There is nowhere else that says spooky like Transylvania. Bram Stoker’s legendary character, Dracula, hung out in this 'neck' of the woods, which is in fact a real-life region of Romania. So did the living, breathing (well, not anymore) Vlad the Impaler. See where he hung his victims out to decompose at Bran Castle, a couple of hours north of Romanian capital Bucharest.
Salem, god bless his soul, was, until recently, one of my sister’s long-suffering cats. Being black, he was quite unimaginatively named after that talking moggie in Sabrina the Teenage Witch (such a good show!). Salem takes his name from a town near Boston, Massachusetts, where ladies in pointy hats who commuted by broomstick were thrown on the bonfire in the Witch Trials of 1692. Unsurprisingly, Salem celebrates Halloween big style with parties, parades and lashings of pumpkin pie.
The ‘City of Light’ has a hidden dark side, and no, we don’t mean the fleshpots of Pigalle. As you enjoy Parisian hand-holding moments with your loved one, gazing upon the Eiffel Tower or Notre Dame, underneath your feet is a hidden world. The Catacombs are a vast network of tunnels running below the streets of the French capital that store the remains of a staggering six million people. Take a guided tour to safely see masses of skulls and other body parts.
Back in the day, when they lived underground, the good folk of Edinburgh commonly died of all sorts of nasty stuff like the plague. Today you can hear the story of many of their demises on a guided tour of Mary King’s Close, a system of secret streets beneath the tourist-tastic Royal Mile. As the place is supposedly haunted, you’ve a good chance of encountering spooks. So, not one for small children, nor the claustrophobic, but fun all the same.
Halloween is much more of a big deal in the US than over here, but it’s mostly a celebration of kitsch for the kids, and an excuse to dress up as saucy witches. However, in darkest Mexico it’s the real deal. On Los Dias de los Muertos (Days of the Dead), the living populace honours its dear departed by extending an invitation to relatives-no-more to pop round to the family homestead for tea and cake, and probably a stiff drink to send them back to the netherworld in good spirits.
It might be a bit late to sort out a last-minute break to Madagascar, but if you think that festivities here are a bit tacky, then celebrate Halloween in traditional style on this exotic island off the east of Africa. The Madagascan way of honouring their dead is the ‘turning of the bones’, an ancient ritual where the dead are dug up, decked out in new threads, then encouraged to hit the dancefloor with friends and relatives. We’re deadly serious.
See what’s on in the UK this Halloween with our ghoulishly good guide to the most fang-tastic events in the country.
Always updated with travel chat, deals, ideas, polls and fun. Join the crowds! Be our friend on Facebook!
© Skyscanner Ltd 2002–2012