Guide To The Best Santa’s Around The Twin Cities

Where are some of the best Santas in the Twin Cities? We’ve called the North Pole to get some tips from the Big Guy’s administrative staff. Here’s what they recommend this year.

photobushero Guide To The Best Santas Around The Twin Cities


Holidazzle Parade

Nicollet Mall from 12th Street to 4th Street
Minneapolis, MN
612-376-SNOW (7669)

Friday, Nov. 25 at 6:30 p.m. continues Thursdays through Sundays until Dec. 18
FREE; Hot Seats $9 each

Santa’s been Holidazzling Nicollet Mall for 20 years this season and nobody does it better! Santa attracts over 300,000 kids of all ages that are ready to tell him their wishes. They can also enjoy floats, twinkling lights, familiar storybook characters, music and more. It’s no secret this is one Santa-seeing hot spot! Speaking of hot spots, want to keep the little ones warm? There’s a tent located on Nicollet Mall between 11th and 12th Streets which serves up more than Hot Seats and a great view, warm up to complimentary hot cocoa and cider as well. Target’s Holidazzle Parade has become a “must-do” on the holiday lists of many families.

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(credit: Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)

Choo Choo Bob's Train Store

2050 Marshall Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55104


Choo-choo and Santa too…at Choo Choo Bob’s Train Store hosts Santa during the holidays to meet his Twin City train-loving moms, dads, and children. Here, kids can play with the trains while they wait to sit on the knee of the man in the red suit. This is a popular spot to see Santa so warning, it can get busy!

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(credit: Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images)

The Santa Experience at the Mall of America

60 East Broadway
Suite E317
Bloomington, MN 55425

Call ahead for appointment times.
$15 for a 5×7 photo

Feeling the crunch this holiday? No time for long lines and feeling the aftermath of cranky tots? Make an appointment to see Santa at the Mall of America – he’s the real deal! While appointments aren’t necessary, it sure does help when trying to fit in some holiday shopping before naptime. Little ones sit with Santa who enjoys hearing their wish lists at his Polar Junction location.

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(credit: Teh Eng Koon/AFP/Getty Images)

Macy's SantaLand

Macy's 8th Floor Auditorium
700 Nicollet Mall
Minneapolis, MN 55402

Call for Santa’s hours

What’s more of a tradition than visiting Santa as he makes a stop at a big department store? Maybe the fact that grandma and grandpa probably came to the same Santa at Macy’s SantaLand – he’s been coming for almost half a century! Children love to watch as Santa and the elves prepare for the most spirited time of the year. Breakfast with Santa is held on Saturday mornings, call ahead for details.

Meghan Marx was born and raised in the mid-west, where outdoor activity is her second nature. Meghan is a graphics artist, college professor and web designer. Follow Meg at @designingmarx.

  • holiday cheer

    Santa visits the Valley Creek Mall in Woodbury on Saturdays from 10:00 to 3:00. This is the “real” Santa – complete with Reindeer on December 10th! Bring your camera.

  • lindsay

    The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum has a great Santa on Saturdays & Sunday from 10:30am-Noon & 12:30pm-2pm. Not to mention a lot of fun activitie – storytimes at the trees, kids shop (where the kids can shop for parents, etc), special music, and more. The Arb website has more information on all that is going on this weekend.

  • Julian Reytel

    Santa has been making home visits since 2004– in the Twin Cities Metro Area.

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