BOO! 10 scary (fabulous) Halloween parties worth the flight

October 23, 2011
Fares from Washington DC:

    Rising holiday airfares aren't the only thing that's scary about this month. October means Halloween, that annual festival of things frightening. And it's become a big deal in top destinations like Orlando, where major events spur a ton of business in an otherwise quiet travel period. Up for a good scare? We've rounded up and ranked 10 spectacles worth the trip, with links to low fares that'll have you in the mood to get up and go.

    #1 HALLOWEEN HORROR NIGHTS AT UNIVERSAL Orlando

    Through Oct. 31, the popular theme park morphs into one of the most frightening places on earth. Eight haunted houses with top-shelf production values and exclusive "RIP Tours" make this one a screaming good time (halloweenhorrornights.com).

    Click here for low fares to Orlando.

    #2 TERROR BEHIND THE WALLS Philadelphia

    Built in 1829, the old Eastern State Penitentiary is one of Philly's most impressive historic sites. (Al Capone slept here!) Through Nov. 12, the 11-acre property, long ago abandoned, becomes one of the world's niftiest haunted houses (easternstate.org).

    Click here for low fares to Philadelphia.

    #3 HALLOWEEKENDS AT CEDAR POINT Ohio

    Did you let another summer go by without a visit to one of the best coaster parks on the continent – maybe the world? Weekends through Oct. 30, be terrified not only by those crazy rides, but also the park's annual screamfest. There's a ton of kid-friendly fun by day; after dark is a different story (cedarpoint.com).

    Click here for low fares to Cleveland.

    #4 VOODOO MUSIC EXPERIENCE New Orleans

    More scary cool than straight up scary, this annual music festival takes over the Big Easy's atmospheric City Park Oct. 28-30, featuring art installations, good food and performances from Soundgarden, Fatboy Slim and more (thevoodooexperience.com).

    Click here for low fares to New Orleans.

    #5 HEADLESS HORSEMAN HAYRIDES Hudson Valley

    A peaceful farm in a sleepy Hudson River town not far from New York City – right in the heart of Rip Van Winkle country – has become one of the country's most famous Halloween attractions, with a mile-long haunted hayride and multiple haunted attractions on an idyllic (well, during the day anyway) 45-acre property (headlesshorseman.com).

    Click here for low fares to the Hudson Valley.

    #6 DETROIT'S URBAN LEGENDS Detroit

    For some people, the windswept Cass Corridor neighborhood of Detroit is eerie enough at high noon on a sunny day, let alone late at night, after a run through this creepy haunted house, located inside an old church and benefiting a local social services organization. Weekends through Oct. 31 (detroithauntedhouse.org).

    Click here for low fares to Detroit.

    #7 VILLAGE HALLOWEEN PARADE New York

    The only thing scary about this annual, all-comers-welcomed happening is some of the outfits, and how they're being worn. Anyone in a costume is welcome to march, so dress your (freaky) best (halloween-nyc.com).

    Click here for low fares to New York.


    #8 KENNYWOOD'S PHANTOM FRIGHT NIGHTS
    Pittsburgh

    A vintage amusement park (wooden coasters!) is in the tenth year of its fun Halloween party. A nifty new attraction – Biofear – shows you what happens when a science experiment goes horribly wrong. Hint: The results will not be kid friendly. Through Oct. 29 (kennywood.com).

    Click here for low fares to Pittsburgh.

    #9 RUBY FALLS HAUNTED CAVERN Chattanooga

    There will be nobody to hear you scream when you're 26 stories down, inside this underground cave turned haunted house attraction. Through Nov. 4 (hauntedcavern.com).

    Click here for low fares to Chattanooga.

    #10 SALEM HAUNTED HAPPENINGS Massachusetts

    The Boston-adjacent town that famously burned suspected witches to death back in the day is hugely popular in the run-up to Halloween. The town throws a month-long fest that's perfect for those that like their fright a little more highbrow, or at least historically accurate (hauntedhappenings.org).

    Click here for low fares to Boston.

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