Where to See Santa Around Columbia


No holiday season is complete without a visit to the man in red! Below is a list of places you’ll be able to find Santa Claus this holiday season!

*Please note – While we make every effort to crosscheck current links and event details on our guides, we always encourage you to do the same before making final plans. If details are missing or incorrect, please let us know so that we can correct them.

Columbiana Centre

Date: Now – Dec. 24, 2019

Time: Monday – Saturday (noon until 8 p.m., break: 2:30 – 3 p.m.), Sunday (12 – 6 p.m., break: 2:30 – 3 p.m.); Extending holiday hours Dec. 14 – 21: Monday – Saturday (9 a.m. – 9 p.m., break: noon – 12:45 p.m. and 3:45 – 4:30 p.m.), Sunday, Dec. 22 (10 a.m. – 7 p.m., break: 2 – 3 p.m.); Monday, Dec. 23 (9 a.m. – 9 p.m., break: noon – 12:45 p.m. and 3:45 – 4:30 p.m.); Christmas Eve (9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Break: 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.)

Location: 100 Columbiana Circle, Columbia 29212 (inside the mall at Belk Court)

Cost: Prices vary depending on the package you choose

Details: Make a reservation to see Santa and spend less time in line.

Vista Lights

Date: Nov. 21, 2019

Time: 6 – 10 p.m.

Location: The Congaree Vista, Columbia 29201

Cost: Free, but bring money for shopping, food, and potential parking (see below)

Details: Join the Congaree Vista’s kickoff to the holiday season at Vista Lights! Enjoy artistic performances, live music and dancing. Stop by your favorite shops, galleries and restaurants and even meet Santa! Experience the lighting of the Vista’s tree which starts the holiday season!

A special Kids Zone on Lincoln Street sponsored by Midlands Media Group, Edventure, Richland Library and Columbia Metropolitan Airport will feature activities for children, including face painting, balloon art, reindeer snacks, a giant snow globe that kids can crawl into, and of course, visits with Santa himself!

Parking is available in the City of Columbia garage at Lincoln and Washington Streets (behind Aloft Hotel) and at the South Carolina State Museum. Experience Columbia SC is offering free rides from the museum’s lot at Gervais and Gadsen on a continuous loop from 6 – 10 p.m. The City of Columbia parking garage on Park Street beside the Hilton Hotel is $10 cash only (due to an event at Colonial Life Arena). Street parking is available and meters are free after 6 p.m.

Grand Opening: Santa’s Holiday Village

Dates: Nov. 29, 2019

Time: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Location: EdVenture Children’s Museum, 211 Gervais Street, Columbia 29201

Cost: FREE with museum admission

Details: Watch Santa come down the chimney and have your picture taken with the Jolly Old Elf himself and Mrs. Claus!

Breakfast with Santa & Mrs. Claus

Dates: Nov. 30, 2019

Time: 9 a.m. – noon

Location: Treasure Island Marketplace, 2702 Emanuel Church Road, West Columbia 29170

Cost: $4 per person for breakfast

Details: Visit a Santa’s workshop plus have breakfast with Santa and Ms. Claus.
Pancake, Sausage and drink. Select a name from our senior giving tree by picking an ornament to provide confined seniors a gift.

Santa Brunch

Dates: Nov. 30 | Dec. 7 | Dec. 14 | Dec. 21, 2019

Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Location: The Main Course, 1626 Main Street, Columbia 29201

Cost: All ages can enjoy our all you can eat brunch buffet for only $14!

Details: Santa is coming to town! Every Saturday during the month of December, Santa will be at The Main Course! Kids will be able to decorate cookies while they visit Santa.

Santa Visit

Date: Dec. 3, 2019

Time: 4:40 – 5:30 p.m.

Location: Gaston Branch Library, 214 S Main Street, Gaston 29053

Cost: Free

Details: Guess who’s stopping by the Gaston Branch Library before he takes to the sky on Christmas Eve. He’s made the list and he’s checked it twice. Come visit Santa and join in on some festive holiday fun. For more information, call (803) 785-9908.

Holiday Celebration with Santa

Date: Dec. 5, 2019

Time: 6 – 7 p.m.

Location: Chapin Branch Library, 129 Columbia Avenue, Chapin 29036

Cost: Free

Details: A special holiday treat. Santa will slip away from his busy North Pole schedule to visit with children of all ages. We’ll decorate the tree, visit with Santa and enjoy refreshments. For more information, call (803) 345-5479.

Breakfast with Santa

Date: Dec. 7, 2019

Time: 9 a.m. – noon

Location: St. Andrews Park, 920 Beatty Road, Columbia 29210

Cost: Free (We ask that each family only claim tickets that they plan to use, so that others may have an opportunity to have Breakfast with Santa!)

Details: Enjoy a family fun Saturday morning with fun activities, breakfast, picture taken with Santa, a performance of “Cinderella’s Holiday Ball” by The Columbia Marionette Theater and much more!

Feliz Navidad

Date: Dec. 7, 2019

Time: 2 – 4 p.m.

Location: Lexington Branch Library, 5440 Augusta Road, Lexington 29072

Cost: Free

Details: Join us for a bilingual holiday celebration featuring stories, crafts, songs and selfies with Santa. Presented in partnership with Lexington School District One Parenting Center. For more information, call (803) 785-2630. (all ages)

Christmas Around The World

Date: Dec. 7, 2019

Time: 3 – 5 p.m.

Location: Richland Library North Main, North Main Large Meeting Room, 5306 North Main Street, Columbia 29203

Cost: Free

Details: Come and learn how other countries in the world celebrate the Christmas season. There will be presenters from different countries, with food samples and dance performances. Santa Claus will make an appearance.

Train Rides with Santa–SC Railroad Museum

Dates: Dec. 7 | Dec. 14 | Dec. 21, 2019

Times: Train Rides with Santa, 10 a.m., 11 a.m., noon and 2 p.m., 3 p.m. and Twilight Santa Express, 5:30 p.m.

Location: 110 Industrial Park Road, Winnsboro 29180

Cost: Train Rides with Santa: Locomotive Cab Ride $50, First Class car $20 per person; Santa Train $15, Children 2 and under are expected to sit on a parent’s lap to ride free. Twilight Santa Express: $20 per person.

Details: All aboard the Rockton, Rion and Western Railroad to take an hour long scenic train ride with Santa! Seating is limited so order your tickets here before you go!

Sundaes with Santa

Date: Dec. 8, 2019

Time: noon – 4 p.m.

Location: Cantey and Goodman Buildings at South Carolina State Fairgrounds, 12oo Rosewood Drive, Columbia 29201

Cost: $8 per person (12 months and under are admitted FREE), parking $5, General Admission tickets and ticket stubs from Preview Party and Ladies Night Out CAN be used by ADULTS ONLY for entry during Sundaes with Santa.

Details: Dress your children in their Sunday best for photos with Santa, enjoy games and crafts with your family, and top off the fun with an ice cream sundae bar!

Visit With Santa

Date: Dec. 8, 2019

Time: 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Location: Batesburg-Leesville Branch Library, 203 Armory Street, Batesburg 29006

Cost: Free

Details: Santa is stopping by with an update from the North Pole. Find out what the elves and reindeer are doing to get ready for their big night. Bring your camera to capture a special photo with the special guest. Sponsored by the Friends of the Batesburg-Leesville Branch Library. For more information, call (803) 532-9223. (all ages)

PJ’s With Santa

Date: Dec. 9, 2019

Time: 6 – 8 p.m.

Location: Chick-fil-A, 229 Bush River Road, Columbia 29210

Cost: Free

Details: Join us for our Annual PJ’s with Santa! Enjoy dinner with the Family, Festive Fun, and Pictures with Santa!

Santa Claus

Date: Dec. 10, 2019

Time: 5 – 6:30 p.m.

Location: Swansea Branch Library, 199 N. Lawrence Avenue, Swansea 291606

Cost: Free

Details: A special holiday treat – Santa will slip away from his busy North Pole schedule to visit with children of all ages. For more information, call (803) 785-3519. (all ages)

Breakfast with Santa

Date: Dec. 14, 2019

Time: 8 – 11 a.m.

Location: Historic Robert Mills Carriage House, 1616 Blanding Street, Columbia 29201

Cost: Adults $20 (members $15); Children $10 (members $7); under 3 free (reservations required)

Details: You’re invited to have breakfast with the jolly ole man himself! After breakfast, take a picture with Santa, make holiday crafts, explore the decorated halls of the Hampton-Preston Mansion and see a Victorian Christmas tree. Breakfast with Santa will be offered at 8, 9 and 10 a.m. Space is limited, so reserve your spot today!

Don’t forget to stop by the Gift Shop at Robert Mills to find the perfect gift! While Santa is hard at work gathering lists, the Gift Shop elves will also be hard at work providing great values on purchases. Enjoy shopping and activities throughout the day at the Gift Shop at Robert Mills!

Please note: This event is rain or shine—bring your umbrellas and stay warm inside our cozy carriage house!

Visit With Santa

Date: Dec. 8, 2019

Time: 6 – 7:30 p.m.

Location: Irmo Branch Library, 6251 St. Andrews Road, Columbia 29212

Cost: Free

Details: Santa is stopping by with an update from the North Pole. Find out what the elves and reindeer are doing to get ready for their big night. Bring your camera to capture a special photo with the special guest. Sponsored by the Friends of the Batesburg-Leesville Branch Library. For more information, call (803) 532-9223. (all ages)

Know of an event not listed? Tell us about it and we’ll add it!

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Tiffany Nettles
Tiffany traded in back-to-back business meetings and PowerPoint presentations, for sippy cups and play dates – leaving her corporate job behind to become a stay at home mom to her 16-month-old toddler. To say life is different is an understatement, and she now has a new found love and respect for the “hardest” (and best!) job she’s ever had. A native South Carolinian, Tiffany is best described as kind-hearted and friendly, with a quick sense of humor. When she’s not toting her little one around town to the latest kid friendly activity, you can find her enjoying a latte at Drip, catching up on the latest celebrity gossip magazines, or watching old reruns of Beverly Hills 90210 from the early 90′s. She received her Masters Degree in Integrated Communications from the University of South Carolina in 2007, and enjoys reading, writing and all things "mom."


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