Santa Visit at Kia-Ora Farm 2015


It’s great to try new things, but it’s also lovely at this time of year to have little traditions. This tradition was one that started inadvertently, back in 2010 when we brought a two-year-old and three-month-old to see Santa at a local mini-farm. The following year our three-year-old and one-year-old suggested it again, and so it has been every year. They’ve never seen Santa anywhere else, and we are happy out with that. I blogged about our 2012 visit HERE.

Our first time visiting Santa in Kia Ora, December 2010

Our first time visiting Santa in Kia Ora, December 2010


A lot of the “Santa Experiences” (What now, where are the grottos of my youth?)  seem to offer an hour and half of Santa and elf stuff and a gift and you have to  book in September, for about €20 per child.

At Kia-Ora Mini Farm, just outside Gorey, for €16 for a child and €7 for each accompanying adult you get the Santa visit (they even take card payments now, hurray), the kids get to pick their own toy which is worth €8-€10 by my estimate, adults get a mulled wine or tea/coffee and a muffin or slice of Christmas cake, and the kids get a small hot chocolate (no marshmallows to my crew’s dismay) and a mini-muffin.  You don’t have to book in advance, just turn up and pay at the counter in the cafe which is Christmassed to the max, with lots of Santas, lights and decorations. Magical.

The Cafe, so many lights, great way to get in the Christmas mood


We’ve never had to queue very long, but there are lovely scenes and on the queue where you can snoop at Santa’s post office, toy room and bedroom.


  Santa’s bedroom

You get a private audience with a very friendly Santa and Mrs Claus, and you take whatever photos you like, the kdis choose their own present and when it’s all done you get to explore the farm like you would on a non-Christmas themed day.


Small girl refused to get the photo without Dad. Happy to take the toy though. I surely have better pics than this.


There are another four similar sized shelves in Santa’s sitting room for the kids to choose from, L chose the pinkest thing she could find

Here’s how we spent our afternoon after meeting Santa:

On Go-Karts (even I had a go)

And trikes, checking out the animals

petting rabbits


Milking cows…

riding in the fire engine singing Christmas songs…

Digging with real diggers (listen to that diesel engine)

And getting Christmassy (even though it’s only November)

First mulled wine of the season


It’s easy to see when we go back why Kia-Ora is such a favourite with our kids, there’s so much to do, and even though they go during the year the place is so well decorated that they are blown away when they arrive, there are lights and Santas EVERYWHERE. We usually go early afternoon so haven’t been there to enjoy the full effect of the light show, but I’ve heard good thing about it too.


I wasn’t asked review Kia-Ora Farm and we paid our entry fees, I’m always happy to support local businesses that are so family-friendly. Gorey Town has just invested in some fabulous new Christmas Lights for our town so if you’re down this way be sure to check them out.


  1. We made our inaugural visit to Kia-Ora Farm at Hallowe’en. The torture chair has probably been converted into Santa’s throne. Great wee place, but alas too far from us to experience the full-on Christmas vibe, and the unforgettable fire engine ride. I still occasionally burst into ‘The Mighty Jungle’.

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