A visit to the big man in red is a must for many families. Santa may be on the verge of experiencing some demand this holiday season after a year or two where some Santa visits have occurred virtually.

Santa arrives at the end of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York. He set up shop in NYC at Macy's on 34th Street.


Santa is hanging out in Santaland, a very festive place that feels like the North Pole, in the busy Macy's on 34th. Santa and his elves are going to be thrilled to visit with kids this year, but there are some things to know before you go.

You need to know what to see at Macy's Santaland.


The best hotels for families in NYC are listed.

Things to know about Macy's Santaland in NYC

There is a Santaland in NYC. There is an enchanted forest, a rainbow bridge, trees, lights, snow-capped mountains, reindeer, train sets, Santa's sleigh and so much more. More than 170,000 people visit Santaland in a year.


Santaland has a private room where you can chat with Santa about your holiday wishes, as well as take pictures with your own camera. You are under no obligation to purchase the packages.


There are tips for watching the Macy's Thanksgiving parade.

How to get a Macy's Santaland reservation

Santa is very popular at Macy's Santaland.

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The wait to see him has gone on for a while. It took hours. Macy's has changed the process over the past few years, and now the NYC Santaland requires reservations.

At 6:30 a.m., you can make free reservations on the website. It's five days before you arrive. If you don't have a lot of flexibility, you'll want to set yourself an alarm to book that slot if you don't have enough time.



Most days the hours are from morning until around 9 p.m. Santa will be in town until the afternoon of December 24th, when he will have to head back to the North Pole.

You can make reservations for up to six people, but Macy's requires you to bring a printed copy of your reservation with you.


The best time to visit Macy's Santaland

You can visit Santa from Black Friday through Christmas Eve. Some times are more preferable than others. Black Friday is the busiest day of the year in Santaland.

Macy's says it can take up to 90 minutes to get to Santa, which matches our experience in the past. If you can visit from Monday to Thursday before Christmas, you will be able to keep your spirits high.

The magic was fading. SUMMER HULL/THE POINTS GUY

If you must go during peak times, prepare yourself with potty breaks, clothing layers that can easily come off, and a loaded electronic device.


Tips for visiting Santaland

Santaland is not as cold as the North Pole. Santaland is warm based on my visits. If you have thick coats and sweaters you need outside, you will melt in the long, slow line to Santa.

Santa will require face masks for his visit. Santa and his elves will be covering their faces.

A visit to Santa is free. You don't have to buy the official photos, but if you do, there's a second line after Santa. The rest of the crew should be sent to a different part of Macy's to wait for you.


You can usually let the elves know when you arrive if you prefer a visit to a Black or Spanish Santa. If you require special accommodations, you can email SantalandNewYork@macys.com.

Santaland is a must see in New York City during the holiday season. It's a good idea to make a free reservations in advance of your visit. If you're planning on taking a family trip to NYC in the future, you should read these articles.