Halloween Treats!

by Sara Barton, 15th October 2021
Plenty of Halloween treats in the south of Scotland
Halloween Treats!

As the bewitching night comes closer, we take a look at where you can get closer to ghouls and ghosts, witches and scary monsters – or enjoy a trail through a pumpkin patch, maybe even pick one of your own? In addition there are Halloween events around the end of the month.


Please note: In light of the coronavirus pandemic, health and safety are of paramount importance. Stay safe and adhere to current government guidance. Closures and access restrictions may apply and will be lifted in line with government guidance. Always check with places directly and prebook where possible. Most events for children require an adult entry as well.


Halloween Trails

Where: Various locations

There’s a delightful Halloween treat awaiting you and the children in your life in the enchanted grounds of Floors Castle. Follow the trail map through the grounds and you can access the Walled Garden and the Children’s Play Park as well with your entry ticket. There are daily entries during the last week of October in the run up to Halloween.

Dress up and you might win a prize while you do the Paxton House Halloween Trail. Running daily from Saturday 9th October to the 31st, trail goers can share photos on social media to enter the best dressed prize competition. Booking in advance is not necessary – just turn up and collect trail sheets from the gift shop.

At Castle Kennedy there are several bewitching trails to captivate the whole family. Younger children might want some help as they try to help the forgetful pumpkin find the keys to the castle on the Pumpkin Trail. Older children can don their cloaks and embark on the Witches and Wizards trail. If they follow the compass, solve the puzzles, and find their way through the forest they could become the castle’s next magical apprentice! Sweet treats await the successful searchers.

And at Jacksons of Jedburgh you get the bonus of seeing farm animals as you experience their FarmWalk with a Halloween theme! The animals will be there for meeting and feeding and Jacksons play and picnic paddocks are open with the addition of delicious hot chocolate and Halloween treats.

Halloween events include trails through grounds at Floors Castle and Castle Kennedy
Hallowe’en trails are an ideal way to entertain and spend a day in the outdoors.

Pick your own pumpkin

Where: St Abbs | Clackmae

This is the perfect place to select your grinning Jack-o-Lantern – a pick your own pumpkin patch! Just the way to excite the family about the Halloween season. At St. Abbs Pumpkin Patch you can choose from over 21 varieties from miniature to large and there are ornamental gourds on offer too. Miniature pumpkins are being sold in support of a local charity so why not pick up a few for extra decoration around the house. Entry to the patch is free of charge and is now open daily until the 31st October. If all that pumpkin hunting makes you peckish, stop off at the The Old Smiddy Coffee Shop across from the entrance to savour some of their home baking.

At Clackmae Farm there are pumpkins and a spooky maze on offer from 15 October until the 31st. There are the possibilities of a family photo shoot in the patch or a pumpkin carving masterclass too, but these are selling quickly. Ticketed entry only.

Pumpkin carving - the ultimate Hallowe'en event
Choose your very own pumpkin – or two – at pick your own pumpkin patches from mid-October.

Potion making and pumpkin carving

Where: Various locations

Spooktacular potions are being cooked up in the eerily Georgian kitchen at Paxton House. Children from 5 can enjoy an hour-long crash-course in Potions without the fear of Professor Snape walking in!

Or perhaps you want to perfect your pumpkin carving skills. Jacksons at Jedburgh are offering the ideal opportunity with sessions running for the last two weekends of October and included in all day tickets purchased. For slightly older children and their families there is an evening carving session on 29th October which includes marshmallow toasting as part of the ticket price! Pre-booking is essential.

Learn how to carve the perfect Pumpkin at Jacksons of Jedburgh!

Evileria

Where: Dumfries

Back by popular demand, performances of The Return of Evileria will take place on the last two weekends of October at Moat Brae. There’s something dark, horrid and weird afoot in the library – the books won’t talk to each other and even the pirates are afraid. This performance event is suitable for children over five and all youngsters will be rewarded for their bravery surviving the night with a genuine certificate! Halloween party games in the Lost Boys Bistro afterwards. Definitely book in advance, there are three sessions per evening, lasting an hour. All children must be accompanied.

Wicked fairy Evileria has returned to Moat Brae to unsettle the library – dare you go in?

Ghostly walks and historical tours

Where: Various locations

Award-winning Mostly Ghostly Tours are offering up spooky tales, ghostly walks and historic tours in the last week of October to coincide with All Hallows Eve. Join them in the crypt of the Crichton to learn about the founder of this former mental hospital and its history. Or perhaps you’re brave enough for a ghost walk in Dumfries? There’s legends and lore abounding at Castle Loch in Lockerbie or dark tales of old Annan as well. The crypt tour is recommended for age 8 and upwards and booking is essential.

Mostly Ghostly provide ghostly and historical tours – seen here in the Crichton Crypt, Dumfries

Halloween Drive In

Where: Dumfries

Whether you are looking for true fright or Halloween fun, the Crichton have transformed the car park into a Drive In movie lot and have got a weekend of appropriately themed movies lined up for the 30th-31st weekend. From child-friendly Casper to popular favourites like The Addams Family and Cruella families are well catered for. And those with true nerves of steel can go later and watch the Blair Witch Project or Scream when its truly dark outside – if they dare!

Choose from multiple scary movies at Crichton Estate Halloween Drvie In

Halloween Events and Parties

Where: Various locations

The weekend offers the ideal opportunity for Halloween events targeted at children and families. An afternoon of interactive fun awaits children (and their accompanying adults) at Barony Castle on Saturday 30th October. Get the kids costumed up and they can have their faces painted on site. There will be games and surprise visits from characters the kids are sure to recognise. Booking essential via the hotel’s website.

Or if you’re keen to share your experience with a four-legged friend, how about going along to Eat Sleep Ride equestrian centre. They are hosting a Halloween gymkhana with pony games and spooky fun on Saturday too.

On Halloween itself, Traquair House offers a perfectly magically mix. There’s Quantum Magic shows, ghost stories in the woods, pumpkin trail in the maze, a spooky scavenger hunt and prizes for best costume. There will be Hallowe’en themed lunches and tea in the Garden Cafe.

Attend a Halloween party on the weekend to really get into the spirit