September 21, 2020

The Ultimate Guide to Winter Fun with Kids in SLC

Winter mountains covered in snow.

Come for the snow, stay for the family fun!

Looking for winter fun with your kids? Salt Lake City is home to more than the best snow on earth. With a kid friendly mentality and a commitment to year round excitement, Utah winters offer unforgettable experiences for your entire family. Our local's guide to winter activities with kids will make planning your next vacation easy and memorable. Come check out what makes winter in Salt Lake City the best time of year for the entire family!

Gallivan Center Ice Skating

Ice Skating Rink at the Gallivan Center for winter fun with kids

First up on your itinerary is ice skating at Gallivan Center. While you are visiting Temple Square and other downtown landmarks, take advantage of this perfect addition to you trip. You will love ice skating under the magical lights of Temple Square for a fun winter night with the entire family. Then when you are ready for a break, grab some hot chocolate and a cinnamon roll from the onsite concession stand. Prices at the Gallivan Center range from $9 for adults to $8 for seniors and children ages 4-12 (children 3 and under are free!). Remember that prices include skate rentals. Be sure to check out their website for more information! 

Parking around the square can fill up quickly on weekends. So for best access go during a weeknight or plan to arrive early! Then park in the underground parking garage of the City Creek Mall.

Ice Castles in Midway

Kids having fun at the Ice Castles in Midway, Utah
(photo via The Salt Project)

Utah winters offer a truly unique experience. For example, next up on your trip is a magical look into the power of ice. The Ice Castles are located in only 6 locations world wide, and one of those locations is just a short 45 minute drive from Salt Lake City! Take advantage of this rare opportunity to immerse your entire family in a winter wonderland. Crafted by professional ice sculptors, the castles include LED-lit sculptures, frozen thrones, ice-carved tunnels, fountains and even slides! This icy wonderland is a fun winter playground for kids and is sure to be one of the most memorable experiences of your trip! General admission for ages 12 and up is $17.99 and $11.99 for children ages 4-11. Be sure to check out their website to reserve a time and view weekday pricing discounts.

Remember this exhibit is located outside– bring your warm clothes!

The Festival of Trees

Christmas Trees at the Festival of Trees

Lasting only 4 days, the Festival of Trees is a must see local experience. Even though playing outdoors is a highlight of visiting Utah, the Festival of Trees offers your family a warm and cozy break indoors. So come welcome in the Christmas season with fun for all ages! Located at the South Towne Expo Center in Sandy, this festival features Christmas trees which have been decorated and donated by local businesses and families. Then at the end of the festival, the trees are auctioned to the public. All proceeds of the auction benefit Primary Children’s Hospital. Tickets range from $4 for children to $7 for adults. There is something for everyone at the Festival of Trees, so be sure to visit their website to reserve your spot for winter fun with the kids!

In addition to the trees, your kids will love the live dance performances, face painting,  gingerbread village and even a visit from the jolly man himself!

ZooLights at Hogle Zoo

Hogle Zoo Lights Display

Last up on your itinerary is a visit to the Hogle Zoo for their ZooLights display. Boasting over 200 animal and holiday-themed light displays, this annual event is the perfect winter activity for families and kids of all ages! So come walk through their 135-foot lighted tunnel, spin on the Conservation Carousel, and then listen to holiday music while sipping hot chocolate. Admission for adults is $9.95 and for children is $7.95.

Hogle Zoo frequently offers admission discounts on their website. So be sure to ask about their bounceback passes!


Coming to Salt Lake City with kids during the fall? Check out these 7 Fun Family Fall Activities!

Looking to experience Utah’s “Greatest Snow on Earth”? Be sure to check out the Best Skiing Near Salt Lake City.  

Seven Slopes

Seven Slopes in a local's guide to what to do in Salt Lake City and the Wasatch Mountains.  The articles on this site were written by students from the University of Utah as part of a digital marketing curriculum.
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