Puerto Rico, an unincorporated United States territory located between the Dominican Republic and the U.S. Virgin Islands, celebrates most of the same holidays as the mainland U.S. does. Even though October is the low tourist season in Puerto Rico, there are plenty of things to do in honor of Halloween. The Caribbean island of Puerto Rico hosts many epic events, parties, ghost hunts, haunted houses, and more, particularly in the capital of San Juan, the biggest city.
If you feel like receiving big scares on Halloween this year, head to House of Phobia which takes place from early October through the beginning of November at San Patricio Plaza west of San Juan in Guaynabo. In 2019, the seasonal theme is a "Lucky Deadly Seven." Visitors will face their seven worst fears in history in a terrifying route through the haunted attraction, presented by Party City PR and Malta India.
Enjoy hits from the 80s and 90s played by one of the best-known DJs of Puerto Rico at Nightmare at the Club held on the weekend before Halloween. The evening event takes place at Fort Buchanan, a U.S. Army installation in Guaynabo; the party is open to the public ages 16 and up (with valid identification). Buy tickets in advance and carry masks with you until you have entered the event in order to be easier identified at the door.
If you're on the northern coast of the island in early October, get creeped out at the Chambers of Terror Haunted House the evening of October 4, 2019, also at Fort Buchanan. The event will feature entertainment for children and adults from bounce houses to bumper cars and inflatables.
La Concha Resort in San Juan's Condado is one of the coolest beachfront hotels in Puerto Rico, offering retro-style rooms, two outdoor swimming pools, and a casino that's always open. The resort's lobby lounge is one of the hippest destinations in the city for a night out, and Halloween is no exception. On the spooky holiday, the hotel hosts parties, magic shows with special drinks and appetizers, and more.
At Plaza Las Américas, the largest mall in the Caribbean and Puerto Rico's first indoor mall, located in the Hato Rey neighborhood of San Juan, there's always something fun going on for families and individuals. On Halloween, check out the Full Moon Mansion, a family-friendly haunted house that will put you and your kids (if they dare) in the spooky spirit through the surprises and magic that await.
Old San Juan has quite a history; on Halloween, you may want to do a little ghost-hunting. The fortifications were designed to inflict heavy casualties on opposing armies. It was a military-fortified city which saw its share of pirates, bloody battles, and shackled prisoners—the latter used to be led up San Sebastián Street to the Plaza de Armas, one of San Juan's main squares. So of course, there are ghosts here too. From the El Morro fortress to The Hotel El Convento, some of the most famous structures in Old San Juan are said to be haunted.
From October 3 through November 3, 2019, get your fright on at Paranormal Nights, a haunted house. At this frightful attraction which typically takes place on Thursdays through Sundays, your encounters with ghosts, zombies, and the like will leave you with chills. You'll find Paranormal Nights adjacent to Don Frappe restaurant and juice bar in Anasco—a municipality of Puerto Rico located on the island's west coast, curiously dubbed "La Ciudad Donde los Dioses Mueren" (the city where the gods die).
While there may be a variety of haunted houses in Puerto Rico, there aren't many located in a 1930s mansion turned into a museum. Those on the southern coast of Puerto Rico in between early October and early November hoping to celebrate Halloween with a thrill and some shouts can go to Soul Screams, a beloved haunted house in its eighth year. The museum called El Museo Castillo Serralles—overlooking the large city of Ponce and its nicely preserved old town—is a worthwhile stop of its own. On this very hill scouts often looked out for ships that might attack the city.
There are plenty of fun ways to enjoy this Halloween in Puerto Rico. If you want to do something creative with your costume, you could go trick-or-treating or to a holiday party dressed as a Vejigante (or dress your child as one). These folkloric demons are integral characters in Puerto Rican culture, and they're interesting to look at. The typical mask of the Vejigante is beak-shaped and horned (the number of horns varies); to complete your outfit, you'll need a colorful cape.