Looking for a good scare this Halloween? Check out these hair-raising, scream-inducing houses of horror around New York City. By Sarah Shaker.
Do abandoned hospitals freak you out? This so-called “fully immersive, multi-sensory” experience in Williamsburg is sure to spook you, as it takes place in an old hospital ward. Following the works of Lewis Carroll for an Alice-like experience, explore hidden scenes around the ward in a small group of 15 or less — if you dare. Thankfully, there are expertly crafted cocktails to enjoy on the premises to ease your nervous excitement or help you to recover from your journey.
Nightmare: New York
Every year, Nightmare sets a scary stage with a new theme for its haunted house. For the first time in the production’s 11-year history, Nightmare has drawn inspiration from the haunts, horror stories and urban legends of the Big Apple itself. From the legend of Cropsey on Staten Island, to alligators in the subways and Sandy-made super rats, this year’s production reminds New Yorkers that some of your scariest nightmares might just be in your own backyard.
Just a block from the Hudson River, you can walk through the manor and meet its insane inhabitants. Blood Manor has been ranked among the best haunted houses in the world, making it a must-visit. The 5,000-square-foot attraction embodies numerous passageways specifically designed to maximize one’s fears as the actors get in your face. For an extra fear-inducing dose of fun, you can visit the manor on one of its designated “Touch Me Thursdays,” allowing limited physical contact from the inhabitants of the manor.
Blackout Haunted House
Ready to go at it alone? Visitors at Blackout are required to wander through this haunted house without a friend to hand hold. After signing a waiver and being instructed on a safety word to get you out of too frightful situations, you’ll bravely be armed with a flashlight and mask to navigate your way through violent situations. Tight dark spaces and intensely violent and sexual situations are not for the faint of heart. Enter at your own risk.
Ghosts of New York Walking Tour
New York City is haunted. Forget staged scenes with actors, fake blood and prop weapons when you can experience where the real ghosts are around the city. Ghosts of New York offers walking tours around our most haunted neighborhoods, detailing the deep, dark history of neighbors past. “Edgar Allan Poe and His Ghostly Neighbors of Greenwich Village” is one of the most popular tours, taking you in search of the spirits of Aaron Burr, several Edgar Allan Poe sites and Washington Square Park, known as the most haunted area in America.
The Gravesend Inn
For the kid who loves a good scare, The Gravesend Inn in Brooklyn provides a thrilling theme-park-quality Halloween attraction for all ages. Returning for another year, this hi-tech haunted hotel put on by Theatreworks (City Tech’s resident theatrical troupe) has been scaring the socks off kids and adults since 1999.