The Gateway Ice Rink is back for another year, giving Gloucestershire skaters the chance to glide across the ice and make magical memories at the Cotswolds' only all-weather ice rink this Christmas.
Officially open from Friday 24 November 2023 — with skating sessions running everyday (bar Christmas and Boxing Day) until Wednesday 3 January 2024 — families can find this unmissable winter activity at Cotswold Water Park, next to The Gateway Cafe and Information Centre.
Completely under cover so you can hit the ice whatever the weather, the rink makes ice skating accessible for all with various skating sessions for all ages and abilities
As well as classic ice skating to Christmas tunes, there's sensory-friendly skating for families with additional needs.
Expect lower lighting, no music and half the amount of people on the ice, as capacity is limited to 50 per cent and special effects are turned off to make it a more inclusive experience. The rink is also fully wheelchair accessible during these sessions and carers are admitted free of charge.
New for this year, The Gateway Ice Rink is also operating Tots on Ice sessions, specifically designed for first-time skaters. Ideal for parents with youngsters under eight, these sessions are capped at 50 per cent capacity to give apprehensive newbies a safer and calmer experience as they build their confidence on the ice.
And for some extra Christmas sparkle, book a Snow Princess session so little ones can skate with Frozen characters Anna and Elsa, soundtracked to well-known music from their favourite films.
There's a photographer on hand to capture all those special memories and visitors can even purchase their own photos on the ice — a lovely keepsake or special Christmas present for a grandparent!
After all that skating action, stick around for food at the Gateway Cafe, serving brunch, lunch and hot drinks.
There's also a spattering of food vendors on site, serving up tasty treats and hearty hot food to help skaters refuel. Hit up Pizzeria 720 for woodfired pizzas or The Sizzle Shack for Bratwurst hot dogs; followed by sweet doughnuts, waffles and crepes with decadent toppings from The Donut Stop.
Not to mention The Hideout Lakeside Bar has a menu of Christmas tipples for the grown-ups, from warming mulled wine to apres-ski style spritzes and winter cocktails.
First launched by Relish Group in 2022, The Gateway Ice Rink became one of Gloucestershire's most highly anticipated Christmas attractions, bringing all-weather ice skating opportunities to people in the Cotswold district. This year, the rink is collaborating with the Pied Piper Appeal to raise money for sick and disabled children in the county.
Each skating sessions is 45 minutes long and costs £14.95 for adults and £11.95 for children under 12. Skate aids can be purchased on the day for an additional £5.
Sessions must be booked online in advance by visiting gatewayicerink.co.uk.