I have never been a true fan of Halloween when I was a child, but I have to admit that since I have been living in London, everything that happens in this city has infected me quite a lot. Shops, supermarkets, even small businesses like barbers, do not fail to decorate with pumpkins and skeletons. London is filled with parties, themed parties, scary routes on the tracks of Jack the Ripper or ghosts. And from 5 pm on October 31st, you go from house to house to ask for a treat or a treat! So, if you’re on Halloween in London with kids, don’t forget to bring a themed costume!
I have selected some themed family events for you. Let’s see what happens in the city together.
PS: even if you are not in London on Halloween, there are many workshops starting the week before, which is half term and it’s holiday.
HALLOWEEN IN LONDON WITH KIDS 2019: THE COMPLETE GUIDE
The Bloody Tower at the Tower of London
The Tower of London, where over the centuries executions and tortures have taken place, is the right place to meet the ghosts of the past.
Included in the admission ticket, don’t miss the Bloody Tower, the site of the alleged murder of 12-year-old Edward V and his younger brother, Richard, in 1483. Tradition says they stayed in these rooms by order of their uncle , the future Richard III.
A must-see to do on Halloween in London with kids.
Discovery Day a Hyde Park: Hair-Raising Halloween
At the Look Out, inside Hyde Park, free Halloween-themed workshops will be held on October 24th and 25th for children accompanied by adults. Kids will be able to create magic potions using garden herbs, build houses for bats and there will also be time to read some scary stories! It is recommended to participate with your own costume of disguise!
admission between 11:00 and 15:00
all the info here
Hunting for real ghosts in the English Eritage castles
There’s nothing scarier than visiting a real castle with real ghost stories: what you need to do is look for your favorite destination on the English Heritage website.
Among the closest to London I point out Eltham Palace and Gardens which will host several sessions with themed activities, or in Kent (south London), the Castle of Deal Castle in Kent, built by order of King Henry VIII, is one of the best Tudor artillery castles in England. Or even the castle of Portchester in Hampshire up to the illuminations of the Whitby Abbey (the ruin that inspired Bram Stoker’s Dracula).
Halloween in London with kids: London Zoo
What not to miss on Halloween in London with kids? The ZSL London Zoo has always been active when it comes to Halloween and this year there will be many themed activities to entertain children, from arts and craft to make their own masks, to pumpkins to dig and draw, spooky tours with challenges and dragons. Obviously you shouldn’t miss going to pay a salute to the scariest in the zoo with giant mice, spiders and bats!
I recommend you book online to get a 10% discount.
Hidden gems in London: Hoxton Street Monster Supplies
Halloween in London with kids also means discovering really special shops that only cities like London can offer.
Hoxton Street Monster Supplies is one of a kind, having as its mission the sale of quality products for monsters of all kinds. If you have a sudden desire for sweets in the form of some human organ, and you want to buy some really special gadgets as well as monstrous, this is the right place.
In reality, this store is also involved in a generous non-profit project, aimed at children (especially from the age of eight onwards) to develop and increase their passion for reading and writing. I point out that it is also possible to write a real letter to a monster, a vampire, a yeti, a werewolf, a mummy, a dragon or a gremlin and get an answer directly in your mailbox.
Here all the info.
Ghost walk and spooky river Thames boat ride
There is nothing more scary than strolling around London on the trail of haunted houses within the royal parks. The tour includes a walking tour and a boat tour on the Thames, which will end at the Tower of London.
Children are 3 years free. Here all the info.
Vauxhall Halloween Spooktacular with kids
Big Fish Little Fish organise family raves. Yes you got it right. They organise rave all around the UK, and on October 26th at the Vauxhall site, there will be three rooms with live DJ music. These raves are for families with children under the age of 8, but everyone is welcome.
Here you find all the information.
Dark Arts at Warner Bros. Studios for Halloween
If you have planned a visit to the Harry Potter studios in October and November, you can explore the dark side of Wizarding World, the darkness of the magical world.
You can then visit the iconic Great Hall set decorated with over 100 floating pumpkins, as seen in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Created by Head Propmaker for all Harry Potter movies, the fearful effect will be assured. Recommended for children over 5 years of age.
Hidden London at London Transport Museum
With the admission ticket to the London Transport museum, you can visit the Hidden London exhibition and discover the ‘forgotten’ parts of the underground network and unbelievable stories, like the underground Plessey aircraft factory, in the eastern part of the Central line where they worked during the second world war over 2,000 people, mainly women.
Or when Churchill took refuge in the depths of the Down Street station during a blitz. You will also find archive photos, objects, vintage posters, secret diagrams and decorative tiles from disused stations.
The exhibition is on till January 2021.
It is suitable for children of all ages.
I also point out that during half term there will also be dedicated activities with Where’s Wally? The Big Museum Hunt.
You can read also the review of the museum during the Christmas period: Meet Santa at the London Transport Museum
Halloween in London with kids: where to go to do trick or treat
If you are in London on the night of October 31st, then you can’t miss the tour of the houses, picking up treats or jokes. Here are some but important rules to follow:
- Start the Trick or Treat tour – Dolcetto or Scherzetto – only when it gets dark. Generally not before 17.
- Knock only at the doors that are decorated, but only the houses that are conspicuously decorated: pumpkins, skeletons, cobwebs and hanging tombs.
- Equip yourself with an indispensable bucket to collect all the sweets
- Consider that the tour does not last more than a couple of hours. If you don’t see people and children around, it means it’s too late.
What are the best neighbours for trick and treat?
Halloween is not part of Uk traditions, so not all neighbours in London will have monstrous houses. However it is very popular, but certainly there are some neighbours that more than others will be decorated with pumpkins and various monstrosities.
In Notting Hill there is a large concentration of American families, so if you want to be sure to go in the right place for trick and treat, this is one of the neighbours I recommend to go. Here you will find real hanging and dangling works of art, cobwebs, skulls, bats, skeletons!
Other neighborhoods are Kilburn, John Wood, Knightsbridge, Belgravia, Fulham and Chelsea.
Here is a list of streets to go: Ilchester road (W14), Oakwood Court (W14), Abbotsbury Abbots (W14), Addison road, The Boltons / SW5), Redcliffe Square, the streets around St James Park, Knightsbridge, Brook Freen ( W6), Grafton Square (SW4), Northcote road (SW11), Phillimore Gardens (W8), Clancarty Rd (SW6), Settington Rd (SW6).
Best streets in Fulham are close to Parson’s Green tube station and are Studdrudge st, Coniger road, Quarrnedon, Chiddingstone St, Chipstead St.
There is also the free Next Door app that tells you which houses are joining, given your location. You must register and enter a residential address. It is in fact an app for us local, but you can use if you wish.
Finally I suggest you read the post What to do in London with children in autumn, where you will find many other information related to this time of year.
If it’s the first time you come to London:
- First time in London with kids
- How to organise a trip to London with kids
- How to save money in London like a local
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