It’s time to don your witch hats and dust off your cauldrons… for who knows what awaits you in the heart of Winchester this Halloween...

History tells the stories of the age-old pagan festival of Samhain which marked the end of the harvest season, as the days bleed into the darker half of the year; that time is almost upon us.

Winchester has a ghostly host of activities to be enjoyed by the whole family this Halloween, all you have to do is decide where to begin…

Ready for some unearthly fun? Winchester is positively overflowing with it! Winchester’s City Mill is a great place to start, with activities from October half term to rouse your little monsters from their sleepy beds. Enjoy the new bat-themed walking trail, spot the bats hanging around and break the code of the cryptogram, try your hand at pumpkin carving, and then settle down for a spooky story telling (suitable for little ones too). With that last little burst of energy, how about some apple bobbing? Celebrate the end of harvest and learn all there is to know about apples from the experts in a live baking demonstration!

If bobbing for apples is a little tame for you, then why not test your mettle with an Adult Only Ghost Tour; you're not afraid of things that go bump in the night, are you?  Do you feel brave enough to wear a costume? Yes? Then wear it with your best spine-chilling smile and try not to scream!  Be on your guard for the infamous ghosts already haunting this beautiful city. Have you head of the Limping Monk? Perhaps you will hear him coming towards you through the dark... How about the Clanking Women, so named due to the sound that is meant to accompany her when she manifests!  The rest you must discover for yourself!

If you wanted something a little less gory and lot more tranquil then can we suggest a relaxing visit to the New Forest...  Marvel at the display of over 4000 pumpkins, enjoy the eerie meet and greets and enter the fancy-dress competition at the Little Monster Ball at Paultons Park

If you're looking for something a little more magical to honour this Hallowed Eve (and half term!) then Wizard Weekend at the Watercress Line is just for you!  Hop on the Wizard Express steam train and there's Wizard Week goody bags for little ones to keep them spellbound for the whole of half term!  

A wonderful day can be spent at Marwell Zoo where you can see just how the creepy the crawlies really are - you can spend a whole day here and even meet the animals!  Are you brave enough to come face to face with some of the hairy legged inhabitants? Try and defeat the spooky maze and then round off the days activities by carving your very own pumpkin!  Under the expert tutelage of the resident wizard Lowedolf, learn how to ride a broom and even make your own wand to take home!

After this magical expedition, it's time to tuck the kids up in bed (with a trusted baby sitter of course) and head out to the Eclipse Inn – this popular haunt is known to be frequented by the ghost of Dame Alice Lisle.  Alice spent her last night at this very Inn, right before she was condemned by Hanging Judge Jeffreys. Can you spot her or is it the wine?

Here is a mere taste of what mysterious and creepy adventures await you in this historic hair-raising hub of magical activities. We can’t wait to see you here among the pumpkins and ghostly patrons - just be careful you don’t take one home with you!

Book your stay with us herehalfterm