Skates, Blades and Skating in Amsterdam

Information on ice skating, inline speed skating, rollerskating and rollerblading in Amsterdam. Also information on events and sports clubs...

Ice-skating, roller blading, roller skating and in-line skating are all popular sports in Amsterdam and the Netherlands.

Rollerblading and Rollerskating

The flat terrain of the Netherlands makes it a suitable location to practice roller blading and inline skating. Flevoland’s network of cycle paths makes it particularly attractive to skaters. There are six recommended skate routes around the province. Maps showing these are available from tourist offices.

Amsterdam has a free public ramp located to the northeast of the Museumplein, which is suitable for roller blading and skate boarding.

Many Dutch cities, including Amsterdam, have special clubs and events for skating enthusiasts.

Inline-Skate.nl provides information on Dutch skating routes, events and gatherings in the provinces of the Netherlands.

Ice Skating

In winter a number of open-air ice rinks open around Amsterdam. Traditionally the most famous seasonal rink was in Dam Square. However in recent years this has been moved to Leidesplein Square where there is also a Christmas market. Skating is usually free and ice skates are available to hire.

There is an open-air ice rink at Jaap Eden. It is open from October to March each year. Other facilities include an indoor rink, fitness centre, restaurant, equipment hire and lockers. The venue also hosts disco skating on Saturday evenings in winter.

Sports Clubs

Amsterdam Skeelers: A group of inline speed skaters organising regular and annual events around Amsterdam. Details of skate routes, places to buy or rent skates and events are available on the website.

SKITS (in Dutch): A social sporting club formed in 2003. In winter, it runs courses for amateur ice skaters and children and organise programmes for people interested in competing. Their ice skating team meets October to March at Jaap Eden. In May, the club arranges roller blade training. Anyone is welcome to join and roller blades are available for students to borrow.

Hardrijders Club Amsterdam: This is a club for people interested in speed skating and related competitions. They train at Jaap Eden and the seasonal ice rink at the Museumplein.

Events

A Friday Night Skate is held, as its name suggests, every Friday throughout the year provided the streets are dry. It was started in 1997 by three friends in the Vondelpark and now attracts up to 500 participants. The group usually meets at 20:00 on Friday at the round bench by the Film museum in the Vondelpark.

The Eleven Cities Tour (Elfstedentocht) is a speed skating race held in the northern Netherlands province of Friesland. It covers a 200 Km stretch of frozen canals and waterways between eleven Frisian cities. The race was inaugurated in 1890 and has been held 15 times since 1909. It cannot take place unless there are suitable winter weather conditions and the quality of the ice meets regulatory requirements.