Ice Rink Budapest

Budapest, Hungary

Updated On: February 25, 2024 by   Ahmed SamirAhmed Samir

Budapest in Christmas is a wonderland teeming with many attractions and activities to do to enjoy your time.

Budapest, Hungary’s enchanting capital, is a city that offers a delightful blend of history, culture, and entertainment. While many tourists flock to its stunning architecture and thermal baths, Budapest has a hidden gem for those seeking icy fun – the Ice Rink Budapest. This seasonal attraction transforms the city’s heart into a winter wonderland, allowing locals and visitors alike to glide gracefully on ice against breathtaking views.

In this article, we will explore the history, features, and experiences that make the Ice Rink Budapest a must-visit destination during the winter season.

Ice Rink Budapest’s Enduring Legacy

The Ice Rink Budapest, known as the “Városligeti Műjégpálya” in Hungarian, is steeped in history, dating back to its inauguration in 1870. This makes it one of the oldest outdoor ice rinks in Europe. Situated in City Park (Városliget), the Ice Rink has witnessed over a century of transformation and remains a beloved fixture of Budapest’s winter landscape.

The Ice Rink was initially established as an open-air summer resort with a lake for boating in the warmer months. The lake would be frozen when winter came, and ice skating became a natural pastime. As its popularity grew, the city decided to develop the area further, and in 1926, the current, purpose-built ice rink was constructed. This new rink allowed ice skating year-round, even during hot summer.

Over the years, the Ice Rink Budapest has hosted various international ice sports competitions, including figure skating and ice hockey. It has also been a hub for local skaters, with many famous Hungarian ice skaters practising and honing their skills on its frozen surface.

The Features of Ice Rink Budapest

Ice Rink Budapest
Ice Rink Budapest
  1. Iconic Location: The Ice Rink Budapest‘s location in City Park places it in the heart of Budapest’s cultural and recreational hub. Surrounded by stunning landmarks such as Vajdahunyad Castle and the Széchenyi Thermal Bath, the rink offers a unique ambience that combines history and nature with winter sports.
  2. Size and Facilities: The rink itself is impressive, covering an area of approximately 12,000 square meters. This ample space ensures skaters have enough room to glide gracefully without feeling overcrowded, even on the busiest days. The facilities include rental shops where visitors can acquire ice skates and other equipment.
  3. Skating Opportunities: Whether you’re a seasoned figure skater or just learning to balance on the ice, the Ice Rink Budapest has something to offer. They offer various skating sessions, including public, family, and beginner skating lessons. The rink’s professional instructors are available for those who want to improve their skills or try figure skating for the first time.
  4. Ice Hockey: For sports enthusiasts, the rink also provides an opportunity to engage in ice hockey. It’s common to see locals and tourists participating in friendly matches or practising their slap shots.
  5. Events and Performances: The Ice Rink Budapest hosts various events and performances throughout winter. From exhibitions by professional figure skaters to themed parties and even Christmas markets, there’s always something exciting happening at the rink.
  6. Spectator Area: If you prefer to watch the action unfold, there is a designated spectator area where you can enjoy a hot beverage while watching skaters glide by. It’s a perfect spot for capturing memorable photos and videos of your loved ones on the ice.
  7. Refreshments: The winter experience is only complete with some warm treats. The Ice Rink Budapest offers a selection of food and beverage stands where you can grab hot chocolate, mulled wine, or traditional Hungarian snacks to energise you during your skating session.

Experiencing the Ice Rink Budapest

Visiting the Ice Rink Budapest is more than just a recreational activity; it’s an opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and enjoy the magic of winter in Hungary’s capital. Here’s a step-by-step guide to experiencing the rink to the fullest:

  1. Arrive Early: Plan to arrive early in the day to avoid long queues and secure a good spot on the ice. The rink tends to be less crowded in the morning hours.
  2. Dress Warmly: Budapest’s winters can be pretty chilly, so dress in layers and remember to wear warm socks. You can rent your ice skates at the rink if you don’t have them.
  3. Take a Lesson: If you’re new to ice skating or want to improve your skills, consider taking a lesson from one of the experienced instructors at the rink. They offer group and private lessons suitable for all ages and skill levels.
  4. Enjoy the Scenery: Take in the picturesque surroundings as you skate around. The view of Vajdahunyad Castle and the surrounding park covered in snow enchants.
  5. Sip on Local Delicacies: After some time on the ice, head to one of the refreshments to taste Hungarian cuisine. Try kürtőskalács (chimney cake), lángos (deep-fried dough), or a steaming cup of mulled wine.
  6. Attend Special Events: Check the rink’s event calendar for any special performances, parties, or exhibitions during your visit. These events can add an extra layer of excitement to your experience.
  7. Capture Memories: Remember your camera or smartphone to capture the magical moments as you skate and explore the rink’s surroundings.
  8. Warm Up Afterwards: Once you’ve had your fill of skating, warm up at one of Budapest’s renowned thermal baths, such as the nearby Széchenyi Thermal Bath. It’s a perfect way to relax and unwind after a day on the ice.

Beyond the Ice Rink – Exploring Nearby Attractions

In addition to the Ice Rink Budapest, City Park (Városliget) boasts many attractions, making it a perfect destination for a full day of exploration. Here are some notable nearby attractions to consider visiting:

  1. Vajdahunyad Castle: This fairytale-like castle is a picturesque blend of architectural styles featuring elements from various historical periods in Hungary. It houses the Hungarian Agricultural Museum and is a popular spot for history enthusiasts and photographers.
  2. Széchenyi Thermal Bath: Located right next to the Ice Rink, the Széchenyi Thermal Bath is one of Europe’s largest and most famous thermal baths. Relax in its rejuvenating thermal waters amidst a stunning Neo-Baroque building.
  3. Budapest Zoo: Just a short walk from the Ice Rink, the Budapest Zoo is a family-friendly attraction with many animals and beautifully landscaped enclosures. It’s an ideal spot for a day out with children.
  4. Museum of Fine Arts: Art lovers will appreciate the Museum of Fine Arts, which houses an extensive collection of European art, including works by renowned artists such as Rembrandt, Raphael, and Titian.
  5. Heroes’ Square (Hősök tere): This iconic square is home to the Millennium Monument, flanked by statues of Hungarian leaders and historical figures. It’s a symbol of Hungary’s rich history and heritage.
  6. City Park Boating Lake: In warmer months, the boating lake at City Park offers a tranquil escape. You can rent rowboats and paddleboats to enjoy a leisurely time on the water.
  7. Transport Museum (Közlekedési Múzeum): This museum showcases Hungary’s transportation history with an impressive collection of vintage cars, trains, trams, and even a nostalgic underground railway.
  8. Museum of Hungarian Agriculture: Located near Vajdahunyad Castle, this museum explores the history of Hungarian agriculture, featuring agricultural tools, machinery, and exhibits on rural life.
  9. Budapest Circus: The city’s traditional circus, located near the Ice Rink, offers entertaining shows and performances suitable for visitors of all ages.
  10. Seasonal Events: Depending on the time of year, City Park often hosts various seasonal events, festivals, and fairs. Keep an eye out for any special happenings during your visit.

Exploring these nearby attractions lets you make the most of your visit to City Park in Budapest. Whether you’re interested in history, art, relaxation, or family-friendly activities, there’s something for everyone in this charming and cultural hub of the city.


The Ice Rink Budapest is a true winter wonderland that brings the spirit of the season to Hungary’s capital. Whether you’re a skilled ice skater, a beginner, or simply looking for a unique experience, this historic outdoor rink has something for everyone. Surrounded by iconic landmarks, offering various skating opportunities, and hosting exciting events, the Ice Rink Budapest is a must-visit destination during the winter months.

So, when you find yourself in Budapest during the colder season, lace up your skates, embrace the festive atmosphere, and create unforgettable memories on the ice. Gliding under the winter sun or the twinkling stars, you’ll understand why this enchanting rink has been a cherished part of Budapest’s heritage for over a century.


What are the best times to visit City Park and the Ice Rink Budapest to avoid crowds?

Mornings during weekdays are generally less crowded, and arriving early can provide a more serene skating experience. Avoid weekends and holidays for a quieter visit.

Are there any special events or performances at the Ice Rink Budapest during the winter season?

The rink often hosts special events, figure skating exhibitions, themed parties, and even Christmas markets. It’s a good idea to check their event calendar for updates during your visit.

How do I get to the Ice Rink Budapest in City Park?

The Ice Rink Budapest is easily accessible via public transportation. You can take the Budapest Metro Line 1 (the yellow line) to the Széchenyi fürdő station, which is right next to City Park. Alternatively, you can use trams or buses that stop nearby.