Yes, it’s that time of year already! The nights are drawing in and the ghouls are coming out… well, some fancy-dressed kids (big and small). If you’re looking for a family-friendly Halloween event with a spooky twist, then look no further as we bring you a round-up of this year’s events…
Have a twilight adventure in the trees
Go Ape is inviting fearless families on a series of twilight adventures in the trees this Halloween. When the sun goes down on the bewitching forest, swap knocking on neighbours’ doors for leaps of faith as a family, on a special after-hours Go Ape Treetop Adventure.
Designed for younger adventurers (over 1m tall) and fun-loving families, the Halloween adventure is heightened by the darkness of the forest which comes alive at night. Scramble through a series of suspended tunnels, clamber across weird wobbly walkways, and negotiate all sorts of other tricky (or treaty) obstacles, before leaping into the night air and zooming down hair-raising zip wires, as eerie owls and forest wildlife provide a spooky soundtrack.
Go Ape Halloween fun during October and November will be available at Alice Holt, Cannock, Crawley, Haldon, Moors Valley, Normanby Hall, Southampton, Thetford, Wendover, Chessington, Black Park and Sherwood Pines. Prices from £16 per person.
Enjoy a ‘Witches Afternoon Tea’
The Headland Hotel in Newquay, made famous in the 1990 film adaptation of Roald Dahl’s The Witches, will play host to the Grand High Witch and her gaggle of crones this Halloween.
A range of Halloween-themed activities, between 21st October and 3rd November, will include broomstick riding, black cat hunting, spooky storytelling and pumpkin decorating for younger guests. Whilst older guests can enjoy a range of blood-curdling coffees, spooky cocktails and chilling mocktails.
There’ll also be screenings of the original Witches film, perfect for nostalgic adults wanting to re-live The Witches experience in the hotel in which it was made, and for younger children who are just beginning to discover the magic of Roald Dahl.
The Witches Afternoon Tea will feature a medley of white chocolate and coconut mice, chocolate witches’ hats with pumpkin mousse, Earl Grey tea fruit cake, blackberry jelly shots, and meringue ghosts. Halloween afternoon teas cost £19 for adults and £10 for children.
Go Brick or Treating at Legoland
This autumn, rather than trick or treating, take the kids to LEGOLAND® Windsor for Brick or Treat.
Monster Rocker needs help to find the missing items on his shopping list for Lord Vampyre’s Halloween party. Once little monsters have tracked the party pieces down around the resort, they can head to the Creepy Crypt, where Monster Rocker’s Butler is on hand to give out treat filled goody bags. Plus there’s the chance to join Lord Vampyre and his monster friends at the topsy-turvy new Haunted House Monster Party ride, as well as enjoy the usual rides, shows and attractions.
Lord Vampyre’s Brick or Treat takes place from 17th October to 2nd November 2019; along with six nights of LEGO® themed fireworks shows. Tickets cost from £36 throughout Lord Vampyre’s Brick or Treat (when booked online in advance). Children under 3 years go free.
Join Leeds Castle’s Monster Academy
This Halloween, kids can explore Leeds Castle grounds and complete spooky classes as they go, winning stamps from each teacher to graduate from the Monster Academy. Activities will include learning to move like a monster, perfecting your scare technique and completing an obstacle class. A fun new haunted trail will also guide younger visitors through the Woodland Walk.
In the afternoons, children can join a dance in the outdoor ‘Monster Mash Ball’ and take part in a fancy dress competition, with prizes for the best costume.
Admission to Leeds Castle costs £26 for adults, £17.50 for children and children under 4 years go free. Family tickets are also available (a small additional charge applies for the Monster Academy booklet).
Experience Dark Magic at Doddington Hall
Doddington Hall’o’ween will return with Dark Magic from 23rd to 26th October. Visitors will be guided around the creepy, moonlit grounds and gardens of the Elizabethan Hall as they learn magic and sorcery to defeat an ancient hex.
Legend has it that long ago, an ancient hex was placed on Doddington Hall, striking fear into the hearts of visitors every Halloween. Bring your wand, wizarding robes and some appropriate footwear, for a darkly magical hour of adventure and scary surprises in the moonlit gardens.
This year’s ‘spooktacular’ events will include a ‘Trick or Tree’ pumpkin picking competition, where for the first time, you can pick your own pumpkin and try to win a free Christmas tree from the Doddington estate.
There will be more than 20 different varieties of pumpkin available to buy this year, including white ‘ghost’ pumpkins and pink ones too. There will also be a pumpkin carving competition, with a year-long family hall and gardens season ticket for the winner. Event tickets cost £14 for adults and £7 for children (book in advance).
Get lost with ghouls at Stockeld Park
Stockeld Park Halloween Adventure will have spooky goings-on for all the family, including a Monster Mash panto show and a terrifying Haunted House (voted Best Scary UK Attraction) featuring newly discovered haunted rooms. Visitors can take on zombies with the laser gun challenge, The Shooting Dead, get lost with ghouls in a Maze Invasion, and encounter real witches in the Enchanted Forest.
New this Halloween, the Pumpkin Experience will feature 4,000 pumpkins waiting to be picked and carved, to create a bespoke lantern.
Stockeld Park, set in sprawling open woodlands and lakes, is transformed at night. Journey by Nordic Ski through the North’s biggest illuminated Enchanted Forest trail, featuring over 100,000 lights, skate on the real Ice Rink, or go wild in the Adventure Playgrounds.
Admission to the park is free, with special activities priced from £10 to £22.50.
and a post-Halloween treat…
Keep the Halloween celebrations going a day longer at The Bridge Inn, Ratho, in Scotland, as their annual firework display takes place on 1st November. The award-winning pub has organised a night full of activities, so you can get cosy with hot chocolate and a variety of spooky cocktails, whilst listening to live music from Paul Wilson.
From 5.30pm there will be free face painting, pumpkin carving and best fancy dress competitions with prizes to be won. Then, the firework display will light up the skies over the Union Canal at 8pm.
Homemade beef burgers and chilli will be available throughout the evening for £6, along with sweetie mixes for the children for £1. The event itself is free to attend.