Halloween in Amsterdam
Halloween in Amsterdam
Do you think that the ancient Celts would have been happy about the way Halloween is celebrated today if they knew thousands of years ago? In all honesty, most likely not. We will never know and the only thing that matters is that Halloween is now celebrated worldwide in various ways and continues to grow in popularity with each year.
Halloween in Amsterdam: Is it celebrated?
When you think about the Netherlands, there is no way that something fun like Halloween will go unnoticed, right? The interesting thing is that you are both right and wrong. Here in the Netherlands, we have our own version of Halloween called Sint Maarten which happens on November 11th each year.
This does not change the fact that the Halloween you all know at the end of October is not a good time to be in the Netherlands. Halloween in Amsterdam, for instance, will be an experience you will never forget. All major clubs host incredible themed events, certain places in the city such as Amsterdam Dungeon become a must-see, and there are even masquerade balls in a few locations in Amsterdam.
While it is too early to speak about the events that will happen on Halloween 2020, we can definitely mention the incredible night in 2019 and talk about the clubs that host annual events and will surely come up with something unique for next year once again. And since partying here is never cheap, the Amsterdam Nightlife Ticket is, once again, the best option for partying on Halloween in Amsterdam.
Before you decide to join a party somewhere in Amsterdam, be sure to check out the clubs and venues that are partnered with the Amsterdam Nightlife Ticket as the chances are that you may be able to jump past the entrance fee and spend that extra € on a few additional cocktails.
Halloween in Amsterdam: Daily Activities
Although Halloween is not officially celebrated in Amsterdam, there are numerous locations and venues that host wonderful events both day and night. With this said, there are many interesting places to visit during the day in the hours before the crazy parties begin.
Although Amsterdam Dungeon is open all year round, there is no better time to visit than Halloween. It is a simultaneously frightening and funny experience that will take you through the entire history of the Netherlands.
Through the 80-minute show, you will go through 12 separate acts that include a total of 7 actors. You will experience the Black Death, the Spanish Inquisition, the Middle Ages. The easiest way to explain it is as a real-life 4D experience – the shows are performed in complete darkness with the addition of sound and light effects and even smell effects.
This attraction, however, will not be suitable for people that do not take black humor well as there will be quite a lot of it through the twelve shows. Nevertheless, it is perfect for people that have a genuine attraction to horror and real disastrous events from the past.
Last but not least, your Amsterdam Nightlife Ticket gives you a 2 for 1 discount on tickets for the Amsterdam Dungeon which is another good reason to visit with your friends or family. Also, the safest option for you is to book your tickets in advance as this attraction is widely popular among tourists and even locals. On Halloween, especially, the chances are that there will be a long line.
Noorderlicht is one of the most popular festival locations in Amsterdam. Every year on Halloween, they host an all-day event that combines numerous fun activities during the day in addition to a fun scary party in the evening.
Depending on your age and family status, the daily activities at Noorderlicht may or may not interest you. For example, these include family-friendly ones such as creating masks and doing make-up so you shouldn’t wonder why there are so many kids.
At night, however, the venue becomes a ballroom for people and creatures of the night. If you have a scary costume you would like to show off, Noorderlicht will be one of the most suitable places for this endeavor. Moreover, the location itself is spooky itself. Besides the night-long party, you can wander around the abandoned buildings scattered in the Northern docklands.
Fortunately, the venue of Noorderlicht is also part of the Amsterdam Nightlife Ticket program and you can enter the regular events there for free. For instance, the Halloween all-day event also has an entrance fee which you can skip with your own ticket.
The Ghost Walk
A city with such a diverse and mysterious history such as Amsterdam will surely have at least a few haunted locations, right? If ghost stories and dark places are your kind of thing, you should definitely book your place in the Ghost Walk of Amsterdam.
Although a ghost walk/tour sounds like something you would usually watch on YouTube, we can assure you that this attraction is on a high professional level and will introduce you to many old legends and actual facts about the dark history of Amsterdam.
Now that you already know about Amsterdam Dungeon which will get you through the history of Amsterdam written in history books, what better way to experience the opposite side of the city’s past – the mystical and paranormal?
Truly, there are too many legends and stories for your professional guide to fit in a single tour. Therefore, here is a simple fun tip. Search for curious myths and ghost stories in advance and get yourself prepared for the tour. This way, you will have a bigger part in the walk and you can ask additional questions.
Halloween in Amsterdam: Nightlife Experiences
As previously mentioned, it is too early to speak about actual confirmed events for Halloween 2020. Nevertheless, the clubs mentioned below have a yearly tradition of celebrating October 31st, therefore, we will mention their 2019 events as well as their usual practices.
Club Paradiso (Helloween Bal Masque)
Few clubs besides Paradiso will give you such a wild and unnatural experience on Halloween. Known for its atypical Reggae & Dub parties that take you on a crazy musical journey from the dawn of reggae music in the 60s to the wildest hits of the most recent years, Club Paradiso is one of the most popular party locations for party-seeking tourists and locals.
Located in a former cultural center that was also once a church, is there a more suitable location for a Halloween gathering of mysterious and frightening creatures? The club hosted its popular Halloween Bal Masque once again in 2019 and judging by its success, you can expect a follow up for this year as well.
Besides the long line-up of DJs and bands that performed all night, the venue also encouraged people to get creative with their costumes with prizes for the wildest ideas. Simply said, no one would be turned off at the entrance but you could easily get turned on as soon as you join the celebration.
Fortunately enough, Club Paradiso is also partnered with the Amsterdam Nightlife Ticket which means that you can eventually skip the entrance fee which you would, otherwise, have to pay. Need any more reasons to go?
The Box (Festival of the Dead)
Have you ever heard of Dia De Los Muertos, the annual Mexican holiday which celebrates the dead through countless parades and celebrations, scary make-up and costumes? In 2019, the citizens and guests of Amsterdam had the chance to celebrate this holiday early in the Box on Halloween.
If you are unfamiliar, Festival of the Dead is now an annual event hosted in tenths of cities around Europe that took its roots from the original holiday in Mexico. In the beginning, it started in the UK but in 2019, the Box hosted it in Amsterdam and we can surely expect a return in 2020 after it was such a grand success.
Take advantage of your Amsterdam Nightlife Ticket and put club the Box on your bucket list for 2020 as they host some of the wildest events all-year-round similar to this one. In its entirety, the Festival of the Dead in 2019 was a frightening but wild and satisfying experience that included monstrous decorations of giant skeleton puppets, real aerial acrobats and dancers, and an abundance of pyrotechnics (controlled and safe for everybody, of course).
Whether you are in the United Kingdom or the Netherlands, the Festival of the Dead is the single best opportunity to experience an insane mixture of horror, circus, carnival, and clubbing at the same time without it being an extremely unaffordable festival somewhere around the world.
Panama club in Amsterdam used to host special Halloween themed events in previous years but in 2019, they made the decision to have a regular weekly Thursday party with a small Halloween twist that, of course, included costumes.
Why are we then including Panama club if they did not do anything impressive for Halloween 2019 you might ask? First of all, we are here to give you the best places to party overall. Second of all, we realize that not everybody wants to get involved in the crazy Halloween-themed parties that we mentioned above. Tastes vary and if you are one of the people that prefer old-school clubbing, club Panama may be the best place to go.
Nevertheless, there is one more reason to include club Panama. While it may happen to be a good place for people that want to stay low on Halloween, Panama club has a long history of hosting the wildest events all-year-round. Although in 2018 and 2019 they decided to skip on all the festivities, you can absolutely expect something different for 2020.
In other words, keep club Panama on your list of plausible locations no matter your taste of party experiences. As long as you love Techno, it will always remain one of the best clubs for this kind of music in Amsterdam.
What is Sint Maarten?
As stated in the beginning, the Netherlands do not actually celebrate Halloween simply because the Dutch have their holiday called Sint Maarten. Quite literally, outside of Amsterdam and Den Hague where the major celebrations take place, Halloween is mostly just another regular day of the year.
In all honesty, both celebrations do not have too much in common and at the same time revolve around the same central activity – children going around the neighborhood, door to door with the purpose of getting some treats.
Already, you can understand the simple similarity between Sint Maarten and Halloween – the children and the candies. However, the children (and sometimes their parents) have to sing Dutch songs to earn their treats and the “trick” part from trick or treat does not really exist. All in all, this celebration is far more family-oriented than Halloween and is actually a beautiful Dutch tradition which we will, however, leave for another time.