3 Reasons to Bring a Group to the Santa Claus, Indiana, Area

Two photos are shown side by side, with left side photo showing a group of women at picnic tables and vineyard in the background at Monkey Hollow Winery, and other photo shows a large group in matching t-shirts in front of the Santa statue at Santa's Lodge

Traveling with a group? Whether you’re a tour operator, an event coordinator, or the person responsible for your family’s next big reunion, you’re probably on the lookout for a unique place to host your group. 

And you’ll find it in the Santa Claus, Indiana area! This location offers something for everyone, so it’s ideal for bringing a crowd to visit. Here are three reasons why… 

It’s a Christmas Lover’s Dream 

Santa Claus, Indiana, is known as America’s Christmas Hometown… and for good reason. Whether you visit on a December weekend or in the middle of summer, you’ll leave with a merry feeling! 

Everyone wants to know how a town named Santa Claus got its name. And groups are invited to learn that—and so much more—at the Santa Claus Museum & Village. See artifacts from the town’s impressive past, tour the historic Santa Claus Church, write a letter to Santa inside the town’s original post office, and don’t forget to snap a group photo with the giant 22-foot-tall Santa statue. Tour packages are available and can include a special welcome and site orientation and a presentation by the museum’s founder, Mrs. Patricia Koch. 

White directional signs with red lettering point to features at the Santa Claus Museum & Village while visitors walk past the historic Santa Claus statue in the background

Christmas and shopping just go together! So, set your group of shoppers loose at the Santa Claus Christmas Store, Evergreen Boutique & Christmas Shop, Santa’s TOYS, and Santa’s Candy Castle. They’ll find everything from souvenirs to sweet treats! Just be sure there’s enough room on the motorcoach to transport the haul back home! 

When it’s time to wrap up the day, Santa’s Lodge is a prime spot for visiting groups. The hotel’s lobby is decked out in festive décor, free continental breakfast is offered every morning, and it’s close to all the top attractions in the Santa Claus, Indiana, area. 

There’s History Around Every Corner 

If you’re planning a trip for a group that includes history-lovers, then this area is a must. One of our most beloved presidents, Abraham Lincoln, lived right here for 14 years of his early life. And you’ll find sites throughout the area that commemorate Lincoln’s time in Indiana, some just five minutes away from the town of Santa Claus.  

At Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial, the Visitor Center welcomes guests to enjoy an orientation film, ranger-led tour, and shopping at the bookstore. A short walk takes visitors to see the gravesite of Nancy Hanks Lincoln, the Cabin Site Memorial where the family’s cabin once stood, and the Living Historical Farm, a re-created and working pioneer homestead.  

A ranger in period clothing interacts with a seated group in front of a log structure at the Living Historical Farm inside Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial

Just across the road from the national park is Lincoln State Park. Established in 1932 as a memorial to Nancy Hanks Lincoln, the park features 10 miles of hiking trails, two lakes, an interactive Nature Center, and the Lincoln Bicentennial Plaza, a monument to Lincoln’s 200th birthday. And if your group likes a more rugged lodging experience, there are cottages inside Lincoln State Park that can accommodate!   

Lincoln is also celebrated at Lincoln Pioneer Village & Museum. The museum is packed with amazing artifacts—from a hutch built by Lincoln and his father to pieces that tell the unique story of Spencer County. The village features 13 replica cabins, each decorated as it might have appeared in Lincoln’s time, for guests to explore. Visiting groups are treated to an in-depth tour and will learn the inside scoop on the area’s past! 

Abraham Lincoln isn’t this area’s only claim to historical fame. Saint Meinrad Archabbey was founded in 1854 and is one of only two archabbeys in the United States and one of 11 in the world. Guests are invited to join the monks for mass daily in the Archabbey Church and tours around the grounds may be available with advance notice. There’s even a Guest House & Retreat Center located on the grounds if your group wants to stay in the peaceful and beautiful setting!  

Here’s a historical fun fact: The nation’s first theme park is located in Santa Claus, Indiana! Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari (previously Santa Claus Land) opened in 1946, beating Disneyland’s debut by nine years. Though the park has undergone a lot of changes over the years, it remains a fun place to visit… especially for church, school, and other groups! 

It’s a Great Place to Eat, Drink… and Be Merry 

It can be difficult to please a crowd when it comes to mealtime. Luckily, there are several group-friendly restaurants in the area that are more than up to the task! 

The Chateau and Back 9 Grill offer buffet dining that can be customized to your request. The Rustic offers private dining in their celebration room. And Angelo’s Pizza and Frosty’s Fun Center can serve up a pizza party to please any group!

Close up of a man's hands holding a salad plate and serving himself from a salad bar at The Chateau

Something that’s always a crowd-pleaser? Wineries! At Monkey Hollow Winery and Distillery and Pepper’s Ridge Winery, groups can enjoy complimentary wine tastings and shop for bottles to take home. Meat and cheese platters can be pre-ordered and live entertainment may be arranged in advance. Is craft brew more your group’s style? You’ll want to add the Santa Claus Brewing Co. and River City Brew Works to your itinerary! 

And the “being merry” part? Well, we can pretty much guarantee that a visit to this area will leave your whole group in good spirits! 

Request Information and Start Planning 

Want to know more about bringing a group to the Santa Claus, Indiana, area? Request information here. And if you’re ready to start planning, we’re happy to help put together an itinerary—just call Karen at (888) 444-9252 or send an email. 

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