There’s nothing to fear in San Diego this Halloween...or is there?
It’s that time of year when ghouls, villains and all manner of frightening beings take over The Haunted Hotel in the Gaslamp, The Haunted Trail in Balboa Park and the Scream Zone at the Del Mar “Scaregrounds.” San Diego’s premier haunted attractions promise to terrify even the bravest guests.
The Haunted Hotel, which has been named one of the top haunts in America and was featured on Travel Channel’s “America’s Scariest Haunts,” has plunged to new depths of terror. If your heart can handle it, take a ride down the Hellevator and brave the zombie-infested alley. If you survive, your reward is a visit to Doll Island, where the dolls may not be what they seem. Keep your wits about you as you ride the Clown Subway and if you haven’t had enough, make your way through the Twisted Torture Temple.
And if you want an extra creep factor, visit the hotel on “Lights Out” Wednesdays. A small glow stick will be your only source of light as you make your way through the twists and terrors.
In Balboa Park, watch your back for pop culture’s most feared villains. Freddy, Jason, Michael Myers and the Exorcist are lurking, waiting for you to drop your guard. You may also encounter characters and creatures from “Stranger Things,” “The Conjuring,” “Krampus” and “Game of Thrones.” Before you even reach them, however, you must find your way through the Experiment Maze. Few make it out unscathed. If you do survive and are determined to go on, it’s just a calm mile-long stroll through the park ... with chainsaw-wielding voodoo masters.
But the most terrifying will be found at the “Scaregrounds” in Del Mar, with macabre attractions. In the House of Horror, 12 rooms are filled with ghosts, zombies and other beings from the underworld. Monsters lurk around every corner, thwarting your attempts to escape.
The Haunted Hayride is a ride through your worst nightmares. This journey takes you to the Zombie Prison, Zombie Town and Zombie Containment. Watch out for the peculiar and surreal Doll Town and keep a close eye out for the walking dead.
The troupe of twisted souls that make up the KarnEvil are out for blood. Bringing new meaning to the term “freak show,” their tamer performances feature killer clowns. If all that isn’t enough for you, you’re welcome to spend time in the Clown Lounge or “Walking Dead” Prison.
Finally, test your survival skills at the Zombie Boot Camp, a basic training course for the zombie apocalypse. Multiple obstacles will test your group as you’re challenged to survive the zombie outbreak.