Since the beginning of time, humans have held festivals to mark different occasions. From warding off ghosts and evil spirits, the winter season to celebrating the dead, these occasions were influenced by the different cultures. Some of these old festivals are still present and have evolved and characterized by scary costumes and spooky activities. Some of these spooky festivals include the below:
This annual event that happens every 31st of October, needs no introduction. The festival traces its origin to the Celtic celebration of Samhain, which was held to celebrate their harvest and also chase away ghosts by dressing in costumes and lighting bonfires. The Halloween festival is now celebrated in many countries, especially in the United States and Canada. The most famous symbol for this event is the scary curved faces on pumpkins, that make the Jack-o’-lanterns and are characterized by people wearing ghostly, creepy and sometimes funny costumes. The night is filled with different activities such as costume parties, trick or treating, visiting haunted houses watching scary films, playing pranks, and other scary activities.
The festival, which started as a way of celebrating Saint Walpurga, who battled witchcraft, has, over the years, turned into one of the spookiest festivals in Europe. It is celebrated every 30th of April in German, and other variants of the festival are held in other parts of Europe. On the night of the festival, people wear spooky costumes, eat, drink, and make loud noises on the streets as a way to celebrate their cultural stories.
Day of the Dead
Day of the Dead or Día de Los Muertos is a Mexican celebration to honor their dead loved ones. The day is so important that it is recognized as a national holiday, and it is held annually on 2nd November, just after Halloween. During this celebration, people dress up in skeleton and bright-colored costumes and paint skull faces, emulating the renowned symbolic icon, La Catrina. The living offers the dead with food and decorate their altars with bright flowers as a way of celebrating with them.
Vegetarian Festival, also known as Nine Emperor Gods Festival, is an annual sacred festival in Thailand for vegans. The festival appears to be insane and spooky to outsiders. The revelers go through ritualized mutilation that includes piercing their skin and even slashing their tongues with varying objects. They use all types of objects from handguns, needles, knives, swords, machetes to bull horns. The participants claim that the spirits protect them and hence they cannot feel any pain. What is more surprising is that the stitches and scarring are very uncommon.
The Krampus Parade
This parade draws its name from the famous European folklore of the same name, a half-demon and half-goat creature who would discipline rude or disobedient children. The rollicking event happens in Austria at around Christmas time -and people flock the streets of Austrian towns dressed in spooky costumes evoking the mythical Krampus. The costumes involve spiraling horns with demonic masks and whips that they flick at the spectators on the sidewalks.
It is however important to note that these are not the only spooky festivals in the world. As a matter of fact, there are several other spooky festivals exist around the world, including Spain’s Dance of Death, Belgium’s Carnival of Binche, Hungary’s Busó Carnival, among many others. In all these festivals one thing stands out- the spooky atmosphere.