It’s that time of year when the weather turns cool, the leaves fall off the trees and creepy polyester spider webs start popping up in your favorite coffee shops. From costume parties to macabre theater, New York City is full of inventive ways to celebrate Halloween. This year, skip the candy and sedentary hayrides and instead lace up your sneakers and head outside for active adventures in and around New York City.
Bartow-Hell Haunted Mansion Tours
A mix of literature, lore, and Halloween scare await you at the Bronx’s Bartow Pell Mansion. Enjoy a night of frights that includes storytelling and lore of witchcraft and the supernatural that have shared the grounds. Walk your way through the mansion for spooky decorations with a side of history.
Cost: $10. Register now.
How to get there: Take the 6 train to Pelham Bay and switch to the B45 which stops directly on site.
The Ghosts of Conference House Walk– October 29th, 2016
History meets Halloween on this nighttime hike through the ancient burial grounds at Conference House, known as one of the most haunted places in Staten Island. Explore the grounds with the NYC Parks & Recreation’s urban rangers while hearing the stories of murder and intrigue that have haunted the house since before the Revolutionary war.
Cost: Free, registration required.
How to get there: Take the Staten Island Railway to Tottenville then the S78 bus to Conference House.
Halloween Costume Hike in the Catskills – October 29th, 2016
For a full day of adventure with 11 miles of hiking, this adventure is less spooky than fun with participants encouraged to dress up in halloween costumes. The hike is guided and will take hikers to the Overlook Fire Tower and the ruins of the Overlook Mountain House.
Cost: Starting at $95 including transportation
How to get there: Group van leaving from Manhattan (register)
Sleepy Hollow 10K Run – October 22, 2016
Head to New York State’s most haunted spot for a Halloween 10k Race that brings you through the cemetery and over the Headless Horseman Bridge. Expect many to be dressed up in costume and enjoy Halloween brews after you’re done.
Cost: $50, day of registration.
How to get there: From Grand Central take Metro North’s Hudson Line to Tarrytown.
HoBOOken 5k Run – October 29th, 2016
Join in the “running of the ghouls” as you race along the waterfront of Hoboken. The 5k course is flat and offers beautiful views of the city. Those with kids can enter them into the shorter Scary Scurry ($15). Don’t worry if you’re not fast, this race offers prizes for the best costumes as well.
Cost: $35. Register here.
How to get there: Take the PATH straight to Hoboken.
Header image by Christian Holmé
Sarah Knapp is a Brooklyn -based entrepreneur whose love for the outdoors and community building led her to the October 2013 creation of OutdoorFest. She has a BA in History, is a Wilderness First Responder and a NY state hiking, camp and boating guide. Her proudest achievement to date is reading the Aeneid in Latin.
Hi Sarah. New to Long Island and really enjoyed your article. Trying to find neat things to do which a) avoid driving through the city to explore so the van trips are fantastic or b) learning of places on Long Island to enjoy. Many of the people I work with are only familiar with NYC. So it’s been hard finding places to hike and walk/run that don’t involve sitting in hours of traffic. Cheers!
Awesome – I’m glad you enjoyed! If you want to search just LI places you can use this link and it will filter so you can see just locations near you: https://offmetro.com/ny/category/locations/new-york/long-island-destination/ Good luck and thanks for reading!