The Best Christmas Apps for Kids

Christmas is the time when families gather together – and kids go crazy over toys. But what about the run up to Christmas? There are letters to Santa to write, seasons greetings – and a whole bunch or apps to get the kids excited. Here are just some of them…

Also, check out our Christmas 2011 apps


Winter Land - Christmas App by Tangorang Labs

Winter Land

Christmas app by: Tangorang Labs
Rating: 5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod app: n/a
iPad app: $1.99
Universal app: no

Winter Land

Part Candy Land and part Snakes and Ladders, this game is 100% fun. It’s great when you can get a iPad game that really captures that feeling of playing board games with your family – this app does exactly that. There are little animations here and there, the music could be out of a holiday-esque Bing Crosby movie  – overall it’s a simple, sweet app. The graphics are wonderful too. If you don’t like board games, or want something more interactive, this might not be for you. As for me, I highly recommend it! Plus at $1.99 it’s a great price for a iPad app. 2-4 players.


Dora The Explorer Christmas Adventure App

Dora’s Christmas Carol Adventure

Christmas app by: Nickelodeon
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod app: $1.99
iPad app: $3.99
Universal app: no

ChristmasPlay HD - FreshLogo

Dora The Explorer stays true to her Nickelodeon roots with a fabulous little app that is bound to thrill Dora The Explorer fans the world over. More than an ebook, Dora The Explorer takes us on an interactive adventure to help get Swiper off Santa’s naughty list. The app delighted my 4 year old, and like the TV show – you can hear kids talking to the characters as they answer the questions throughout the app. Unfortunately, this is not a universal app and this review is based on the iPad version.


The Night Before ChristmasThe Night Before Christmas ebook app - One Hundred Robots

Christmas app by: One Hundred Robots
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod app: n/a
iPad app: $1.99
Universal app: no

ChristmasPlay HD - FreshLogo

There are many versions of the traditional Twas The Night Before Christmas story available in app form and this is my favorite. Unfortunately, it is only available as an iPad app. The British accented narration is superb, the illustration and animation is fantastic – bottom-line it’s an entertaining, top notch ebook. I’m dropping half a star because – and I can’t believe I am saying this – there are no settings that allow for auto page turn or word highlighting. Yes, it would be nice if there was a game or coloring page, the usual things that I might gripe about, but really as an ebook it is so close to perfection. Highly recommended!


Santa mega app - 10 in 1 Christmas AppSanta Mega Pack – 10 in 1

Christmas app by: Appventors

Rating: 5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod / iPad app: $0.99
Universal app: no

ChristmasPlay HD - FreshLogo

Wow, this is not a perfect app although it’s getting a 5 star review. This Christmas app gets 5 stars because you get pretty much everything you could possibly want from a Christmas app and it looks good too. Record a message to Santa = check, play games and puzzles = check, read a christmas book = check, coloring pages = check. Best thing, this massive bundle comes with a tiny price tag – $0.99 – and that makes for a very merry Christmas.


How The Grinch Stole Christmas
How The Grinch Stole Christmas

Christmas app by: Oceanhouse Media
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod / iPad app: $1.99
Universal app: yes

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Oceanhouse Media

Another classic book turned into a great ebook app from Oceanmedia. Like other books from Oceanmedia the ebook features “Read To Me”, “Read To Myself” and “Autoplay” modes. Check out more Grinch-y apps here


Jellybean Tunes Holiday Edition
Jellybean Tunes Holiday Edition

Christmas app by: Garry Froehlich
Rating: 4 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod / iPad app: $1.99
Universal app: yes

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Oceanhouse Media

This is a delightful app that helps kids play Christmas tunes while learning about music. There is a follow along song book with all of your favorite Christmas songs, a quiz to help you learn the notes on a scale and a free play option that allows you to record and playback your own music. The design has a little rough edges, but I don’t think your kids will really notice. I would love to see this app tackle a non-Christmas playbook. Defintiely worth a download.


Twas The Night Before Christmas Illustrated Interactive Story with MusicTwas The Night Before Christmas – Interactive Story with Music

Christmas app by: Once Upon An App

Rating: 4 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod / iPad app: $2.99
Universal app: yes

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Oceanhouse Media

Twas The Night Before Christmas is a classic – and this app tells it in a classic way. With vintage illustrations, a charming reading voice and hidden picture puzzles as you work through the story. In addition to the story, there are coloring pages for each of the pages in the ebook in the iPad edition. Since the coloring pages are only available in the iPad version of the app, I would have like to see some better coloring options – or at least larger color swatches which were still a bit tricky for little fingers.


Flying Poodles - a Christmas Story - iPad / iPhone app for kidsFlying Poodles – A Christmas Story

Christmas app by: Poodle Dog Productions

Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod / iPad app: $1.99
Universal app: yes

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Oceanhouse Media

If you are looking for a contemporary take on a traditional story, you should check out Flying Poodles – A Christmas Story. Sure, we still have Santa and Mrs Klaus, but they text and have GPS to guide their sleigh this Christmas. This ebook is written by the extraordinary Karen Morss and beautifully  illustrated by Ginger Nielson. Although, it doesn’t include some of the interactive elements that I enjoy in some ebooks, neither does it carry a high price tag. Bottom line: at $1.99 for a universal app this wonderful ebook is a great addition to any digital library.


Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer AppRudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Christmas app by: Oceanhouse Media

Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod app: $2.99
iPad app: $2.99
Universal app: yes

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Oceanhouse Media

Oceanhouse Media always does fantastic ebooks and like the Dr Seuss ebooks, they are stepping into the cult classic arena, and that isn’t easy. I am a huge fan of the Rudoloph the Red Nose Reindeer animated movie that this is based on so and this ebook didn’t quite capture the magic for me. Visually, the ebook captures the style of this beloved childrens book, but the voices don’t – there are some original voices used, but not enough. Like other apps from Oceanhouse Media there is an interactive element missing – no games, coloring pages, etc. Bottom line – as an Christmas ebook, the Rudolph The Red-nosed Reindeer is a classic and this ebook is done very well and worth the $2.99 for a universal app.


Cookie Doodle - Shoe The GooseCookie Doodle – Christmas Edition

Christmas app by: Shoe The Goose

Rating: 5 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod app: $0.99
iPad app: $0.99
Universal app: yes

Cookie Doodle - Shoe The Goose
This app was recently featured in The Best Thanksgiving Apps for Kids post – and it stays up-to-date with the Christmas version complete with gingerbread men, Christmas trees and candy canes. This app has been a hit with the whole family – and anyone else we’ve shown. For 0.99 cents this a a wonderfully entertaining app and a “must” for any iPhone or iPad – and since it is a universal app you can enjoy it on all your Apple gadgets for one price.


Countdown to Christmas - Holiday Puzzles - TwigsburyCountdown to Christmas

Christmas app by: Twigsbury

Rating: 4 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod app: n/a
iPad app: $1.99
Universal app: no

Cookie Doodle - Shoe The Goose
Nice entertaining app for kids – and less frustrating than the usual 0ne-blank square puzzles. There are plenty of Christmas themed fun puzzles to choose from which can be played easy, medium or hard levels. You need to complete the first level to get to the other puzzles.


ChristmasPlay HD - FreshLogoChristmasPlay

Christmas app by: FreshLogo

Rating: 4 out of 5
Buy it? Yes
iPhone / iPod app: $0.99
iPad app: $0.99
Universal app: no

ChristmasPlay HD - FreshLogo
A simple, but cute app for toddlers. Kids decorate pictures by dragging items onto the image- for example, you can dress a snowman or decorate a christmas tree. The illustrations are very cute and well done, plus there each image has a little animation as a treat for younger kids.


Snow Wonder - Build A SnowmanSnow Wonder – Build A Snowman

Christmas app by: My Busy Kit

Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Buy it? Maybe
iPhone / iPod / iPad app: $1.99
Universal app: yes

ChristmasPlay HD - FreshLogo
This app definitely shows potential, but is a little too simple for all but the youngest kids. Would love to see more scenes and dress up options, but the snowflakes are fantastic.


You might also like:

Although the following are not my top picks for this season, they are definitely worth a look….and maybe by next year these apps will be spectacular!

– XmasWish – Preety Pty. Ltd

– Holiday Advent Calendar HD – Sentactio, LLC

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