Six spectacularly spooky Halloween family events

With preparations for Halloween well underway, we’ve chosen six of the best family-friendly Halloween events from across the country.

With everything from face-painting and spooky Celtic tales to fantastically frightening ghost trails, there's plenty going on this Halloween to make it one to remember!

1. Samhain Haunted Forest Walk 

The woods in Marlay Park are going to be pretty spooky this Halloween as Samhain thanks to the haunted forest walk, which returns to haunt them for the 10th year in a row, on Sunday October 30th 2016. The 1.7km walk will be open from 3.30pm to 8.30pm.

You are invited to dress to impress in your Halloween costume as you venture through the dark, fright-filled forest. The route is suitable for wheelchairs and buggies. Entry is free, but you will need to have a wristbands. You can find more information here.

2. Bram Stoker Festival 

Taking place from Friday October 28th to Monday October 31st in Dublin city, this festival has something for everyone. It celebrates Dublin-born author Bram Stoker and his most famous novel, Dracula, published in 1897.

During the festival, children can enjoy events such as “Dracula’s Spooky Underground Sound Lab” at the Ark in Temple Bar, and admission is free! The whole family can have a blast in Stokerland, the pop-up Victorian fun park, which takes place in St. Patrick’s Park from 11.00am to 4.30pm, which also has free admission. Find out more here.

3. Halloween Fun at Tayto Park

There will be loads of fun and frightening events at Tayto Park this Halloween! From Saturday October 29th to Sunday November 6th, there will be a range of activities for younger children, including face-painting and arts and crafts, and for children eight years and older, the Terrifying Terror House is the place for them.

This exciting entertainment will be taking place from 11.00am to 4.00pm, and on October 31st, a child in fancy dress accompanied by a paying adult will receive free entry to the park. For teenagers, there is the Tayto Park After Dark. This will take place on October 22nd, 28th,29th, 30th and 31st, from 6.00pm to 9.00pm.

Ticket prices are €20 per person and include entry to the park, a night ride on the Cú Chulainn Coaster, the Windstar & Endeavour Experience 5D Horror Movie, as well as some others activities. Pre-booking is essential for this event. Find more information here.

4. Halloween Bonfire and Storytelling in Brigit’s Garden 

Brigit’s Garden in Rosscahill, Co. Galway, will be hosting a day of excitement and Halloween fun on Sunday October 30th. As a sample of the events taking place, there will be a Treasure Hunt around the gardens, crannog and stone chamber; face-painting; a chance to make your own mask; and apple fishing in the fountain.

Later on in the day, storyteller Rab Fulton will entertain the children with spooky Celtic tales and the day will end with a parade and the lighting of the bonfire. The day starts at 2.30pm and will wrap up around 5.30pm, and once again, pre-booking is essential to avoid disappointment. Find more information here.

5. A Very Gorey Halloween 

Gorey in Co. Wexford will have a variety of activities, entertainment and competitions this Halloween. On Saturday October 29th, there will be a Halloween Family Fun Day (starting at 1pm) with a wide range of fun and excitement for the whole family.

Other events happening in Gorey during the spooky season include the Staff Fancy Dress Competition, a Zombie Parade with a prize for the best zombie, a Window Display Contest, and Gorey’s King and Queen of Halloween Fancy Dress Competition. More information is available here.

6. Knocknagoshel Halloween Festival 

The famous annual ghost trail at the Knocknagoshel Halloween Festival in Co. Kerry is taking place once again this year. There will be a whole host of entertainment throughout the village during the festival, including a children’s disco held in the Community Centre hall and, of course, the widely popular ghost trail.

The entry fee to walk the Well Road, where the ghost trail is held, is €5 per person, with all proceeds going to charity. The festival starts at 6.30pm and ends at 9pm sharp. You can learn more about the plans for Hallowen here.

With all those events planned, there's no excuse for not throwing on your Halloween costume this year.