The best places to see Santa in New Zealand

Ho ho ho! Santa is here and ready to catch up with the recipients of his special gifts this Christmas.

Read Newshub's selection of places you can take the family to meet the big man in red for a chat, a photo and a jolly great time.


Snowplanet (November 23 - December 24)

Santa's magical cabin at Snowplanet - Auckland's indoor snow dome. Families can get a photo with him and meet his elves.

Prices start at $9 per person, and bookings are essential - phone 09 427 0199 or email

Smith and Caughey's (November 22 - December 24)

Visiting Santa's enchanted forest is a great way to kick festivities off.

High demand, however, means the booked (no queue) experience is sold out. Not to worry though, the non-booked experience is still available.

Children will receive a collective tree bauble from Santa and a keepsake photo.

The non-booked experience is $15 per child. For further information 09 377 4770 or email

The Museum of Transport and Technology (December 13 - 24)

MOTAT's grounds will be transformed with Christmas lights and children will have the chance to meet Santa and his elves.

Entry is $2 per person and children aged under five get in free.

SkyCity (December 6 - 25)

See the man himself under Auckland's biggest Christmas tree. Click here for times.

Rainbow's End (November 23 - December 22)

Santa's excitable elf helpers will take people through his grotto to meet the big man before visiting his sleigh in the snow.

Visiting the grotto is free with a Rainbow's End Kidz Kingdom pass ($35) or Child Superpass ($50). Photos will be available to purchase.

The best places to see Santa in New Zealand
Photo credit: Getty


Centre Place Shopping Centre

Get a photo with Santa and embark on some great elf adventures including face painting, balloon twisting and rounding up reindeer.

The Base (November 16 - December 24)

Say g'day to Santa as he visits the Te Rapa shopping centre from the North Pole.

Visiting Santa is free and photos start from $17.

Santa claus portraits and lifestyle
Photo credit: Getty


Queensgate Shopping Centre

People will have the chance to meet Santa in his new toy emporium from now until Christmas Eve.

A range of photo packages are available and every child who gets a snap with him will get a gift.

North City Porirua - sensory Santa (December 8, 7:45am - 9am)

Children with sensory challenges can have one-on-one time with Santa in a peaceful and comfortable environment.

To make a booking visit

Santa on his sleigh pulled by 8 reindeer in front of a large moon and fog.
Photo credit: Getty



Santa's grotto is now open at the iconic Christchurch department store.

To make a booking click here.

The Palms (December 2 - 24)

Santa has arrived at the Shirley mall and will be there every day from 10am.

Meeting Santa is free and photos start from $15.90.

The best places to see Santa in New Zealand
Photo credit: File


Toitū Otago Settlers Museum (December 7 - 24)

Come and visit Santa in Dunedin's Queens Garden.

Admission is free and photos start from $15.

Meridian Mall

Santa and his helpers will be settled in the central Dunedin shopping centre from Saturday.

People can get their photo taken and post a letter in the big man's mailbox.

Photos are $15.

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