With our freakiest time of the year just around the corner it’s time to start conjuring up a concoction of spooky experiences to enjoy this Halloween. England’s full of pumpkin patches, spooky trails, haunted castles and after dark experiences to give everyone a little fright …
Start the Halloween fun early and pick the perfect pumpkin from one of England’s many pumpkin patches…
Spook-tacular Halloween at The National Forest Adventure Farm, Staffordshire
16, 17, 23-31 October
Join the farm for this years’ Halloween Spook-tacular; with broomstick training, tragic magic school, ludicrous laboratory and pumpkin wagon tractor ride to the pumpkin patch where children can pick their own pumpkin for free.
This family-run farm shop provides visitors with a pumpkin map and a wheelbarrow, and lets them loose among the vines to choose from the thousands of squash and gourds on display. There’s a pumpkin-carriage tractor ride for little ones and a sizzling barbecue for lunch on chilly days.
Pick your perfect pumpkin on Secretts farm set in the scenic countryside of Surrey, enjoy a pumpkin-themed menu and BBQ, with the chance to pick up some seasonal pumpkin delicacies from the farm shop, including breads and cakes to enjoy on the drive home. Pricing £3, pumpkins from £2
With over 130,000 pumpkins grown and over 20 varieties to pick from you’ll be spoilt for choice at Farmer Copleys. There’s also tractor rides, story-times and prizes for the best dressed handed out by the not so wicked witch of the west.
Halloween tricks and treats to entertain your little terrors…
Dr Frankenslime's Trick or Treat Express, Spa Valley Railway, Tunbridge Wells West
30 – 31 October 2021
Packed full of slapstick comedy, magic and mayhem, the shows on the 30th and 31st of October begin at Tunbridge Wells West at 16:15 and 18:00, returning approximately 1hr 15mins later. The gruesome family fun will start with an experiment or two with the wacky Dr Frankenslime, before boarding the steam hauled Trick or Treat Express to begin the journey to the haunted, Eridge station. Along the way, Dr Frankenslime will hand out activity packs and colouring pencils to all the little monsters onboard. Upon arrival at the station, everybody will make their way on to the platform where the mad doctor will show you how to make his famous, glow in the dark slime, each child will get to take the revolting concoction home with them!
Pricing: £15 (adults), £7.50 (child), family (2A+2C) - £35.00
Nature Fright Nights, Washington Wetland Centre, Tyne and Wear
Friday 29, Saturday 30 and Sunday 31 October 2021
See nocturnal nature at its spookiest on an after-hours wander through atmospheric wetlands. Enjoy themed crafts, including jam jar lantern making, a night-time stroll, bat-detecting in Hollowood, potion-making at Hunters Shriek cabin and outdoor stories, before returning to the centre for a tasty Halloween treat.
Wizard Weekend, Watercress Line Steam Railway, Hampshire
29 – 31 October 2021
Join in on the spooky activities from 11 – 4pm over the Halloween weekend, with magic and mischief on the agenda. Get whisked away on the Wizard Express and take unlimited rides throughout the day, encounter creepy crawlies, or even get dressed up as Harry Potter characters on the Kings Cross footbridge used in the films. Take a ride on the spooky miniature railway, get involved in some Halloween lessons and marvel at haunting magic performances. There’s something for everyone over the weekend.
Halloween Spooky Steam Specials, Apedale Valley Light Railway
30 – 31 October 2021
Apedale Valley Light Railway in Staffordshire will be running its popular Spooky Specials again on October 30 & 31. A fun outing, suitable for all ages, the steam trains will run at frequent intervals, finishing at 7.30pm. The Halloween event costs £3.50 (adults) and £1.50 (children). Visitors are strongly advised to wrap up warm and bring a torch.
The Wizards of Once Halloween Quest, across English Heritage sites nationwide
Explore a castle on a brand-new adventure trail inspired by Cressida Cowell’s bestselling Wizards of Once series. Will you find the ingredients for the Spell to get rid of Witches and uncover the location of the Cup of Second Chances? Come along in frightful fancy dress to enter a competition and maybe win a prize.
At locations across the UK such as Audley End House in Essex; Stonehenge in Wiltshire; Carisbrooke Castle on the Isle of Wight, and Whitby Abbey in North Yorkshire. Pricing varies by event.
Suitable for 8 – 14-year olds and their families, this Halloween spirits of the Tower of London have been inadvertently released and are roaming the castle. Among them, an unknown force is hell-bent on taking the Tower, threatening the Realm itself. The adage 'Who has the Tower has the Power?' has never been truer. A team of Ghost Raiders are on site, but they urgently need your help to investigate spooky occurrences and defeat the spirit trying to capture the Tower. Included in admission price.
Halloween Half Term family fun at Hever Castle, Kent
23 - 31 October
Treat your little ones to a spine-tingling visit to Hever Castle over the Half Term break. Come dressed up in your spookiest outfit, spot Halloween decorations around the grounds and learn how to become the perfect little monster in the Ghoul School Audio Trail. An array of teachers will be imparting their delights, frights and a few vampire bites! You will also have the chance to plant garlic bulbs in a free family-friendly workshop. The perfect activity to ward off any stray vampires. The event is included in normal admission prices.
Half term Halloween fun at Chatsworth House, Derbyshire
23 – 31 October 2021
Bring you little monsters to the farmyard to meet the animals and join in with creepy crafts. If you're feeling brave, dare to ride the Halloween trailer into Warlock Wood, where we need your help battling the ghastly ghouls. Activities included with admission price.
Kentwell's School for Sorcery, Kentwell Hall, Suffolk
23 - 31 October 2021
Bring your family to enter a magical Halloween world. Explore the spooky zones around Kentwell's Buildings, Gardens and Grounds for immersive Halloween fun, challenges and activities aimed at children from 3 to 14 years of age, and their families.
Pricing: Adult: From £15.95; Child: From £11.95-£15.95. Under 3’s free. Advance booking required.
Halloween Half Term Fun at Canonteign Falls, Exeter
23 - 31 October
This October half term join in for some spooktastic fun at Canonteign Falls including a special Halloween trail (£2.50 including activity pack). If you bring your little ones in fancy dress you could be in with a chance to win a family day ticket for 2022.
Canoe Halloween Candy Hunt, New Forest Available from October
Treat (not trick) your little monsters to some scarily good fun on the Beaulieu River this Halloween. Head out in a stable Canadian canoe on the hunt for devilishly delicious Halloween candy along the riverside.
Shriek Week runs through the October half term. Visitors can experience live action thrills at Haunted Heights - Drusilla’s’ haunted house experience; Mummy Mayhem – a spooky takeover of the Park’s adventure maze, and the Sugar Skull Witch – a new addition for 2021. Head to the Discovery Centre between 10:30 and 4:30pm for some creepy crawly encounters throughout the week and meet some amazing mini monsters with experts from the zoo team on hand to answer your questions. Pricing varies.
Head to the top of the Tower for a spooky sky-high game of i-spy, and watch out for some extra spooky surprises hidden around the tower itself! Brace yourself for a thrilling experience and brave the nerve-jangling glass Sky Walk or just take it easy and enjoy the view from Spinnaker Tower – the stunning 170-metre icon of the South Coast and Britain’s best viewing tower.
Pricing included in standard admission (from £13 adults, £9.85 child)
Join in the spooky fun as SEA LIFE Brighton goes from Aquarium to Ascarium this Halloween. Follow the immersive trail to find the Sea Witch’s missing potion ingredients hidden throughout the depths of the tanks, where you will also discover some of the spookiest creatures of the sea and you might also receive a treat (or trick)!
Family Friendly Fright Night at the Museum, Newmarket
Thursday, 28th and Friday, 29th October
Palace House was once the horseracing home of King Charles II during his visits to Newmarket. Today, it is home to paintings and many other works of art. This Halloween, take a tour by torchlight and watch history come alive, meet the ghosts of Charles II and his housekeeper, and join a witch hunt to find the five witches around the house and win a goody bag! Dressing up is very much encouraged, both adults and kids alike and there’s free brownies at the Bakery for those who do.
Halloween Spooktacular at the Hippodrome, Great Yarmouth
22 -31 October 2021
The Hippodrome Circus Halloween Spooktacular is always a hit, where audiences will be kept on the edge of their seats with a packed line-up of amazing acrobatics, daring stunts, aerialists and hilarious comedy all set against a spooky backdrop. In an amazing themed setting with incredible lighting and special effects, even the audience is encouraged to come in Halloween costumes.
The friendliest, most frightful fun fest in the UK – all set in Peppa Pig World. There will be exciting Hallowe’en shows including The Legend of Paulton’s Manor - an all singing and dancing extravaganza, ghoulish fun and Peppa Pig World will get a spooky Hallowe’en makeover. Visitors can also look forward to scary characters, late night openings and great photo opportunities.
Pricing from £110.75 (family of three), £147 (family of four)
Halloween Family art workshops, Southampton City Art Gallery
26 – 29 October 2021
For an artistic take on Halloween, the Southampton City Art Gallery is staging a series of family art workshops. On Tuesday 26th and Wednesday 27th October at 10.30am and 1pm there’s a Spooky bunting and Halloween lanterns making workshop. Tickets cost £10 per child with accompanying adults free. While on Thursday 28th October families can get creative with clay and make a decorative pumpkin. Tickets cost £7.50 per person for each 90-minute slot at 10.00am, 12.30pm and 2.30pm. Finally, on 29th October, there are three x 90-minute Spooky Scenes sessions at 10.00am, 12.30pm and 2.30pm in which families can experiment and create a 3D spooky scene, using mixed media including watercolour and inks.
Four family adventures which can be downloaded as a new online visitor guide in time for the October half term break, tempting families to explore the ‘darker’ side of the county, its ruined castles, spooky caves and centuries of bloody deeds, ghastly ghosts and fearsome folklore. Enjoy the guide as a self-guided adventure, aimed at 6 to 12-year olds, plus plenty for younger or older ones to enjoy too with topics perfect for exploring Key Stage 2 and 3 topics including Prehistoric Britain, The Tudors, Plague, medieval times and the Civil War. The spooky trails feature 15 places to visit and explore, with the guide helping to fully undercover the deadly detail of the history combined with fun crafts to inspire imaginative play and treasure hunts to keep kids engaged with each location and off their screens.
Ghost tours and spooky trails to send shivers down your spine
Ghost Tours, across English Heritage sites
28 – 31 October
Explore over 10 historic haunted castles and houses in the dark this Halloween. Storytellers will guide visitors through the past of these sites, and all of the ghostly and supernatural stories which join. Locations range from Eltham Palace and Gardens in London to Carlisle Castle in Cumbria. Full list of locations online. Suitable for those aged 16 and over.
Pricing from: £7.50 (child), £12.50 (adult), £32.50 (family two adults)
Spooky Tours at Burghley House, Stamford, Lincolnshire
20-31 October 2021 (excluding Sunday 24 October).
Spooky lantern lit tours of one of England’s grandest Elizabethan houses return this October with more scary stories and haunting hidden history. Led by a costumed ghostly expert, this year the guided tours will offer the chance for visitors to brave the creepiest corners and darkest depths of the grounds at Burghley. Taking place in the Gardens in twilight, prepare for an evening of terrifying tales and frights in the night with local ghostly expert Martin Tempest and his fiendish friends. Designed to be scary but fun, the tours reveal Burghley’s ghostly goings-on across the centuries and promise plenty of history, as well as scares, during the 50-minute flickering torchlight trails.
With so much history and stories of resident ghosts, are you brave enough to venture out onto the Beaulieu River at dusk? Adorn your best fancy dress and head out in illuminated canoes onto the estuary at nightfall on this 90-minute, canoeing tour with New Forest Activities. Paddle the Beaulieu River's dark waters by moonlight, stopping along the way to hear ghoulish ghost stories from your night-time guide. Hot chocolate and Halloween candy will be available for everyone taking part. Fancy dress is not essential, but encouraged.
The award-winning Southampton Ghost Tour takes on special relevance at Halloween. Spooky stories from Southampton’s eerie past are literally brought to life by actors who take on the parts of the city’s most notorious ghosts. The Halloween tour starts from Tudor House with a ghostly encounter with Sir John Dawtrey, the original owner of Tudor House, before continuing on to Southampton’s historic buildings and a pop-up meet and greet with resident spooks from The Bargate, The Merchants Hall and West Gate. The tour takes place at 6.30pm and 8pm on Saturday 30 October and costs £10 per person. All tours involve some scares but are family-friendly.
Eerie Experiences and attractions to get your frights on….
Dark Arts, Warner Bros Studio Tour Harry Potter film set experience
24 September – 7 November
Warner Bros Studio has transformed the 'Making of Harry Potter' film set for its annual Halloween celebration, and this year it is themed around Voldemort’s infamous ‘Dark Mark’ symbol. Guests will explore the studios underneath 100 floating pumpkins in the Great Hall, handcrafted by the head propmaker Pierre Bohanna and his team, and even be invited to learn a sequence from the famous battle scenes and practice your spells on Death Eaters during your visit.
For Hallowe’en and to celebrate the spookiest holiday of the year, Chawton House is running “Gothic Month”. This special programme is running throughout October, with events including exclusive dining in the atmospheric Smoking Room, wilderness walks in the moonlight, and a garden trail for kids.
With four multi-award winning, terrifying mazes and a brand-new attraction for thrill seekers and families alike, Trick O’ Treat Town, Scarefest is sure to frighten guests with spooks and scares for all ages!
The perfect experience for half term, join family and friends to wander into darkness in this unmissable outdoor experience, for visitors of all ages to enjoy. Wind your way through the illuminated haunted woods filled with creepy neon cobwebs, ghastly ghouls and wicked witches. Then discover the Secret Garden filled with more hidden surprises. Could it be a trick of the light or do things really go “bump in the night”?
Pricing from £25 (adult including parking), £10 (child, trail entry only), £56 (family trail with parking, two adults, two children)
See Bram Stoker's inspiration in a new light as Whitby Abbey is bathed in dramatic illuminations once again. Have your camera at the ready as you explore the gothic splendour of the ruins lit up with all the colours of the rainbow. And of course, it wouldn't be Halloween without the Count! See the story of Dracula brought to life before your very eyes within the abbey ruins all aglow, with a twist on the abbey’s usual show.
Halloween Scream Fright Night at Hever Castle, Kent
25 – 31 October
This October, for the first time Hever Castle will host evenings of frights and terror for thrill seekers 14 years old plus. Discover the darker side of Hever with a fright night you won’t forget, full of immersive scare action intended to frighten. During the evening you will have access to two separate mazes. First, you’ll be heading into the Castle for The 13th Frame to discover 12 ghost photographs in this first time exhibition, followed by SUBstratum; descending into the cellars of the castle for a 15-minute interactive experience.
A scare event in one of the oldest known haunted sites in Hull allows you to move around its inner depths. Meet foul, devious characters, and some particularly 'live' spectres around you. They will drag you into another unearthly world inside the fearful walls of Annisons Funeral Parlour. Enjoy the chilling 'Live' displays and experience the UNDEAD terrifying characters!
Fairground Frights at Great Yarmouth’s Pleasure Beach
27 – 31 October 2021
Great Yarmouth’s famous Pleasure Beach is bringing back its award-winning Halloween event, Fairground Frights for 2021. The event, which launched last year, scooped a European award for best scare entertainment at the annual ScareCON awards, and will be five nights of fearsome entertainment featuring ghoulishly costumed actors, spooky surprises, scares and projections. Each of Pleasure Beaches’ 25 rides will feature in the special Halloween nights in different ways. The event costs £19.50 per person for unlimited access to all rides and attractions (height restrictions apply) for three hours and is suitable for ages 10 and over.
Fright Night at the Museum, National Horse Racing Museum, Newmarket
Saturday 30 October
Make sure you don’t end up in the asylum or you might never escape… Visit the beautiful artworks in Palace House – a stunning 350-year-old building by day, a haunted doll’s house by night. Beware the headless horseman and his torture chamber – his previous victims are buried close by. Take care not to go too close to the witch’s gingerbread house, it may look tasty to you, but you look tasty to her! After your bone chilling travels, enjoy a warming hot chocolate or a mulled cider at The Tack Room bar. Costumes are very much encouraged and anyone in fancy dress will get a free brownie from the Bakery. Adults in fancy dress will get a free wine or beer when they present their ticket at the bar.
Victorian Gothic Falconry at Whitby Abbey, North Yorkshire
2 – 3 October
Join the Abbey’s talented falconers for fascinating flying demonstrations whilst hearing stories of the Victorian Gothic Revival Period. The stories investigate the natural world through the eyes of the Victorians, and pit myth and legend against science and fact. Included in standard admission ticket price – £10 (adult) £9 (concession) £6 (child) £16 family (1 adult), £26 family (2 adults)
Supranatural Tours to chill the soul and the chance for a group of up to six people to spend the night in the Victorian bedroom. The Supranatural Tour will start in the Courtyard at 8.30pm, and include an outside walk around the grounds, covering stop offs such as The Haunted Tree, The Crying Child, The Severed Head, and The Face at the Window. The tour will move on to the Main dining room for a glass of mull and to hear about the happenings in the house, before moving on to visit The Great Hall, The Parlour, and the haunted Victorian Room. Kentwell's Victorian Room has been known to family members and their servants as the Haunted Room for many years. Tea and coffee will be available through the night and a full English breakfast will be served at 9.30am in the Stable yard Tearoom.
Pricing varies: From £15 for tour and £450 for overnight (for group of six)