31 Oct 2018
Ireland is the home of Halloween. It started as a Celtic festival, Samhain Night, which marked the end of harvest and the beginning of winter. It is believed that as the lighter world and the darker world crossed, the veil between this world and the other world was at its thinnest and therefore let spirits pass through.
Salem is notorious for spooky goings on. Known for its witch trials in the 1600s, Salem is perhaps one of the most famous Halloween destinations.
The famous Witch House (pictured above) was owned by Judge Jonathan Corwin and is the only original building still standing from 1692.
Mexico’s ‘The Day of the Dead’ starts on 31st October and ends on 2nd November. It’s a festival where the living honour the dead with bright colours, by visiting their loved ones graves and by creating large, well decorated altars (known as ofrendas) in their homes to welcome spirits.
The occasion is also marked with parades through streets of towns and cities. The day of the Dead celebrations are not seen as morbid, rather a beautiful way to honour loved ones.
Hong Kong is considered the Halloween capital of Asia, however this wasn’t until recently. The Chinese territory seem to get into the Halloween spirit more and more each year and 2018 is set to be the biggest yet.
Halloween parties pop up all over the place, with Disneyland, Ocean Park and other Hong Kong tourist destinations and hot spots dressing up and getting ready for the spooky celebration.
Home to Dracula’s castle, Romania is most definitely a Halloween hotspot. Dracula, the creation of Bram Stoker, spent his years in Bran Castle, Transylvania, Romania. Vlad III, a Transylvanian count was thought to be the inspiration of Bram Stoker’s novel and the real-life Dracula, also lived in Bran Castle in the 1400s.
If you’re visiting, make sure you wear something around your neck or douse yourself in garlic to avoid the jaws of the world’s most famous vampire.
It may be the focus of a very famous Halloween film and the subject of Washington Irvine’s book The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, but Sleepy Hollow is actually a real place. A small village in New York State, USA, Sleepy Hollow is filled with myths, legends and spooky stories which date back centuries.
According to myth (and countless Google searches), Washington Irvine drew inspiration for his book from real-life events! Now, we’re not sure whether it’s the teacher getting into a spot of bother over his love life or whether he really did meet a headless horseman (seems rather less likely), but we’d love to know which parts of the stories are real!
The last of our American Halloween hotspots, New Orleans is also known for its myths, legends and spooky goings on.
From haunted houses to voodoo and everything in between, children and adults celebrate Halloween to the max in New Orleans. Trick or Treating, parades, parties and ghost tours dominate the streets and you’ll find some of the best costumes and decorated houses from around the world in the city that truly LOVES Halloween.
Amsterdam have an annual Halloween festival just waiting to scare your socks off. From the Monster Ball to the Amsterdam Dungeon (very similar to the London Dungeon), horror movie marathons to haunted houses and more… put Amsterdam on your ‘to visit’ list for Halloween.
Monster’s Park is one of the highlights of Bomarzo, a small town in Italy. In the 16th century it was used as a horror show, with faces and figures carved in the stone. The garden was commissioned in 1552 by Prince Pier Francesco Orsini as an expression of grief designed to shock its visitors.
Who doesn’t want to spend Halloween in one of Europe’s most gothic cities? From ghost tours to zombie night runs, Halloween parties and some of the best costumes you’ll find, make Prague one of your top Halloween destinations right now!
(We couldn’t help ourselves…)