Halloween may be October 31 for the rest of the country, but in Orlando, the Halloween season kicks off in September. The theme parks at Universal Orlando, Sea World and Disney’s Magic Kingdom each offer special Halloween party events throughout the months of September and October. While the parties are very diverse, they share some of the same qualities.
Halloween parties at Universal and Disney require a separate ticket for admission. Buying a park pass isn’t enough; you’ll need to spend a little extra to attend one of these private events. Some parties offer after-hours access to select rides and attractions; all parties offer characters, sights and shows you won’t see at any other time. The parties are vastly different in terms of their overall feeling and the age groups they are intended for. Choosing the best Halloween party for your group is a matter of evaluating each event and selecting the one that suits the ages and interests of your family the best.
Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party:
One of the most popular events of the year at the Magic Kingdom, Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party is aimed at families traveling with children. While the Disney villains are out in force, strolling the park, hosting dance parties and signing autographs, the scares here are minor—or nonexistent.
Guests attending the party can don costumes, trick or treat or get extra time on some of the park’s most popular rides. It is not unusual to see entire families dressed in costume, trick or treating and having fun. The Haunted Mansion takes center stage for this event, with live characters, extra spooky décor and a spooky but fun ambience. If you enjoy the Magic Kingdom during a “regular” day, then the Halloween party is well worth a visit; many guests make this party a yearly event.
Sea World’s Halloween Spooktacular:
Sea World’s Halloween event is aimed at families with small children; the under-10 crowd will get the most from the offerings here. From cookie decorating to trick or treating and character greetings, this gentle and not scary party is a must-do for the preschool crowd.
The Halloween Spooktacular begins at noon on select days, allowing even the youngest preschoolers a chance to enjoy the fun before bedtime. Visit Abby Cadabby’s interactive Halloween Adventure, or trick or treat at designated stations throughout the park. Look for friendly fish, mermaids and other sea creatures when you head to this kid-friendly shindig. The Halloween Spooktacular is free with your park admission.
Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando:
This event features special effects and costuming that is truly movie worthy. Halloween Horror Nights is one of the most intricate and well planned Halloween events in Florida—or anywhere else. This event is designed for teens and adults; it is extremely scary, and children under the age of 13 will not be admitted. Parents are strongly urged to leave the kids at home and come out for a scary good time.
The special effects and costumes are gory and scary at Halloween Horror Nights; this event is a “don’t miss” if you enjoy a good scare or a frightening movie. Hundreds of performers take to the streets with one mission—to scare park guests. The 21st annual Halloween Horror Nights season opens in September, and features themeing surrounding the idea of “luck”. You can be sure that all the luck with be bad on these dismal but thrilling evenings at Universal Orlando.
Remember if you are planning on visiting any of these theme parks in October, it is highly recommended that you make an Orlando hotel reservation prior to heading out on your vacation. While October is considered the off season for tourist, a lot of guests still flock to Orlando on the weekends.