Halloween is right around the corner and there are some seriously spooktacular events happening throughout the length and breadth of Ireland — it’s time to get booking.
Here in Ireland, Halloween holds a very important weight in our yearly event calendar. According to Irish folklore, Halloween draws its roots from the Celtic tradition of Samhain, which marks the end of the harvest season and the start of the New Year.
A time of year when the veil between the realms of the living and the dead is thought to be at its thinnest, October 31 brings with it a whole host of activities for us to mark the occasion with. We’ve already provided a rundown of the very best family-friendly events on the horizon, and the top pumpkin picking location, but here are some for the grown ups…
1 October – 2 November
The biggest and most terrifying Halloween event in Ireland, the tormented and twisted minds of Farmaphobia return this year with five incredibly creepy haunts spread across over 100 acres of fear in Fordstown, county Meath. The attractions include a Cult land where you can prepare to be sacrificed by the Children of the Forest, a town full of clowns, Purge Might, Momma’s Murder Maze, and a Zombie Morgue.
The Nightmare Realm
7 October – 2 November
Since their inception back in 2009 in the town of Tralee, The Nightmare Realm have been terrorising the people of Ireland from Kerry to Cork and now to Marys Lane City Market in Dublin, this year marks their 13th Halloween in business. Ireland’s largest indoor scream park, an evening at the ‘No.1 Haunt in the World’ is sure to be quite the horrifying experience. Booking is open now.
Silver Scream Halloween Season at Pálás and Light House Cinema
Nothing screams spooky season like a scary movie marathon, and the folks at Galway’s Pálás cinema and Dublin’s Light House are bringing all the classics out of the archives for a limited time only. Bringing cinema’s most iconic movie monsters back to the big screen, the season kicks off with a special screening of Dracula, the lineup also include Bride of Frankenstein, Creature from the Black Lagoon, and many more.
Púca Festival 2022, Trim/Athboy, Meath
Music, fire, feasting and merriment in Ireland’s Ancient East — Púca Festival returns in celebration of the Celtic New Year with the spirits of Halloween. Saluting the spirits of the season through folklore, food, myth and music, this festival reopens the pathways of reflection and celebration carved by travellers over 2,000 years ago. The incredible lineup of events includes comedy from Joanne McNally and David O’Doherty, music from Imelda May and The Academic, a live podcast from Blindboy, and much more.
Bram Stoker Festival, Dublin
The Bram Stoker Festival is bringing The Northern Lights to Dublin this year with a mesmerising, immersive light and sound experience which you’ll never forget. A free spectacle that will create a spectacular vision of the Northern Lights in Dublin Castle’s Upper Courtyard, its lush visuals and harmonious soundscape will bring the wonder and joy of an aurora borealis to people in cities who would never typically get a glimpse of this majestic vision. The full programme also includes tours, comedy, theatre, screenings and much more.
A great Samhain gathering that sees the Walled City come alive with ancient spirits just in time for the Awakening. Celebrating all things folklore, feasting, and festivity, Derry reopens the pathways of the Halloween travellers of the past, and has been doing so for the past 35 years. From zombie apocalypses and hay trails to houses of horrors and spooky tours, check out the full schedule here.
CON MÓR at Macnas HQ
29 & 30 October
This year, the Macnas crew are switching things up a little. At their HQ on Fisheries Field, Galway, you’ll find the giant CON MÓR perched on the banks of the River Corrib, and it’s said that this giant is so big, you could even park a car in one of its nostrils. For the weekend that’s in it, Macnas are asking kids and grown ups alike to make, find or bring along a feather over the Halloween Bank Holiday Weekend with their message of hope attached to the feather, and give it to Con Mór.