Santa’s Edinburgh Grotto Trail

10 November 2021

Santa Claus is coming to town!

Santa At Edinburgh Zoo

This may be his busiest time of the year, but Santa has still managed to squeeze in some time to fly round Edinburgh & the Lothians and set up his grottos all across the land. So, this festive season, why not treat your young ones to a trip to see the jolly man in red – and maybe even get a special gift to take home!

Places are going quickly, so book early to avoid disappointment.


Santa Land in West Princes Street Gardens

Santa At Home

Visit Santa in his enchanting grotto in Santa Land in West Princes Street Gardens where visitors can meet the man himself, listen to a magical story and receive a small gift.

Afterward, why not explore the Christmas Tree Maze, family-friendly rides, or warm up with a hot chocolate in the festive West Princes Street Gardens.

20 November - 24 December.


Santa’s Secret Storeroom at The Eco Larder

Zero waste local supermarket, The Eco Larder is this year providing children with an eco grotto experience.

Once you’ve got the secret password, step into the beautifully decorated secret storeroom to meet Santa, where he’ll share stories and provide ideas on how you can help him on his eco mission. All children will receive a toy and an eco-mission handout as well as some valuable and practical lessons on how to contribute towards protecting the planet.

2 – 23 December.


Santa’s Daytime Grotto at Edinburgh Zoo

Breakfast With Santa At Edinburgh Zoo

Back by popular demand, Santa and Mrs Claus are back at Edinburgh Zoo this Christmas.

Santa’s Daytime Grotto is available on selective dates and includes a 5-minute slot to chat with Father Christmas, hear about his tales from the North Pole and receive an early festive surprise.

Admission tickets to Edinburgh Zoo must be purchased in conjunction with grotto slot tickets.

Or to start your morning with a real Christmassy feel, you can book Breakfast with the Clauses. Enjoy a tasty breakfast in the Grasslands Café with festive snowman pancakes, craft activities and a story from Mrs Claus. This festive treat begins at 9am and includes Edinburgh Zoo admission for the rest of the day.

4 – 24 December.


Santa’s Grotto at Dobbies Edinburgh

Dobbies Santa(Image Credit: Dobbies Garden Centres)

6 miles south of Edinburgh city centre will take you to the magical outdoor woodland of Santa’s Grotto at Dobbies Edinburgh.

Take a wander through the woodland, keeping an eye open for the festive characters along the way, before receiving a welcome and gift from Santa himself. There’s also the option of purchasing a keep-sake photo of your visit.

27 November – 24 December.


The Santa Experience at Archerfield Walled Garden

Archerfield Santa Grotto

The beautiful space of Archerfield Walled Garden in East Lothian will be welcoming Santa and his elves this festive season in a custom-built wooden Sorting Office.

Join Santa for a short group story, before meeting him individually in his Sorting Office, where each child will receive a gift.

3 – 23 December.


Santa’s Grotto at Carberry Tower

Taking place in the stunning Winter Pavilion of Carberry Tower, a glorious mansion house and estate near Musselburgh, Santa’s Grotto returns to delight and treat youngsters this Christmas.

Children will get the chance to meet Santa and receive a gift from his elves, and afterwards why not treat all the family to something tasty in the Bistro. As Grotto ticketholders get 15% off the total Bistro bill on the day, it’s just like an early Christmas gift!

10 – 24 December.


The Paraffin Pixie Search for Santa at Almond Valley Heritage Centre

Paraffin Pixie At Almond Valley

Bringing some sparkle to the dark evenings, the Paraffin Pixies will lead you on a magical illuminated trail that leads to Santa's workshop at Almond Valley Heritage Centre in West Lothian.

Meet some of Santa's reindeer and maybe even get a glimpse of the man himself!

10 – 24 December.


Santa's Grotto at National Mining Museum Scotland

Telling the story of coal, the National Mining Museum Scotland is based at one of the finest surviving examples of a Victorian colliery, the Lady Victoria Colliery at Newtongrange, just 9 miles south of Edinburgh.

This Christmas, you can write a letter to Santa and post it in the special post box, take part in a scavenger hunt and then have a chat with the man himself, before receiving a gift and snapping a photo.

10 – 19 December.


Meet Santa & His Alpaca Friends at Beirhope Alpacas

Beirhope Alpacas

An hour's drive from Edinburgh, nestled in the heart of the Cheviot Hills, Beirhope Alpacas is bringing some alpacas-filled fun to Christmas!

Meet Santa & His Alpaca Friends, where you can also feed the alpacas before visiting Santa in his magical grotto, where each child will receive a special gift.

All Aboard the Alpaca Express and An Evening with Santa are also available.

11 – 24 December.


For more ways to make your festive season merry and bright, have a look at more things to do in our What's On Guide >