With October on the horizon and Halloween here before we all know it, it’s time to get into a spooky mood. It’s no secret that NYC goes all out every Halloween, and we expect this year to be no different! Whether you love dressing up in a costume, getting freaked out in a haunted house, or just like taking in the fall decor, there’s a little Halloween magic for everyone. We put together our ongoing list of the best Halloween events in NYC happening throughout the month. Let’s let the spirits guide us to our next adventure…
1. Sip on craft cocktails while exploring a haunted mansion at House of Spirits
Get ready to step into the Volkov Manor as you walk through the haunted tale of Doctor Grigor Volkov, an eminent psychiatrist and hypnotist whose patients are back to haunt him and his orphaned nieces and nephews. Stroll around his spooky manor all while sipping bone-chilling cocktails and French chocolate truffles. Ready to kick it up a notch though? Expect to experience thrilling haunted house adventures like macabre magic, tarot readings, secret games, and even a real ouija board! This is where adults go for an otherworldly cocktail immersion.
Grab tickets to the experience here!
Where: 60 Pine St
2. Encounter mystifying centaurs and wizards at Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience
Nothing says Halloween quite like wizards and witches, and that’s exactly what you’ll find at the Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience. Located an hour and a half outside of NYC, this experience is coming on October 22 to transport fans to the wizarding world of the Warner Brothers’ movie series. This forbidden forest is full of atmospheric lighting, creepy creatures (like Hippogriffs, Centaurs, Unicorns and Nifflers), immersive activities, food and drink and so much more! If you’re a Harry Potter fan, this experience is an absolute must!
Lock in your tickets here before it’s too late!
Where: FDR State Park, 2957 Crompond Rd, Yorktown Heights, NY
3. Watch bewitching burlesque and aerial dancers at Boo-lesque
So you think you’ve seen burlesque dancing…but how about with a Halloween twist? By walking into the haunted atmosphere of the Hotel Chantelle, you’re preparing for bewitching burlesque, petrifying pole dances, and alarming aerial performers. Each ticket comes with a 2-course meal as well, so you’re getting a meal and a show! VIP options and table packages are also available for this experience.
Check out the different pricing options here!
Where: 92 Ludlow St
4. Enter the Halloween wonderland of Haunt O’Ween
First on our list is Haunt O’Ween, a Halloween wonderland coming to Holmdel, New Jersey this weekend (Sept 30)! This 200,000 sq ft space covered in 35,000 pumpkins is the perfect place for families of all age to enter an immersive Halloween experience. The experience will feature trick-or-treating, face painting, haunted performances, games and rides, and of course, illuminated pumpkin-themed tunnels! Plus, this year’s edition will feature a special “Daniel Spellbound” experience that includes a scavenger hunt, photo opps, and even merch. Although it’s slightly outside of NYC, it’s worth the drive.
Buy your tickets here because they’re selling fast!
Where: 101 Crawfords Corner Rd, Holmdel, NJ
5. Enjoy spooky Halloween tunes at a Candlelight performance
Get ready to experience haunted Halloween tunes in a way you never have before. Accompanied by hundreds of illuminated candles and a string quartet, you can experience a multi-sensory musical experience that will leave you in awe. From Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” to “The Addams Family Theme Song” we promise that you’ve never heard Halloween songs like this in your life!
Grab your tickets to the show here:
- Candlelight Halloween: A Haunted Evening at Church of the Heavenly Rest
Where: Various Locations
6. March through NYC in your costume at Halloween Village Parade
If there’s one NYC Halloween tradition unlike any other, it’s the yearly NYC Village Halloween Parade that goes up Sixth Ave from Canal St to 15th St each Halloween night (Oct 31)! Every year’s event always nets about 50,000 people, always dressed the part with hellish and spooky costumes that are enough to scare anyone! Walking in the parade is completely free as long as you have a costume. This year’s theme is “Freedom” in hopes to have everyone express themselves as they wish! You can also live stream the parade on their website.
Learn more info about the parade here!
Where: Greenwich Village
7. Light up the night at the Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze
The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze is one of the most stunning visual Halloween experiences that comes each year, and it’s because of the 7,000+ uniquely carved pumpkins forming all sorts of art installations. From their gorgeous Pumpkin Bridge to the jaw-dropping Pumpkin Planetarium, there are tons of illuminated art pieces that are surreal to see in person (including NYC staples like the Statue of Liberty and a subway station entrance). The blazin’ pumpkins are slightly outside of NYC in Hudson Valley, but are surely worth the train ride up!
Check out more info on this year’s blaze here.
Where: Van Cortlandt Manor (525 S Riverside, Croton-on-Hudson, NY)
8. Get your cuteness fix at the Halloween Dog Parade
The cutest Halloween event in NYC this year is slated for Saturday October 22, and it’s the Halloween Dog Parade! Whether you’re looking to dress your pooch up yourself or want to stop by and get a load of the cuteness, this is the place to be! The parade is in Tompkins Park and begins at 1 pm. If you want to enter the competition with your pup, be sure to register on their website beforehand!
Where: Tompkins Square Park
9. Survive the scariest haunted house in NYC at Blood Manor
One of our favorite haunted house experiences is getting ready to open their doors this weekend (Sept 30) for the 2022 season! Blood Manor includes 7+ attractions including a “Killer Clown Room” and a “Maggot Invasion” that will leave you shivering with nervousness. This haunted house is genuinely scary and we advise you to know that going into it! Their time slots are on weekends (with some Wednesdays and Thursdays) from 6 pm – 12 am.
Read more about what’s new for 2022 on their website here.
Where: 359 Broadway
10. Dance your costume off at Elsewhere’s #EL5EWHERE 5th Year Anniversary Party
In the mood for a little Halloween party? Celebrate the 5th anniversary of one of our favorite Brooklyn clubs, Elsewhere, during Halloween weekend! Their two main events include their actual “5th Anniversary party” on October 31 with world renowned DJ Mura Masa + friends, and their “Elsewhere Halloween” event on October 28 consisting of a full venue takeover and a full list of rad DJs. Of course there will be Halloween decor and spooky club vibes, so don’t forget to where your costume to the big dance!
Check out Elsewhere’s calendar here!
Where: 599 Johnson Ave, Brooklyn
11. Stroll through autumn decor at Fall-O-Ween at New York Botanical Garden
Fall O’Ween at the New York Botanical Garden is one of our favorite yearly happenings, and this year’s lineup includes a massive slate of activities that will get you in the fall mood. Some notable ones on our list include the Bales & Ales event (food and drink) as well as the Pumpkin Carving Face-Off, which is a competition you got to see to believe! This is only a slice of what’s going on over the course of October, so be sure to check out their website for more.
Plus, read even more about it here!
Where: 2900 Southern Blvd, The Bronx
12. Snap a photo of the famous Halloween Pumpkin Flotilla
Central Park always offers tons of kids activities and events (this year on October 26), but the grand finale of their celebration is always the famous Halloween Pumpkin Flotilla. This year’s event takes place on October 27, when a collection of carved pumpkins are set afloat on the Harlem Meer in Central Park. The event is free to the public and is as picturesque as you can get! It goes perfect with the fall foliage in the park too.
Where: Harlem Meer in Central Park (west of Fifth Ave. and south of 110th St)
13. Have family-friendly fun at Boo at the Zoo
For our Bronx Trick-or-Treaters, we can’t leave off the family-friendly fun at the Bronx Zoo. On Saturdays and Sundays (starting this Saturday Oct 1), children and adults alike are invited to wear their costumes to the zoo for a full Halloween takeover! The most popular activities you’ll find include a candy trail, costume parade, craft sessions, a magic and mind reading show, pumpkin carving classes, and more! Tickets are required and are available to be purchased in advance.
Learn more about Boo in the Zoo here.
Where: 2300 Southern Blvd, The Bronx
Put your spirit to the test at one of NYC’s ghoulish bars before the 31st. Treat yourself to a seasonal cocktail at a bar or speakeasy that gives off the spook-tacular vibes you’re after! Check out our guide to the best spooky bars and restaurants in NYC for Halloween vibes.
Where: Various Locations
The first of October comes around this weekend, but you know New Yorkers have already started pulling out their Halloween decorations! From the haunted Greenwich Village to the residential Upper East Side, there are tons of neighborhoods to walk through and admire their spookiness. This is one of our favorite free ways to spend a few hours getting into the Halloween spirit!
Check out our favorite neighborhoods for decorations here!
Where: All around NYC
16. Test your fears during one of the New York City Ghost Tours
Boo! How haunted do you think NYC is? Well you’re about to find out…Greenwich Village is notoriously one of the most haunted neighborhoods in the city and this walking tour will bring you around the area and spook you out on the way. Learn about scary Manhattan history all while walking in the shoes of ghosts past!
Buy tickets here.
Where: St Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery, 131 E 10th Street
17. Treat your sweet tooth at the Museum of I-Scream
The beloved Museum of Ice Cream will be turning into the Museum of I-Scream on Friday (Sept 29) through October 31. Featuring magical and shocking sweet treats, museum-goers will be invited to step into their decorated space full of skeletons and dairy, all while collecting unlimited candy and trying out speciality desserts. Each visitor even receives an ice cream mask and treat bag along the way. If you have a sweet tooth, get ready to try out their pumpkin spice soft serve, candy corn popsicles, haunted milkshakes, Witches Brew cocktail, and a whole lot more!
Learn more info about the pop-up here.
Where: 558 Broadway
18. Get into the Halloween spirit at the inaugural Pumpkin Fest at Seaport
Seaport is kicking off their first annual pumpkin fest this weekend (Oct 1) featuring pumpkin-themed installations, events, food and drink, and more! Pier 17 has always had great Halloween decor, but they’re stepping it up this year with a full month-long (and change) experience until November 7. Of course the beloved pumpkin arch will make a return, but other activities coming include pumpkin decorating, a Halloween movie marathon, pet costume contest, block party, speciality food, and so much more!
Keep it locked to Seaport’s website for all of the upcoming events!
Where: Seaport District (Fulton St. to Pier 17)
19. Uncover the secrets of the Basilica of St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral at the Catacombs Tour
A creepy 200 year old cathedral is just waiting to be uncovered, and that’s what you’ll get with this 90 minute walking tour of St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral. With the help of a tour guide and pure candlelight, you’ll explore otherwise off-limit parts of this haunting church, like the two walled cemeteries. Be ready to step into something you’ve never seen before…
Buy your tickets here!
Where: 266 Mulberry Street
20. Go pumpkin picking at Decker Farm
Nothing says Halloween like spending a few hours in a pumpkin patch! Decker Farm on Staten Island is our go-to patch of choice that’s perfect for pickin’. After you’re done, stick around for thier corn maze, pumpkin painting, hayrides around the farm, and autumnal food and drink. Pumpkin picking is open every October weekend (including Oct 11) from 11 am – 5 pm! Tickets are required to enter the family farm.
Learn more about the oldest, continually working family farm here!
Where: 435 Richmond Hill Rd, Staten Island
Also published on Medium.