Where to find Santa in Chicago.
Miraculously Santa can be found at multiple locations around downtown at the same time. Sometimes he charges and sometimes he’s free to visit. Below I’ve listed in detail all his free locations. This year I’ve added a list of where he charges outrageous fees to visit because people emailed me about it last year.
Santa and Mrs. Claus will be installed at Millennium Park beginning November 17 when the Christmas Tree is lit. Be prepared. Lines can be very long.
Hours (subject to change) Thursday, November 23 (Thanksgiving Day): 12 Noon-3pm, November 26-December 17: 12 Noon-6pm
Santa’s Midwest headquarters is open to children of all ages. They can inquire whether they have made his “nice” list, make gift requests and take photos. There is no charge to visit Santa, but you must take your own photos with your camera or smartphone.
900 N. Michigan Shops Level 3
Nov. 18-Dec. 24, 2017 M-Sat: 12PM-6PM; Sun. 11:00AM-5:00PM
Taking a photo with your phone or camera is free.
Lincoln Park Zoo, 2001 North Clark Street
November 25–27, December 2–4, 9–23, 26–31; January 1, 2017 4:30–9 p.m. Santa heads back to the North Pole after December 23.
Santa’s hours are 4:30-9 p.m. during regularly scheduled ZooLights evenings (special event hours vary). Seeing Santa is free of charge.
Swissotel, 323 East Upper Wacker Drive, (312) 268-8235
Dec. 2, 2017 (11 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.), and Dec. 17, 2017(1 p.m. – 4 p.m.). Santa will greet children and pose for photos in his suite.
Local families and hotel guests are invited to visit the free “Santa Suite,” free of charge. The Santa Suite is actually the five room Presidential Suite at the hotel.
The space is decorated with twelve Christmas trees, a table set for Santa and his special guests along with snacks and giveaways.
Skate with Santa Maggie Daley Park, 337 E. Randolph
See Santa for a Fee
Santa can be found at Macy’s on State Street, 111 N. State Street. 8 minutes with Santa for $40 or more.
Santa can also be found at Macy’s at Water Tower, 835 N. Michigan Ave. 8 minutes with Santa for $40 or more. Reserve in advance and save money on your photo package.
Santa at Winter WonderFest at Navy Pier 600 E. Grand Ave. Discount tickets to Winter Wonderfest
Highway robbery Santa
Santa at the Museum of Science and Industry $30
Santa at the Shedd Aquarium $50 adults, $40 children.