Skip to main content

Google’s updated Santa Tracker entertains and teaches coding throughout December

Google Santa Tracker - Trailer 2018

Whether you’re a parent with Christmas-obsessed kids, or simply looking for something to do in your lunch hour, then be sure to drop by Google’s 2018 Santa Tracker for a spot of festive fun.

The interactive website and Android app encourages visitors to “explore, play, and learn with Santa’s elves all December long” via a cornucopia of playful tasks and mildly distracting buffoonery. Oh, and coding lessons, too.

Google’s Santa Tracker is in its fifteenth year and comes with a revamped design to capture better than ever the merriment of the holiday season.

“Under Mrs. Claus’s expert guidance, the elves have updated the village with a snazzy look and feel along with some brand-new content,” it says on the site.

In years gone by, visitors could unlock one activity per day in the run-up to December 25, but this year it has done away with the countdown approach and now lets you dive straight into all 24 activities from the start.

This year’s offerings are split into three categories: Learn, play, and watch. Activities include Santa Selfie that lets you give the big guy a makeover — if you’ve ever wondered what Santa would look like with a rainbow-colored beard, here’s your chance. For something a little more educational, Code Lab introduces coding fundamentals that help to navigate an elf through a forest in the hunt for dropped presents.

You can also learn about different holiday traditions around the world and there’s a section offering lots of different Santa phrases in various languages.

Short animations pepper the site, too, among them A Day At The Museum and Elf Car, and the many games include Penguin Dash, Elf Jamband, and Gumball Tilt.

Educators looking for some festive inspiration can download lesson plans that incorporate some of Google’s learning activities, including the ones focusing on coding and holiday traditions.

And on the big night, you can, of course, track Santa’s progress as he makes his way around the world on his sleigh, delivering gifts as he goes. And keep an eye out, too, for the exclusive games that Google has promised to drop as Santa embarks on his most important journey of the year.

Editors' Recommendations

Trevor Mogg
Contributing Editor
Not so many moons ago, Trevor moved from one tea-loving island nation that drives on the left (Britain) to another (Japan)…
Not sure what to get for your Secret Santa exchange? Here’s 10 geeky gifts for under $25
best secret santa gifts christmas apps holidays

With the holiday season in full swing, gift-giving is on the minds of many. If you're part of a Secret Santa exchange, however, it can be daunting to find an appropriate gift for someone that you may have never actually spoken to. Luckily, there are gobs of affordable tech-related goodies out there that pretty much anyone will appreciate. Whether your assigned victim is a nature lover or a gamer, our list has choices to make you look like the best Secret Santa ever.

Tile Mate Key Finder ($25)

Read more
Real estate site Zillow shows off the inside of Santa’s cozy North Pole home
zillow lists and shows off home of santa 2 santas house

To help ring in the holiday season in style -- and to the delight of children everywhere -- the real estate website Zillow now allows people to take a whimsical photographic journey through the North Pole-based home of Santa Claus. Situated on 25 acres, the listing for Mr. and Mrs. Claus' festive residence depicts a rather cozy looking cabin that's (unsurprisingly) decked out in a whole lot of red.

Valued at a reasonable $656,957 -- even after a remodel in 2013 -- it appears Kris Kringle's not only living in style but doing so in a rather economical fashion.

Read more
The countdown has begun: Google launches its Santa Tracker
google santa tracker 2016

It's that time of year again. As Christmas approaches, Google has officially opened Santa's Village.

That's right, the countdown to when Santa's departure on his sleigh to deliver joy around the world has begun. But before Santa departs, his elves are keeping busy, and Google's making it easy to see what they're up to with its Santa Tracker service, available on the web as well as on Android and iOS.

Read more