Post Overview: Roundup of the best October & Halloween events in New York City 2023
If you’re looking for the best Halloween events in New York City you’ve come to the right place.
I’m a sucker for all things orange & spooky, and have made it my personal mission to maximize October in NYC to be the ultimate Halloween party.
By combining both personal experiences and extensive research I’m confident this article will help you have the best Halloween NYC has ever seen!
I’m not one for small talk and I know what you’re here for. So without further ado let’s get into the best Halloween events New York City has to offer in 2023.
Best Halloween Events in New York City
Take part in the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade
Date: October 31st, 2023 at 7PM
This year is the 50th annual Halloween Parade NYC has hosted in Greenwich Village. The tradition started with a solo mask maker and puppeteer who walked his neighborhood streets for the local kids’ entertainment.
By the third year the NYC Halloween parade developed into a non-profit organization full of volunteers who dedicate themselves to keep the tradition alive. With more than 50,000 costumed participants a year I’d say the parade is very much alive and well.
As far as Halloween events in New York City go, the Halloween parade in Greenwich Village tops the list. If you’re in the city on October 31st this is where you want to be.
The parade can be viewed on both sides of 6th Avenue between King St. and 15th St.
There are also a handful of ways to participate. The NYC Halloween parade is always looking for volunteers and if you want a more flashy role consider actually being in the parade. This year the theme is Upside/Down : Inside/OUT!!
There will be a costume contest, which you automatically enter just by showing up. The NYC Halloween Parade has “secret scouts” looking for the most original and fun costumes. Prizes are announced after the parade.
Local’s Tip: if you aren’t comfortable being around so many spooky figures consider watching the NYC Halloween Parade at home. The TV Channel NY1 will be covering the parade from 8 to 9:30 PM. Also, most of the local news channels will show spot coverage here and there throughout the night.
Address: 6th Avenue between King St. and 15th St.
Get Spooked at Blood Manor
Dates: September 29th to November 4th, 2023 | Check out the calendar here.
Allow me to begin by saying that horror is subjective, and some people only want to be a little spooked while celebrating Halloween in NYC whereas others want to fight real ghosts and werewolves.
If you fall want to be terrified, Blood Manor in Tribeca is one of the best Halloween events in New York City for you.
The haunted house takes pride in their work, outfitting their space with props and graphic images that are sure to make the hair on the back of your neck stand up. The actors commit to their role and earn their wages by becoming ghastly creatures.
What makes Blood Manor really stand out is that they offer two “lights out” nights (on Nov. 4th/5th) where you walk through the attraction completely in the dark. It’s pitch black, all they hand you is a measly little glow stick.
Blood manor is not for the faint of heart, but is seriously one of the best Halloween events in New York City.
Local’s Tip: Purchasing tickets ahead of time is highly recommended. You can get your tickets here. Tickets can be purchased at the door, but there is a limited quantity and you usually have to wait in line.
Visit A Haunting in Hollis
Dates: September 29th to October 31st, 2023
Located in Queens, this New York City Halloween event takes place in a residential home. The house is fully stocked with spooky decor and actors just waiting on you. There’s a haunted house, as well as escape rooms.
In the haunted house you’ll be chased through 5 floors, and if you get too scared you have two options. First, you can use the safety word “peanut butter” and call it quits. More interestingly, you use your laser gun and teach those ghouls a lesson! And did I mention the only way out is down a 20 foot slide?
As a bonus, A Haunting in Hollis hosts a Halloween Lights event that is kid friendly (2023 date TBD).
All age-inappropriate props and decor will be removed for the day and kiddos can enjoy one of the most joyous New York City Halloween events. You can expect to find friendly staff, arts & crafts and goodie bags filled with candy.
Address: 21117 Hollis Ave, Queens, NY 11429
Make the trek to the Headless Horseman
Dates: September 23rd to October 29th, 2023
I’m hesitant to mention this NYC Halloween event because it is quite a ways away from the city. Without a car, it’s pretty difficult to make it to Ulster Park in New York.
But I feel like I would be doing a disservice not sharing this gem with anyone who is in a position to make the trip. Headless Horseman is one of the most epic Halloween events in New York City and well worth the trek.
This is one of the most disturbing Halloween events near New York City (in a good way). The outdoor attraction is made up of 8 haunted houses, a dark harvest corn maze and a dark and spooky outdoor walk. There’s also escape rooms, but those come at an additional cost.
And for the little ones, Headless Horseman hosts two Children’s Days. They are on October 7th and 21st from 11:30 to 2:30PM. Kids can expect a tiny taste of terror with music and a maze among other activities.
Local’s Tip: Purchasing tickets ahead of times is strongly recommended. Not only will it save you from having to wait in line, they’re actually less expensive when booked in advance.
Address: 778 Broadway, Rte 9W, Ulster Park, NY 12487
March to the Arch at Dumboween
Dates: October 26 – 31, 2023
Any long time reader of New York Simply knows we’re huge fans of Dumbo. And when we learned that Dumboween hosts an annual March to the Arch on October 31st we were ecstatic!
Led by the Funkrust Brass Band, the costumed entourage of families meander their way from Washington Street to the Dumbo Archway on Halloween day. After the parade there are a slew of free activities like arts & crafts and a photo-booth. There are even prizes for the best costumes!
The March to the Arch is a one-stop shop for families looking to have the best NYC Halloween experience. More than 50 businesses will be giving out candy so kids can get their trick-or-treat on.
And in the buildup to the beloved NYC Halloween tradition Dumbo sets up plenty of seasonal photo-taking opportunities throughout the neighborhood, beginning on October 26th. If you can’t make it Halloween day, swing by the week before for a taste of Halloween in Brooklyn.
Address: 160 Broadway 3rd floor, New York, NY 10038
Tour Haunted Manhattan
For those of you that know that haunted houses are simply fake and that costume parties are just your coworkers dressed up as Dracula, may I suggest a NYC Halloween activity that’s a little more, real?
Every town has tales of hauntings, ghosts, and spirits and New York City is no different. The friendly folks over at Haunted Manhattan host walking tours to teach you of the creepy past of some of your favorite spots.
There are four tours to choose from, Greenwich Village, East Village, West Village and Five Points. Each walking tour is under 3 miles which will will give you roughly an hour and a half of thrilling and funny stories shared by charismatic guides.
Taking a tour is one of my favorite things to do every Halloween in New York City, since it’s interesting to learn creepy facts about the streets I walk every day. Sometimes the tales hit a little too close to home, and that’s where the real fun happens.
Address: The meeting point for your specific tour will be emailed to you after booking your tickets.
Trick or Drink at the Halloween Bar Crawl
Dates: October 27, 28 & 31, 2023
Looking for one of the best boozy Halloween events in New York City? Get ready to Trick or Drink.
Barcrawlerz is hosting this year’s annual Trick or Drink bar crawl, where for 3 days you can dress up and head to participating bars for drink specials surrounded by other ghouls and goblins.
The process is simple, simply buy your tickets and show up to the registration site on your confirmation email to get your wristband and map of the participating bars along with the specials they’re running.
Then head to your first spot for no cover charge and drinks! This is one of the best NYC events for adults, and if I’m being honest specifically for singles (who are ready to mingle).
The other participants are often fun and rambunctious, so the bar crawl is a great way to make friends. Not to mention, if you decide to dress up it makes for quite the ice breaker to get the conversation going!
Take a NY Ghosts Tour
New York City as we know it has been centuries in the making, and beneath the modern city it is today are tales of ghosts and the paranormal.
Notable people have called the city home, and some believe they have never left. NY Ghosts hosts tours showcasing haunted places and the legends that have made them infamous.
Take Mark Twain’s brownstone for example, which has informally come to be known as the house of death. Twain himself wrote about paranormal experiences he experienced in the home. Residents today have reported seeing the ghost of Twain at the bottom of the stairwell or just walking around.
I learned about this ghastly site on NY Ghosts’ tour, and read more about it on their blog. Sometimes real life events can be more frightening than made up tales and what better time to learn about them than at this NYC Halloween event.
Address: Meeting place for your tour is on the confirmation email after purchasing your tickets.
Celebrate the Day of the Dead
Dates: October 27, 28 & 29, 2023
With New York City being a melting pot the mixing of international holidays and celebrations is to be expected. One of these international holidays that’s celebrated around Halloween in NYC is Dia de Muertos, or the Day of the Dead.
Not related to Halloween, the Day of the Dead is a Mexican holiday celebrating the lives of those who have passed. At St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery there will be a multi-day observance of the holiday fit for the whole family.
The schedule includes a market selling both traditional Mexican food and art, art workshops and a dedicated time to make ofrendas, or offerings for your loved ones who are no longer with us.
True to Mexican culture the event is vibrant and fun, and should be added to your NYC Halloween itinerary. The event requires advanced RSVP, but it’s free to attend!
Address: 60 Pine St, 5 Story Mansion A, New York, NY 10005
Snap a picture at the Pumpkin Arch on Pier 17
Are you looking for one of the most instagrammable Halloween events in New York City? Look no more.
Since 2020 Pier 17 has put together a free art instillation made up of over 500 pumpkins in the shape of an arch for no reason other than to bring folks joy.
Drawing people from all over the city, not only does this perfectly orange pumpkin arch make for great photos, the Brooklyn Bridge as the backdrop is stunning.
Typically making an appearance mid-October this beautiful pumpkin arch is located on Pier 17 at South Street Seaport. Snapping a photo with this masterpiece is one of the best Halloween events in New York City.
While technically there are no rules for how long you can take pictures, be courteous of those around you. Try to take your pictures quickly to maintain the flow of the line.
Pro Tip: Visit the pumpkin arch at night for a magical experience. The arch is full of lights that when lit, add a whole other dimension to the arch and your photos.
Address: 89 South St, New York, NY 10038
Visit the Pumpkin Patch at Queens County Farm
Dates: October 1st to October 31st, 2023
When I first moved to New York City eight years ago from the Pacific Northwest I was worried I’d be giving up essential fall activities.
My first thought was where the hell does someone get a pumpkin for Halloween? Sure bodegas are great and they get the can get the job done, but it’s not the same. I needed the full Halloween event in New York City.
To my surprise, going to a pumpkin patch was one of the attainable Halloween events in New York City I wouldn’t have to kiss goodbye! Thanks to Queens County Farm (and a hefty subway ride) I was able to get my fix of a pumpkin patch and corn maze.
Queens County Farm has been around for over 300 years and serving New Yorkers with the ultimate NYC October experience. One of my favorite Halloween events in New York City is to join Queens County Farm and attempt to do the corn maze at night.
The pumpkin patch is opened daily from October 1st to October 31st. Opened Monday thru Friday from 12 PM-4:30 PM and Saturday & Sunday from 10:00 AM-4:30 PM.
Best part? Free admission! Pumpkins are priced by size if you choose to get one.
Further reading: Check out why Queens County Farm is also on our list of 30+ Festive Fall Things to Do in New York City.
Address: 73-50 Little Neck Pkwy, Queens, NY 11004
Dates: September 8th to October 29th, 2023
Unless you’re planning a trip to Germany any time soon, this NYC October tradition is the next best thing.
From September 8th (yes really, a whole month early) to October 29th New Yorkers and locals alike can enjoy this epic NYC Halloween event. Did I mention it’s seven days a week?
Located on Pier 15 south of the South Street Seaport (a mere two piers from the pumpkin arch), head to Watermark Bar for this lively October event. We’re talking delicious food, tasty beer and all sorts of entertainment.
If drinking is not your style, no need to worry. Oktoberfest was set up to be a celebration that everyone can enjoy (kids included). Grab your friends and family and make a NYC fall day out of it. Soak in the amazing views of the Brooklyn and Williamsburg bridges and revel at the Brooklyn skyline.
Oktoberfest is a free event, you just register online and then pay for any beer or food while celebrating.
Address: 78 South St Pier 15, New York, NY 10038
Find the best Halloween Decorations in NYC
I currently have an on-going debate with my husband on which New York City neighborhood is home to the best Halloween decorations. I’m partial to the oh so charming Greenwich Village, while my husband argues the Upper West Side is where it’s at.
Regardless of which neighborhood you choose to visit, you won’t be disappointed! My suggestions is to make it one of your many New York City Halloween events and explore a new neighborhood whenever you can.
October in New York City is like no other. Charming brownstones lined with spider webs, skeletons and vibrant pumpkins turn every day strolls through the city into an experience.
It’s exciting seeing my favorite city take every holiday seriously and the proof is in the pudding.
One of the best Halloween events in New York City in October is to make time to wander through different neighborhoods checking out the decorations. Grab your favorite warm drink, bundle up and explore the magic in NYC during the autumn.
If at all helpful, here are some of our favorite neighborhoods (including streets) for decorations in NYC this Halloween.
Pick up a Pumpkin Keg from Loreley Beer Garden
Dates: September 23rd to November 5th, 2023
Finding delicious pumpkin beer in New York City in October is a relatively easy thing to achieve. You can find great options at any local pub or bodega.
But what if I told you I know a spot that takes it one step further and they serve pumpkin beer in a Pumpkin Keg? It’s true! Loreley Beer Garden on the Lower East Side is the genius behind this fall concoction.
Between September 22nd and November 5th, grab your friends and enjoy a 60 oz Pumpkin Keg filled with pumpkin beer. The keg is fitted with a beer tap and you can roughly get 4-5 glasses of beer out of it.
If you’re not a fan of pumpkin beer but still want to experience the Pumpkin Keg, no worries. You have the option to substitute the flavored beer with any beer Loreley’s has on tap- no charge.
Address: 7 Rivington St, New York, NY 10002
Enjoy a spook-tacular bite at Oscar Wilde
Dates: Year-round, Halloween decorations are up in October
Quick history lesson: Oscar Wilde was an Irish poet and one of the most popular playwrights in the late 19th century best known for his wit and flamboyance.
Unfortunately, Wilde’s reputation was tarnished after falling in love with a man. As you probably know, in the Victorian era being gay was not only frowned upon, but a crime. So much so that Wilde spent two years in prison because of it.
This Victorian style restaurant is a way to celebrate all that Oscar Wilde stood for. Hosting an impressive art (and object) collection dating back to the 1800’s you can enjoy a French fireplace from the 1840’s, stained glass from an Irish castle and so much more.
Making reservations at Oscar Wilde during October is paramount to experience one of the best Halloween events in New York City. The restaurant decorates for the holiday in a way that is unmatched.
Every inch of the place gets decorated (including the ceiling), minimalism has no place here. And don’t even think about leaving without trying the Wilde bacon cheeseburger and truffle fries.
PS, check out all the clocks in the restaurant. You’ll find that they are set to 1:50. The reason? That’s the time that Oscar Wilde died. No corners are cut when it comes to attention to detail here!
Address: 45 W 27th St, New York, NY 10001
Stop by the Tompkins Square Halloween dog parade
Date: October 21st, 2023
Yup, Tompkins Square throws an annual Halloween parade in NYC for dogs and it’s just as adorable as it sounds!
In case you missed it, the parade was briefly cancelled in 2023. However, public support brewed and the parade organizers were able to find a way to bring this beloved NYC Halloween tradition back for its 33rd year.
Clear your schedule on October 21st because you’re not going to want to miss this. The creativeness and dedication leaves me speechless year after year. A lot of the dogs in the parade are dressed better than me!
Pups are encouraged to participate and there is no entry fee or registration needed. All you need to do is dress Fido up and arrive early (awards are to be had so I emphasize the part about arriving early!).
This year the parade procession will run on Avenue B from 12th to 7th Streets.
Whether you own a dog or not, this is one of the Halloween events in New York City that is so stinking precious and you are guaranteed to melt into a puddle from all the cuteness.
Address: E 10th St, New York, NY 10009
Take an after-hours tour of Green-Wood Cemetery
Hear me out on this one. I know some folks might consider the mention of a cemetery as one of the best Halloween events in New York City creepy, but it’s true.
Green-Wood Cemetery has a plethora of NYC Halloween events to choose from. You can take tours of the cemetery (after dark), take part in a Crime and Catastrophe trolley tour or enjoy music and entertainment all while relishing in the ambiance of the cemetery.
Check out Green-Wood Cemetery’s calendar here and plan the prefect spooky night while visiting New York City in October. Oh, and I should mention a fascinating 25-year creative installation located at the cemetery.
The installation, called Here Lie the Secrets of the Visitors of Green-Wood Cemetery, is a grave designed specifically for secrets. Visitors can write their most intimate secrets on a sheet of paper and finally lay them to rest.
Address: 500 25th St, Brooklyn, NY 11232
Fall-O-Ween at the New York Botanical Garden
Dates: September 19th to October 31st, 2023
One of my favorite New York Halloween events is Fall-O-Ween at the New York Botanical Garden (NYBG). NYBG kicks off the fall season with loads of pumpkins, hordes of gourds and plenty of NYC autumn activities. I’m telling you, no trip to New York City in the fall is complete without checking one of their many events off your list!
NYBG also hosts a Halloween parade every year, the date has yet to be released but we will update this guide as soon as we know.
The entire weekend is chock-full of pumpkins, families and Halloween festivities. Kiddos dress up in their Halloween costumes and get to strut down Garden Way showing off the cutest looks. It’s one of the can’t miss Halloween events in New York City for anyone with kids!
Aside from the parade, you can expect to see pumpkins larger than life and pumpkin carvings like never before. Here is the calendar for New York Botanical Garden. Plan your trip the right way and be sure to include Fall-O-Ween into the Halloween events in New York City you’ll check out this year!
- Adults: $35 | $15 NYC residents
- Students (with valid ID)/Seniors (65+): $31 | $7 NYC residents
- Children (2-12 years): $15 | $4 NYC residents
- Children under 2: Free
- Patrons/Members: Free
Address: 2900 Southern Blvd, The Bronx, NY 10458
Check out Boo at the Zoo
Dates: Saturday & Sundays September 30th to October 29th, 2023
Finding Halloween events in New York City for kids isn’t always easy, which is why I really appreciate Boo at the Zoo. Every year the Bronx Zoo hosts a Halloween party in NYC the whole family can take part in.
Guests are encouraged to show up in costume and take part in a day of fun. The zoo has candy trails so kids can trick or treat alongside their favorite animals. It’s an educational day too, since the zoo shows what some of the animals’ favorite snacks are as well.
There’s a multitude of arts and crafts kids can take part in, as well as a magician, pumpkin carving shows, and a costume parade that takes place 3 times a day. Long story short, this is one of the best Halloween events New York City has for families looking for clean fun.
- Adulst: $41.95
- Senior (65+): $36.95
- Children (3-12): $31.95
- Child under 2: Free
Tickets must be purchased in advance and go on sale August 29th, 2023.
Address: 2300 Southern Blvd, The Bronx, NY 10460
And Pumpkin Nights
While Boo at the Zoo is one of the best things to do on Halloween in NYC with kids during the day, Pumpkin Nights is one of the best things to do at night, and it’s right next door at the Bronx Zoo.
After the animals go to bed the lights turn on (inside the pumpkins). There’s an illuminated, animal themed jack-o-lantern trail that meanders around the zoo.
You’ll also come across games and vendors selling appetizing bites. Throughout the whole experience you’ll be learning about animals and how they behave at night (remember, there won’t be any actual animal exhibits open)
Perusing the 5,000+ pumpkins at Pumpkin Night is one of the best Halloween events in NYC with kids. Spend some time watching new, masterful jack-o-lanterns made and snap some photos of your children.
Address: 2300 Southern Blvd, Bronx, NY 10460
New York Simply Exclusive: This NYC Halloween season is extra special because our readers can enjoy 15% off their tickets to Pumpkin Nights with code NYSIMPLY. Code valid until 10/29.
Best Halloween Events in New York City (Post Summary)
- Take Part in the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade
- Get Spooked at Blood Manor
- Make the Trek to the Headless Horseman
- Visit a Haunting in Hollis
- March to the Arch at Dumboween
- Tour Haunted Manhattan
- Trick or Drink at the Halloween Bar Crawl
- Take a NY Ghosts Tour
- Celebrate the Day of the Dead
- Snap a Picture at the Pumpkin Arch at Pier 17
- Visit the Pumpkin Patch at Queens County Farm
- Celebrate Oktoberfest
- Find the best Halloween Decorations
- Pick up a Pumpkin Keg from Loreley’s Beer Garden
- Enjoy a spook-tacular bite at Oscar Wilde
- Stop by the Tompkins Square Halloween dog parade
- Take an after-hours tour of Green-Wood Cemetery
- Partake in the Medieval Festival
- Fall-O-Ween at the New York Botanical Garden
- Check out Boo at the Zoo
- And Pumpkin Nights
Map of the Best Halloween Events in NYC
And there you have it folks! My list of the best Halloween events in New York City in 2022.
Hope this makes your holiday a little more fun.
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