Halloween for the Fearless Traveler
Uncategorized at October 28, 2015on
Halloween can be a great experience in your home town, but if you’re down for getting the real spooks then you’re at the right place. Check out the best destinations to spend your Halloween.
- The Sleepy Hollow, New York:
First on the list is Sleepy Hollow in New York. The name basically says it all… The Sleepy Hollow Cemetery is one of the oldest cemeteries in the U.S., and on a side note the famous author/diplomat Washington Irving is buried there.
You can book a rental in the town of Sleepy Hollow or you can even stay in New York City (which is about 30 miles away).
And why would you want to visit on Halloween? Well, let’s see…The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving is one of the most iconic American Ghost stories. The story is set in the Hudson Valley village, where people still report seeing the Headless Horseman at cemeteries all around the area. The Sleepy Hollow Cemetery hosts daytime and lantern tours but it is strongly advised that you book your tour well in advance because it is very popular Halloween time.
- Christ Church, Barbados:
If you’re into the creepy story telling on Halloween then this is your stop. Located on a hill overlooking the sparkling Caribbean Sea, the Chase Vault is the site of one of the most chilling mysteries in Barbados. The coffins of the wealthy Chase family were found to be tampered with and pillaged over the centuries, but there is no evidence that the massive lead door of the vault had ever been disturbed. The ghosts of two family members are said to haunt the vault, and the tomb makes for a spooky stop on an otherwise sunny and cheery island. Oh and if you are anxious to spend your Halloween over there feel free to stay over on the Caribbean Coast of Barbados.
- Paris, France:
Next stop Paris! City of Lights is home to some of the creepiest places in Europe. We know you’re tempted to check out the Eiffel Tower, the Bois de Bologne, and the Louvre museum, but if you’re coming to get your guts turned inside out you might want to head to Pere Lachaise Cemetery and the Paris Catacombs.
The Pere Lachiase Cemetery has miles and mile of tombstones, including those of Chopin (pianist), Jim Morrison (singer) and Edith Piaf (international star). The cemetery is (obviously) said to be haunted and outright creepy! Even more terrifying is what lies beneath the ground. In the Paris Catacombs the bones of millions of long-dead Parisians line the tunnels, uprooted from their tombs and assembled here in the 17th century.
- Dracula’s Castle, Romania:
Of course the infamous Castle of Dracula… It really doesn’t get much spookier than that! On a happier note, there are lots of pretty vacation rentals in the mountains of Transylvania in Romania which are conveniently close to the infamous Bran Castle, once said to be the home of Vlad the Impaler, the reputed inspiration for Bram Stoker’s famous Dracula.
Vlad the Impaler was known for his incredible cruelty and torture, reportedly impaling tens of thousands of his enemies on stakes and leaving their bodies to rot. Today, the castle is open to the public and you can book a Halloween tour and learn the truth behind the terrifying legends.
- Salem, Massachusetts:
Ooh Witches! 26 people were once tried and then put to death in Salem for being witches. Today, the town of Salem is one of the best Halloween vacation spots for its celebration of witches on their most important night of the year. Salem hosts events over the entire month of October, including tours of haunted and infamous spots, trial and hanging re-enactments, witches’ circles, fireworks, and a parade. Sounds delicious!
You can also visit the Witch House museum, the only building left in Salem that has direct links to the Salem Witch Trials. As you might imagine, the museum has extended hours in October. The one-time home of Judge Jonathan Corwin, one of the judges in the trials, it now is a museum of seventeenth century architecture, furnishings, and lifestyle.
- New York City:
NYC! Take a deep breath… is you’re too horrified to visit any of the creepo places mentioned above, you should probably just stick with the contemporary Halloween customs; happy costumes, drinking and partying… NYC’s Greenwich Village hosts an amazing Halloween Party every year, with dancers, costumes and a huge parade with giant puppets. You can also take in an after-dark Crypt Crawl under the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, or sign up for a ghost walk through the village, where you might run into the ghost of Edgar Allen Poe.
Okay so I think you got a pretty good picture of how you can terrify yourself… The choice is yours! Mwahahaha!