Over 30 Creepy Mazes, Haunts, Tours, Escape Rooms And More For Halloween
Los Angeles is a great city for people who love Halloween, because there is just so much to do. We've got monster mazes, we've got pumpkin patches, we've got bizarre immersive theater performances, we've got escape rooms and we've even got haunts where you'll need to sign a waiver for admission. There's a little something for everyone, from the scaredy-cats to the bold, and it all starts as soon as mid-September. We'll be updating this list as more haunts pop up.
Universal Studios' Halloween Horror Nights
Universal has six new mazes this year and with the exception of two of them, they’re all based on iconic horror films. There's the The Exorcist, Freddy vs. Jason, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Blood Brothers, and Halloween: Hell Comes to Haddonfield. If you went last year, know that this year's Halloween maze is an all-new one that will have you hanging out with Michael Myers in the streets of Haddonfield and the local hospital. Another new maze will take us through the "Murder House," "Freak Show" and "Hotel" seasons of American Horror Story, while the Dark Christmas scare zone has been swapped for a full Krampus maze. We got a sneak peek at both the American Horror Story and Krampus mazes with HHN Creative Director John Murdy, so we can report that the AHS maze is the park's largest yet, with lots of very creepy easter eggs scattered throughout.
As for your scare zones, you're getting The Purge again, this year featuring nods to the latest in the dystopian franchise, Election Year. This year's Terror Tram will not be Purge-themed, however, as Eli Roth and Crypt TV instead present a clown-themed ride. According to the narrative, Harold Kappowitz, also known as "Koodles the Clown," was once a children's TV star. Unfortunately, he ultimately became into serial killer "Hollywood Harry," and somehow recruited several more clowns to terrorize tram passengers. Meanwhile, hip-hop dance troupe The Jabberwockeez will have several performances throughout the night. You'll also have access to Universal's permanent Walking Dead attraction, which begins in the hospital where show hero Rick Grimes awakens from a coma to find out the world has been overrun with zombies.
If you get a day/night pass, you can hang out at Harry Potter before the sun sets, then get scared after dark. We'd definitely recommend splurging for the front of the line pass, unless waiting in long lines is appealing to you.
Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights is located at 100 Universal City Plaza in Universal City. It runs September 16-November 5 from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. Tickets are $59 to $89, with optional add-ons.
Knott's Scary Farm
Knott's Scary Farm in Buena Park can be surprisingly spooky for a family-friendly park usually haunted by Snoopy the dog. There are two new mazes this year. Shadow Lands, which takes guests through an ancient Japanese temple and an afterlife full of demon samurais; and Red Barn, packed with animals that want to eat you. They also have six returning mazes: PARANORMAL, INC., Dead of Winter, Trick-or-Treat, The Tooth Fairy, Voodoo and The Gunslinger's Grave.
In addition to the mazes, there will also be a zombie-themed laser tag maze called Special Ops: Infected, and a VR experience called FearVR: 5150, in which guests virtually stroll through the strange Meadowbrook Institute via a Samsung GearVR. If you've attended in previous years, you may know that certain mazes have extra rooms, accessible only to those who hold a Skeleton Key. This year, all four skeleton key rooms will be standalone experiences. Visions is an augmented reality game (like Pokemon Go!) that turns various items in the Green Witch Museum into haunted relics. Prey is a hay maze one must navigate in near-darkness, using only a flickering lantern. Slasher takes guests through an '80s horror film, and ZOZO is an experience about a demon that can be conjured using a spirit board.
Scare zones also will return this year, including The Deadly 7 (the sins personified); Ghost Town Streets, where the park's slider troupe will perform; Fiesta de los Muertos; CarnEVIL and the all-new Hollow, inspired by The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. Elvira will back back to host her Danse Macabre show and if you like corny, politically incorrect jokes, they're bringing their annual pop culture show The Hanging back.
Knott's Scary Farm is located at 8039 Beach Blvd. in Buena Park. It runs September 22 through October 31, 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Thursdays and Sundays, and 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Tickets range from $40-52 for general admission, or $75+ for a Fright Lane Pass with a skeleton key.
While last year's "Boogeyman" theme introduced us to classic folklore beasts, this year's "Secret Society" indoctrinates us in a cloak and dagger club. Riders will go down one of two pathways after being judged by cult members and for the first time ever, some of ride will take place on foot, not on the wagon. Returning dark mazes are Ouija Origin of Evil: House of Shadows; Trick or Treat; and the usual haunted village favorites, including the roving monsters, the Scary-Go-Round, pumpkin carving, live shows, mediums and a food truck.
Los Angeles Haunted Hayride is located at 4730 Crystal Springs Dr. in Griffith Park. It runs from October 1 through Halloween. Tickets are $32 to $60.
Creep Los Angeles
Creep popped up last year, offering something new to L.A.'s Halloween scene. It's not just a maze, as the monsters of Creep can get very close, and you'll be going inside in groups of only eight at a time. But don't worry: these monsters are not aggressive the way the monsters of Heretic House and Blackout are, just a little, well, creepy. This year's show, Entry, is even better than last year's. It takes us into the demented mind of artist Erebus Burwyck, who disappeared in 1974, spawning a cult-like following. You'll begin in a dark and moody lounge where the atmosphere will be eerie from the get-go, but you can settle your nerves with a drink from one of the bartenders. Perhaps you'll meet one of the bar's eccentric guests. They might tell you a story, invite you for a dance, or even treat you to a show that'll make you blush. Then, you'll enter the maze, which reveals Burwyck's past and present via a series of bizarre Lynchian vignettes. Prepare to spend about 90 minutes here, and be aware that you may be touched or moved about. You will not be touched harshly. It may be a little sexy. And remember, once you enter the darkness, the darkness enters you.
Creep L.A. is located at 2136 N. San Fernando Rd. in Glassell Park. It runs September 16 through October 31 on select dates. Tickets are $40-50. Definitely buy your tickets and reserve your time slots online.
Reign of Terror
Reign of Terror is massive, growing every year. This year it will feature 95 separate rooms including themes like The Asylum, Quarantine, Blood Manor and Infected. The haunt is constructed and run by volunteers and the funds from each year are donated to Conejo Recreation and Parks District. If you feel like going through with the lights on, they do offer two of those tours on October 22 and 29 from 1 to 4 p.m. Those are only $5.
Reign of Terror is located in the Janss Marketplace at 197 N. Moorpark Rd. in Thousand Oaks. It runs October 7 through October 31 on select dates from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays, and from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. on weekends. $19-30.
Motel 6 Feet Under
This volunteer-run Anaheim haunt won the favor of many Halloween enthusiasts for its innovative scares. As the name might suggest, you're checking into a terrible motel that would certainly only get one star on Yelp.
Motel 6 Feet Under is located at 1960 S. Anaheim Way in Anaheim, and runs October 7 through November 5 on select dates from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weeknights and 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Tickets are $15 to $25, with deals on certain nights.
The Witches' Ball: A Halloween Bacchanal
Matt Dorado of Drunken Devil, the folks behind last year's party and dark maze Sinner's Soiree, decided they'd rather do horror-themed parties than traditional dark mazes. After their immersive event L'Enfer: An Infernal Discotheque in May, they're back with a Halloween party titled The Witches' Ball. As the name implies, they're taking us into a black mass with a nod to 60s and 70s exploitation films. "Think garish, Dario Argento-style lighting, pulpy noir atmosphere, and an unapologetic sense of camp, kitsch, and theatricality," the Drunken Devil says.
Performers include DJ Chris Bowen (Akbar, The Eagle L.A.), burlesque dancer and aerialist Scarlette Fox, dancers The Rigomortettes with acid doom rock band Old Blood, puppeteer Matt Scott and Rasputin's Marionettes, and Pretty Things Peepshow burlesque performer Go-Go Amy. Guests will also enjoy Stolen Rum cocktails and other boozy treats, a scare zone, horror installations and tarot readings.
The Witches' Ball is on Saturday, October 29 from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. at a secret location on the outskirts of downtown Los Angeles only to be revealed to ticket holders. $60.
Rotten Apple 907
This Burbank home haunt has been going on for 26 years. It began as a birthday party and turned into the endearing obsession of Preston and Diane Meyer, who convert their yard into a fantastical horror theme every October. This year's theme is The Not So Enchanted Forest, and if you really want to see the kind of breathtaking work true love and passion for Halloween (plus a little ingenuity) can do, this is the haunt for you.
Rotten Apple is located at 907 N. California St. in Burbank. It runs October 22, 23, 29, 30 and 31 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. It's free, but any donations will go to the Volunteers of Burbank Animal Shelter.
The 17th Door
The 17th Door is not for everyone. This haunt tells the story of a girl named Paula. Last year, she was a freshman in college, suffering from an eating disorder sparked by a childhood full of bullying, and myriad other mental and social issues. This year, Paula is a sophomore and it doesn't look like things are lightening up as promotional videos show a pregnant Paula reaching for an ominous wire coat hanger. While the actors in this haunt won't necessarily physically torment you, the subject matter is pretty intense and actors may touch you. Last year, someone rubbed a dead fish on my arm and a clown stuffed me in a locker and licked my face. So, fair warning. If none of that bothers you, this Tustin haunt is back with the same safe word: "mercy."
The 17th Door is located at The Market Place, 2856 El Camino Rd. in Tustin. It runs September 23 through October 31 on select dates. $22-27.
Zombie Joe's Urban Death
Zombie Joe's Urban Death has been going strong for the past several years. They've got a knack for putting on an artful show that manages to get under your skin without relying exclusively on campy gore. Make your way through a haunted maze and into their intimate black box theater for a series of disturbing vignettes.
Zombie Joe's Theatre is located at 4850 Lankershim Blvd. in North Hollywood. It runs October 7 through November 5. $15.
The Nightmare Before Christmas Live
Danny Elfman himself will play Jack Skellington in this screening of The Nightmare Before Christmas at the Hollywood Bowl, accompanied by a live orchestra. Elfman will be joined by original cast members Paul Reuben, Catharine O'Hara and Ken Page. The Bowl will be converted into Halloween Town for the three-day run, with costume contests and other interactive activities.
The Hollywood Bowl is located at 2301 N. Highland Ave. in Hollywood. Tickets are 35+.
Unbound Productions returns with three new, short immersive plays for Wicked Lit, a consistently awesome Halloween event. This year's works include H.P Lovecraft's From Beyond, Anansi and the Demons and Ellen Glasgow's The Shadowy Third. The scenery will set the mood for these three classic horror tales, as all the action takes place in a mausoleum and cemetery.
Wicked Lit is located at Mountain View Mausoleum and Cemetery at 2300 N. Marengo Ave. in Altadena. Shows run October 1-November 12. Tickets are $35-75.
L.A. County's only maritime haunt always offers a full night of activities. This year boasts six different mazes, including B40, Soulmate, Lullaby, Deadrise, Circus Big Top Terror, and the new Intrepid, which explores the legend of the ship's creator and protector, the Iron Master. If that does not entice you, there will also be sideshow performances, paintball, a 4-D horror experience, and lots of themed food and drinks. And if you get too scared, you can book yourself a hotel room and hopefully not run into any of the Queen Mary's other ghosts. Just kidding, or are we?
The Queen Mary's Dark Harbor is located at 1126 Queen Hwy in Long Beach. Tickets start at $20.
Devoted has been going on for a while, but newcomers to the immersive performance series will be able to enjoy their October show even if they missed the beginning. Devoted revolves around Cara Darling, a young woman who is in love with you—or at least obsessed with you. I first encountered Cara at ScareLA, where she met me in a secluded corner and braided my hair with ribbons and told me about what it means to really love someone, right before she offered me a cup of her blood. She soon sent me a letter and invited me on a second date in the parking lot of a shopping center, where I met two of her creepy friends. They brought me to Cara's house, where we made dinner together (it was a little Dr. Lecter, to be honest) and she let me in on some rather unsettling aspects of her childhood. You can meet Cara for yourself, as the next chapter takes place in October—though it may be more "intense, dark and unsettling" than your average Tinder date, creators say.
Devoted takes place October 21-30 in a secret location. $37.
For a spooky, sexy time, try Gorlesque's "Paradise." It begins as a walk through the late Dr. Weltschmerz's own idea of Utopia. Before his death, the doctor's quest was to create the most perfect women, who you'll have the chance to meet. But don't expect his creations to be damsels in distress. According to organizers, the 20-30 minute event will not rely on jump scares, but instead special effects that “distort the perception gravity and reality, affected visibility and balance and leaving the guest feeling appropriately unsettled.”
Gorlesque is located at 224 E. 11th Street, Ste. 501 in the Fashion District.. It runs October 19-30. $30-40.
The latest from Screenshot Productions, this immersive, interactive haunt has you navigating through a bizarre world using an actual rope, which leads to different places depending on what choices you make. You can break the curse and escape, or maybe you'd like to stay for a bit as its overlord. Either way, you'll go in alone, and the entire experience will take 45-60 minutes. Screenshot's performances are consistently awesome, with even their darker shows offering a chance for introspection and beauty.
The Rope is located at The Think Tank Gallery, 939 Maple Ave. in downtown L.A. It runs October 11,12,18,19, 25, 26 and November 1-4. $65.
Sinister Pointe has creepy shows all year long, but for Halloween, they're running Fear the Mark, a four-part interactive haunt. Once you enter the haunt, a spirit guide will direct you through a portal into one of four horrifying dimensions. In each, there lies a creature called a Brander, who may attempt to mark you and trap you in that dimension forever. It's not particularly clear what that means, but we think it means you should avoid it. If you are feeling adventurous, you can buy a ticket to access all four dimensions.
Sinister Pointe is located at 1851 W. Orangethorpe Ave. in Fullerton and runs October 7-November 12.
To be honest, we're not entirely certain what Heretic House is doing. Everything they do is shrouded in mystery until you show up at a random address and find yourself being nailed into a coffin or tied to a chair while someone cuts off your cardigan with a pair of scissors. Heretic House is a full-contact, extreme, sign-a-waiver haunt with various shows revolving around assorted terrors, such as sleep paralysis, ritualistic cults or claustrophobia. They have shows planned for September and October, the details of which are murky, but if you're feeling brave, check out their website here and follow them on Facebook here to get involved. I have personally survived Heretic's torments twice and find them to be quite delightful. You can read my accounts here and here.
RISE of Jack o'Lanterns
If mazes aren't your thing, RISE offers 5,000 beautifully carved pumpkins. Some have allusions to pop culture, and some are arranged into magnificent dragons and other towering sculptures. You'll have two changes to see RISE, as the traveling show will take appear in both downtown Los Angeles and Pomona this autumn. Guests can rove the exhibit at their leisure while a seasonally appropriate ambient soundtrack plays.
RISE of the Jack O'Lanterns will be at the L.A. Convention Center, 1201 S. Figueroa St. in downtown L.A., October 13 to 16, and at the Fairplex, 1101 W. McKinley Ave., in Pomona October 27 to 30. Tickets are $26 for adults, $22 for children.
The Tension Experience
This 2.5-hour immersive performance consists of 24 rooms, each one leading you deeper and deeper into the world of the mysterious O.O.A. Institute, which is definitely a cult (despite what they tell you). The masterminds of the haunt—horror director Darren Bousman and writer Clint Sears—have been disseminating tales of the O.O.A. via bizarre Internet forums, threatening phonecalls and creepy interactive experiences all over town for months. The culmination is this part-haunt, part-escape room, part-theatre experience that aims to unnerve its guests while forcing them to be present. It's also highly interactive, meaning each guest will have a different experience based on what choices they make and what clues they do or do not find. (Read our interview with the creator here).
The Tension Experience is located at a secret location in Boyle Heights. Tickets are $125.
Six Flags Fright Fest
This Valencia theme park is offering six mazes, including the new end-of-the-world-themed Aftermath 2 and returning mazes Toyz of Terror 3D and Chupacabra, as well as several scare zones, such as their all-new Suicide Squad area. It's also your chance to ride a handful of their coasters in the dark, and in between, you can enjoy one of their spooky sideshows.
Six Flags Fright Fest is located at 26101 Magic Mountain Pkwy in Valencia and runs September 17-October 30. Prices start at $54.99.
BOO at the Zoo
For Halloween, the L.A. Zoo offers a corn maze, shadow puppet shows in caves, crafts and other family-friendly activities. Plus, you can schedule a meet-and-greet with creepy crawlies like snakes, scorpions and spiders, and check out a handful of animal feedings.
Boo at the Zoo is located at 5333 Zoo Drive in Los Angeles. It runs October 1-31.
Mr. Bones' Pumpkin Patch
Ol' Mr. Bones has been around since 1987. He is returning to Culver City, but he's also opening up a new village in Malibu. Expect pumpkin houses, straw mazes, crafts, a petting zoo, pony rides and other fun stuff fit for all ages. Plus, it's a great place to buy your own pumpkin.
Mr. Bones Pumpkin Patch is located at 10100 Jefferson Blvd. in Culver City and 23575 Civic Center Way in Malibu, October 1-30. Entrance is $5-15.
Van Oaks Cemetery
For a fun thrill that's appropriate for all ages (and those of you who cringe at even the thought of a monster jumping out at you), Van Oaks Cemetery offers a free yard display with theatrical lighting, effects, animatronics and sounds. The piece is inspired by Disneyland's Haunted Mansion.
VanOaks Cemetery is open October 16-31 from sundown until 10 p.m. at 5822 Norwich Ave. in Sherman Oaks. Free.
An Evening of Competitive Murder
Wise Guys Events brings us a "competitive haunted house" at Heritage Square Museum. Each of the six houses has a different game inside that groups of 10 will play at a time. You can play each game as many times as you want, and in any order. There will be live music, a cash bar and, most importantly, free parking.
An Evening of Competitive Murder is on Sunday, October 30 at the Heritage Square Museum, located at 3800 Homer Street in Los Angeles. Tickets are $36..
Paramount Ghost Tour
Paramount is hosting an after-hours tour of the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, featuring sordid stories from behind the scenes. Guests will have a glass of champagne at dusk, then explore the backlot, soundstages and cemetery while begin regaled with spooky tales. The tour is 2.5 hours long and you will be on foot. You’ll also get candy and popcorn.
Paramount Pictures After Dark Tour: Tales from the Other Side runs on Fridays and Saturdays, September-November 5. Tickets are $99.
Fallen Saints is an immersive play that takes place in a foreboding mortuary in Victorian England. Meet a series of off-kilter characters before joining a medium in a seance. She seeks to put the spirits to rest, but someone unexpected answers her call. This experience is about 30 minutes, and you will stand and walk for a short portion of it.
Force of Nature's Fallen Saints is located at The Actors Group at 2813 W. Magnolia Blvd. in Burbank. The show runs October 7-29. Tickets are $15.
Beware the Dark Ream
If you're on a budget, you can get into this haunted castle for free with a can of food to be donated to the Santa Clarita Valley Food Pantry. Beware the Dark Realm has a medieval castle theme, complete with a dungeon. You can take a tour when it's full of monsters and other unsavory types, or you can take a non-scare version an hour before the haunt officially opens.
Beware the Dark Realm is located at 28621 Sugar Pine Way in Santa Clarita. It runs October 21-28.
Trap House is located at Think Tank Gallery at 939 Maple St. in downtown L.A. The art show is free, the escape room and events require tickets. The show runs October 9-31, closed on Tuesdays. Read more here.
Horror Made Here
Head up to the Warner Bros. studio in Burbank for a tour of horror sets and stages from the likes of The Exorcist and HBO's True Blood, plus a screening of either The Conjuring or its sequel, The Conjuring 2, complete with concessions. You'll also get to check out their "Stage 48" attraction, featuring props from the Conjuring franchise.
Horror Made Here is located at Warner Brothers Studio at 3400 W. Riverside Dr. in Burbank on Friday, October 28 (The Conjuring) and Saturday, October 29 (The Conjuring 2). Tickets are $75..
Field of Screams
Field of Screams turns a stadium into a horror fest containing five mazes and a ride that mimics being trapped in your own coffin well before your time. Maze themes include Insanity, Descent, Inferno, Hunted and a 3-D maze called Illusions.
Field of Screams is located at 500 Diamond Dr. in Lake Elsinore. It runs September 30-October 1. Tickets are $15-30..
Alone returned late in the season, announcing that they would only pop up for one night in a location that will only be revealed to ticket holders. The Enola Foundation, the secret society that serves as the foundation for ALONE's many immersive performances, said this will be some kind of ceremony, but the details remain murky. The event is currently sold out, though there is a wait list. Read about our previous experience with ALONE here.
Alone is located in a secret location. It takes place on October 30 at 9 p.m. Tickets are $75..
Trap House is two things at once: it's a grisly art show, and it's a 30-minute escape room in which you must uncover the dark secret hidden within the recording studio of an outlandish punk musician. Throughout the month, the space will also host a series of macabre events such as comedy shows, Serial Killer Speed Dating, and the aforementioned immersive experience, The Rope.
The Hyde Street Massacre
This walk-through maze has guests entering the home of Otis Hatcher, a Halloween-loving kid who grew up to be a murderous adult after his neighbors refused to accept his quirky ways. You can buy a ticket that allows you to pass through with just startles and boos, or a more extreme ticket that allows the denizens inside the haunt to touch you or even pick you up!
The Hyde Street Massacre is located at 38801 Los Corralitos Rd. in Temecula. It runs September 30-October 31. Tickets are $10-20.
Esotouric Bus Adventures
You can learn a lot from Kim Cooper and Richard Schave. Their brains are chockfull of L.A. history, from architectural wonders to the macabre. In October, they’ll be hosting three tours that might suit your fancy. October 15’s Echo Park Book of the Dead tour explores the dark side of a favorite neighborhood. In a Lonely Place: Raymond Chandler’s Los Angeles on October 22 visits the haunts of the iconic author. And then there's The Real Black Dahlia on October 29, which, of course, delves into the unsolved murder of Elizabeth Short, whose body was found cut in half near Leimert Park in 1947.
Esotouric takes place as various places around Los Angeles. Check for tickets on their website here. $58.
Remember that scene in the very first season of American Horror Story where a tour bus pulls up in front of the Murder House to talk about the gory things that occurred there? That’s Dearly Departed. They offer their macabre tours all year long, but they kick it into high gear for Halloween. You can go on their walking Ghost Tour, their signature Tragical History Tour, or a tour of famous horror movie filming locations.
Dearly Departed is located at 6603 Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood, but their tours take place all over Los Angeles on various dates. Prices vary.
You can play escape rooms any time, but there are some spooky ones that are perfect for Halloween. Escape Hotel is the largest in the country, with 10 total rooms (five of them are open now). The lobby is very The Shining, and rooms like "Daycare" and "Witchcraft" are appropriately eerie. The Bunker Experience in Pasadena combines a post-Apocalyptic escape room with a maze full of monsters. There's also The Basement in Sylmar, where you must escape a serial killer's house, starting with, well, the basement. 60Out in Westwood has The Mystery of Senator Payne in West L.A. and and Doctor Psycho in East Hollywood. Maze Rooms, with locations spread out around L.A., has horror-themed rooms like Castle, Portal, Demon Hunter and Motel. The 13th Room in Pomona is suitably creepy, and offers dinner package. Escape Room LA in downtown L.A. has The Theatre, from which you must free a ghost. Get The F Out's Virus Room in Burbank will crush you if you don't formulate an antidote in time. Enigma Room in West Hollywood has the creepy The Will and Crime Scene, while nearby Room Escape LA has the Zombie Lab. Escapedom in Westwood has you escaping a serial killer's Lair or venturing into the Den of Occult. There's The Haunted Recording Studio in North Hollywood, as well as PanIQ Room's Insane Asylum. Crossroads in Anaheim has a unique game that put you in your very own horror movie: each member of your six-person team is given an archetype (the jock, the virgin, etc.) and must each get out of their own room before trying to escape the larger puzzle. Nearby Puzzlemazement has The Dollhouse and Paranomal. Countdown near University Park has a Krampus Room. And in downtown L.A., you'll find Trapped in a Room with a Zombie, which is exactly what it sounds like.
Editor's Note: Yes, we know Delusion isn't on this list. That's because it's totally sold out! But if we hear about an extended run or new batches of tickets, we will let you know!