Where To Be Scared? Some of New England’s Haunted Attractions

Every time October comes around, my friends and I look forward to spending at least one night of the month being terrorized by horror actors in old, repurposed buildings somewhere, just for the sake of the season. 

Because of this, I have visited my fair share of haunted attractions in New England, and have therefore developed some pretty strong opinions on each location. 

So, here are my thoughts on the few haunted attractions I have attended, in hopes that it helps you decide what to do for your Halloweekend!

Spooky World Presents Nightmare New England

This year was the second time I had the opportunity to visit Mel’s Funway Park for Spooky World Presents Nightmare New England, and it was the second time that Spooky World has disappointed me.


The Nightmare New England experience starts in a long, winding line to the ticket booth that does not fizzle out throughout the attractions. We spent more time waiting in line than we did in the houses, and even though our tickets were for a specific entry time, the line for the haunted hayride kept us waiting almost two hours after our scheduled time. And the worst part was that the haunted hayride definitely did not seem worth the wait. We piled into the floor of a trailer, squished together with strangers, and rode through lightly decorated woods where actors were allowed to jump onto the trailer and touch you. Yes, touch you. And when this upsetting hayride came to an end, the houses weren’t much better. In one word, I would describe the houses here as “ “underwhelming.” There are three houses at Spooky World, and there aren’t many rooms in any of them, and inside these few rooms, most of them didn’t have any actors. This overall lack of actors and attractions made the Nightmare New England experience less exciting, as there weren’t many faces to be scared by throughout the night. The theming of the houses (Asylum, 3D Scape, and The Colony) also weren’t anything unique or exciting. Outside of haunted attractions, Nightmare New England does offer the typical Mel’s experiences, like minigolf, go-karts, and batting cages (all at an additional price) as well as a wide selection of food and carnival games.

All in all, there isn’t really anything exciting that would make me want to return to Spooky World Presents Nightmare New England, and nothing that would cause me to suggest the experience. 

Screemfest at Canobie Lake Park


To me, Screemfest and Canobie will always be classic, nostalgic experiences to participate in. But even so, their haunted attractions need some updates. Screemfest features five haunted houses that are all actually pretty scary, but my only complaint is that the themes of these houses have been the same for years, so the experience has lost a lot of its excitement as a result of this. But if you’ve never been to Screemfest, the featured houses are The Villiage, Carnivus, The Canobie Lake Hotel, The Culling, and Facility 235, and I enjoyed most of these houses, and appreciated the uniqueness of the themes. Canobie also offers most of its usual rides, as well as a number of exciting horror shows.

While I do enjoy Screemfest and Canobie Lake Park, and I appreciate the attractions it has to offer, I would only recommend buying a ticket to Screemfest if you’ve never been before, because it is in desperate need of some updates. 

Fright Fest at Six Flags New England

Because of the trek needed to get to Agawam, Massachusetts, this year was the first time I was able to attend Fright Fest at Six Flags New England, and the experience I had made me wish it was closer.


The setup at Six Flags was very similar to Canboie, but on a larger scale. The themes of their houses were unique (Midnght Mansions, Nightmares, Slasher Circus 3D, Terror Tales, and The Aftermath: Zombies Revenge,) and they also had a number of exciting shows and scare zones throughout the park. I also really enjoyed the rides at Six Flags, and that experience by itself was worth the trip, I didn’t even need the haunted houses. The most impressive thing about Fright Fest to me was that it was not crowded at all. The waits for the rides and haunted experiences were short, and we were able to do a lot of exciting things in the short time we were there. 

I had a blast at Fright Fest and would definitely recommend attending, as long as you’re willing to make the two and a half hour drive to Agawam. 

Fright Kingdom

For me, Fright Kingdom in Nashua was the definition of a pleasant surprise. Located about thirty minutes away from Amherst, it is the closest haunted attraction that I’ve gone to, and also the one that has scared me the most. Fright Kingdom has four haunted houses, right in a row, with the concepts of Apocalypse Z, Bloodmare Manor, Psycho Circus, and The Abandoned.


But, the unique thing about Fright Kingdom is that the theming is continuous throughout the line, so it is nearly impossible to get bored. The houses are intense, with realistic sets, and actors everywhere, ready to scare you. The ticket queue is very interesting, as it features real costumes and set pieces from all kinds of horror movies and TV shows, and there is a spot for food and shopping after the houses. 

Basically, if you’re looking for a good scare that is not too far away, Fright kingdom is the way to go.  

New England is full of haunted attractions, and I’m sure you’ll have no problem finding something scary to do this weekend. But, these are my opinions based on the houses I have visited, and I hope they help make your Halloween as fun (and scary) as it can possibly be. 

Happy Halloween!