It’s that time of the year again- haunted houses are popping up everywhere in San Diego, from the Scream Zone to the Haunted Trails to the Whaley House, to name a few.
Scream Zone at the Del Mar Fairgrounds includes four different attractions. The Zombie Paintball Safari, which is exactly what it sounds like. Players ride on carriages while shooting zombies with glow-in-the-dark paintballs. Another attraction is the House of Horrors, the haunted house with 12 dens. The Haunted Hayride features more zombies, Haitian Voodoo, and the Walking Dead. The last attraction, The Chamber, is a maze that includes the longest spinning kaleidoscope tunnel in Southern California.
In the Gaslamp district, there is the Haunted Hotel, the longest running haunted house in San Diego. This year, it features killer clowns in subway cars, the “Evil Dead” cellar, and the “Walking Dead.
The Haunted Trails in Balboa Park, which is a mile long outdoor path through the park. An additional maze this year is the eXperiment.
At Knott’s Berry Farm, a seasonal special is Knott’s Scary Farm Haunt, which features shows, mazes, and rides. There are ten different mazes, nine rides, and five other attractions, including a ghost town. A new attraction this year is Trapped: A New Experiment, an interactive maze with puzzles and contraptions, which has been so popular that it requires reservation
In Mira Mesa, the Monster Manor is a non-profuit, volunteer-based charity attraction, making it cheaper than most other haunted houses. It is operated by the Mira Mesa Theater Guild, and there is also a kid-friendly alternative called Lite-Frite.
A haunted house with a lot of history behind it is the Whaley House located in Old Town, which includes a museum and has been on numerous TV shows. This house belonged to Thomas Whaley, his wife Anna, and his six children. In addition to being their home, the Whaley House was also San Diego’s first commercial theater, the county courthouse, and a general store. Some believe this house is haunted, as Thomas and Anna heard heavy footsteps on the stairs that they thought belonged to the ghost of James Robinson, who was hanged on the property. Some visitors have reportedly seen apparitions of Thomas and Anna Whaley, and others have heard strange noises. During Halloween, the Whaley House offers special Ghost Hunting Tours.
Most haunted houses are for children 10 and up, and are not recommended for everyone. From manmade to legend-based haunted houses, San Diego has many different scares to offer during Halloween.