Do you feel that chill in the air? Well, maybe not — it is Orlando, after all. But fall has arrived in The City Beautiful, with plenty of seasonal activities to keep you busy. One of our favorites is SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular. The boo-tiful festivities run weekends from Sept. 23 through Oct. 29. What makes SeaWorld’s Halloween celebrations unique to others in the area is that the party goes all day, Saturdays and Sundays, from 11 a.m. until close — rather than starting at dusk like many celebrations. We think this makes SeaWorld one of the hoppening spots around to celebrate Halloween with your younger tadpoles.
Join the Sesame Street gang for a spooky Halloween story, go trick-or-treating and more this fall at SeaWorld for an awesome, spook-free experience … all included with regular park admission. (As if we didn't need to scare up another reason to visit!)
Here's Counting the Reasons We Love SeaWorld's Halloween Spooktacular!
1. Halloween Spooktacular Trick-or-Treating
Who else is here for the candy?! SeaWorld is an excellent place for stress-free trick-or-treating. Upon entering Bayside Pathway (where a majority of the Spooktacular fun takes place), you can immediately pick up a treat bag. These get an A+ in our book ... they are nice, sturdy and decently large! Plenty of room for candy.
SeaWorld is also a great spot for those sensitive to allergies. Upon picking up your treat bag, you can consult with an employee to get information on the allergen-friendly offerings. Also, each trick-or-treat station is labeled with what candy is being given out. This is a win-win: You can be sure to dodge anything you or your tadpoles may be allergic to, and make a bee-line straight to your favorites! Some stations include Airheads, Tootsie Rolls, Cowtales and more.
Parents, don't be shy — you can get in on the fun too! We thought trick-or-treating may only be for tadpoles, but have no fear. We saw many grownup frogs hopping around getting candy too! There are many trick-or-treat stations throughout Bayside Pathway, so be sure not to miss any, and feel free to double up on your favorites.
Pro Tip: Save trick-or-treating for later in the day, a bit before you plan on heading out of the park, if you don't want the tadpoles overindulging in sugar all day long. We promise SeaWorld won’t run out of candy, and why haul all of your goodies around all day if you don’t have to?
2. Halloween Spooktacular Costumes
Costumes are of course all part of the Halloween fun. Unlike other Halloween parties in the area, costumes aren’t as much of a staple at SeaWorld. We find it to be the happy medium, as costumes are appreciated and admired, but not obligatory. You can feel comfortable dressed up or dressed down, or anywhere in between. This is a great option if you feel like getting into the spirit without packing a whole ensemble for the event.
All guests are welcome to wear their spookiest attire, with just a few rules. Only tadpoles 12 and under are permitted to wear masks; ages 13 and older may not wear masks or hoods. Before you go all out with the special effects makeup, note that face painting is not allowed on any guest unless done by a professional park artist. All costumes are subject to normal dress code for the park, so be sure to stay appropriate!
Beyond those simple rules, we have one major recommendation: Dress for the weather! Halloween weather in Florida differs greatly from the chilly season in most parts of the country. Be prepared for weather in the 80s — lose the long sleeves, so your tadpoles don’t get cooked in the sun! Theme park days are exhausting enough as it is, without adding overheated children into the equation. As always, be sure to keep water on deck to stay hydrated as you hustle around chowing down on sweets.
Pro Tip: Bring a change of clothes for your little ones, especially if they insist on wearing heavier or layered costumes. They may be insistent in the hotel room, but that may change in the middle of the heat.
3. Sesame Street’s Countdown to Halloween
Join Elmo, Abby Cadabby and more friends as they tell the story of Count Von Count’s lonely Halloween. This indoor stage show is full of friendly Halloween favorites, like flying bats and dancing skeletons. Your tadpoles will have a blast singing and playing along with all of their Sesame Street pals. This is perfect entertainment for your younger kiddos who love to interact.
The show takes place multiple times daily at Seaport Theatre and is a great place to take an afternoon break. Plus it's in air conditioning! These shows do fill to capacity but generally not until close to starting time. If you have more than a couple of people in your group, we recommend arriving at least 20 minutes ahead of time. Don’t worry, the wait is fun with plenty of interactive dancing and games to keep your tadpoles entertained.
You can buy reserved seating online at $19/person, but we don’t think it is necessary. If it is a top priority event for you, simply get there a bit earlier to guarantee great spots. There really isn’t a bad seat in the house!
4. Count Von Count’s Spooktacular Breakfast
For an extra cost, you can start your family’s day off on a particularly festive foot by enjoying breakfast with all of your Sesame Street friends. At $19.99 for adults and $9.99 for children (ages 0-3 are free), we can’t complain about the price of this character meal that includes a full breakfast buffet. If your tadpoles are Sesame Street fans, we totally recommend this it! The food will get you fueled for a day of fun, and the characters are a blast to interact with for great photo memories.
5. Penelope’s Garden Party
This party-within-the-party takes place intermittently throughout the day and is a great place for your little tadpoles to burn off some energy. You can sit nearby and watch them have a blast as they dance and sing with underwater characters and play along with hosted activities. A live DJ, fun crafts and bubbles floating overhead are all a part of this fun and unique experience. Take the tadpoles here during their inevitable trick-or-treat sugar rush — it is the perfect amount of fun interaction to keep them excited through the rest of the day!
6. Mermaid Grotto
Don’t worry — you don’t have to go under the sea to meet a beautiful mermaid in Orlando …simply visit SeaWorld! Toward the end of Bayside Pathway on the right, you’ll find Mermaid Grotto. One of a few different mystical mermaids will be visiting at her seashell for photo-ops and fun conversation! Of course, Lily couldn’t miss this opportunity. These pink- and purple-haired wonders will make bubbly conversations with your little ones, certain for great memories. Lily dressed as a mermaid herself for Halloween and enjoyed comparing her tail with the mermaid at the grotto!
7. Halloween Spooktacular Meet-and-Greets
Along the party path, there are plenty of creatures and characters out and about to say hello! From princesses to jellyfish, to stilt-walkers and everything in between, there is something (or someone!) new and fun around every corner.
Some character duos are out telling stories of their undersea adventures ... some groups are out to play games like “Hookfish” (the ocean’s version of Hangman). These goofy critters were Tad’s absolute favorite! He had a blast admiring their costumes and talking with them — his favorite were the “catfish” and “dogfish.” All are ready to meet, greet and take photos with your gang. Challenge your tadpoles to identify the different creatures or to meet all of the different princesses! These are fun ways to spice up your day at SeaWorld's Halloween Spooktacular.
8. Pets Ahoy Halloween
We are huge animal lovers, of course, so we’re big fans of the traditional Pets Ahoy show at SeaWorld. It’s a blast to see the dogs, cats, ducks, pigs and more work together to perform hilarious on-stage tricks. This is a fun show, as it highlights less exotic animals and all of the fun tasks they’re able to accomplish too! Best of all, the animals are all rescues.
The Halloween edition of this show isn’t too different from the original, but adds a few bits of seasonal theming to make it festive and fun. Pets Ahoy typically only takes place once a day, so be sure to check it out!
9. Halloween Dance Party
End your night with a bang! One hour before park closing, a party kicks off at Village Square in front of the park as the sky fills with bubbles and captivating lights. This fun environment hosts all of the fun, under-sea friends you’ve made throughout the day for line-dancing and celebrating!
10. Halloween Spooktacular Merchandise
Want to get into the spirit at the last minute? No worries. SeaWorld has a great variety of kids’ costumes on site, from your Sesame Street faves to the trendiest mermaid garb. The face painting stations are also a great way to get into the spirit!
We are also loving the exclusive SeaWorld Halloween merch this year. There’s a great selection with cool designs, with sizes ranging for the whole frog squad.
11. Halloween Spooktacular Food & Activities
As you explore the Spooktacular area, you’ll find an array of carnival-style games, complete with Halloween-themed prizes including super cool Day of the Dead-style plushes. Purchase the $20 game pass in advance to get five games for the price of four — all with a guaranteed prize! This was a great way to keep Tad and Lily entertained AND scoring some souvenirs to take home.
Be sure to stop at the craft station where you can make custom family-style art and décor with your little ones! I was a huge fan of the “Mummy-Daughter” handprint art. How adorable! There are plenty of spooky, creative designs for your whole family to get in on.
It’s not a trip to SeaWorld without some delicious food and drinks, and there’s no shortage on Bayside Pathway. Mama and Papa Frogs can enjoy the seasonal craft brew sampler. The rest of the gang can snack of classic theme park favorites with a “spooky” twist. Our favorite were the warm cinnamon sugar doughnuts ... yum!
We are huge fans of SeaWorld Orlando's Halloween Spooktacular. It is honestly one of our favorite times to visit the park. More than anything, we cannot say enough great things about how convenient and fun it is to celebrate the season with your younger tadpoles. The Sesame Street show is a huge hit for young ones, the character meet-and-greets are whimsical — plus, lines never get too long and trick-or-treating is a laid-back experience. And since the fun lasts all day, it never gets too chaotic or crowded. It's perfect for families catering to a variety of ages! Our favorite part is how the Halloween festivities are condensed into one area, so that way you don’t have to hustle around the entire park to get the full experience. This is a huge plus for all of you Mama and Papa Frogs out there.
Have questions about SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular? Share them in comments below! Planning a visit to SeaWorld Orlando or the other Orlando theme parks? We've got easy-peasy park plans to help you make the most of your visit!