Where to Take Safe Santa Claus Pictures on Long Island in 2020
Santa has the magical ability to be in several places at once—even during a pandemic, and we've rounded up 14 fun venues where Santa Claus is holding court regularly and posing for pictures in a safe, socially distant way. So, pack your most festive Christmas mask and plan a date to share your wish list.
If you'd rather visit Santa from the comfort and safety of your home, check out our suggestions for online visits with old St. Nick. For more socially distanced seasonal adventures, check out our roundup of great holiday light shows in the region, and bookmark our Holiday Fun Guide for all the can't-miss seasonal happenings.
Editor's note: While we are trying to promote safer activities that occur outdoors or with social distancing guidelines in place, please keep your family and others safe by always wearing a mask and maintaining an appropriate distance.
Safe Santa Visits in Nassau County in 2020
Bayville Adventure Park's Winter Wonderland – Bayville
Weekends through Friday, January 1, 2021
Santa sits behind a plexiglass barrier at Bayville's Winter Wonderland, and only one family at a time may enter the Santa area. Admission to this seasonal amusement includes a visit to Santa's Toy Factory Fun House, the holiday express train ride, ice skating, skate rentals, rock climbing, and a holiday character meet-and-greet, but the Magical Santa Experience is an additional $15 charge and includes photos for a family of up to six people and a letter from Santa to send to your child before Christmas.
Weekends through Sunday, December 20
You can stroll through the charming Christmas Village and stop to see Santa in his workshop, where he’ll be waiting for visitors. Photos are safely taken with him from a six-foot distance, and Santa sits behind plexiglass.
Magic of Lights – Jones Beach State Park, Wantagh
Daily through Saturday, January 2
This magical drive-thru spectacular has become a holiday tradition for many Long Island families. Enjoy the magnificent light show and get an included-with-admission, socially distant photo with Santa.
Photos With Santa at Roosevelt Field Mall – Garden City
Daily through Thursday, December 24; closed Monday, December 7
Santa holds court on the lower level of the mall. He and his elves wear masks during visits, and families must do the same. Advanced registration is recommended. While a visit with Santa is FREE, you'll have to pay for photos.
Have a socially distanced chat with Santa at the Christmas House. Photo courtesy of the Christmas House
Safe Santa Visits in Suffolk County in 2020
Christmas House Long Island – Riverhead
Daily through Sunday, January 10
This indoor, immersive experience dedicated to all things Christmas hosts St. Nick for socially distant photos. He wears a mask and poses from six feet away.
Santa’s Christmas Tree Farm LI – Cutchogue
Select dates through Wednesday, December 23
After you cut down your own Christmas tree at this aptly-named farm, you can get your photo taken with Santa for FREE. He’ll be sitting in a bright red pickup truck, and kids—and pets—can stand beside the truck for the perfect holiday photo. There’s also an ice skating rink, s’mores by the fire, and much more. A Sensitive Santa holds court on Wednesday, December 9.
The Shoppes at East Wind Winter Fest – Wading River
Saturdays December 5, 12, and 19
Along with its Winter Fest holiday shopping event, The Shoppes offer visitors the chance to snap a FREE photo with Santa, who will be waiting under the gazebo behind a ‘magic’ Santa shield. There’s also a special mailbox where those Santa letters can be dropped. Advance registration is required.
Meet Scuba Santa at the Long Island Aquarium. Photo courtesy of the aquarium
Long Island Aquarium Santa Brunch – Riverhead
Sunday, December 6
If you're looking for an out of the ordinary Santa photo, what could be better than posing with Scuba Santa? Following the Long Island Aquarium's annual Santa Brunch, Scuba Santa makes appearances at multiple habitats throughout the day.
Photos With Santa at Smith Haven Mall – Lake Grove
Select dates through Wednesday, December 24
Santa is seated at the center court for photos most days this holiday season. Masks are required for all visitors, and Santa and his elves wear them, too. Advanced registration is recommended. While seeing Santa is FREE, you must pay for photos to take home.
Bright Nights at the Vanderbilt Museum – Centerport
Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through Sunday, December 20
Take a stroll around the decorated grounds and enjoy the holiday lights, themed displays, food, music, and more. Mask wearing is required. Be sure to stop by and visit Santa—ensconced safely behind plexiglass—and share your list.
Stop by 8A Fifth Street in Lake Ronkonkoma, where Santa is welcoming visitors outdoors. Photo by George Curto
Socially Distanced Santa Night – Lake Ronkonkoma
Saturday, December 12
See one of our favorite local light displays and enjoy a Santa encounter. St. Nick sits under a large, open, decorated carport lit up by more than 5,000 LED lights. Guests can talk to Santa and take photos from a safe distance. Masks are required, and everyone is asked to wait their turn; one family is allowed to visit with Santa at a time. The event is FREE, but donations to Mended Little Hearts of Long Island are appreciated.
Walt Whitman Shops — Huntington Station
Daily through Wednesday, December 24
Visitors to Walt Whitman Shops can make their appointment to see Santa online. Santa and his helpers wear masks, and visitors are required to follow suit. While seeing Santa is FREE, you must pay for photos to take home.
Santa sees visitors outdoors at White Post Farms. Photo courtesy of the Farm
White Post Farms – Melville
Weekends through Sunday, December 20
Bring your kids to this popular fifth-generation family farm where they can visit Santa outdoors or drop a Santa letter into the North Pole mailbox along with a SASE for the big guy to answer. There’s an outdoor winter wonderland scene for photo ops as well. The farm is cash-only, and there is an ATM on the premises.
Waterdrinker Family Farm – Manorville
Wednesdays through Sundays through Sunday, December 20
There's tons of seasonal fun at this farm, including photos with Santa. You can cut down your own tree, stroll through the vintage Airstream Christmas Village, shop at the gift shop and greenhouse, enjoy hot cocoa and s’mores, and much more. Check the website for visiting days and times with Santa.
This post has been updated for 2020.