Originated in Medieval Ireland, Halloween has become synonymous with crazy costumes, scary pranks, trick-or-treating games, gothic themed parties and fun time. Halloween is one of its kind festivals which celebrates the dead. Following are some places around the world, which do it in style are a sure shot way of endless spooky fun and celebration.
Derry City, Ireland
The origin of the modern day Halloween lies in the ‘Samhain Night’, a medieval Irish festival, which marks the end of the harvest, and the beginning of shorter days, the “darker half” of the year. Derry city organises the biggest Halloween celebrations in Ireland known as ‘Banks of the Foyle Halloween Carnival’, a nine day feast including a parade, catwalks, workshops, a number of spooky haunted house trips, horror movies and shows, fireworks and Dragon Safari.
Known as the Halloween party capital of Asia, Halloween finds a new meaning in this city. The Hong Kong Disneyland hosts the annual Halloween Bash. The Lan Kwai Fong Halloween Street Party is famous among the tourists from all over the world who visit Hong Kong during this time of the year. The bars in the town are all decorated keeping in mind the gothic theme of the occasion and the people come out, celebrate and revel on Halloween night dressed up in crazy costumes.
Salem, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
Known for its infamous witch trials in 1600s, when a lot of people were accused and prosecuted of witchcraft, Massachusetts definitely has a scary history. Owing to its name ‘Witch City’, the town has a lot of scary traditions and rituals from the past. The city organises an annual Halloween themed festival, which is a major tourist attraction apart from its Witch Museum and the Old Harbour, which are definitely the scariest places one can explore.
Sedlec Ossuary, Kutna Hora, Czech Republic
An extraordinarily scary chapel because of its unique exhibits and decorative pieces, Sedlec Ossuary is a gothic chapel decorated with garlands made of human skulls and bones, chandeliers made out of human ribs, a number of chalices and other decorative pieces. This place is one of the twelve World Heritage Sites in Czech Republic and sees an increase in the number of visitors during the Halloween holidays.
Dracula’s own city, Transylvania is the best place to spend the Halloween. The town has its own gothic traditions which have become its hallmark. One can visit Dracula’s castles, fortified and ruined churches and the famous fancy dress Halloween party in Transylvanian mountain retreat.
In Mexico, Halloween is called the Day of the Dead. Oaxaca is a town in Mexico where the people observe the Day of the Dead from 31st October through 3rd November. Every year, the streets are transformed and decorated with skulls and skeletons, people come out of their homes dressed in their traditional horror costumes, prepare the favourite food of their dead relatives and visit the cemeteries. The main square is decorated with lights, skeletons and flowers and people party here all night.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Known as “The Most Haunted City in America,” New Orleans is famous for its Halloween eve fun. One can go to a number of haunted tours through the French quarter or visit the Voodo and costume shops which sell innovative and scary costumes along with giving one a look into the history of the age old gothic traditions of Halloween. The city hosts a number of Street Parties, the most famous being the Bourbon street in the French Quarter. Other options for the visitors are Hermann-Grima house and the Voodoo Music Festival.
By- Shilpa Sharma