• September 8, 2023
  • Lauren Critzer
  • 0

Unmasking Austin: Your Ghoulish Guide to the Austin, Texas Halloween Experience

Fellow Halloween enthusiasts, welcome to Austin — a city where we celebrate Halloween with such unrestrained gusto that, come October, every corner is brimming with spooky charm. If you’re eager to uncover the best Austin spots to celebrate Halloween, look no further. This local guide will give you an insider’s look at the thrilling festivities that transpire in Bat City every All Hallows’ Eve.

Austin’s Eerie Extravaganza: Halloween on 6th Street

For a heart-pounding Halloween experience, make your way to 6th Street, the beating heart of Austin’s nightlife. Every year, 6th Street transforms into a mesmerizing Halloween spectacle, drawing in crowds of revelers. This lively avenue, adorned with bars, restaurants, and shops, offers the perfect staging ground for the city’s Halloween gala.

  • Parade of Costumes: During Halloween, 6th Street morphs into a runway showcasing a myriad of outlandish costumes. Austin’s Halloween enthusiasts leave no stone unturned, bringing to life everything from vibrant unicorns to ghoulish zombies, from bedazzled comic heroes to larger-than-life Disney characters. What’s even more delightful are the creative homemade costumes that seem to reflect the city’s boundless creativity.

  • Themed Nightlife: EmbraceAustin’s Halloween spirit at one of the countless bars, pubs, or clubs that gear up for the spooktacular evening with spine-chilling decorations and themed drinks. Visit the century-plus-old hotel and local favorite, The Driskill, to partake in their infamous Halloween bash. A must-visit is Buffalo Billiards, where bartenders craft special Halloween cocktails that are devilishly delicious.

Austin’s Frightful Ferrago: The Breathtaking Haunted Houses

If Halloween is a puzzle, then Austin’s haunted houses are its unsettling center pieces. The city’s horror-inducing abodes promise bloodcurdling shivers and leave you teetering on the brink of terror, and that’s exactly why we love them.

  • House of Torment: Stepping into the House of Torment is like walking into one’s nightmares. This hellhouse, known for its horrifying displays, eerie sound effects, and actors committed to inciting terror, is sure to unnerve even the most stouthearted of Austin locals.

  • Scream Hollow: A bit farther from the heart of the city is Scream Hollow, a sprawling 20-acre fear-factory housing four uniquely haunting domains. As you tread with caution through these houses of horror, expect nothing less than nightmarish characters, grotesque apparitions, and hair-raising screams that echo through the night.

A Peek into the Past: The Historic Oakwood Cemetery Tour

For a more thoughtful Halloween engagement, one full of history and eerie charm, journey to Austin’s historic Oakwood Cemetery. This solemn plot, cradling those who left their marks on Austin’s past, offers a uniquely atmospheric way to honor Halloween.

  • Connecting with the Departed: The tour, helmed by Save Austin’s Cemeteries, will take you past tombstones dating back to the nineteenth century, each holding myriad stories of Austin’s yesteryears.

  • Historic Haunts: While undeniably eerie, the tour offers a meaningful connection to Austin’s past, serving up your Halloween fix with a unique historical twist.

An Austin Original: Spooky Bat Watching at Congress Avenue Bridge

Every All Hallows’ Eve, Austinites gather under the Congress Avenue Bridge to partake in a chilling Halloween tradition that has become a city staple — bat-watching.

  • Urban Bat Colony: The Congress Avenue Bridge is home to the world’s largest urban bat colony. Underneath the city’s hustle and bustle, some 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats hang upside down, awaiting the cloak of dusk.

  • The Eerie Flight: As the sunset paints the Texas sky, a wave of bats rush from under the bridge, casting shadows over Congress Avenue in a visual display that’s hard to forget. This eerie spectacle truly pays homage to Austin’s “Bat City” moniker and stands as a marvel of our Halloween traditions.

Fun for All Ages: Austin’s Halloween Festivals & Trick-or-Treating Events

Among all the spine-chilling haunts and wild celebrations, it’s essential to remember that Halloween isn’t just about fear. It’s also about fun, candy, inventive costumes, and family. Austin offers ample family-friendly festivities that guarantee a ghoulishly good time for everyone, with fewer screams and more giggles.

  • Boo at the Zoo: The Austin Zoo erases the line between spooky and cute with their annual Boo at the Zoo event. This kid-friendly haunt lets you embark on a moonlit train ride, venture into a family-friendly haunted house, and enjoy traditional trick-or-treat fun in the company of Austin’s more exotic residents.

  • Spooktacular at The Bullock Museum: Spooktacular at the Bullock Texas State History Museum is an annual celebration full of engaging activities. Snuggle up for story-telling sessions, get creative with Halloween-focused arts and crafts, and learn a little history while you’re at it.


From haunted houses and eerie bat flights to historical cemetery tours and family-friendly festivals, Austin’s Halloween celebrations span the full spectrum of spookiness. So, dig out your costumes and dust off your Halloween spirit. Our diverse city is ready for you to plunge into its uniquely Austin Halloween traditions. Remember, we don’t just celebrate Halloween, we give it an irresistible Austin twist. As locals, we can assure you, our Halloween spirit isn’t just supernatural, it’s so very Austin. Now go on and immerse yourself in the festivities — we guarantee you’ll have a hell of a time.

Happy Halloween from the heart of Texas, y’all!

Lauren Critzer

I was born in Charlottesville, Virginia and after college, I moved to San Francisco to explore new opportunities and broaden my horizons. I fell in love with the city's vibrant culture and unique atmosphere, but eventually, I moved again, this time to Austin, Texas.

As much as I loved living in different parts of the country, having a baby boy brought me back to my hometown in Charlottesville, where I now live with my husband, our little one, and two furry friends. I enjoy going to wineries, taking my pups everywhere, and spending quality time with my family.

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