An afternoon at the Dolder ice rink

The ice skating tradition

Are your skates ready to carve up the ice? Then get on that ice and start pirouetting, dribbling a puck or taking a penguin for a stroll.

"Mom, can we go ice skating again?" That phrase, uttered every year by my kids, is not what I would call music to my ears.That said, when I was young, I spent nearly every winter Wednesday afternoon at the ice rink. I carved up the smooth ice to the sounds of Madonna, Wham and Aha, hand in hand with my friends. But with kids in tow, it’s another, much wobblier, but no less pleasant matter. So, up we go to Römerhof where we take the historic Dolderbahn to the top station. After a short stroll through the forest, we’re here!

With glee, we spot 6,000 square meter of icy surface. Built in 1930, and the place where my daughter’s grandmother already learned her pirouettes, the Dolder is one of the largest open-air ice rinks in Europe.


With the right equipment, ice skating is a pleasure, even for beginners.
With the polar bear skating aids, even the little ones can carve up the smooth ice.

We pay the entry fee – which isn’t much higher than for other ice rinks – and walk down the stairs where we rent our skates. Now, it’s all about reaching the ice on thin blades without having any accident what so ever. It’s a wobbly affair, so we grab on to the polar bear skating aids to get acquainted with the ice. It doesn’t take long and we start to skate around the beautiful Christmas tree illuminated with 11,000 LEDs.

Giddy with excitement and with cramped calves we look for a table on the terrace in front of the little ice rink café. Gratefully we sit down and drink our well-deserved, and of course, non-alcoholic, punch.


During the holiday season, a huge Christmas tree spreads festive mood and joy. And every Friday and Saturday evening, big flaming torches light up the ice. The Dolder ice rink was built in 1930 in Zürichberg. To this day, the open-air ice rink is the largest in Europe.

Apart from Dolder, there are numerous ice rinks in the Children’s Region where kids and grown-ups can carve up the ice, play ice hockey, and have fun with the whole family.

Ice Skating in the Region


January, 2018
modified in October, 2019
An article by:
Nicole Gutschalk und Andrea Bornhauser
Our favorite thing is to take our children exploring in the most beautiful spots around our home city of Zurich. Together, we run the online platform, where we share fashion, lifestyle, food and travel tips with modern families.
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