Winter Festival is a national event to be held over three weeks during June and July this year. It’s a wintery wonderland styled around European winter markets, to be held at iconic locations – including right here in Canberra!

Each Winter Festival will host a wide range of snow and ice-related activities including open-air ice skating, powder snow pits, toboggan rides, European-style pop up food stalls, live music, professional ice skating performances and interactive games.

“For many Australians this will be their first experience of ice and snow,” event organiser Andrew Lemon says.

“For others it will be a chance for them to re-live some of the fun snow and ski experiences they’ve had on holidays – but without the huge price or needing to pack or travel!

“Imagine ice skating on an open-air rink with powder snow dusting your hair – blink and you’ll feel like you’re in Austria not Australia.”
According to Andrew almost anyone can have a go at ice skating.

“With the warm climate in Australia, ice skating is obviously not something that most people do all the time, but it’s awesome to try new things and this festival is loads of fun, even if you’re a bit wobbly at first,” he says.

“It’s not that difficult really and we have professionals on hand to assist novice skaters, plus of course there are lots of other fun activities to do.”

The inner-city location in Garema Place not only provides a stunning backdrop, but also immediate and easy access to public transport.

In the City Canberra CEO Jane Easthope is thrilled that this major national event is coming to Canberra.

“The addition of Canberra to the Winter Festival line-up is a key achievement for the city and our surrounding region,” Easthope says.

“Taking the much loved Skate in the City to a new level, Winter Festival in the City will include an ice rink and two new exciting rides, including the real snow Toboggan Terror and the Giant Inflatable Ice Slide. European-style market stalls and a wealth of exciting entertainment options will ensure a fantastic time for all the family.”

At $22 for an adult ticket, $60 for a family pass and either $5 or $12 per child (depending on age) and with discounts for groups of 10 or more, it’s a fun, healthy and affordable activity.

23 June to 17 July

Garema Place, Canberra City.

Ice rink hours:
Monday to Thursday: 10am to 7pm
Friday and Saturday: 10am to 9pm
Sunday: 9am to 7pm
Online prices:

Ice rink:
Adult: $22
Child (5-15): $12
Under 5: $8
Family Pack: $60
Skate Aid: $8

Other rides:
Toboggan Terror: $7
Giant Slide: $5

Getting there

Winter Festival in the City is located within easy walking distance of the Civic bus interchange. You can find out details of bus routes at
The Canberra Centre has more than 5000 parking spaces, with access to car parking along Ainslie Avenue, Petrie Street and Scott’s Crossing.
There are also various open-air car parking options around Civic. For details go to and search for ‘Canberra’.