Holiday Travel

Ultimate Guide to Knott’s Merry Farm with Kids

There is nothing like a good old-fashioned country Christmas (or at least Southern California’s version of one). With all the different décor styles and modern colors used to celebrate the holidays these days, there is something to be said about the comfort of tradition. Knott’s Berry Farm Christmas is classic merriment, complete with carolers, glittering trees and even snow. Taking visitors back in time, Knott’s Merry Farm brings Christmas to the Wild West with a decked out Ghost Town and Santa’s Cabin. So cozy and beautiful, it is a holiday event we never miss!

Visiting Knott's Merry Farm

Money Saving Tips:

If you want to spend the whole day at the park, there are always great ticket deals to be had. Plus, Knott’s caters to the heroes of our community, providing reduced and even free admission to those in law-enforcement, fire and military as well as their families.

During the holidays in particular, there are some options. I usually like to attend the Christmas Craft Village, if nothing else. The great thing about this is that visitors are able to attend for free! Until mid-December, there is no admission costs to visit the Christmas Craft Village Monday through Thursday.  After that, you will need admission to the park in order to attend any of the festivities.

Where to Stay Near Knott’s Berry Farm:

Knott’s Berry Farm Hotel is walking distance from the theme park and perfectly convenient. There are usually always package deals if you book the room and park tickets together.

Where to Eat:

There are plenty of dining options at the park, but I have my favorites. During the holidays especially, I love eating at the recently renovated Mrs. Knott’s Chicken House. On a cold night, after partaking in cheerful holiday festivities, there is nothing like fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, soup, cabbage and ham, rhubarb, corn, salad, fresh biscuits and boysenberry jam, pie and punch! YUMMY! In addition to the chicken dinner, Mrs. Knott’s also hosts the Winterfest Buffet, which is an all you can eat Sunday brunch.

Eating at Mrs. Knott's Chicken House

Ghost Town Grill is another favorite. Located inside the park on Ghost Town main street, this restaurant is right in the middle of the action. Sit on the patio and watch all the holiday festivities from the comfort of your table. 

Ghost Town Grill at Knott's Berry Farm during the holidays
My daughter being weird in a photo as usual.

Enjoy the view from Ghost Town Grill at Knott's

In the park or craft village, a funnel is always a must! Fried dough with boysenberries and powder-sugar? Merry Christmas, indeed!

Funnel Cakes at Knott's Merry Farm

What to Drink:

When I’m walking around the craft village, I always have to have my boysenberry coffee. The aroma is intoxicating. Can you tell I’m a bit of a boysenberry fan? I even had a boysenberry punch fountain at my wedding.

Always start and end the evening with beer, wine or cocktail. In the Ghost Town is a saloon, which serves alcohol, so naturally Sis, Grams and I have to make a pit stop there. It is right in front of the main stage where the Christmas show/tree light happens, so I always try to plan our beer break so that the kids can watch the show.

Calico Saloon at Knott's Berry Farm Ghost Town

Also, in Santa’s Cabin there is a craft beer booth, hot coco tasting, eggnog and winter wines.

Santa' Christmas Cabin during Knott's Merry Farm

Don’t forget to try the new Boysenberry cocktails at Mrs. Knott’s Chicken House.

Boysenberry cocktails at Mrs. Knott;s Chicken House

Ghost Town Grill is another great spot to relax, sip something adult and watch all the main street action.

Things to Do During Knott’s Merry Farm:

For the most part, all the main Christmas festivities happen in Ghost Town. The best part is that this is the only section free of admission Monday through Thursday.

Ghost Town during the holidays at Knott;'s Merry Farm

Santa’s Christmas Cabin:

During the holidays, the old Wilderness Dance Hall is transformed into Santa’s Christmas Cabin. It is fun for parents and kids, because the little ones get to meet Santa, get a picture with a beautiful backdrop and nibble on holiday treats while the big kids get to sip on craft beer and winter wine. It is a really cozy setting with tons of fascinating Christmas décor to delight the senses.

Inside Santa's Christmas Cabin during Knott's Merry Farm

Christmas Craft Village:

I love walking around Ghost Town at night inhaling the sweet scent of my boysenberry coffee and excitedly gazing at all the craft booths as the Christmas lights sparkle in the trees, holiday carolers sing their merry tune and snow falls gently to the ground. The kids love to explore the old red schoolhouse and the haunted graveyard while the adults enjoy the scenery. It is just a little country wonderland and my holidays would not be complete without it.

Carolers during the holidays at Knott's Berry Farm

Holiday decor at Knott's Merry Farm

It's snowing in Ghost Town during Knott's Merry Farm

Live Shows:

Snoopy on Ice: There is always an ice show at the Charles M. Schulz Theatre, but during the holidays it a very merry show! The Peanuts as well as seasoned ice skaters a wonderful Christmas spectacular that is fun for the whole family!

Lucy’s Wish List: At Camp Snoopy is a kids show performed by the Peanuts gang.

Snoopy’s Merriest Tree Lighting: Located on the Calico Stage and infront of the Saloon (hint hint) is a fun little holiday musical ending with the lighting of the Christmas tree. Santa even makes an appearance.

Snoopy’s Merriest Tree Lighting at Knott's Berry Farm

Calico Saloon Christmas Show: A fun little performance in the saloon that gets the audience involved and the party started!

Bird Cage Theatre: Right in Ghost Town, it is perfect for those just visiting the craft village. In this beautiful historic theatre, Charles Dicken’s “A Christmas Carol” and O.Henry’s “A Gift of the Magi” are performed live every night.

Bird Cage Theatre hold Christmas themed shows during Knott's Merry Farm

Ghost Town: Wandering around Ghost Town singing holiday favorites are the Carolers as well as Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies. These musical acts really bring another level of jolliness to Ghost Town that the kids will love.

Festive Ghost Town at Knott's Berry Farm with Christmas Carolers

That’s A Wrap!

Whether you want to spend an entire day at the theme park or just want a quick festive fix, Knott’s Merry Farm makes for a perfect family holiday activity. I’ll be there, will you?
Having fun at Knott's Merry Farm

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I am a busy mama with 3 delicious babies and a serious itch for travel and writing (when I am not bartending, that is)! After graduating from Cal State San Marcos with a B.A. in Communications, I decided to start a family and pursue a career in freelance writing. I created HotMamaTravel as an outlet to do what I love while sharing useful travel tips and inspiration with others. Our mission is to show parents how to master travel with kids, while keeping your Saturday-night selves. We call it "Family travel...with a twist".

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