Winter Recreation Guide

If you’re the outdoorsy type who loves to explore Central Park through all weather, there are plenty of ways to get active and enjoy the Park on a cold, snowy day.


Grab your sled and enjoy a fresh layer of snow on the slopes of Central Park. We recommend Pilgrim Hill and Cedar Hill, which open for sledding when there are at least six inches of snow cover on the ground and conditions permit. Bring your sled and let gravity do the rest.

Skaters enjoy the Wollman Rink after dark, with the skyline of Manhattan as a backdrop

Ice Skating

Admire the surrounding views while you skate on one of Central Park’s ice rinks: Wollman Rink and Lasker Rink. Each rink offers skate and locker rentals; hours and ticket prices vary. And when conditions permit, bring your own skates to Conservatory Water, which opens for free ice skating when the ice is consistently at least six inches thick.

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing

Admire the winter wonderland around you by snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. The best places to snowshoe and ski are Sheep Meadow, the Great Lawn, and other large meadows in Central Park—in addition to the bridle path, which the Conservancy leaves snow-covered in the winter to protect its soft surface. These activities are allowed when conditions permit and there are at least six inches of snow on the ground.

A snowbear (sic) stands wintry guard by the Reservoir

Building Snowmen

Engage in the most classic of snow-day activities and fill Central Park with your own snowy sculptures! There’s plenty of room throughout the Park, and though many lawns are closed in the winter, we open them when they are protected by more than six inches of snow cover on the ground (and conditions permit).

A cluster of parkgoers seen through the Inscope Arch in winter

Support the Park

Central Park is particularly beautiful during and after a snowfall, but snow requires a great deal of extra responsibility for our staff as we work to keep the Park accessible. Help us keep Park paths safe for visitors before, during, and after it snows.