When October rolls around, thoughts of Halloween come to mind - this year, consider making Halloween at Busch Gardens part of your fall plans! Whether it's the Tampa or Williamsburg location, there's plenty of spooky fun on hand for the whole family.
Halloween at Busch Gardens
Both the Busch Gardens Africa and Europe park locations feature the annual Howl-O-Scream, a night of authentic spooky fun and ghoulish decorations. From mid-September through the end of October, Busch Gardens parks are transformed into haunted Halloween destinations.
Busch Gardens Africa Howl-O-Scream
Each year, the Busch Gardens park has a different theme for their Howl-O-Scream. With haunted houses and "scare zones" as well as Busch Gardens rides, there's never a dull moment. Visit the following... if you dare.
- Wicked Woods: Beware of the eerie life-like trees as you travel through the wicked woods. They may just reach out and grab you!
- Zombie Junction: Zombies come alive to frighten park visitors. Boo!
- Pharoah's Revenge: - Mummies, mummies, everywhere… so watch your back.
- Masters & Monsters: - Monsters fight it out in this scary battle arena.
- Eternal Midnight: Experience a visit to purgatory and be thankful you can leave!
The Tampa location also features a number of live shows that capture the spirit of Halloween at Busch Gardens, including:
- Fiends: Music and fun await those who dare to dance among the fiendish.
- Sweet Dreams: Special effects add to the spook factor at this show.
- Freak Show: Freaky folks round out the Halloween entertainment.
Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream Sleepovers
Busch Gardens Africa (Tampa) also offers an option for park guests to spend the night at their Howl-O-Scream sleepovers. Kids in seventh through tenth grades can spend a night among the horrors with chaperoned access to a variety of the haunted events of the evening. The cost for sleepover participants is over $70 and include accommodations at the Mzinga Lodge and a sunrise safari tour, dinner, and breakfast. Students must be accompanied by an adult. Check the Busch Gardens Tampa site for specific dates and current pricing.
Tickets to Howl-O-Scream can be ordered online for discounted rates. Group tickets are also available, offering discounted ticket pricing for groups of 15 or more. Those who are Passport Members receive additional discounts. An unlimited ticket package is available with the Thrills & Chills Weekend Pass - for one price you can enter the park during an entire weekend (Thursday through Sunday) an unlimited number of times, day or night. The Recurring Nightmare ticket offers unlimited visits during the hours of 7:30 p.m. until 1 or 2 a.m., depending on the day. Special pricing is available on select Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays during the event. Check the official Tampa Howl-O-Scream site for more information about current ticket prices and dates.
Busch Gardens Europe Howl-O-Scream
Busch Gardens Europe features "The NeverAfter," a village that recreates familiar fables with a new, spooky twist. Check out two haunted mazes, Deadtime Stories and Tormented Tales, as well as a variety of scare zones.
To assist guests, the park provides a rating system that scores how frightening each attraction is. On a scale of one to six pumpkins, with six representing the scariest, The NeverAfter receives the six pumpkin rating. This attraction is not suitable for children under age 17.
- Clownfusion: Clownfusion is a bit tamer with a two pumpkin rating, giving guests the experience of a carnival funhouse with mirrors and tunnels.
- Jack's Pumpkin Express: Guests can board this train ride and take in the sites of the Halloween festivities.
- Curse of Pompeii: This maze winds through ancient ruins, exposing guests to earthquakes and other scary sites.
- Land of the Dragons: This kid friendly zone is a welcome break from the scares and thrills found throughout the park.
Guests at Busch Gardens Europe gain admission to the Howl-O-Scream event with regular park admission. Online specials are also available, including purchasing a season pass for the upcoming year and getting your Howl-O-Scream admission free. Check the official Williamsburg Howl-O-Scream site for more information about tickets and dates.
Be aware that, due to the nature of some of the Halloween themed attractions, you should use your best judgment when spending Halloween at Busch Gardens if you have small children. Some of the spooky activities may be too intense for young kids, so check them out before exposing your little one to something that may be more frightful than delightful. In fact, the Busch Gardens Tampa site includes a warning: "Howl-O-Scream is too intense for young children. Parental Discretion is advised." With care, visiting these spooky attractions can be a fun fall event for the whole family.