New Orleans is among the ideal Halloween destinations in the US. The city has a rich, long, and checkered history, with several distinct cultures contributing their beliefs, superstitions and ghost stories.
Ghostly Watering Holes
Would-be ghost hunters may be interested in New Orleans’ haunted bars. These include O’Flaherty’s Irish Channel Pub at 514 Toulouse Street, Alibi Bar at 811 Iberville Street, The Old Absinthe House at 240 Bourbon Street, and many others. Accounts vary from cold spots and ghost balls, to the sounds of wild parties in empty upper rooms. Some ghostly manifestations even occur in full view of former bar patrons.
Lovers of all things ghostly won’t go wanting at one of the hotels and B&Bs that are reportedly haunted in New Orleans. There is an element of showmanship present at some of these locations, like the Magnolia Mansion B&B.
Other locations include:
- The Provincial, located in the French Quarter, which was once a Confederate hospital during the Civil War.
- Lafitte Guest House at 21 Bourbon Street, where a girl, who died of yellow fever in room 21, reportedly appears in mirrors and plays with the lights.
- The Andrew Jackson Hotel at 919 Royal Street, where five boarding school children lost their lives in a fire in the 1700’s. Visitors have reported hearing these children playing in the dead of night in the abandoned courtyard.
- The Dauphine Orleans at 415 Dauphine Street has reportedly been haunted by the spirit of a dark-haired man in military uniform, as well as the specter of a dancing woman.
Halloween Night On Bourbon Street
Bourbon Street is especially wild on Halloween night. Costumes and masks are not only welcome, but encouraged. Come on down and soak up the authentic party atmosphere of America’s most gothic city.
Krewe of Boo Halloween Parade
Famous for Mardi Gras, nobody knows how to party like New Orleans. In fact, things get wilder than ever during the annual Halloween Parade. The parade is held on October 24th and is a benefit for the First Responder’s Fund of New Orleans, which helps police and firefighters return to their hurricane-damaged homes. Families are invited to attend, but should chose their viewing spot carefully to avoid the bars and rowdier parts of the route.
Boo At the Zoo
Near Halloween, Audubon Zoo becomes a scary place! Activities include a haunted house, trick-or-treating, and games ideal for families.
A Mourning Tour of the Hermann-Grima House
All year round, the Hermann-Grima House is a great way to get a taste of history. Visitors can see and experience what life was like for freed blacks living in New Orleans in the 18th and 19th centuries. From the middle of October to the middle of November, the house is decked out to reflect the mourning rituals and wakes that were customary, including a coffin in the parlor, black draperies, and a black wreath on the door.
The Voodoo Experience is an excellent opportunity to take in some of the famous music of New Orleans. The line-up is always impressive and the surrounding craft and food fair is not to be missed. While the music festival runs throughout the day, the music doesn’t stop when night falls. Shows continue into the night at the various clubs and venues within the city. This three-day festival is held in New Orleans City Park near the New Orleans Museum of Art.