Halloween party ideas: 20 easy ways to nail a spooky celebration

Halloween party ideas are wide and varied, we've narrowed it down to 20 of the best.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by kids sat in halloween costumes sat in home made spookey den
(Image credit: Getty / Future)

Halloween party ideas are hard to choose to from, they are all so varied and creative.

There are so many Halloween crafts (opens in new tab) you can make at home to pull together a spooky surrounding for your party, the best Halloween decorations (opens in new tab), favours and Halloween games (opens in new tab) are ones you can pull together quickly and easily - or just buy online. 

Goodto.com Family Editor, Stephanie Lowe (opens in new tab) says; "A Halloween party sounded like a lot of work initially and I wasn't into the idea, but then I realised it meant we didn't have to go trick or treating and I could side step all that anxiety of being outside in the dark, navigating steps with littles. Being in to answer the door was part of the party's excitement. Keep it small and intimate is my only advice."

Not only will spooky decorations be a brilliant addition to your party try Halloween food ideas (opens in new tab) and cocktails, there are so many ways you can create a realistic setting for your party this autumn.

Halloween party ideas

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1. Lantern-lined steps to the front door

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Let's start with the Halloween decorations! If you're planning a Halloween party, you'll need to dress your home up in the spooky spirit. Having some lanterns and Halloween painted pumpkins (opens in new tab) lining the pathway up to the front door is a great way to greet your guests.

2. Pumpkin wreath

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Much like Christmas, there's no better way to show people you're in the spooky spirit than a wreath on the front door. This stunning pink one is made up of small pumpkins but you can buy ones more in the autumnal theme from Etsy (opens in new tab) - or you can make your own wreath (opens in new tab) at home.

3. Gravestones in the garden

These gravestones are a subtle way to bring some life (or death) to your garden this Halloween. We particularly like the set of 4 tombstones (opens in new tab) available to buy on Amazon as they're simple to stick in the ground on Halloween night.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by pretend gravestones in soil

Credit: Amazon

4. Ghostly balloon garland

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Having a balloon garland over your front door is a sure-fire way to kick things off. Make your own using shop-bought balloons and a thick permanent marker - or buy a ready-made one from Etsy (opens in new tab).

5. Spooky fairy lights

Fairy lights are a party essential! At Christmas, blinking fairy lights disappear off the shelves and at Halloween, a set of orange lights goes a very long way towards setting the festive theme.

If you're looking to go for an orange, pumpkin-y theme then you'll love these lights from Amazon (opens in new tab). For a low-key skeletal theme, have a look at these Day of the Dead-inspired lights (opens in new tab) and for a bat-friendly fiesta, these purple lights from Etsy (opens in new tab) are amazing.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by Pumpkin electric light string against the window. Halloween theme

Fairy lights are a simple way to bring light into your party space, Credit: Getty.

6. Creepy crawlies on the kitchen cabinets

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These simple spider decorations make a great addition to any kitchen on Halloween! As one of the easiest Halloween crafts (opens in new tab), you can also make them from home using just some black card and a sharp pair of scissors.

7. Hanging spider garden decorations

This hanging spider garden decoration (opens in new tab) might not be for the faint hearted but it's a great investment if you're looking to splash out on the best bits for your party. Available on Amazon for £27.99, this huge spider comes with its own web that you can hang from your house and drape into the garden.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by giant shop bought black spider in pretend web

Credit: Amazon

8. Skeleton in the bathtub

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While most people just focus on decorating a couple of rooms for a Halloween party, this idea extends the theme to the whole house. Pick up a skeleton on Amazon (opens in new tab) and pop them in the bathtub to give your guests an extra surprise when they go to the bathroom.

9. A frightening feast on the table

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We don't doubt that you've got your Halloween food ideas sorted - from the Halloween pizzas (opens in new tab) to Halloween cake pops (opens in new tab) - and now we've got an idea for your spread. Lay out a colourful table cloth and dot some Halloween bits around the table; a bat here and there, a antique-y black candlestick to light up the table and a pumpkin should definitely do the trick.

10. Colourful candles

Candles aren't only a great way to bring a low light to the room but you can get loads of unique, colourful and spooky candles to complement your decorative theme.

We love these pumpkin ones from Etsy (opens in new tab) for a more light-hearted celebration or these skull ones (opens in new tab), also from Etsy, as the wax drips through the eye sockets as the candle melts.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by Pumpkin candles

Credit: Etsy

11. Vampire kiss cocktail

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What (adults-only) party isn't complete without a bit of booze for those who want? To make a vampire's kiss cocktail, you'll need per drink:

  • 20ml raspberry liqueur
  • 25ml vodka
  • Handful of ice
  • Frozen raspberries
  • Red sugar for the rim of the glass
  • Champagne to top off the cocktail

To garnish, pop in a set of vampire's teeth.

For an alcohol-free version, try a vampire's blood pomegranate punch (opens in new tab). It's a safe one for adults and children alike!

12. Halloween birthday cake

If you're having a Halloween party to celebrate an occasion or just want to make sure your guests have plenty of sweet treats, why not bake a spooky birthday cake? We love this recipe by Great British Bake Off star Nadiya Hussain as it's homemade from start to finish and so impressive.

Take a look at Nadiya Hussain's Halloween birthday cake recipe (opens in new tab) here.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by ghostly cake with spider decoration

Credit: GoodtoKnow

13. Halloween cupcakes

For something a little simpler and kid-friendly, make Halloween cupcakes (opens in new tab) instead.

There are so many different types you can make, you're sure to find one that fits your party theme. These Frankenstein cupcakes (opens in new tab) are so cute and while they might be harder to make, they're perfect for impressing at a party. These spider cupcakes (opens in new tab) are so easy to make too and ideal for chocolate-lovers.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by pumpkin spooky orange cupcakes

Credit: GoodtoKnow

14. Terrifying toffee apples

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Toffee apples are such a nostalgic treat and a great party idea! To give this classically autumnal recipe a spooky twist, add a couple of drops of red food colouring to the last stage of the toffee mix. Trust us, these are a real showstopper.

Learn how to make toffee apples with our special recipe.

15. Puking pumpkin dip

For your guacamole platter, this puking pumpkin is a great idea! Even if it is a little bit gross. To make, you will need a pumpkin, a knife and your favourite dips. Then cut a large mouth towards the bottom of the pumpkin and scoop out the seeds. Carve eyes and a nose with a sharp knife. Place the pumpkin on the edge of a plate, spoon the dip into the mouth and spread onto the plate.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by Puking pumpkin, another good Halloween party idea

Credit: GoodtoKnow

16. Donut eating contest

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When it comes to Halloween parties, you should always have a couple of Halloween games (opens in new tab) up your sleeve. This donut eating contest is a sure winner (with both adults and children alike) and it's bound to crack a few smiles. Hang a piece of string across two points in a room and attach another piece, with a donut on the end, for everyone playing to munch on. Whoever can finish their donut first with their hands behind their back is the winner.

17. Indoor scavenger hunt

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As with any party where you're planning for your guests to be able to go outside, it's always best to have a back-up plan in case it rains. Scavenger hunts are a kids' party classic and a great way to keep them occupied for a few hours but this game also works for older kids and adults. With some Halloween-themed card and a stroke of imagination, you can make up your own clues or download some from TailorMade Designs on Etsy (opens in new tab).

18. Spooky charades

This is another traditional kids' party game that works so well for Halloween! Download this set for less than £4 from Etsy (opens in new tab) or make your own, using characters from some of your favourite Halloween movies (opens in new tab) and television shows.

Halloween party ideas illustrated by Halloween charades, a great Halloween party idea

Credit: Etsy

19. Apple bobbing

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While we're not entirely sure what makes apple bobbing so spooky, it definitely makes our list of Halloween party ideas! This (very wet) game is so easy to pull together. All you'll need is a large bucket and a couple of apples floating along the top. Whoever can bob and grab the most apples with their mouth, hands tied behind their back, is the winner of the game.

It's a winner for kids of all ages - but maybe not for anyone who's come to the party with a full face of face paint.

20. Pin the spider on the web

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Pin the tail on the donkey gets a re-vamp in this creepy version of the classic game. Make your own at home using some white card and a thick black marker to draw the web. Make the spiders by drawing some on another piece of card, cutting them out and attaching a piece of blu-tac on the other side. Alternatively, download this Halloween party idea from Etsy (opens in new tab).

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Grace Walsh
Features Writer

Grace Walsh is a Features Writer for Goodto.com, covering breaking news health stories during the Covid-19 pandemic as well as lifestyle and entertainment topics.  She has worked in media since graduating from the University of Warwick in 2019 with a degree in Classical Civilisation and a year spent abroad in Italy. It was here that Grace caught the bug for journalism, after becoming involved in the university’s student newspaper and radio station.