Halloween Haunts and Horrors: The Best Haunted Houses in Southern California
Arts & Culture / / Oct 20, 2016
The BEST month of the year has finally arrived, so grab your Pumpkin Spice Latte and prepare to enter a world that only exists in your dreams … or is it your nightmares? Ghosts and ghouls, it’s finally HAUNT SEASON!
I’ve been slightly possessed by a love for “Haunt Experiences” since the 3rd grade, when I dressed up as Pikachu and finally worked up the courage to stand in line at our friendly neighborhood Haunted House Extraordinaire. The corner house decorated their home and invited strangers in to experience a night of pure terror for years, and every year it got bigger and better.
As I grew older it became my annual Halloween tradition – to track down and conquer the BEST haunted houses I can find. This year, I went a little overboard. I researched, read pages of reviews, watched hours of video walk-throughs, and finally compiled the following destinations for this year’s Halloween Haunts and Horrors guide to the scariest attractions in Orange County and LA!!
Location: 2856 El Camino Real, Tustin, CA 92782 (Right next to Party City)
Price: General Admission $27-29, VIP $33-35, Mercy pass $5
Pro-tip: If you choose the earliest walk-through time and arrive 15 minutes early you don’t need a VIP ticket. We only waited in line for 10 minutes.
I love this haunt because of its intricate back story, and the immersion of all your senses. As you walk through this haunt, you relive the story of a young girl named Paula, who is facing traumas from her past and present, in the form of terrifying pig demons. This year, the creators added 4 more doors that you must pass through in order to escape. If I can offer any advice to you adrenaline junkies that want to face “The 17th Door”, it is this: choose the wheelchair you sit in wisely, and show no fear. One of Paula’s pig demons saw my fear from a mile away when I walked into a room full of creepy crawlies, and within .04 seconds I had a live snake on my face and was trying desperately to disappear behind my boyfriend, who could barely stifle his laughter.
Location: 1126 Queens Hwy, The Queen Mary, Long Beach, CA 90802
Price: General Admission $24 (discount codes are easily found online, check Groupon as well.)
Pro-tip: You do not necessarily need a fright pass, as there’s plenty of entertainment to enjoy while you wait in line, and you will have time to get through all of the mazes. Arrive by 6:30 PM at the LATEST to avoid issues with parking.
This haunt is seriously a great deal. Not only do you get to enjoy a night of spooky horror, you also get to explore the Queen Mary! Some of the mazes even take you through well-known hot spots for paranormal activity on the ship. The live shows are also very enjoyable. The fire-spinning show is a MUST see, and performers are on-stage often throughout the night.
Location: 1912 N. Pepper Street, Burbank, CA 91505
Price: Free Admission, accepted donations
Pro-tip: The Instagram account is very active and up to date, and they respond to any questions you may have in a very timely fashion. These people are the definition of rad.
I’ve definitely been looking forward to finally getting a chance to tour this maze. The efforts that go into a home haunt are monumental and bred from an undying passion for the spooky holiday. Home-owners invite complete strangers into their own backyards to spread chilling, heart-racing frights in the spirit of the Halloween season, so remember to be respectful of the actors and props. This home haunt thrives on donations and reviews. I will most definitely be attending on Saturday October 29th, so head on over and check it out with me!
Below is a list of other popular haunts in the area, as well as any information you may need to get your scare on. Happy Halloween everyone!
Location: 26101 Magic Mountain Pkwy, Valencia, CA 91355
Price: Daily Ticket + Maze Pass $70
Pro-tip: Upgrade to a season pass for only $10 more and receive entry into the park FREE for the rest of the year, as well as free parking.
Location: West Fullerton Shopping Center, 1851 W Orangethorpe Ave, Fullerton, CA 92833
Price: General Admission $26, All Night Pass $36
Pro-tip: There are 4 routes through this haunt, with General Admission you will only see one. Spring for the All Night Pass for endless screams!
Presenting: The Not So Enchanted Forest
Location: 907 N. California Street, Burbank, CA 91505
Price: Free Admission, donations accepted
Location: 16887 Daisy Ave, Fountain Valley, CA 92708
Price: Free Admission, donations accepted
Pro-tip: A $5 donation will get you a front of the line pass for your entire group of 4 or less.
*This Haunt is only open Halloween night from 7 PM to 10 PM.