No kidding around, the free and cheap activities in Winter Park make it easy to show your kids a great time. From the simplest of things like the little red wagons at the village to the lazy river & water slide at the Fraser Valley Rec Center, you can create memories of a lifetime in Winter Park without breaking your budget.
Check out our favorite activities for our kids in Winter Park.
Free Hideaway Park Sledding Hill
Downtown Winter Park’s Hideaway Park turns into a fun snow zone during the winter time. The gently sloping southeast corner is perfect for sledding and there’s also a nice fire ring to warm up cold hands and toesies. The best part is, you don’t even need to bring your own sleds because they are provided by the Fraser Valley Lions Club.
Hideaway Park is also the perfect spot to build a snowman!
To find Hideaway Park and the sledding hill, just look for the Winter Park Visitor Center with the huge bronze moose outside. The Visitor Center is directly across the street from McDonalds in downtown Winter Park. If you’re coming from the ski area, take a right at the stoplight (Rendezvous Rd), or take a left when coming from Fraser’s direction. Call the Visitor Center for more info at 970-726-4118.
Go Skiing (free or under $10)!
For only $10, you can buy a lift ticket to use Sorenson Park, the easy learning area at the base of Winter Park Resort. There are two surface “magic carpets” that are like flat escalators to take you up the hill and one Poma surface lift with a long handle and seat to pull you. To see some photos of Sorenson Park and the other beginner area, Discovery Park, click here.
Sol Vista Basin also has night skiing and tubing on Saturday nights through April 2nd. The cost for tubing is $11 for a 45 minute session and night ski lift tickets are just $10.
Grand Park Community Recreation Center
This brand-new, state-of-the-art facility is a paradise for kiddos. Our favorite is the pool area with a big loop water slide, a lazy river, a zero-depth entry area with mini slides and fountains, a water-basketball net and diving boards. For the parents, there is a hot tub right next to the lazy river that allows you to keep an eye on them floating around, lap lanes to get some cardio, and a wet and a dry sauna.
In addition to the pool area, there are basketball courts, a gymnastics center, weights, cardio machines, running/walking tracks and an indoor climbing wall.
Adults who want to work out on their own can use their drop-in child care, Playful Penguins Child Care, for $4 per hour ($3 for members). Morning child care hours are Mon-Thurs from 7:45am to 1:15pm and Fridays from 8:45am to 1:15pm. Evening hours are 4:45 to 8:00pm Mon through Wed and 4:45 – 6:45 on Thursdays. Saturdays they are open 7:45 am to 2:15pm only.
Admission is normally $10 for adults, but guests of Winter Park Lodging Company have access to $8 passes. Admission for kids is $7. For more information, visit their website or call 970-726-8968.
There are loads of ice rinks to choose from, starting with the Village Ice Rink at the base of Winter Park Resort and ending at Snow Mountain Ranch YMCA in Tabernash. All of them have their special features. See below for the descriptions, locations and costs for each.
Village Ice Rink, at the base of Winter Park Resort, is one of the newest rink in the valley. It is a very quaint open-air rink with lots of atmosphere and scenery. Village restaurants and shops lie just a few steps away, and the ski slopes are around the corner, so it’s easy to find plenty to do nearby. Rentals are available at the Winter Park Resort Rentals shop across from Starbucks for $8-$10.
Cooper Creek Square Ice Rink is the most centrally located ice rink in the area and it’s probably the most well-known. It’s a covered rink, but is open-air so you still get the rush and feel of an outdoor rink. There are loads of shops and restaurants at the adjacent Cooper Creek Square mall, plus a really neat fire ring with benches to warm your hands and feet. Skates are available for rent at Christy Sports in Cooper Creek Square and at the neighboring Viking Ski Shop.
Fraser Valley “Ice Box” Rink is a brand-new, state-of-the-art, complex located on County Road 5 just outside the town of Fraser. This NHL-size rink is a covered outdoor rink with ice-skate rentals on site, plus a warming room and a concession stand. In the summertime, it becomes an inline skating rink, plus it’s right next to baseball and soccor fields, too. Click here for more details.
Snow Mountain Ranch aka The YMCA of the Rockies – has a large covered outdoor rink and a big sledding and tubing hill right next to it, so you can do both in one day. Plus, it’s really affordable to do both, especially compared to the big hills in Fraser. To use the YMCA facility there is a $5 entrance fee, or free if you’re a member of YMCA. Then, it’s only $5 to rent ice skates all day long. For sledding & tubing, the cost is $10 for all day sledding and $15 for all day tubing, including rentals.
To get out and explore a little, plus burn some energy, take your kids snowshoeing. There are many easy trails that are well-traveled, which means the snow is more packed down and easier to trek. The Visitor Center in downtown Winter Park hosts free & easy guided snowshoe hikes on Saturdays and they even provide free snowshoe rentals. Just call them at 970-726-4118 for times and to sign up.
You can also rent snowshoes for only $15 a day at our VIP partner Epic Mountain Sports. Just swing by one of their shops in downtown Winter Park or call them at 970 726-2868.
The Village at Winter Park Resort
You can easily spend an hour toying around at the Village at the base of Winter Park Resort. Our Winter Park Lodging Company Mascots, Willem and Nicholas Bradford, love Goody’s Creperie and Ice Cream Shop. You can slide up to the bar to indulge in one of their many ice cream flavors, such as “birthday cake” with sprinkles on top.
The mascots also love the new outdoor train and playground area, the outdoor musical instruments and climbing all over the huge Coca-Cola bear. The Village also provides little red wagons to tote the wee onesaround the shops and restaurants.
There’s also a new outdoor ice skating rink at the village and several others around town – click here to see more about the ice skating rinks in Winter Park.
Hot Sulphur Springs Resort
Be outside to enjoy the scenery and soak up the minerals of the natural hot springs while your kids play in the water of several kid-friendly pools. During the summer there’s also a large swimming pool with a water slide open, too.
The drive to the town of Hot Sulphur Springs is beautiful, too. It’s about 45 minutes west on Hwy 40 from downtown Winter Park.
Simple Snow Fun
Build a snowman! Open space and snow is abundand all over Winter Park and Fraser Valley. Hideaway Park on the main drag in Winter Park is great, and so is Wolf Park on King’s Crossing Road. Click here to see both on a map. Or have a snowball fight. Anywhere you want. Built a fort, make snow angels, whatever you want. Be outdoors bundled up and you’re bound to find something fun to do in Winter Park.