Celebrating Halloween in New York: the Highlights

5:24 pm  |  19.09.2021

Halloween in New York – the originally Celtic custom is now especially celebrated in the USA. So, of course, in New York City – every year in October countless children take to the streets in scary costumes, walk-in packs from door to door, scare people and shout: “Trick or Treat”.


But Halloween in New York has long ceased to be a children’s festival. The city is adorned with pumpkin head lanterns, house entrances are reminiscent of locations from a horror film, plus there are lots of crazy events and parades. But, as always in New York, everything is in abundance. So what’s the best party? Where is the best place to celebrate Halloween in New York? Where do you buy the craziest costume and where do you meet for the annual Village Parade? Trick or treat? Here you will find answers to these questions.

Halloween Decoration in New York

If you are in New York at Halloween time, you should definitely stop by the Upper West Side, the Upper East Side, and the West Village, because there you can marvel at the scariest Halloween decorations on the houses.

Scary Halloween Costumes: Halloween in New York

On the occasion of the numerous Halloween parties and parades in New York one is prepared: Here everyone dresses up on October 31st. takes to the streets. You can find the best costumes in the Abracadabra Superstore. The great thing is that you can also rent the costumes there. So perfect for you as a Halloween last-minute visitor. The atmosphere of the shop gives an idea of ​​the horror that awaits you in New York on October 31st.

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The Perfect Make-Up

If you take it seriously and want to celebrate Halloween in New York appropriately, you shouldn’t forget perfect make-up. In the evening you are often shocked at how real the horror faces look. So it’s good if you can keep up, right?

Janina Field’s salon puts on make-up for you “ready for Halloween” from $ 50. Usually, her salon is known for the beautiful women who leave the salon every day – but on Halloween, it gets more than scary here too. You can read/book further information and dates here online.

The Village Halloween Parade

The highlight is New York’s Greenwich Village Halloween Parade on October 31st with more than two million spectators. The parade has been held since 1973. Around 50,000 disguised participants, countless gigantic marionettes, and many bands ensure an unforgettable parade through the streets of New York.

The meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. on 6th Avenue on Spring Street. The parade starts at 7 p.m. If you want a good view of the move, you should come early and secure a place along the route. The Horror Parade ends north on 6th Avenue / 16th Street. Many streets are closed during the parade and the subways are overcrowded.

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However, it is worth seeing this spectacle. The creativity of the participants is limitless and you meet every figure from the well-known horror flicks, perfectly disguised and made up. This event resembles a huge horror festival, which culminates in the annual aftershow party in Webster Hall. You crown the best costume of the night. The winner is rewarded with $ 5000. The Webster Hall is also transformed into a huge horror party full of surprises that evening.

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Haunted Houses in New York

Popular scary house in New York


This custom is probably only celebrated in America. During the time around and on Halloween normal houses, shops, or event halls are transformed into so-called haunted houses. We would probably translate this as “scary houses”. This is definitely not for the faint of heart.

With a flashlight and a protective mask, you go inside the horror attractions. Speaking is actually forbidden inside, shouting more than desired. You have to be a little crazy to be chased by chainsaws, knives, and lively actors around the house. Here you can find all the information about the most popular Haunted Houses in NYC.

On the Trail of the Ghosts of New York

The “Ghosts of New York Walking Tour” is something for the not-so-die-hard among you. A very nice introduction to Halloween in New York and at the same time an excursion into the city’s creepy past. 

You will be guided on the English-speaking tour mainly in Greenwich Village and learn about the creepy, historical background of the area. Past a haunted house and mysterious street sections, you will get to know New York from a completely different side.

Times Scare in Times Square: Halloween in New York for Tourists

Another highlight is undoubtedly the Times Scare in Times Square. This horror house, which is open all year round, is very popular on Halloween and attracts many visitors. Suitable for families and cannot be compared to the Haunted House, which only takes place on Halloween, a good alternative for all of you who do not want to be plagued with nightmares for days.

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Pumpkin Flotilla in Central Park

Especially if you are celebrating Halloween with children in New York, there is one event that you should definitely visit: the Pumpkin Flotilla in Central Park. 

Every year on the day before Halloween, Central Park has lots of fun activities for families. Here pumpkins are carved, Gursel stories are told and a small Halloween parade is organized. So be sure to put on a costume if you want to take part.

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However, the highlight of the Central Park Halloween celebration is the Pumpkin Flotilla. When it slowly gets dark around 6:30 p.m., the previously carved pumpkins are released into the Harlem Sea. They are pulled by a kayak. They illuminate the lake for about 30 minutes. The spectacle annually draws hundreds of visitors to the northeast corner of Central Park.

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