Photo: Reimar/Shutterstock

When It’s Cold Enough in Toronto, You Can Ice Skate on Lake Ontario

Outdoor Toronto, Canada
Photo: Reimar/Shutterstock
Matador Creators
Jan 12, 2023

Unless you live in Vancouver, winter in Canada is made of cold and snowy days. And there are two ways you can deal with this weather that lasts for months: You can stay at home and whine about it until spring, or you can get out there and make the most of what you’ve been handed. In a lot of places around Canada, enjoying the seemingly never-ending below-zero temperatures means tying up your skates and going on the ice. In the biggest city in Canada, Toronto, that sometimes means ice skating right on Lake Ontario.

@matadornetwork The best view of the #TorontoSkyline right here 🌃 🎥 @WasabiGang #lakeontario #todot #iceskating #nightskating #halosilverteam ♬ original sound – Matador Network

Despite the magnificent views you get from the Toronto skyline, ice skating right on Lake Ontario is not always possible or recommended. You need long stretches of very cold weather for the ice to be thick and sturdy enough to support your weight. If that’s not the case, the fun can stop very quickly and the consequences (falling in the lake’s icy waters) can be fatal.

The talented (and professional) ice skater in the video above is skating in the Toronto Harbour, a sheltered area that freezes much more easily than the main Lake. But that does not mean that the practice is safe, especially if you skate well away from the shore.

And if you’re not brave or skilled enough to ice skate on Lake Ontario, know that there are plenty of ice rinks around Toronto where you’ll be much safer. That includes the Barbara Ann Scott Skate Trail right in downtown; the very popular and large Nathan Phillips Square, also in the heart of downtown, where there are changing rooms and skate rentals; and the skating rink at the Harbourfront Center, right on the shore of Lake Ontario. The skating rink at the Harbourfront Center is temporary closed due to construction but it will be good to go again by summer 2023.

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