Categories: things to do

Although Halloween will be very different this year, there are still plenty of activities planned to deliver some epic fun without the epic trek.

There are activities to suit those seeking a ‘ghostly fright’ through to family days spent picking pumpkins or visiting Northern Ireland’s museums and attractions. 

Event organisers across Northern Ireland have been working hard to deliver fun-filled activities for all the family, with safety at the heart of each itinerary. There may be restrictions on numbers and social distancing protocols will be strictly adhered to but there is no limit on the fun you can have.

Here are some activities to enjoy this Halloween.

Where’s Wally Spooky Museum Search - Armagh Observatory & Planetarium, County Armagh

From October 28 – November 4, Wally, the world’s most elusive children’s book character will be visiting Armagh Observatory and Planetarium. Families will be able to hunt for Wally amongst the exhibition area, as well as spell out a spooky phrase with letters hidden alongside mini Wally standees. Children will receive a special ‘I found Wally’ bookmark on completion of the search. This activity is free however pre-booking is essential as visitor capacity is reduced to ensure social distancing. This experience is included in your activities when you book into one of their dome shows.

Pickie Pumpkin Patch, Bangor, County Down

This Halloween you are invited to the Pickie Fun Park to explore the pumpkin patch and hop on board the Pickie Puffer Ghost Train with the zombie conductor. After a ghostly train ride, head over to the Halloween pumpkin patch. Once you have found your perfect pumpkin, you can take it to the designated carving area where staff will help you create your work of art. Once complete, take your pumpkin home and put it on display to ward off the Halloween spirits! Event dates and times: October 17 & 18, October 24 – October 31 at 11am to 3pm each day. Each ticket includes one pumpkin and an all-day wristband for the Pickie Fun Park attractions. Online booking essential. 

Half-term Harvest - Castle Ward, Downpatrick, County Down

From October 19 to November 1, enjoy Castle Ward’s woodland playground with the kids, reopening for two weeks only this Half-term. Or enjoy the beautiful autumn scenery with the family on The Forager’s Trail. Starting in the Stableyard and following the signs, you can become an animal for the day and enjoy the hunt for acorns, berries and all of autumn’s bounty. Also, take a lovely family photo by the pumpkin patch to remember a great day out. Learn more about what’s on at Castle Ward and book online in advance.

Ghosts of Riverside Past - Riverside Theatre, Coleraine, County Londonderry

For the first time ever, The Riverside Theatre will be summoning the ghosts of its past back to life for three horror-filled nights this Halloween. Ghouls and apparitions from the dark, eerie alcoves of the theatre will haunt the grounds and disseminate their harrowing tales. Strange figures with tales of woe and distressed spirits with grudges to bear in limbo will come out to terrorise the living. These outdoor promenade experiences run from October 29-31. Please wear suitable outdoor clothing and footwear. Book tickets in advance.  

Paranormal Investigations and Jail of Horror - Crumlin Road Gaol, Belfast

This Halloween, one of Belfast’s most haunted buildings, Crumlin Road Gaol is opening its cells for some spine-chilling, nail biting events, which are guaranteed to make even the bravest of visitors jump. The visitor attraction will be going all out for its eagerly anticipated Halloween line-up, featuring the ‘Jail of Horror’, an intense scare attraction and a ‘2hr Paranormal Investigation’ ghost haunting experience. Launching on Thursday October 15 and finishing on Halloween Night, these events are the perfect way to get your annual fill of all things scary and paranormal. Booking is essential and please check age restrictions.

Let’s Go Hydro 2nd Annual Halloween Festival, Belfast

It's pumpkin season, and Let's Go Hydro is back with an even bigger and better Halloween Festival from October 24-31. This includes Ireland's biggest inflatable Halloween display with five-metre pumpkins, seven-metre ghosts and so much more. There will also be a pumpkin patch, tasty food, wagon tours/kiddie train rides around the resort with story-telling in the spooky Tipi. Kids can play on the hay pyramid and slides, enjoy the petting zoo and pony hops on the space hoppers. There is also a giant bouncy castle for the little ones and s’mores! The Aqua Park will be included for those who want one last splash and there’s a 4pm daily drive-in cinema with Halloween family favourites showing every day. There will also be a fireworks display on Halloween night. Book tickets in advance.

Fermanagh Fun Farm Halloween Festival, Lisbellaw, County Fermanagh

Join the Halloween Festival at Fermanagh Fun Farm on October 17, 18, 24, 25, 30 & 31. Activities include riding the ghost train to the pumpkin patch. You can collect your pumpkin and bring it into the pumpkin carving shed to design and create your own lantern. Participate in the treasure hunt to find all the ghostly spirits across the farm, finishing in the ‘graveyard’ – are you brave enough to enter? Visitors can also feed the animals some Halloween treats and visit pets’ corner for a handling session.  Book tickets in advance. 

Fulton’s Pumpkin Patch, Artigarvan, County Tyrone

From October 17-31, Fulton’s family farm will be hosting its popular Halloween activities. This year there’s a new addition with a ‘spooktrail’ through the maize maze and the pumpkin patch will have special varieties of pumpkins from all over the world. In addition, there will be a few ‘Fright Nights’ for over 14s. While you’re there, don’t forget to say hello to the small animals who live at the farm. Please note weekdays are by appointment only, Saturday and Sunday are open to the public. Visit Fulton’s Family Farm on Facebook for more information. 

Book tickets in advance. Tickets are subject to availability. Check age restrictions before booking. 

Some things to remember:

1. Some new booking systems have been introduced 

It is best to double-check any locations you visit as they may have introduced new measures and booking systems. 

2. Visit safely with social distancing  

Social distancing measures of one-metre plus are in place across Northern Ireland, to ensure the safety of everyone. Plan your visits in line with ongoing restrictions.  

3. Plan your itinerary  

You can take your trip towards new adventures without getting a flight, with packed explorations to discover in Northern Ireland. It is strongly recommended to plan your itinerary and book in advance to avoid disappointment. With stunning mountain and coastal walks and chances to explore the fresh air, check out local council websites for carpark updates before you start your adventure. 

4. Mandatory Face Coverings  

Since 10 August, the use of face coverings in certain indoor settings, such as shops or shopping centres, has been mandatory. This includes most attractions. You must also wear a face covering on public transport.