Rink Greenwich, London Christmas Ice Skating Review, Frugal mum photo


Useful information for your visit…


Facilities:  Cafe, toilets, parking

Address and Post Code: Romney Rd, London SE10 9NF

For up-to-date opening times and information, please check their website.


For more city adventures, check out my other London family day out reviews:

Frugal family days out: The 10 best FREE places to visit in London with kids!

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And for lots of money-saving UK getaway and school holiday tips, you’ll want to read:

Cheap days out with the kids: 20 ways to have fun on a budget in the school holidays!

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UK family travel on a budget: 25 ways to have a cheap staycation holiday!

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How can my child get a Blue Peter Badge? Enjoy over 200 UK free days out to UK attractions!

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