October is the month of Halloween and since we are all too old to go trick-o-treating, it’s time to find some age appropriate activities things to do during this special holiday season.
As the second most populous city in the United States, Los Angeles is bound to have a lot Halloween-related activities to do in this month. Lucky for us, being in the Entertainment Capitol of the country, we are surrounded by theme parks that put together amazing Halloween events. Since Halloween isn’t a holiday celebrated in Taiwan, I made sure I go out to get a good feel of how it is celebrated here. Here are some of my personal suggestions and tips on how to celebrate Halloween in SoCal at the 3 different theme parks in LA:
For the first time ever, Universal Studios Hollywood is teaming up with AMC to recreate The Walking Dead into a haunted maze at Horror Nights this year. This theme park, in my opinion, has the scariest mazes among all the other theme parks in LA because all of the 6 mazes are derived from an actual horror movie. Some of the movies include The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Saw is the Law and Alice Cooper Goes to Hell. Because of that, for those of you who have seen the movie(s) before, you will reach another level of fright when you recognize movie scenes throughout the maze. Furthermore, the monsters at the scare zones all have on detailed makeup and exquisite costumes, adding another level of fear into the overall park.
Tickets to the Halloween Horror Nights is still available for purchase on October 18-21, 25-28, and 31. The general admission ticket price ranges from $51 to $66 depending on the day you choose to go. From personal experience, I highly encourage you to purchase the Front of the Line Pass. Although the cost is higher ranging from $109 to $129, it will ensure that you get to go to all 6 mazes and have time to go on other rides or watch the special show because you wouldn’t have to wait in line.
As part of its 40th anniversary celebration this year, Knott’s is featuring up to 13 mazes and 4 scare zones throughout the theme park. One of my most recommended mazes among them is the Terror of London which features Jack the Ripper and Dr. Jekyll. The maze has great scenery and a solid background story behind it. Comparing to Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights, Knott’s overall experience isn’t as terrifying as Universal’s. The main reason being, the monsters at the scare zones are more casual, their costumes and makeup aren’t as detailed as those at Universal. Most of the monsters have on a mask and they will start chatting with guests waiting in line after a while, thus making themselves less of a fright. But a plus side about Knott’s is that there are a lot more rides that you can go on. So, in case you are tired of haunted mazes, you can take a ride on one of the longest and tallest wooden roller coasters in the world, the Ghostrider, which includes a dramatic, 108-foot initial banked drop, 13 additional drops, sudden dips and banked turns.
Haunt dates are on Oct 8-21, 25-28, and 30-31 and prices go from $36-$52. Unfortunately, Knott’s doesn’t offer a Front of the Line Pass deal like Universal, so please be prepared to wait in long lines.
If going to haunted mazes and getting scared by roaming monsters and ghosts aren’t your thing, then be sure to check out Mickey’s Halloween Party at Disneyland! Living up to its slogan of “the happiest place on earth”, Disney designed the Halloween Party as a time to capture precious one-of-a-kind moments. All guests to the park are allowed to dress up as their favorite (Disney) characters and take pictures with characters such as Mickey and Minnie, Winnie the Pooh, different princesses, Woody from Toy Stories, and etc! There are a number of “Treat or Treat” stops where guests of all ages can ask for candies. Disney also made an effort to provide healthy treats such as dried apples and baby carrots. My advice to making the visit even more memorable is to head to the front of the castle around 9:00pm to secure a great viewing spot for the “Halloween Screams” Fireworks and be on a look out for Disney villains who are known to make special appearance during the party. And before you leave the park, don’t forget to stop by the souvenir shops on Main Street USA to pick up some Halloween-themed merchandise and goodies.
Tickets for Mickey’s Halloween Party sell out fast! The only available dates now are Oct 29 and 31, each at $69. Hurry up and buy your tickets online now before they are sold out!
Hopefully my tips has helped you decide on how (& where) you will celebrate your Halloween in Southern California this year, whether it is in a frightful way or in a heartwarming way. Have you decided what you will be dressing up as this Halloween?