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Published October 11, 2023

The Best Ways to Celebrate Halloween in San Francisco

Parties, costume contests, trick-or-treating, and more! Here's where to get spooky in SF. 🎃👻🕷️

by San Francisco Bucket List

 

It's October, and that means spooky season is officially here—and we're diving in head first. Fall in San Francisco is jam-packed with Halloween-themed events, no matter your age, scare affinity, or favorite autumn activities.

From bar crawls and themed pop-ups to dance parties and chilling nighttime Alcatraz tours, there's no shortage of haunting fun to enjoy. Looking for something a little more lowkey? Try an immersive Halloween yoga session, or round up the kids for a day at the pumpkin patch. Find all the best Halloween events in SF below!


The Top Halloween Events in San Francisco This Year

Grab a Drink at Frankenstein's Mad Scientist Cocktail Lab

Frankenstein's might look like an ordinary bar from the outside, but inside, you’ll find yourself surrounded by mysterious potions, shimmering elixirs, and spine-tingling concoctions. Mix up your own cocktail with the help of a mad scientist and enjoy the decked-out space with plenty of photo ops and opportunities for mingling.

Where: Westwood: 2036 Lombard Street, San Francisco, CA
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PRESENTS

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2036 Lombard Street, San Francisco, CA 94123, USA
Frankenstein's Mad Scientist Cocktail Lab - San Francisco
Starting at $20

Book now

 

Attend Dogfest Bay Area

The cutest Halloween event this year takes place at Jack London Square in Oakland. On October 21, head to the plaza near Plank for Halloween entertainment, activities, and fun—but most importantly, to see dozens and dozens of costumed pups. You can register your own doggo for the costume contest or just participate as a spectator. There will be live music, food, and vendors, so plan to make a day of it!

Where: Jack London Square: 472 Water St, Oakland, CA
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Watch Halloween Movies Under the Stars

One of the very best parts of Spooky Season is watching spooky movies! For select Thursdays and Fridays in October, Record Bar will air the best Halloween classics on their stylish outdoor back patio. Settle in for a night under the stars watching favorites like Scream, Friday the 13th, Beetlejuice, and more. Each ticket includes one themed cocktail!

Where: The Record Bar: 177 Eddy St, San Francisco, CA
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EXCLUSIVE

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177 Eddy St, San Francisco, CA 94102, USA
Outdoor Halloween Movies at The Record Bar
Starting at $25

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Step into an Immersive Nightmare Before Christmas-Inspired Bar

Take a visit to the Burton Underworld at this immersive Halloween/Christmas bar! Alongside the town’s most famed characters—Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King, and Beetlejuice—guests will be greeted with a complimentary beverage, spooky treats, and fantastic themed decor.

PS: If you come costumed, you might just score extra free drinks and snacks!

Where: 1123 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA
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EXCLUSIVE

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1123 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA 94103, USA
Jack N Juice Immersive Bar
Starting at $29

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Attend a Halloween Yoga Class & Dance Party

Slow things down at an immersive yoga class on Halloween! Come in your creative costume for Halloween Yoga at 6pm, then stay and learn how to do the Thriller Dance afterward! You can also dance with the DJ, snack on empanadas and salad, sip Halloween Punch, access the Art Bar Lounge, play games, and win a costume contest!

Where: Temple Immersive: 540 Howard St, San Francisco, CA
More information

BEST PRICE

location_on
540 Howard St, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA
Temple Immersive Yoga Classes
Starting at $28

Book now

 

Visit a Pumpkin Patch

It's not Halloween if you haven't picked out a pumpkin and carved a jack-o-lantern. The Bay area is home to lots of farms and pumpkin patches (including the pumpkin capital of the world), with pumpkins ripe for the picking along with hay rides, corn mazes, haunted attractions, petting zoos, fresh cider and donuts, and much more. Choose a pumpkin patch near you from our list of top picks, and get into the Halloween spirit!

Where: Various locations
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Go on a Halloween Bar Crawl

What’s the adult version of trick or treating? Trick or drinking, of course. Enjoy drink specials and free entry into bars across the Bay Area at two Hallowen-themed bar crawls in San Francisco and San Jose on October 27, 28, and 31. Grab your costumes and check in at NorthStar Cafe in SF or O'Flaherty's Irish Pub in SJ!

Where: SF: NorthStar Cafe, 1560 Powell St | SJ: O'Flaherty's Irish Pub: 25 N San Pedro Street
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BEST PRICE

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1560 Powell St, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA
Trick or Drink: Halloween Bar Crawls - San Francisco
Starting at $15

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Dance at a Silent Disco

Join a Silent Disco at TJPA's Salesforce Park Main Plaza on Halloween night from 6–8pm. The event will feature three DJs, Barebottle beverages, and headphone fun. Costumes are encouraged, so come dressed up and pre-game for your night out—or just make this your night out and head home afterward for spooky movies and Halloween candy. You do you. The silent disco is free and open to the public. Registration isn't required, but it's appreciated.

Where: 425 Mission Street San Francisco, CA
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Visit the Exploratorium After Dark

Thursday nights are reserved for adults at the Exploratorium, and on October 26, you can drop in for their Thrills and Chills event. Grab your friends and a drink from the bar, and start exploring. See how long you can last in a pitch-black dome, try to make your way across the fog bridge, observe human heart cells beat on their own, and much more. Your adventures will be scored by Oakland’s own Awesöme Orchestra as they perform music from classic thriller and fantasy films!

Where: Exploratorium: Pier 15, Green St, San Francisco, CA
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Exploratorium, Pier 15, Green St, San Francisco, CA 94111, USA
Tickets for Exploratorium After Dark Thursdays (18+)
Starting at $19

Book now

 

Check Out Decorated Halloween Houses

Setting pumpkins out on the front porch is par for the course during Halloween, but there are a few homes and neighborhoods that kick it up a notch (or ten) with full-blown graveyards in the front yard, gigantic skeletons, festive lights, friendly witches, and more. Take a drive or stroll through Cole Valley (Belvedere Street, specifically), Seacliff, Upper Terrace, and Noe Valley to see some of the best Halloween decorations in the area.

Where: Various locations

 

Go on a Night Tour of Alcatraz

In the mood for some good old-fashioned ghost stories? You won't find jump scares and costumed characters here—just the cold hard truth about the notorious criminals housed in Alcatraz and their chilling stories. Explore the infamous prison on a Night Tour, or if you have a good amount of time, a chilling Behind The Scenes Tour, where you can see newly revealed areas, including a secret escape tunnel, the underground jail, and more.

Where: Alcatraz City Cruises Ferry: 31 San Francisco Pier 33
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Celebrate Dia de los Muertos

A Day of the Dead celebration is happening on October 29 with chalk artists, mariachis, crafts, a costume contest, and Mexican Folklorico dancers. Swing by Jack London Square in Oakland between 1pm and 3pm for an afternoon of festivities at the Halloween Dia de los Muertos Fun Fest. The event is free and open to the public!

Where: Jack London Square: 472 Water St, Oakland, CA
More information

 

Trick-or-Treat at The Beach

The Great Hauntway is back for its third year with car-free trick-or-treating by the beach along with activities, crafts, and of course, treats. The event takes place on October 29 at The Great Highway Park from 1pm to 3pm. Bring the family and participate in pumpkin painting, big bubble-making, and more. You can also set up a trick-or-treating table to hand out treats—feel free to bring a lawn chair, table, and decorations to make it your own.

Where: Upper Great Highway between Judah and Taraval
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EXPLORE MORE:
The Best Farms, Pumpkin Patches, and Fall Festivals in the Bay Area
San Francisco's Ultimate 2023 Fall Bucket List
10 Scenic Hikes in San Francisco

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