This Is Halloween... At Disneyland. Here's What It Looks Like Now At The Spookiest Place On Earth

This is the event we created the word "spooktacular" for. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland)

It's time to face the deep, blood-curling horror of... oops, got that mixed up with what SoCal's other theme parks are doing. We meant, enjoy the holidays with just a slight dose of fright in the Halloween Time version of Disneyland. They just kicked off their gentle scares this past week.

Join us below for a virtual look at what's going on at the parks right now (and what could be going into your belly).

DISNEYLAND

I feel both welcomed and a little unsettled. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)

Disneyland's celebration is juuuust this far off from being a non-Halloween church harvest festival, but there are still spooks to be had. On Main Street, you get a giant Mickey Mouse jack-o'-lantern, along with a Pumpkin Festival.

BRB, have all the Nightmare Before Christmas songs stuck in my head for the foreseeable future. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)

The Haunted Mansion transforms into Haunted Mansion Holiday, with Nightmare Before Christmas characters largely taking the place of the more traditional Haunted Mansion ones. It's a surprisingly complete tranformation, leaving you wondering how they managed to do all this before setting it back to normal in just a few months. This attraction serves double duty for both the Halloween and Christmas season. Synergy gods be praised!

This year, the gingerbread display features a giant five foot spider with eerie glowing eyes, attempting to pry the edible mansion from its foundation. This year's gingerbread creation is made up of 90 pounds of gingerbread, 30 pounds of confectioner's sugar, 10 pounds of white chocolate and 45 pounds of fondant. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland)

One Easter egg (Halloween egg?) for you to check out: each year, the gingerbread house inside changes designs.

In perhaps the most frightening image of the whole affair, the sign for Ghost Galaxy promises frights, though those in the actual ride are a little more subtle. (Courtesy Disneyland)

Meanwhile, Space Mountain gets some adjustments to become Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy. Given that this ride largely takes place in the dark, the Halloween effects largely come down to switched-up sound effects, including screams that aren't just from those who can't handle a dark rollercoaster. You also get some ghosts, which reach out and come after you in the darkness of space. (No relation to Space Ghost.)

Zócalo Park in Frontierland at Disneyland features a colorful display in honor of Día de los Muertos. This immersive setting features beautiful marigolds and papel picado, along with a traditional ofrenda, calaveras (sugar skulls), an iconic figure of La Catrina and delicious food at the nearby Rancho del Zócalo. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland)

Frontierland gains a Día de los Muertos tribute with Zócalo Park, including an exhibit with skeleton figurines, bright flowers and other Day of the Dead decorations.

CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE

Oogie Boogie takes over Disney's California Adventure entrance, with an oversized silhouette beckoning guests through the main entrance — surrounded by a swarm of bats around Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

Disney also capitalizes on the Nightmare Before Christmas at California Adventure, with the silhouette of villain Oogie Boogie welcoming everyone in with some added creepy-kookiness.

The Headless Horseman clearly isn't paying attention to the no smoking signs. (Courtesy Disneyland)

The Halloween vibes continue down Buena Vista Street to Carthay Circle, home to a statue of the Headless Horseman, as seen in Disney's own '40s classic The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad. It's a deep cut perfect for the season.

At Monsters After Dark, lighting on the exterior of the Fortress shows that something inside has gone awry, with empty glass cages greet visitors in the lobby. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

The Guardians of the Galaxy's Mission: Breakout becomes "Monsters After Dark" at night. They darken the exterior, then add new lighting effects, as part of a new storyline. The ride goes from being about breaking out to Groot being left behind, now in need of a rescue from Rocket. The new version of the read even includes a Guardians-style song, but instead of a real '70s deep cut, it's an original called "Monsters After Dark" written by the movie's composer.

Who knew cars could wear Halloween costumes? (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

Cars Land goes full Halloween, perhaps moreso than anywhere outside the Haunted Mansion. Their home of Radiator Springs becomes — wait for it — Radiator Screams, with the whole land getting a makeover.

I thought the Cars characters were supposed to be friendly. (Courtesy Disneyland)

Jamboree becomes Mater's Graveyard JamBOOree, while Luigi's Rollickin' Roadsters becomes Luigi's Honkin' Haul-O-Ween. The JamBOOree features Cars takes on Halloween classics, with the "Monster Mash" becoming "Monster Truck Smash," while "Purple People Eater" becomes "Purple Fender Bender."

Ramone pays tribute to Día de los Muertos at Ramone's House of Body Art. Ramone celebrates this time when families gather to remember their loved ones with a traditional "ofrenda" display honoring the gone, but not forgotten, Doc Hudson. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

There's also a Día de los Muertos appearance, with Cars Land's Ramone displaying his own altar celebrating the films' Doc Hudson. (Sorry, we're getting verklempt!)

Puns made in the promotion for this event that may be a step too far: Disney promises that the major car characters will show up in "car-stume" as they prep for "trunk-or-treating." WE'LL ALLOW IT, we suppose.

Plaza de la Familia, a limited-time festivity at Paradise Gardens, celebrates Coco and the bonds of family. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland)

Beyond the world of Cars, California Adventure's also hosting a musical tribute to Coco at the seasonal Plaza de la Familia.

Coco's story gets told live, with this epic marionette leading the way. (Joshua Sudock/ Disneyland)

It tells Coco's story and includes songs from the movie, including the all-the-tears-inspiring "Remember Me." They're also hosting a bandstand with Mariachi music and other traditionals all day long.

The Coco ofrenda at California Adventure. *sniff* (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland)

The World of Coco art exhibit includes a look at everything that went into bringing the movie to life (and death). It also features a Coco-style ofrenda remembrance altar, putting you straight into the movie's universe.

MICKEY'S HALLOWEEN PARTY

Just remember: You'll get a chance to breathe AFTER you get all the candy. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

The parks feature even more after hours on select nights (with the purchase of an additional ticket). Everyone's invited to dress up for the event, as long as you adhere to some safety restrictions.

The most epic part about the party: trick or treating at Disneyland. Combine the magic of Disney with the wonder of sugar, and your heart will be pumping as you zip around trying to collect it all. Just remember to pause, take a breath, and take in some of the trademark small Disney details. They've got you if you need a pure sugar break — healthy snacks are also offered.

More than just the fireworks should scary you if this show's doing its job right. (Courtesy Disneyland)

The Halloween Screams firework show takes place each night during the party, hosted by Nightmare Before Christmas's Jack Skellington.

Villains look out on unsuspecting park visitors during the Frightfully Fun Parade. (Courtesy Disneyland)

The party also comes with the Frightfully Fun Parade, a Halloween march headed up by Sleepy Hollow's Headless Horseman. He rides down Main Street, joined by other Halloween characters such as Jack Skellington, as well as the ghosts of the Haunted Mansion.

As they do with some of their bonus events, Disney throws in their PhotoPass service, so you can get the park's professional photographers to shoot your picture without any additional fees.

If you don't want to buy a ticket to spend the whole day at the park, Mickey's Halloween Party tickets still allow you to come three hours before the party officially starts, so you can enjoy some of the parks before things get haunted. You also have to buy your tickets in advance — purchases aren't allowed on the day of the event, even if they happen to not be sold out. (But it almost always sells out — at press time, only 5 of 17 nights the party is being offered still had spots available.)

HALLOWEEN CHARACTERS AND OTHER PHOTO OPS

Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse rock their Disneyland Halloween costumes, with Mickey getting as scary as he knows how. (Scott Brinegar/Disneyland Resort)

You can check out Mickey and friends in their own Halloween outfits during Mickey's Halloween Party, along with other seasonal garb at daylight — along with different costumes for Disneyland and California Adventure.

Glee's Matthew Morrison celebrates Halloween with Captain Hook, Cruella de Vil and the Evil Queen at Disneyland in this example of corporate synergy from Oct. 2, 2010. (Photo by Paul Hiffmeyer/Disney via Getty Images)

For the party, they also send out the bad guys to Villains Square for evil photo ops, with other costumed Disney characters throughout the park.

The character Vampirina has been part of a Disney Junior series, and now she's also making the move to in-person appearance. "Vee" will be making appearances at California Adventure during the day, as well as in the Frightfully Fun Parade.

Great, now we have to worry about if our cars are spiders now. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

Over in Cars Land, the puns continue, with Mater as a "van-fire." You've also got Lightning McQueen as a superhero, a spider-car at Flo's V8 Cafe, and more.

You can read a full list of 13 great Halloween photo ops here.

THE FOOD

Mickey Bread with Fangs at Pacific Wharf Café. (Disneyland Resort)

Some of the highlights of Disney's Halloween treats include:

  • Special holiday churros throughout both parks
  • Halloween candy including Mini witch, Jack Skellington and Evil Queen apples
  • Spoke-y Cone Macaron at Cozy Cone Motel: Filled with marshmallow buttercream and candy corn (we'll let you debate whether those ingredients equal a treat)
  • Candy Cone Pie at Flo's V8 Café: Cream pie with vanilla, buttercotch and white chocolate pudding
  • Headless horseman cupcakes
  • Día de los Muertos cuisine in select areas

Read the full list of deliciously ghoulish treats here.

Disneyland's Halloween Time runs through Halloween itself. Mickey's Halloween Party runs on various nights from Sept. 19 to Oct. 31, usually twice a week.


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