There are plenty of opportunities to catch a scare leading up to Halloween.

Haunted Haight Walking Tour

The President & founder of the San Francisco Ghost Society leads a ghost tour of the Haight-Ashbury. Learn about San Francisco history and ghost hauntings while exploring locations that were once home to murderers and cult leaders. Haight-Ashbury, Saturdays (Friday-Monday Halloween weekend) at 7pm, $20, reservations required. More info.

Chinatown Ghost Tours

Many Chinese believe when people die, their souls continue living in the world of darkness and must be taken care of by their descendants. Without caretakers, they turn into miserable, desperate souls. But the scariest ghosts are said to be those who died from murder and suicide that haunt the scene of their death ready for revenge. This walking tour takes vistis passageways of Chinatown’s past, including a former gambling den haunted by the spirit of Fu Ling Yu who met his unfortunate demise when he was caught cheating.

Chinatown, Friday & Saturday evenings at 7:30 pm, $48, reservation required. More info.

California Academy of Sciences Zombie Nightlife

Learn about zombie neuroscience and how zombie-like systems would manifest themselves in real life. Check out real brain specimens and go on a zombie apocalypse adventure through the museum. This event also includes a zombie prom and a zombie drag show & costume contest.

Golden Gate Park, Thursday Oct. 27th at 6pm, $12, More info.

San Francisco Ghost Hunt

This three-hour, one-mile walking tour takes participants to San Francisco’s most haunted places, and promises encounters with real ghosts from wild and romantic times of yesteryear. Hear ghost stories based on documented research and touch haunted artifacts. Pacific Heights, nightly (except Tuesdays) at 7pm, $20 cash or traveler’s check. More info.


South Bay

Winchester Mystery House Fright Nights

Sarah Winchester built and rebuilt this house over her lifetime to escape curses she believed were cast in the wake of her husbands fortunes from his gun business. During Fright Nights, the Winchester Mystery House is transformed into a terrifying Halloween experience. The night begins with haunted walk-though the house with nightmare-inducing tales and roaming scare performers, then travel through a corn field maze and haunted graveyard to reach a showdown with Sarah during a seance. San Jose, Friday -Sunday (Halloween weekend Thursday-Monday) starting at 6:30pm, $15-$60. More info.

Great America Halloween Haunt

The South Bay theme park gets a makeover that includes Scare Zones of dead armies and forsaken souls. Watch creepy shows and navigate through disturbing haunted mazes. Ride the park’s thrill rides, including a special gruesome attraction. Santa Clara, Friday-Sunday 7pm-midnight, $27-$41.99, More info.

Alien Extreme

Live actors, animated props and special effects bring to life the story of an alien spacecraft that crashed next to the county airport. Explore the area overrun by bizarre and frightening creatures from other worlds.

San Jose, various times & dates, $20. More info.

Image Credit: San Francisco Ghost Hunt