Ice Skating (credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Bay Area residents love to ice skate and celebrate one of winter’s favorite sports. But the Bay Area’s snow-free California winters mean manmade ice rinks are the way to go. Read on for both year-round and seasonal ice rinks on the Peninsula.

Belmont Iceland
815 Old County Road
Belmont, CA 94002
(650) 592-0533

Belmont Iceland is a well-recognized and popular skating venue for both professional and non-pro skaters, and has hosted numerous skating clubs for figure skating, speed skating and hockey. The location draws people from Sacramento, Santa Rosa and San Jose who often come to skate at the club’s sessions. Some of the country’s top well-known skaters have practiced at Belmont Iceland, including Peggy Fleming, Debi Thomas and Brian Boitano, and competitive skaters continue to train here representing the Skating Club of San Francisco. There is so much available at Belmont Iceland, including public skating (admission: adult $7/child $6, skate rental $3), figure skating, freestyle, special sessions (family fun Fridays, Sunday family fun, weekday lunch hour), ice hockey, broomball, parties, camps and more that make this location so special. Visit the website for full pricing and schedule information.

Winter Lodge
3009 Middlefield Road
Palo Alto, CA 94306
(650) 493-4566

Winter Lodge is a recreational skating school where students learn in a relaxed atmosphere at a pace comfortable for them. The professional instructors evaluate students to decide the best pace for the class, and students move up to the next level when their instructor feels they are ready. Winter Lodge encourages students to practice outside of their weekly lesson, as students who regularly practice increase their skills faster and enjoy classes more. Enjoyment while learning is the focus here. Winter Lodge offers group lessons weekday afternoons and Saturday mornings for students ages 4 and up, with free practice time included. Fall and winter sessions (eight weeks each) are $200 and spring session (nine weeks) is $225. Also available are lessons for teens, parent and tot, freestyle, special needs, adults and more. Visit the website for full details.

Nazareth Ice Oasis
3140 Bay Road
Redwood City, CA 94063
(650) 364-8090

Nazareth, a longtime Peninsula skating spot, offers its skating school, including summer camps, adult hockey, youth hockey and figure skating options with a full schedule of classes and open time for skating. The Nazareth Ice Oasis Grill is also open to club members, friends and fans with an indoor view of the entire ice sheet, or outside seating to enjoy the mild Northern California weather. Check the website for full information on classes, curriculum, schedules and to access the various registration forms.

Sharks Ice at San Jose
1500 S 10th Street
San Jose, CA 95112
(408) 279-6000

Learn to skate at the official practice facility of the San Jose Sharks Ice Hockey team. With a wide variety of skating programs for all ages and skill levels, Sharks Ice is an excellent facility for not only ice hockey, but also for figure skating and synchronized skating for tots, youth and adults at all levels. Group and corporate events, birthday parties and ice rental along with curling lessons are welcomed here too. If you are looking for hockey or figure skating equipment, then visit the Pro Shop at Sharks Ice for just about everything you will need. Visit the website for full details on all of the hockey and public and figure skating options, fees and schedules available.

Downtown Ice
120 S. Market Street
San Jose, CA 95113
(408) 279-1775

Ice skating Olympian Kristi Yamaguchi and Hawaiian Airlines invite you to enjoy San Jose’s Downtown Ice, the annual seasonal ice rink now in its 5th year of operation. Located in a beautiful setting at the Circle of Palms between the Fairmont Hotel and the San Jose Museum of Art, Downtown Ice is a fun way to enjoy some skating exercise with family, friends or a best date. Arrive early to skate on fresh ice and to scope out a parking space, as downtown San Jose is a busy place. See “The Halo,” the light show at the Circle of Palms, nightly at 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. through January 11, 2015.

Melanie Graysmith is a writer, artist and educator based in San Francisco. She writes on adult education, art and lifestyle topics, and enjoys writing short stories and poetry. She is also a member of an independent filmmaking group. Her work can be found at