Natural History Museum Ice Rink

Staff member on the ice

Everything you need to know about visiting the Ice Rink.

How do I buy tickets?

Book your skate session online to guarantee your place or buy your tickets from the box office when you arrive. Remember, you may have to wait for your turn on the ice if you haven't booked your session in advance, especially during peak times.

Transaction fees apply.

When should I arrive?

The Ice Rink will be open 20 minutes before the first session. For all other sessions please arrive at least 40 minutes before the start of your session.

How long do skating sessions last?

Each skating session lasts 50 minutes.

Is skate hire included in the ticket price?

Yes, skates are included in the price of your ticket.

Can I bring my own skates?

Yes, figure skates and hockey skates are allowed. But the organisers reserve the right not to allow skates deemed to be unsafe.

What security measures are in place at the Ice Rink?

The Ice Rink has a robust security management plan, which is coordinated by event security and the Metropolitan Police. Security checks will be in place, including bag searches, which may result in delays when entering the site. We ask all guests to be vigilant and not to leave bags or belongings unattended.

What do I do if the ice is wet?

UK weather can be changeable - rain, warm temperatures and strong winds can make the surface of the ice wet.

The Ice Rink is prepared for changing weather conditions, and wet ice is safe to skate on.

Check for any weather warnings on the day of your booking and, if in doubt, bring waterproof clothing.

What should I wear?

Whatever the weather, we recommend wearing suitable outdoor, waterproof clothing. It’s quite normal for there to be a degree of surface water on any outdoor ice rink. For this reason, visitors should be aware that they may get wet even if it isn’t raining.

Is there somewhere to leave bags and coats?

We have a cloakroom for bags and coats. It costs £2 per item and is free for school groups. For safety reasons, bags are not allowed on the ice. All items left in the cloakroom are done so at the owner's risk.

Where can I collect lost property?

Lost property will be held at the Museum. If you think you may have lost something please email us.

Will sessions be cancelled in bad weather?

The Ice Rink is an outdoor event and operates in nearly all weather conditions. However, please bring suitable outdoor clothing whatever the weather. Ice is, of course, made from water - rain or dry there is always a risk of getting wet. In the unlikely event that the Ice Rink must close, alternative skating sessions will be offered. We regret than no refunds can be given due to bad weather.

Can I book a penguin skate aid?

We have a limited supply of penguin skate aids, which cost £5, available on a first-come first served basis from the skate hire counter. Unfortunately skate aids cannot be booked in advance. Please note that we also have children’s bob skates available free of charge, these are twin bladed skates that fit over a child’s shoes. Please speak to any member of Ice Rink staff if you wish to hire a skate aid or require bob skates.

Who can enter the skate exchange area?

Only ticket holders can enter the skate exchange area and Ice Rink.

Are wheelchair users allowed onto the Ice Rink?

We run dedicated accessibe skate sessions at the Ice Rink. You can get more information about this on the Booking page. Unfortunately, we cannot allow wheelchairs onto the ice at other times. The Café Bar and viewing platform are accessible to wheelchair users at all times using the lift.

What can I do if I don't want to skate?

If you don't want to skate you can warm up with a hot drink in the Cafe Bar, watch skaters from the open-air balcony or go for a spin on the fairground carousel which is open throughout the day. You don't need a ticket for the Café Bar or the open-air balcony. You can also visit the rest of the Museum, which is open every day until 17.50 except 24-26 December 2016.

How small/large are your skates?

Skates are available from child size 9 up to an adult size 15. Bob skates are also available for toddlers. Bob skates are double blades that strap onto the shoe.

Is there a minimum age to skate?

There is no minimum age, but children aged 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult. We advise parents to use their discretion on whether very young children will enjoy the experience.

How many adults need to accompany school groups?

Minimum and recommended teacher to student ratios apply to different age groups:

Infants (Years 1-2): We require a minimum of 1 adult to every 8 children but we recommend 1 adult to every 5 children.

Juniors (Years 3-6): We require a minimum of 1 adult to every 10 children but we recommend 1 adult to every 8children.

Secondary (Years7-11): We require a minimum of 1 adult to every 10 children.

Ages 16 and over: We require a minimum of 1 adult per booking but we recommend 1 adult to every 30 children.

What do I do if I haven’t received my tickets?

If you selected to have your tickets sent by post and you haven’t received them within a week of your skating session, please call Ticketmaster on +44 (0)333 321 9999.

Visit and booking

Find opening times and information about booking tickets, group visits and a dedicated session with an ice marshal.

News and events

Get the latest news about special events at the Ice Rink, sign up to our newsletter and hear about special offers.

Food and drink

The Café Bar is open daily and offers tasty meals, snacks and refreshments, including hot drinks and a range of wines, beers and soft drinks.