It’s the most magical time of year and the jolly red guy in the big suit is ready and waiting to hear what all boys and girls (and moms and dads, too) want for Christmas this year. But the trouble is….this popular guy is pretty hard to track down. And when you do manage to find out where he is, there is typically a very l o n g line. That’s why I suggest meeting Santa for breakfast. The kiddos are distracted from waiting while eating kid friendly fare, and everyone is so much happier on a full stomach, don’t you think? Here are my top picks for having a uniquely amazing breakfast with Santa in Chicagoland:
Brookfield Zoo, Brookfield
Why we love it: Choose from either the 9 a.m. or 11 a.m. seating to have a delicious breakfast with your family while being entertained by costumed character and other festive performers while waiting for Santa and Mrs. Claus to arrive. There are a few different rooms so the line to see Santa is as efficient as possible, and if you choose the later seating, you can stay and visit the animals and play at the Hamill Family Play Zoo before enjoying the always popular Zoo Lights. Even better news? Kids 3 and under are FREE!
Macy’s State Street, Chicago
Why we love it: So….breakfast with Santa at the Walnut Room tends to be booked the second reservations go live to the public. But here’s the great news…there’s always dinner! Enjoy a delicious meal in the historic Walnut room being entertained by balloon artists, face painters, magicians, and of course meeting Mrs. Claus and her handsome hubby!
Pinstripes, All Chicagoland locations (Northbrook, South Barrington, Oak Brook, and Chicago)
Why we love it: You would never think that a place that focuses on bowling and bocce ball would have fantastic food—but it is true! The endless brunch at Pinstripes is not to be missed any Sunday of the year, especially when Santa is planning to make a visit! Be sure to make reservations for not only brunch, but bowling afterwards to complete a family Sunday Funday. Oh, and don’t forget that kids 5 and under eat FREE!
Shedd Aquarium, Chicago
Why we love it: Enjoy breakfast and a movie with the big red guy in one of the most fun places in all of Chicago! After watching “The Polar Express” in 4D, explore the Shedd Aquarium’s Polar Play Zone and a showing of the Holiday One World show using your reserved seating as part of the breakfast package. Now, if only Santa came to breakfast riding a dolphin….because THAT would be amazing…
Spirit of Chicago, Chicago
Why we love it: It may not be breakfast, but this lunch spread is even more spectacular than most breakfast buffets. You can enjoy a meal and a cruise on Lake Michigan, admiring the gorgeous Chicago skyline all while chatting with Santa about how great you and your family have been all year long.
Wilder Mansion, Elmhurst
Why we love it: You can enjoy a continental breakfast, crafts, and other holiday festivities in a jaw droppingly BEAUTIFUL place. If you are an Instagram lover like me, this is the breakfast for you.
Cantingly Park, Wheaton
Why we love it: Choose from meals with either Santa or the Grinch to get you into the holiday mood. Depending on when you visit, you might also be able to catch the Lego Holiday Train exhibit.
Looking for other ways to celebrate this magical time in Chicagoland? Then be sure to check out my guide to Chicagoland’s most popular holiday attractions and my Christmas in Chicago Bucket List!