Celebrate Halloween all month long during Salem Haunted Happenings! Start your planning here, or download the Salem app, and find this year’s events in the calendar and find frequently asked questions below:
Effective August 23, masks are required in Salem in indoor public areas. Learn more about Salem’s mask order at salem.com/masks. Currently masks are also required throughout Massachusetts while onboard public/private transportation (including trains, buses, ferries, rideshares, and taxis, and while in stations) and while in healthcare settings. We recommend confirming COVID-19 policies with individual businesses if you have questions, and packing a mask during your visit. If anything changes, updates on COVID-19 in Salem will be listed at hauntedhappenings.org/covid19.
Salem is located just 16 miles north of Boston. Find directions to Salem plus information on train and ferry service here.
We recommend taking the train or ferry to Salem to avoid downtown traffic. Salem is accessible via the MBTA on the Newburyport/Rockport line of the Commuter Rail and the Salem Ferry runs between Long Wharf in Boston and Blaney Street in Salem. You may also want to consider parking at a nearby train station and riding one or two stops into Salem. If you must drive, you can find a list of lots and garages here.
If you’ve never been to Salem before, we recommend choosing 2-3 attractions per day to visit, in addition to any special events you may be interested in. Purchase tickets in advance for events and tours you’re interested in, and be sure to leave a couple of hours for shopping and lunch (and maybe breakfast and dinner, too.)
It depends what you’re interested in. If you are most interested in the Salem Witch Trials, you may want to visit the Salem Witch Museum or Witch Dungeon Museum, see Cry Innocent, and stop at the Salem Witch Trials Memorial. For modern Witch experiences in Salem, you may want to check out our Witch shops and psychic fairs, and book a reading. For Salem’s spookier side, you could take a ghost tour, walk through a haunted house, or take an evening harbor cruise with Mahi Cruises or Essex Heritage. We recommend starting with the events calendar to see what events are scheduled during your visit and planning your attractions, shops, and restaurants from there.
Salem is an excellent day trip and an even better overnight stay. Most museums and attractions are 1-2 hour experiences. If there are four sites you want to visit, you can probably do those, with time for lunch, in one day. If you have more than four must do’s on your list, stay overnight to ensure you have plenty of time!
Average temperatures for October are a high of 62 degrees and a low of 45 degrees. Being New England, it could be 75 degrees and sunny or 32 degrees and snowing. Prepare for anything by dressing in layers.
That is the Salem Heritage Trail! It connects Salem’s historically significant sites and neighborhoods. We recommend following it in conjunction with a map like the one in the Guide to Salem Haunted Happenings.
The Haunted Happenings Grand Parade returns this year in a new format, along with Mayor’s Night Out, Wicked Wednesdays at the Phillips House, and more. Browse the event calendar to see what is happening during your visit, and consider attractions like Mahi Cruises’ Haunted Happenings Cruise, the Salem Trolley, and more.
This year’s Haunted Happenings Grand Parade takes place on October 7 at 6:30 pm in a new format! With the theme “Upside Down and Inside Out,” the floats and performers will be stationed around down and spectators can walk the parade route to view them. Learn more here.
Each of Salem’s witch museums offers a different experience with a unique focus on an area of Witch Trials history- Choose the museum(s) that sound most interesting to you:
It depends on the attraction. We generally recommend purchasing advanced tickets for anything that takes place at a set time, like events on the calendar if they offer advance tickets and Salem walking tours. Some museums and attractions may still have limited capacities or be requiring or recommending advance tickets. Please confirm availability and ticket information with the attractions you are planning on visiting.
Contact individual businesses to see what may be available, and check back on this page soon as we will be sharing updates once we have them.
Many restaurants in Salem do not take reservations during October. We recommend checking with the restaurants you are interested in directly.
There will be outdoor dining in select locations during October, as well as takeout. Please confirm availability with the restaurants you are interested in.
There are not any hotels, inns, or B&Bs in Salem that promote themselves as haunted. But if you ask their guests, it’s a whole different story. Without anything official, we leave you, the visitor, to tell us: Were your accommodations haunted?
Some accommodations in Salem fill up about a year in advance. We recommend booking your accommodations as soon as you are able to, or planning your stay midweek as you may find more availability then.
If your travel dates are flexible, you may find more availability midweek or earlier in the month. You can also find places to stay in neighboring towns here.