Frighten yourselves silly with 15 of the the best Halloween events taking place this year...
Wexford’s most terrifying haunted house is open for business again this year, ready to frighten the living daylights out of all who visit it. They have a special family show for the over 5s, which promises to tone down the bone-chilling scares for the little people and, let’s face it, their parents too.
€15 Adult, €12 Concession, €8 Child (aged 5-11 yrs)
Fota Island expects over 18,000 people to walk through Spooky Town this Halloween, and it’s easy to see why. This fully interactive experience brings Halloween alive for the whole family, by setting you work, solving a mystery as you walk through this amazing town, and even meeting some of its many spooky inhabitants along the way.
Between €14 and €18, children aged under two go free.
Thurles Halloween Arts Festival
Thurles awakens the dead this Halloween as its annual festival takes over the whole town. There’ll be art exhibitions, magicians, spooky story time and family movies throughout the week.
Extremely well done, and a treat for both adults and children, a trip to Ghoulsey’s Manor at Cuskinny Court is a must for those of us with theatre lovers in the family. This year’s theme is ‘Monsterval: The Return of Doctor Frankfarter’. Expect to be spun along with loads of laughs and quite a few scares at this 200-year-old spooky mansion.
€16 per person or €70 for a family of five
Happy Halloween Cork and Limerick
Hattie O’Goodspell, the good witch of Munster, is returning to Dunnes on Cork’s St Patrick’s Street and the Jetland Shopping Centre in Limerick this midterm, to give children a tour of her magical and spooky lair and show them where she makes her magic potion. She even gives every child who visits a special treat as they leave.
€5 per child.
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Leap Scarecrow Festival
A week of scarecrows and pumpkins and all things Halloween, as Leap celebrates its annual scarecrow festival. There’ll be scarecrow workshops and puppet shows as well as face painting and a kid’s disco — great family fun.
Boo At Ballymaloe
Treat your family to some frightful family fun at Ballymaloe House this midterm where a theatrical wonderland awaits. Catering for the whole family, there are earlier shows from 10am to 1pm
especially for younger trick-or-treaters. Once the clock strikes 2pm, the lights will go down and scare levels will increase to cater for braver souls who are willing to navigate the maze that has been set up within the house.
€15 per person
Every year The Waterford and Suir Valley heritage railway transforms to take families on a spooky 30-minute journey through the haunted forest in the dark, where anything can happen! Expect fun and frights!
€12 for children under 16, Adults €15
Samhain at Kylemore
Kylemore Estate in Connemara are staying true to their roots this Halloween, hosting a gorgeous
celebration complete with some traditional turnip carving, fortune-telling and lots and lots of barmbrack from the extremely superstitious head gardener who will tell all the families about the Irish traditions at Halloween. There’ll even be a procession to a huge bonfire to round the evening off.
A family with children under 10 years of age: €28, Family children over 10 years of age: €37.50, Adult: €14 and children under 10 are free, Children over 10 pay a student ticket at €10.
Kenmare Halloween Howl
Kenmare celebrates the spookiest time of the year with this week-long festival, featuring a huge amount of child-friendly events. Choose from visiting the haunted house or engaging in a rousing game of Halloween splatball — the choice is yours.
Boo at Leahy’s Farm
Ideal for the littlest spooks, Boo at Leahy’s features pumpkin carving, chocolate lollipop-making and of course, the haunted hayride. A great introduction to the fun of Halloween.
€15.50 per person, with an added €5 for lollipop-making and €4 for pumpkin-carving.
Halloween at Hook Lighthouse
Hook Lighthouse celebrates Féile Samhain to the max each year and it offers a week-long family programme to boot. There’ll be daily session of pumpkin carving, and spooky night time tours of the lighthouse. On Halloween itself, there’ll be an evening of storytelling sitting by fires on the lighthouse lawn.
Tours are €10 per person, pumpkin carving from €5.
Knocknagoshel Halloween Festival
Celebrating its 22nd year, this festival kicks off with a walk along the Well Road, Knocknagoshel’s ghost trail and is followed by lots of fun in the village as well as a children’s disco.
The ghost trail costs €5 per person.
Halloween Cork City Gaol
Cork City Gaol is hosting Halloween fun for the entire midterm break. There’ll be daily treasure hunts and face-painters on hand, as well as an on-site spooky storyteller, ready to spill the beans on the gaol’s scary past.
Children €6, Adults €10.
Dragon of Shandon Parade
When darkness falls on Halloween night, the streets of Cork City become a stage for the Dragon of Shandon and his macabre assortment of creatures, as he lurches around the streets. This fantastical display is simply a must-see.