North Pole, AK

It’s Christmas Every Day in This Magical Place

Allison Burney
Photo by author

I expected to see a few things on my trip to Alaska—mountains, glaciers, wildlife, and even icebergs being some of them. But what I didn’t expect to find was Santa’s House.

So, when we realized we had the option of going to North Pole, Alaska, we couldn’t resist!

We arrived at Santa Claus House one evening to add a little Christmas spirit to our trip. They say smiles are guaranteed at this place, and in our experience, it’s true!

For almost 70 years (it opened in 1972), Santa Claus House has been delighting visitors from all over the world with its fun holiday traditions and special keepsakes and gifts. There are signs and billboards of Santa to take pictures with, reindeer to visit, Christmas goodies to indulge in, and lots of Christmas shopping to do! But the main event, of course, is to meet Santa Claus himself and get your picture with him.

We spent about an hour browsing the gift shop and picking out something special to remember our family trip to Alaska by. I bought myself a beautiful ornament showing a Christmas morning scene, with a Christmas tree, presents, and stockings hung over a fireplace. Along the bottom it reads “Santa Claus House—North Pole, Alaska.”

One of Santa Claus House’s most popular features is its “Original Letter from Santa.” Printed on custom stationery unique to Santa Claus House, each letter can be personalized for the recipient—right down to the text itself, which can be customized to reflect the individual child’s life and interests.

As an added bonus, every Letter from Santa includes the following:
Screenshot by author. Taken from Santa Claus House website
These personalized letters are filled with more than good wishes from Saint Nick; they're filled with the promise of Christmas, and all its secrets and magic. — Santa Claus House

Rather than letters from Santa, my family decided to fill out postcards to ourselves to be sent out from the North Pole. We thought it would be fun to receive these memories of our time at Santa Claus House and in North Pole, Alaska once we were back home and celebrating Christmas together.

We also saw Santa’s reindeer at the Antler Academy of Flying & Reindeer Games right next door to Santa Claus House. Here, you can get up close with Santa’s Team and feed them, learn more about reindeer, and listen to entertaining stories and tales about them and their adventures. You can even “have your picture taken with them to prove you truly did meet Santa’s Team.”

After visiting with the reindeer, we were off to do a “town tour.” We stopped at about four places around the town of North Pole that were the best photo opportunities to make Christmas cards or postcards out of. We actually saw "The North Pole,” too—a red and white striped pole, and stood beside it to snap some pictures.
Photo by author

Many of the stores and restaurants around the town are permanently decorated for Christmas with candy cane lamps and streetlights, Christmas signs, and other decorations. The street names are part of the magic, too, with Santa Claus Lane, Kris Kringle Drive, and Mistletoe Lane all located in town. Even the City of North Pole's website has a countdown to Christmas at the top!

As Travel Alaska says, “This community of 2,200 residents keeps the Christmas spirit alive all year long.”

After visiting North Pole and being infected with the Christmas spirit, I started to think that having Christmas all year round might be kind of nice!

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Freelance writer & proofreader. I love travel, reading, coffee, and exploring nature. On a mission to keep learning, growing, and enjoying this adventure we call life.


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