The best places to take pictures with Santa in NYC

Smile! Here are our favorite places to take pictures with Santa in NYC this holiday season.

By Allie Early and Oliver Strand |
Santa Buddies
Photograph: Chris Large

Create a lasting memento of the holiday by going to one of these spots for pictures with Santa. Here's a tip: get your little elf to sit still with the promise of a mug of the best hot chocolate in NYC. It's a gift, not a bribe.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Christmas for kids in NYC

These photo spots offer great experiences for families—some are straightforward, while others are themed Santa experiences that put the "whoa!" in ho-ho-ho. Keep up the holiday spirit by going to the best holiday train show for kids in NYC, and finish the day with the Christmas caroling NYC kids and families love most. The city is magic this time of year.

Where to take a picture with Santa in NYC

Photograph: Courtesy of Macerich
News, Events & Festivals

Santa HQ at Queens Crossing

Santa's workshop might be in the North Pole, but he's headquartered here in New York. To be more precise, Santa HQ is on the third floor of the Queens Crossing shopping center, and it's an immersive experience that's a technological funhouse, a 21st-century update on the classic Santa display and a cool way to kickstart Christmas for kids. The real reason to go? Your little elves get to sit for pictures with Santa. If it's better to give than receive, then give your little one the memory of a lifetime with a deskside at Santa HQ. Photo packages from $34.99. All ages.

Photograph: Courtesy Bloomingdale's + Joe Schildhorn/

An Out Of This World Holiday

Bloomingdale's, Upper East Side

An out-of-this-world holiday celebration is within reach: Just hop on the subway to Bloomingdale's. The iconic department store is transforming Lexington Ave into an intergalactic, festive display complete with all-things astronauts and space ships. Aside from a stunning window display, shoppers can also expect plenty of fun seasonal activations throughout the store: 3, 2, 1 Gift Off, an immersive VR experience where kiddos race against the clock to collect gifts, an intergalactic snow globe that's perfect for a holiday photo and  GE C’ing is Believing, a debut smart light installation that blasts off into the stars. Plus, Santa Land! Let the little dress up for a meeting with the man in the red suit. St. Nick's hours are as follows: Mon-Sat from 10am-1pm and 2-5pm, Sun from 11am-1pm and 2-5pm. Learn more about the holly, jolly happenings online. All ages.