Theme Park & Zoo
Right outside of Cherokee, NC is a smallish theme park that needs to be on your list of things to do at least once when you are in the Smoky Mountains. This attraction is part theme park, part zoo and all Christmas all the time. Themed as if you are visiting the North Pole, Santa’s Land is a way to capture the spirit of the Holidays during anytime of the year.
The theme park side of Santa’s Land is a huge draw. Designed with the youngest members of your family in mind, the rides and attractions at Santa’s Land provide hours of entertainment. Whether you are looking for a Rudolph themed roller coaster or a trip around the pond in a paddle boat, the attractions and rides at Santa’s Land are excellent.
- Santa’s Express Train
- Kiddie Cars
- Boat Ride
- Paddle Boats
- Helicopter Ride
- Old Fashioned Carusel
- Ferris Wheel
- Umbrella Ride
Also, on the theme park side of things is Santa’s Village. You step into the North Pole and get to walk the streets and lanes around Santa’s house. Visit Frosty’s T-Shirt Shop or Santa’s Snack bar. Take pictures around the elves’ homes and even get to visit the big man himself. Yep, you can get a jump on the Holiday season and surprise grandma with a picture of the kids with Santa Claus and Mrs Claus. Also, if your child is already thinking ahead to Christmas they can let Santa know what they want for Christmas.
The other side of Santa’s Land is Zoo Land.
- Santa’s Deer Barn – Feed the deer, pet the deer, in general you get to get up close and personal to white-tail deer like you never have before.
- Baby Bears – Each year, Santa’s Land gets a new set of baby bears. Ruff and Buff, as they are always named, get fed three times a day and you will able to get up close to these wonderful little critters without the fear of mama bear getting a little too close. If you want a sure fire way to see a black bear cub in the Smokies, this is a sure-fire bet.
- Kangaroos – Yes, Santa’s Land even has kangaroos. This might seem unusual but they are wonderful to watch and have become one of the biggest draws at the park.
- Santa’s Goats – The goats get to roam around in their own unique environment. Climbing up and down the ramps that allow them to get to the top of the houses the live in, provides hours of entertainment. You might even get to pet on the of the goats if you feed them.
- Lemurs and Monkeys – Of course, just like at any zoo, the monkeys and lemurs are the stars. Except for the baby bears, these might be the most interesting and entertaining animals at the zoo.
Santa’s Land is one of the roadside attractions that gives you a glimpse into the past. Wanting to let the kids experience the days of yore, you will not find a better place in the Smokies than Santa’s Land. Visit the zoo, ride the rides and talk to Santa himself – only at Santa’s Land.