Every October 31, people from all over the world celebrate the ghosts of the dead who have returned to earth.
From its origins as a Celtic pagan celebration, Halloween has evolved into a time-honoured tradition. This is the time of the year to dress up in the most outrageous costumes, strategise the most effective trick-or-treating route, string up frightening jack-o’-lanterns all around the front porch and have the most “terrifying” night out with friends and family!
To help you find the best parties around the world, here is our list of the 10 best Halloween events from around the globe that you don’t want to miss.
Image by Lifestyle.style
Do you know that Malaysia also celebrates Halloween?
More specifically, Sunway Lagoon is hosting the ultimate Nights of Fright 7 where you get to experience 11 thrilling rides, 8 haunted houses, 1 haunted theatre and 2 show stages every Friday to Sunday from 4 October to 3 November!
Zombified animals, haunted hotels, plague doctors with their terrifying bird-like beak masks, abandoned torture sheds, New Orleans voodoo talismans and bomohs all await. The only question is, are you brave enough?
For more information, visit https://sunwaylagoon.com/nof7/
You might want to hurry. Tickets are already selling out fast!
Image by NYC The Official Guide
New York City knows how to throw a party but the Village Halloween Parade might be the biggest one it throws all year!
Millions of people attend this terrifying jamboree, which grew from a community event to an institution. Over 60,000 costumed people, musicians and dancers participate as they parade up Sixth Avenue, each dressed to impress (and terrify!).
If you’re willing to brave the crowd and giant skeleton puppets, then this free parade is definitely something to do when in the Big Apple. The parade is also meant to be kid-friendly but some costumes might be too scary for children so we would advise exercising your discretion.
For more details, visit the official website here.
Image by The Source
If you want to join the largest Halloween street party in the world, make sure you head to Santa Monica Boulevard in Hollywood on October 31.
Nearly half a million will be present (likely with a few A-listers mixed within) for a wild night of live music, costume partying, and drinks all around. Some of the local bars and restaurants along the street might also have special hours or offer drinks by the curbside, but due to the expected crowd size, we advise planning before venturing out.
For more information, click here.
Image by Things to do in Salem
Salem has long had its reputation tied to witches since the infamous Salem witch trials in the 16th century, so it seems fitting that it knows how to a memorable Festival of the Dead.
Running for the entire month of October, the festival has everything from psychic readings to seances, ancestral altars and dinners with the dead.
To stay on top of all the events, visit its official website here.
Image by Skiddle
This Alice in Wonderland experience is wildly popular and has sold out for the past 3 years in London!
Held in the 1,800 capacity Indigo O2 in London, this is your chance to jump down the rabbit hole into a 7-hour haunted fairytale. Meet with deranged bunnies and kittens, the March Hare, an Evil Alice, and participate in a bloody Mad Hatter tea party unlike any you will have seen or experienced before.
And if that isn’t enough, there will also be free doughnut giveaways, confetti, world-class DJs, fortune tellers and so much more will be present at this fancy dress tea party - definitely one of the best Halloween events you will attend. Provided you can grab a ticket first!
Image by Kyodo News
Since its inception in 2014, the Ikebukuro Halloween Cosplay Festival has evolved into one of the largest Halloween events to take place in Japan.
As its name suggests, this mega cosplay festival takes place on the streets east of the Ikebukuro station in Tokyo and attracts over 20,000 cosplayers. Throw in the onlookers and you can anticipate around 105,000 people in attendance!
If you love dressing up as an anime character, then this is one festival you don’t want to miss. Come here and experience shopping and dining in costume, and participate in the Halloween parade which carries various themes including “zombie and horror”, “street culture and dance”, drag queens and “futuristic costumes and dance”.
For more information, click here.
Image by AFAR
Do you know that you can celebrate Halloween in Dracula’s own crib?
Otherwise known as Bran Castle in Romania, this one-day Halloween Party takes place on 2 November and includes a night tour of the castle with Vlad the Impaler, dalliances with the Wicked Fairies, plenty of Romanian red wine and a Halloween After Party.
How is that for the ultimate, spooky celebration?
For more information, click here.
Image by Villa Pedossa
If you are in Italy at the end of October, then we would recommend dropping by Corinaldo, which will have transformed itself into an open-air Halloween themed party. Carved pumpkins, skeletons, witches and even a haunted house can be found all over this little town.
Apart from the atmospheric decorations, there will be plenty of activities to join in including art shows, food, concerts and the election of a Miss Strega (Miss Witch) on October 30.
Image by Beltane
With Samhuinn being the origin of modern-day Halloween, it is only fitting that one of the best Halloween events around be the Samhuinn Fire Festival.
The Samhuinn Fire Festival is a contemporary version of the original Celtic festivals and is full of crazy fire displays, drumming and acrobatics. Held at the top of Calton Hill in Edinburgh, you will have the unique choice of following either the Winter or Summer courts (or both!) and mingling with the costumed performers throughout the evening.
While this event does permit children, parents are advised to do so at their own discretion. You will also need to purchase a ticket to attend, so we advise buying now to avoid any disappointment!
More information can be found here.
Image by Kid101
If you are looking for something a little less gory and adrenaline-fueled, then the Night of 1,000 Jack-o’Lanterns at Chicago Botanic Garden is definitely something you want to consider attending together with your family.
Visit the garden to see the 1,000 jack o lanterns lit up at night, each of them having been handcrafted in a more elaborate and creative manners. Some of the artists from the New York-based Rise of the Jack O’ Lanterns even spend up to 15 hours per pumpkin carving!
To purchase tickets, click here.
Didn’t you just get chills from reading about all the spooky events happening around the globe?
Each country celebrates Halloween in its own unique way and we would encourage you to go and explore, whether it is celebrating the event as a fun family night or diving deep into the spookier, bloodier affairs.
And don’t forget to check out mayflower.com.my for the best flight and hotel package deals!
A faith-driven Sarawakian lawyer who believes that it is never too late to start crafting a socially impactful legacy. When not grappling with warranties and liabilities, she loves pursuing adrenaline-fueled adventures, improving her Español and playing the violin. You can find her at @vidadeliya or https://www.vidadeliya.com