5 Off-Beat and Unconventional Halloween Activities in Vancouver

stairs-205718_1920Vancouver has no shortage of thrills and scares for those looking for Halloween fun, from spooky trolley and train rides to haunted houses and even a ghoulish amusement park.

But there are also plenty of options in and around the city for Halloween lovers searching for something a little different. Here are five off-beat, sometimes overlooked and somewhat unconventional Halloween activities guaranteed to give you a few goosebumps. Some of these activities are on offer year-round, while others are especially for Halloween:

Sleuth your way out of a “serial killer’s basement”: Popular around the world, escape rooms are elaborate, themed rooms – like a haunted mansion or a mummy’s tomb – where participants are quite literally locked inside. Groups must solve clues and puzzles to break out before time expires. In Vancouver, Smartypantz offers several terrifying challenges perfect for Halloween, from a serial killer’s basement to a doomed submarine and an old abandoned house. Year-round, approximately $25 a person.


GraveTalesImage-550x367 (1)Relive historic fur-trading horrors at Fort Langley: Originally constructed in 1827 as a Hudson’s Bay Company trading post, historic Fort Langley has seen its share of horrors over the years. Learn about the waves of disease and famine, primitive amputations and other macabre moments on a walking tour of the fort and neighbouring cemeteries. Oct. 15-30, $17. 


Vancouver-Mysteries-key-brand-image-horizontal-orientation-printHunt down an assassin on the streets of Vancouver: Ready to solve a murder mystery on the streets of Vancouver? A local journalist has been found dead. Now it’s your job to find out who did it and why – and the clock is ticking. This interactive adventure from Vancouver Mysteries has you and fellow detectives fan out into the city, looking for hidden items, decoding secret messages and tracking down the cold-blooded killer. Year-round, $25. 


Screen-Shot-2015-09-06-at-11.38.46-AMTrack down zombies (and an alien or two) on a smartphone adventure: You and your fellow zombie hunters must race against the clock to stop an epidemic in this interactive theatre experience on the streets of Vancouver from Virtual Stage. The premise: a UFO has crashed outside the city; the alien pilot is hiding downtown and spreading a deadly virus that turns people into zombies. Harness the power of your GPS-enabled smartphones to collect clues, avoid ravenous attackers and save the city from a plague of walking dead. Oct 6-Nov. 1, starting at $25. 


VPL-Photo-508-First-Vancouver-City-council-Meeting-After-the-Fire-1886-H.-T.-DevineTake a terrifying tour of Gastown, circa 1890: This incredibly well researched walking tour from Forbidden Vancouver takes guests through the city’s historic Gastown neighbourhood. Though it may look picturesque now, Gastown was the scene of its share of plagues, fires and grisly murders in the late 1800s. Get ready for some shocking revelations as you relive cold-blooded killings and long-forgotten crimes from the days when Vancouver was still a Wild West outpost. Offered year-round, $22.

These are just a few of Vancouver’s off-beat and unconventional Halloween offerings. Have a favourite of your own? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

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