It’s that time of the year again for all the young ghouls and goblins to enjoy some spooky fun! From pumpkin patches to Halloween movies, there are tons of fun things to do in Southern California and plenty that are not-too-scary family-friendly events. Check out the ultimate guide to the best Halloween events in Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Diego to experience with your family this Halloween season.
Best Halloween Events In Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Diego (2023)
Los Angeles Halloween Events
Sept. 28 – Oct. 31, 2023
For over 20 years, The Simpsons producer Rick Polizzi created an incredible Halloween display in the front yard of his home in Griffith Park. After closing for COVID in 2020, this year Boney Island is back in a brand new form at its new home at the Natural History Museum. For the first time, NHM visitors can explore the reimagined Nature Gardens transformed into a unique interactive experience for all ages. Fans of the neighborhood installation will recognize skeletons performing rope tricks, levitating through hoops, shadow puppetry, and more. The NHM is adding real fossils, live animal presentations, and trick-or-treating to the experience. Food trucks and photo ops will also be available.
Sept. 28 – Oct. 31, 2023
Returning for its second year is this immersive Halloween festival aboard the haunted Queen Mary in Long Beach, the perfect setting for spooky festivities! The event includes haunted trails, live entertainment, themed bars and lounges, carnival rides, and more. During the day, the dockside Shaq Diesel’s Pumpkin Patch offers a traditional pumpkin patch experience where kids of all ages can stop at one of the many trick-or-treat stations, check out pumpkin sculptures, or climb around on inflatable play zones.
Oct. 7 – 13, 2023
The Sanderson Sisters are uniting once again to put a spell on you! The El Capitan Theater is reviving this cult classic on the big screen to help fans celebrate the spooky season.
Oct. 14 – 31, 2023
Keep the Disney Halloween theme going with special screenings of Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Oct. 1 – 31, 2023
At the L.A. Zoo in Griffith Park, visitors can take in spooky views every day as the Halloween spirit takes over for 31 frightfully fun days. Weekends are even better since they provide extra goodies like outdoor live performances, animal pumpkin feedings, themed photo ops, educational areas, and more. Enjoy trick-or-treating stations with treats on the final two weekends of the month (October 21/22 and 28/29). Costumes are welcome!
Oct. 6 – 29, 2023
This three-week-long family-friendly event is back again at Descanso Gardens. The gardens take on a whole new look as thousands of carved pumpkins line the walkways after dark. In addition to creative jack-o’ lanterns, the event features unique art installations, fall food offerings, and more. This year’s event also includes exciting new displays like an expanded Día de los Muertos ofrenda altar where visitors can take a quiet moment to remember loved ones.
Sept. 30 – Oct. 31, 2023
Easily one of the best Halloween events Los Angeles has to offer, the Fall Harvest Festival at Underwood is a must-do for families with young kids. The farm will be transformed into a massive “Pumpkin Patch, Pick Your Own & Fall Harvest Experience” with activities such as rides, games, picture ops, live music, themed weekends, food vendors, and more. Be sure to book your weekend tickets in advance.
Sept. 29 – Oct., 31, 2023
This immersive experience is one of our favorite fun Halloween events. Showcasing thousands of hand-carved, illuminated pumpkins across the grounds of King Gillette Ranch in the Santa Monica Mountains, they’ve created a spectacular light display beneath the fall sky. Grab a hot beverage or seasonal drink from the Spookeasy bar or a festive bite to eat at the food trucks before you head out on the trail.
Sept. 16 – Nov. 5
Whether you’re a longtime fan of Bob Baker or this is your first show, don’t miss this hour-long, family-friendly boo-sical revue! The show features over one hundred spirited puppets, like glow-in-the-dark skeletons and Frankenstein’s monster.
Oct. 28 – 29, 2023
Discover the creatures of the deep sea at this Halloween-themed weekend event featuring a costume contest, a vampire magician, underwater pumpkin carving, creepy critters, and more.
Oct. 21-22, 28-29, 2023
Two weekends in October, visit this fantastic zoo at Moorpark College for some family-friendly Halloween activities. In addition to animal meet and greets and wildlife programs, visitors can also check out free kids crafts, a scavenger hunt, photo ops, food trucks, and trick-or-treating.
Select nights Sept. 7 – Oct. 31, 2023
Universal Studios Hollywood transforms after dark with scare zones and terrifying haunted houses based on classic scary movies and new favorites like Stranger Things and The Last of Us. You can also take a ride aboard the Terror Tram for more scares. This event is not for the faint of heart and is definitely geared toward teens and adults.
Oct. 31, 2023
Looking for something a little different this Halloween? If your big kids have outgrown trick or treating, why not spend October 31st enjoying a screening of The Phantom of the Opera starring Lon Chaney, accompanied by a special performance by organist Clark Wilson.
Select dates in October
The popular outdoor movie fest gets into the spirit of the season for the month of October with screenings of Halloween classics, including Disney’s Halloweentown celebrating its 25th anniversary and Hocus Pocus.
Select dates in September and October
Pack a picnic and pick your rooftop location across the city for an evening of movie classics. The September and October lineups include The Nightmare Before Christmas, Hocus Pocus, Monsters Inc., Coraline, Coco, and more.
Orange County Halloween Events
Sept. 1 – Oct. 31, 2023
This Halloween, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park will transform into kid-friendly, spooky theme parks. Main Street, USA, will greet you with festive displays of distinctively carved pumpkins, including the enormous Mickey pumpkin. Characters will be dressed in costumes, the Haunted Mansion becomes the Nightmare before Christmas, you’ll find lots of special Halloween-themed shows and parades, and don’t forget all the yummy sweets throughout the park.
Sept. 8 – Nov. 1, 2023
Get into the spirit of the season with this exciting game! You can pick up your game board and stickers at specific Downtown Disney retail locations for $9.99 plus tax. Have fun locating concealed Halloween décor, including Disney character-themed pumpkins, and sticking the accompanying stickers on your game board. Return your game board to a redemption site for a souvenir.
Daytime Thursdays – Sundays and select nights, Sept. 21 – Oct. 31
Enjoy a family-friendly fall festival for Halloween at Knott’s Spooky Farm. The park is revamped for Halloween with eerie surprises and festive-themed décor. Young kids ages 3-11 will enjoy checking out the various children’s Halloween activities, including trick-or-treating, throughout the stores and other structures in the town of Calico to gather tasty sweets. For the older kids, there is KNOTT’S SCARY FARM. This special ticketed event happens on select evenings through Halloween night.
Sept. 16 – Oct. 31, 2023
The Pumpkin Patch at Irvine Park Railroad in Orange County is enjoyable for the whole family. Come out and take advantage of the numerous kid-friendly activities with free admission. The massive patch offers train and hay wagon rides, bouncy houses, face painting, pumpkin ring throws, tasty cuisine, a hay maze, a haunted house, and, of course, pumpkin picking.
Sept. 16 – Oct. 31, 2023
For an authentic pumpkin patch experience, head to Tanaka Farms. At this u-pick pumpkin field, you can select the perfect pumpkins to bring home, take a wagon ride, and navigate the corn maze. Weekends include additional activities, like arts and crafts, festival games, farmer golf, and the famous pumpkin cannon.
Sept. 29 and select dates in October
Each evening on select dates, enjoy the Halloween festivities at Adventure City. Browse the “Trick-or-Treat Street” for free candy and other gifts, ride the Halloween-themed Express Train, enjoy a spooky Halloween scavenger hunt, and check out the Spooktacular Dance Party. Costumes are welcome!
Halloween Events in San Diego
Select dates, Sept. 16 – Oct. 29, 2023
LEGOLAND’s popular Halloween event is back again, bringing monstrous fun to the theme park. Guests will be treated to tons of candy, a brand-new show schedule, silly monster LEGO characters, and more.
Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays in October
Join the fun at the San Diego Zoo with a glowing party that’s sure to be wild! Live DJs, bubble shows, animal encounters, acrobatics, and more are all part of this spooktacular shindig. Kids ages 11 and under enter for free.
Select dates, Sept. 16 – Nov. 5, 2023
The Count’s Halloween Spooktacular at Sesame Place is one of the best places for young visitors to enjoy a fun, not-too-scary celebration. Visitors will delight in trick-or-treating around the park, Halloween-themed concerts and parades, the interactive Scarecrow Scavenger Hunt, and memorable picture opportunities with everyone’s most beloved monster friends decked out in costume!