Looking to experience Halloween in New Orleans? All you need to do is show up. Second only to Mardi Gras, Halloween is just second nature for a city like New Orleans. As a local told me during my recent visit:
Don’t approach zombies or vampires on Halloween in New Orleans. They may just be real.
Voodoo Music + Arts Festival
A festival I keep wanting to get to is Voodoo Festival that takes place every year in October in New Orleans. This year, that happens to be the weekend right before Halloween making it the perfect time to visit a great festival and experience Halloween in New Orleans. The festival has plenty of music, food, arts, and more.
Visit a Haunted House
I love visiting haunted houses – both real and fabricated – and Halloween brings that chance to visit lots of haunted attractions. New Orleans has several haunted houses open just for Halloween and the month of October so why not check them out while you’re in town!
Less than 3 miles from the enchanting French Quarter on the cemetery streetcar line, this magnificent mansion was originally built in 1872 and operated for about 80 years as an actual MORTUARY. The venue operates year-round in three fashions: A spectacular themed special event venue known as Mystere Mansion, an attraction that houses Live Escape Games known as Mystere Escape Rooms, and during the Halloween Season as the Mortuary Haunted Mansion.
Be careful though – I think they’re ready to purge!
Scout Island Scream Park
Scout Island Scream Park Halloween Festival is a unique, immersive experience that evolves each Fall. This Family Fun Festival opens around lunchtime on the weekends between late September and early November with Festival music, food, entertainment, carnival rides, hayride, and featuring a very unique Kid Zone! And as night falls, Scream Park evolves into a dark carnival of unusual monsters, amazing illusions, stunning special FX, unique and original costumes, makeup, animations and frightening detail created by the artists of The Mortuary Haunted Mansion. Only the courageous will survive the intense encounters with these infamous creatures of the night.
New Orleans Nightmare
The House Of Shock is a seasonal haunted attraction located in New Orleans, Louisiana. Every year, the House Of Shock is opened on weekends in October. The House Of Shock is known for its satanic themes and intensity by New Orleans residents and tourists.
Attend Voodoo Authentica’s own Voodoofest
Voodoo is often misunderstood. So on Halloween every year, Voodoo Authentica holds their own Voodoofest to explain their beliefs and educated outsiders on the most common myths and misconceptions surrounding voodoo. The event includes talks, lectures, dance performances, drumming workshops, and healing rituals. You’ll likely walk away with a different understanding of Voodoo after this night.
Attend a Vampire Ball
Have you always wanted to attend a vampire ball? For whatever reason, vampires are completely romanticized and I get it – I’m right there with you! Give me the chance to become one of the immortals? I’m signing up.
New Orleans is unique in the way that you can at least pretend to be a vampire without anyone thinking twice about it. So, make sure you attend the Vampire Ball hosted by The House of Blues.
Take a Tour of St. Louis Cemetery No.1
Crystal of Wandering Crystal
Spend this Halloween in one of the most haunted cemeteries in the United States — St. Louis Cemetery No 1 in New Orleans. Only accessible on a New Orleans tour, the oldest graveyard in New Orleans is home to above-ground oven crypts and is oozing with countless spooky ghost stories to make your Halloween more terrifying than you could even imagine.
As you pass by the crumbling tombstones, you’ll hear tales of ghosts that currently haunt the cemetery. The most famous spirit resident is the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans, Marie Laveau. During her reign, she was the most powerful voodoo practitioner and her legend lives on after her death.
Marie Laveau is said to make her presence known and guests have reported being touched, hearing voices or falling ill after coming into contact with the Voodoo Queen’s tomb.
If you’re wondering why her tombstone is donned with offerings of coins, makeup and hair elastics, it’s for a very specific reason. Often visitors to the graveyard will try to mark her grave with three xs so Marie Laveau will grant them a wish. If their wish comes true, the visitor is obligated to return to her tomb with gifts to say thank you.
A visit to the cemetery is fun, informative and spooky. But be careful because you may not be leaving the graveyard alone.
American Horror Story: Coven Tour
Taking the [unofficial] tour showcasing all of the filming locations for American Horror Story: Coven (season 3) is a must-do while in New Orleans and even better during Halloween! Even if you’re not a fan of the show, the tour is interesting and fun! I actually took my grandma on it and she really enjoyed all the historical elements and the tour takes you to spots you’ll likely want to visit anyway such as St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 (which you can only get access to via a tour).
Find Your Best Look at One of the Costume Shops
Always wanted to go all out for Halloween? New Orleans is the place to be. There’s no such thing as “too much.” Make sure to visit one of the city’s many costume shops to get all the essentials needed for any Halloween costume.
Attend the Long-Running LGBTQ+ Party for a Good Cause
The HNO [Halloween New Orleans] is a 35-year running event that raises money for Project Lazarus in New Orleans which is an HIV/AIDS support organization. The event runs an entire weekend and includes a black-tie ball, an elaborate and vibrant Halloween dance party, an afternoon dance party in the park, and, of course, an infamous New Orleans Second Line through the French Quarter.
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