I am off to USA for Halloween – Wonder how spooky it really is!!!

Halloween on the East Coast

Halloween is not as big in the UK as it is in the US, so I have always wanted to visit to see how they really celebrate this holiday and if it is like it is in the movies. Last year we did the West coast of America and I was in Las Vegas for Halloween. I didn’t see as many people dressed up as I thought but to be honest a lot people are wearing wacky clothes in Las Vegas anyway so I didn’t know if it was normal or for Halloween. We went to San Diego and because it is close to the Mexico border there was a lot of Day of the dead décor and I wanted to go back to this area this year or Salem, Massachusetts to find out more about the witch trials. 

One of my favourite Halloween films is Hocus Pocus and I have been wanting to see the Hocus Pocus filming locations so this swayed my decision to go to Boston plus I found a really cheap flight. Norwegian airlines is a no frills flight but at £250 I don’t care as long as I get there safely so I booked it and I am off in a few days. Unfortunately I left it too late to get somewhere to stay in Salem as there are now no hotels available so I am going to visit during the day from Boston.

hocus pocus film

Hocus Pocus was filmed in Salem

I have a friend that lives a couple of hours from Boston in New Hampshire so it is a perfect opportunity to finally visit her as I have been saying for a couple of years I would. Hopefully I will still be able to see the Fall Foliage before it gets too cold. I am hoping to go for  long country walks with her and her pet dog and we are also going to have a pre thanks giving dinner as I will not be around for the actual holiday well its just an excuse for some pumpkin pie.

fall in new hampshire

Fall in New Hampshire

What do I have planned

Well since I only got back from Australia and few days ago and haven’t really had time to plan much. I am just going to get out there and see what happens. This is so unlike me as I must have anything planned down to even where I am going to eat so let’s see how I get on with this trip. I am only taking hand luggage and even doing my first home stay in the USA to save some pennies.

I still need to find some cheap accommodation in Washington. US cities are really expensive why didn’t I think this through a little bit more, but thats me Miss impulsive got to go away lady. I can not bring myself to staying in a hostel yet though I keep saying I need to, to save on costs but I think I am not the type of person that can share with strangers.

Plus just as I am writing this I remembered about Boston Cream pie and now I am excited to be going to Boston and hopefully have some of this dessert which is so good and we don’t have in the UK.

boston cream pie

Boston Cream Pie – Image credit : Wikipedia

I could not decide on where to actually spend Halloween, I was going to go to Philadelphia as they have some cool things going on below is a snippet.

‘Terror Behind The Walls’ at Eastern State Penitentiary
Located in in the Fairmount section of Philadelphia, Eastern State Penitentiary was once one of the most famous and expensive prisons in the world with notable inmates including one of America’s most notorious gangsters, Al Capone. The allegedly haunted prison, which opened in 1829, was abandoned in 1971 and is now a National Historic landmark. Together with informational tours for the public, during Halloween, the eerie crumbling cellblocks also play host to the scariest haunted house event ‘Terror Behind The Walls’, a combination of five themed areas consisting of Hollywood-quality special effects and live actors. Not for the faint-hearted, this terrifying event is sure to get pulses racing. Tickets cost from approx. £15 ($19) per person, with half-price ticket rates available for children on Family Nights. For further information, visit www.easternstate.org/halloween.

Eastern State Penitentiary

The ‘Terror Behind The Walls’ experience at the Eastern State Penitentiary. Photo courtesy of Eastern State Penitentiary

Betsy Ross House 
Built over 250 years ago and located in the city’s Historic District, Betsy Ross House provides travellers with the opportunity to step back in time to learn about Betsy Ross who is widely credited with sewing the first American flag. Restored and furnished with items that originally belonged to Betsy, her 18th century home opened to the public as a museum in 1898 and provides insight into a home of the period. For those on the hunt for unearthly activity, the building is also reportedly rich in paranormal activity, with visitors claiming to have spotted Betsy’s ghost weeping at the foot of her basement bed. Tickets cost from approx. £4 ($5) per adult and from approx. £3 ($4) per child. For more information, visit www.historicphiladelphia.org/betsy-ross-house/what-to-see/.

Ghost Tour of The Haunted USS Olympia at the Independence Seaport Museum
From its very first voyage in 1895, the steel warship USS Olympia gained a reputation amongst sailors for being haunted and cursed and although now a maritime museum at the Independence Seaport Museum, at least 20 deaths have reportedly occurred on the ship through murder, accident or illness. Unsurprisingly, the naval ship is also a hotspot for paranormal activity, with visitors sometimes hearing the eerie voices of long-dead sailors echoing along the ship’s narrow passageways. Travellers eager to explore the ship’s creepy labyrinthine decks and possibly encounter unexplainable paranormal activity are encouraged to join The Ghost Tour, which will lead willing individuals though the spine-tingling nooks and crannies of the ship. Tickets cost from approx. £15 ($19) per person. For more information, visit www.ghosttour.net/hauntedphiladelphia.

Laurel Hill Cemetery
Founded in 1836, the Laurel Hill Cemetery is home to thousands of graves and exquisite monuments, marking the final resting place of notable burials such as Thomas McKean, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, along with around 40 Civil War generals and six Titanic passengers. Situated in a picturesque location overlooking the Schuylkill River, the cemetery was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1998, with only a few cemeteries in the nation receiving the honour. The fascinating cemetary is open to the public seven days a week, providing the perfect setting for a spooky walk among the shadows of the headstones and mausoleums. For more information, visit www.thelaurelhillcemetery.org.

For more information on Philadelphia, visit the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website, www.discoverPHL.co.uk 

But I decided to head back to New York as I was told their Halloween parade is insane. I am staying in Time Square which I love, hopefully it wont be as cold as when I first visited when it was snowing and I might finally get to Central Park as it was like an ice rink last time. Again I am thinking of my tummy as I am looking forward to the best pizza I have ever had which i got from a place near time square.

I have thought about dressing up but since I only have hand luggage I don’t know if it is worth it as I will be on my own anyway and will feel silly. Although they do have some cool Halloween accessories on amazon so maybe I could get something small.

To save some more money I went on Groupon and got 50% off the hop on Buses which I love doing here is my plan for 2 weeks. I am going to get on my very first Greyhound Bus again only seen these in films I hope they are OK.

Boston – Boston tea party – Hop on Trolley

Salem – Witch museum

New York – Halloween Parade

Philadelphia – Hop on Bus

Washington – Hop on Bus

New Hampshire to visit my friend

So, if you have any tips for these areas please get in touch if not come back in a couple of weeks and see what I got up to.

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