Also known as All Saints’ or Hallowmas, Halloween is one of the most celebrated festivals and among the oldest holidays in the world. Beginning as a traditional ritual, the event has evolved into a celebration characterised by pumpkins and activities like trick-or-treating and carving jack-o-lanterns. Celebrated on the 31st of October, the day of remembrance is observed in diverse ways
across different countries. While the age old traditions associated with the festival remain unchanged, a few of the activities and happenings have come a long way since its origin. Read on to know more about how the festival is celebrated across the world.
Offering a perfect melange of ancient rituals, traditional beliefs and age old customs, Halloween is one famous event in the USA. The festival is famed for its costume parties, parades, haunted hayrides, street fairs, carnivals, playing trick-or-treat and carving lanterns out of pumpkins. Offering prayers to the dead, decorating houses with pumpkins and dressing up to your scariest self are popular traditions associated with the festival. Spooks, ghosts, witches, wizards and skeletons are common symbols of Halloween. Village Halloween Parade (New York City), Sleepy Hallow Halloween (Washington), Emma Crawford Festival (Colorado), Little Five Points Halloween Festival (Atlanta) and Halloween on Halsted (Chicago) are top highlights of the festival in the country.
Halloween is celebrated with much pomp and show across the country. Originating as a Pagan festival held in different regions, it is characterised by a set of interesting activities such as trick-or-treating, parades, dance performances, costume parties and visiting the graves of the dead. The colours of orange and black along with black cats, pumpkins, haunted houses, cauldrons, spiders, witches, wizards, bats and spirits are among the significant symbols of the festival. Apple bobbing, nut-cracking, costume dressing, bonfires and offering prayers to the deceased are a few of the well-known traditions associated with Halloween.
Locally known as Día de las Brujas, Halloween is one of the well-known festivals in Mexico. It is usually hailed as children’s festivity in the country and is characterised by several interesting activities like trick-or-treating, lighting bonfires, hanging lanterns on trees and setting off firecrackers. Dressing up in scary costumes, making toys and candies resembling skeletons, lighting the graves of the deceased and offering prayers to the dead are common traditions associated with the festival. Although Halloween is quite popular in Mexico, the Day of Dead celebrated on 1st of November is celebrated on a larger scale in the country.
Originating over 1000 years ago, Halloween in Ireland is a major festival celebrated with much excitement across the island. Associated with a lot of ancient traditions and practices, the event is best known for its set of religious rituals and interesting activities especially bonfires, jack-o-lanterns, trick-or-treating, fancy dressing and blind dates. A group of young men dressed in their scary costumes going from door to door singing rhymes and songs and asking for food and drinks is a common Halloween custom in Ireland. Homemade apple pies, Colcannon, Potato Farls, Barmbrack cake, Ivy Leaf and the pumpkin are among the must try dishes during the festival. Games like snap apple, knock-a- dolly, shaving the friar and blind folded cabbage picking are also quite popular. Fortunetelling using different objects is a major component of old Irish Halloween tradition.
Featuring events inspired by the Dracula theme, Halloween is a well-known public holiday in Romania. With its centre of attraction being the Bran Castle, the event begins with shopping for garlic as a form of protection from the evil spirits on the night before the actual festival (30th October) and continues till the end of 31st October. Transylvania is the perfect place to spend Halloween and enjoy its festivities amidst full magical settings. Dressing as ghosts, witches and vampires alongside savouring upon some authentic delicacies and exploring different myths and legends, Halloween in Romania is surely an experience of a lifetime. Guided tours to the castles and cathedrals are quite popular among the tourists.
With a spooky environment and embracing the spirit of the festival, Halloween in Hong Kong is a recent addition to the list of popular events in the country. Be it raucous street parades, scary parties, authentic mouth-watering cuisines, carnivals, or busy theme parks, the festival is celebrated with much pomp and show all across the region. The famous Hong Kong Disneyland turns to a haunted land decorated with scary pumpkins, mysterious trees, ghosts, and cobwebs!! Masquerade balls, wildly howling street blowouts, street parties, trick-or-treating, and costume parades are a few things to look forward to during the festival in Hong Kong.
Marking the only one day when the spirits of the dead return back to the world, the festival is famed for its traditional practices, Halloween parades, parties, ghost trains, haunted trolley tours, Yard Hunts, carved pumpkins and other interesting activities. Family dinners followed by parlour games, pumpkin art tours, and symbolic walks are quite popular among children and the youngsters.