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The best places to visit Santa this Christmas in Auckland

The best places to visit Santa this Christmas in Auckland

Here is our pick of the best places to take the kids to see Santa and have a family photo this Christmas in Auckland, New Zealand.


1. Snowplanet

Visit Santa at Snowplanet from 23 November to  24 December 2019 in the snow.  Remember to dress up warm as you will be in the snow dome, and it is a chilly -5 degrees to make Santa feel at home.  We like visiting Santa at Snowplanet, as not only do the kids get to meet Santa, but they get to have fun playing in the snow.  Plus we didn’t seem to get as many questions asking “Is Santa really real?” when we visited him here.

Santa’s Visit includes:

Visiting Santa and one printed group photo, 1 lollipop for each child for $9 per person.  

Santa’s Family Snow Fun add on includes: 

You can add on to Santa’s Visit 30 minutes exploring Santa’s Winter Wonderland for an extra $9 per person. The kids can touch, feel and play in the new alpine village in the snow. Have fun making snow angels, hiding amongst the trees or climbing on the terrain. Plus you can take your own photos in the snow.

Santa Family Snow Fun with Tubing add on includes:

You can add on to Santa’s visit 30 minutes of snow tubing and exploring Santa’s Winter Wonderland for an extra $25 per person too.

Bookings are essential, call 427 0199 or email


2. Visit Santa at Christmas Lights at MOTAT

Christmas Lights at MOTAT
Christmas Lights at MOTAT

MOTAT is celebrating the spirit of giving with its special Christmas Lights at MOTAT this Festive Season from 8pm to 11pm from Friday 13 to Tuesday 24 December 2019. The Museum grounds will be transformed with Christmas Lights.  The kids can meet Santa and his elves and share in the magic of Christmas. There’ll be plenty of things to see and do with live entertainment, indoor movies, tram rides, carollers, craft activities, Santa’s grotto and more!.

Entry is $2 per person, and children under 5 are free.  Additional charges apply for ice skating.

3. See Santa at SkyCity

Picture: Auckland for Kids - Santa up Sky Tower
Auckland for Kids – Santa up Sky Tower

Visit Santa at SkyCity under Auckland’ biggest Christmas Tree for weekends in December and then each day from 6 December to 24 December 2019 from 2pm to 4pm and 5pm to 7pm and on Christmas Day from 11am to 9pm.  


4. Santa’s Enchanted Forest at Smith & Caughey’s

Photo Auckland for Kids - Smith & Caughey's Enchanted Forest
Photo Auckland for Kids – Smith & Caughey’s Enchanted Forest

Santa’s Enchanted Forest experiences are at Smith & Caughey’s in Queen Street from Friday 2 November to Tuesday 24 December 2019. Smith & Caughey’s is always one of our favourite places to visit Santa. Children enjoy the enchanted forest lights and displays and then get to visit Santa.  Plus you can enjoy their Christmas window displays inspired by The Night Before Christmas before or after your visit.

There are two options to have your photo taken with Santa. The booked experience at $30 per child includes a visit to the Enchanted Forest, a collectable Christmas tree bauble, a visit to see Santa,  a photo and downloaded photos. If your children don’t mind queuing, and be warned queues can be an hour or longer the non-booked experience is $15 per child. The booked and non-booked experience include the same things, apart from the booked experience has NO QUEUE and does not include the downloaded photos. The booked experience usually sells out, so you are best to book online early.  Both the booked and non-booked experience includes free entry for up to two adults.

5. Santa’s grotto at Rainbow’s End

Santa will be in the Kidz Kingdom castle in Rainbow’s End on the weekends from 23 November 23 to 22 December 2019 from 10:30am to 3:30pm. You will be greeted by Santa’s excitable Elf helpers, take a walk-through Santa’s grotto to meet the big man, and then visit his sleigh in the snow.

Visiting Santa’s Grotto is free with your child’s Kidz Kingdom ($34.99) or Rainbow’s End Child Superpass ($49.99). Photos are available to purchase.

Rainbow's End Santa's Grotto 2019


6. Your local shopping centres

We know sometimes you just want somewhere close to home to visit Santa, so here are the other local shopping centres in Auckland you can find Santa this Christmas. If you want to take the kids to a local santa parade have a look at Auckland for Kids December 2019 events calendar

Central Auckland

Westfield St Lukes from Monday 27 November to Tuesday 24 December 2019*
  Sensitive santa photography on 1 December 2019.
Royal Oak Shopping Mall from Saturday 30 November 2019*
Westfield Newmarket from Monday 2 December to Tuesday 24 December 2019. 
  Sensitive santa photography on Sundays 8 Dec, 15 Dec and 22 Dec 2019.
– Sylvia Park from Saturday 16 November to Christmas Eve on 24 December 2019.
  Sensitive santa sessions on Mon 16, Tues 17 and Wed 18 December.
– Victoria Park Market from 1 to 24 December 2019.

East Auckland

– Santa’s Candlyland at Botany Town Centre from 22 November until 24 December 2019.
  Senstive Santa sessions for children with special needs and sensory processing disorders are available from 1 Dec to 8 Dec 2019*
Pakuranga Plaza from Saturday 7 December 2019*

North Auckland

Coast Plaza Whangaparaoa from 5 December to 24 December 2019*
– Santa’s Workshop at Highbury Centre from 8 December 2019*
– Santa’s Workshop at Milford Shopping Centre now until 24 December 2019: 12pm to 5pm
  Plus get a FREE Christmas stocking to take home and decorate
– Santa at Westfield Albany from 27 November until 24 December 2019*
– Santa at Shore City from 1 December 2019*

Northwest Auckland

NorthWest Shopping Centre from 23 November to 24 December 2019*
  Sensory session on Wednesday 4 December 2019.
– Santa’s Wonderland at Westgate from 30 November to 24 December 2019*

South Auckland

– Santa at Westfield Manukau City from 28 November to 15 December 2019* There are sensitive santa photo session on 30 November and 7 December too.

West Auckland

– Santa at WestCity Waitakere until Tuesday 24 December 2019*
– Santa at Lynnmall from Saturday 23 November 2019 to Tuesday 24 December 2019*

* Please check with your local shopping centre Santa’s hours before heading out as he will not there every day in December.

If you have a favourite Santa that we have left off the list, let us know in the comments below.

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