Last year we visited Santa’s Village Amusement Park for the first time, and they invited us back this year for their Magical Christmas Days! December 15-16, 2018 is their LAST event of the year so you don’t want to miss out! You’ll see almost half a million Christmas lights and experiences for kids to enjoy are all over the place! Below are just some of the things to do at Santa’s Village Amusement Park in Illinois!
Things to Do at Santa’s Village Amusement Park:
Hug a sheep!
Santa’s Village has a fabulous petting zoo (Old MacDonald’s Barn) with all sorts of animals that you can feed, pet, hug, and just enjoy! Inside the barn area is also a nice place to go to get away from the cold wind in the winter! You’ll find porcupines, wallabies, capybaras, a skunk, donkeys, goats, sheep and more! The animal feed is $3 per cup and $1 for refills so make sure you bring a few bucks for this!
In additional to Old MacDonald’s Barn there is also a Deer & Wildlife Park trail you can walk and feed the deer! Bring quarters for the food stops or use your feed cup from the petting zoo area! This trail also provides a less stimulating sensory experience if you have kids that need a little space to run. There are over 200 animals in the park!
Feed the birds!
As you know our family is huge animal lovers! If there is ever a hands on opportunity to be with animals – we’re there! Parakeet Paradise Aviary is the warmest spot in the park and right next to the restrooms. We’ve been to parakeet aviaries all over the country and the one at Santa’s Village is by far the most active and exciting! Birds will flock to you in a hot second if you have a feed stick so if you have a child who is frightened by birds I recommend keeping them in the corner where no one is feeding birds. Feed sticks are $2.
Additionally there are various animal yards integrated inside the theme park like Caribou Crossing, Frosty’s Friends, Tortoise Island and more. I LOVE the mixture of wildlife and entertainment for families to enjoy and learn more about! There are educational facts and placards to learn about the different animals you will meet. Some of which are a Kookaburra, bob cats, red foxes, peacocks, cavy, muntjacs, and others.
Play on the playground!
Last year we featured the death-defying “treehouse” playground that my kids ADORE. It’s a fantastic adventurous spot in the park for kids to run off a little steam and take photos – right by the bathrooms! Very nice for when others in the family are using the potty!
See almost half a million lights! (holidays)
In 2018 Santa’s Village celebrated the holidays with Magical Christmas Days. It was wonderful! There was live entertainment (and they were GOOD!), campfires and heaters set up, and almost half a million lights twinkling to make the evening more magical! Different areas of the park were set to Christmas music in coordination with the lights. There were lights on the theme park rides, lights in the trees, on the buildings, and even creating a canopy overhead between the trees! It was beautiful!
Ride a Roller Coaster & Other Theme Park Rides
Santa’s Village does a really good job of offering rides for different ages to enjoy. They are not all kiddie rides, and not all older kid rides – there’s a nice mix. Since my boys are older they can separate from us and go ride the older rides while we take our 4 year old on the other kiddie rides. And there are of course rides we can all ride together like the Tilt-a-Whirl and the carousel!
There are two different roller coasters (a kiddie one and one for older kids & adults), hot air “balloons” we can all ride, Viking Sea Dragon, train rides, spinning “Snowballs”, side winders and more!
Drive a car! Not once, not twice, but 3 times!
Because we have children that range from age 4 to 11 we know there will be height requirements at each ride that will affect which kid gets to ride (or drive!) what! My boys favorite “ride” are the bumper cars (minimum 42″). They spent hours there! Jed’s Antique Country Cruisers is one of my personal favorites because you get to “drive” a classic stagecoach looking vehicle on a really long track.
Even my 4 year old could sit in the driver’s seat!!! Talk about a WOW THRILL for her! There are also classic kiddie cars that little ones can “drive” in a circle.
Watch a Show!
Although we missed them this time, Santa’s Village also has an Exotic Animal Show and Sheer Magic Show. You may also spot Princess Tinselbella wandering around too! We saw her last year and my daughter spent the whole day watching for her throughout the park!
Visit with Santa Claus AND Mrs. Claus!
The VERY first place you walk by when you arrive in the park is Santa’s Hut! This is a special magical place decorated to the hilt and truly a special spot for anyone who believes in Santa. On the side of the hut is the fantastic bench you see above for resting and photos. Or hop in line and be invited inside Santa’s hut to meet him and Mrs. Claus.
What I LOVE is that your family is the ONLY ones in the hut with Mr. & Mrs. Claus. It’s quiet, there are no distractions, there’s no rush, and Santa does a fabulous job spending time with just your child.
My daughter was SO excited to see Santa, but was quite shy and timid once we made it inside the hut. Santa didn’t miss a beat and kept the conversation rolling. Definitely the best Santa I’ve come across! He had me believing he flew straight down from the North Pole just to be there that day! Look at this photo of my daughter with Mr. & Mrs. Claus!
More Santa’s Village Details:
Wheelchair Rentals ($15/day)
Wagon Rentals ($10/day)
Strollers are OK
Hours & Dates
Shop in the Christmas Gift Shop!
Places to Eat!
Hand Sanitizer Stations!