Halloween has gained popularity in the Netherlands in recent years, and it is celebrated in various ways, but it may not always be as traditional or spooky as it is in some other countries. Dutch Halloween celebrations tend to be a mix of traditional Halloween elements and more lighthearted, humorous, or family-friendly activities.
Spooky, scary, creepy Dutch Halloween
Here are some common ways Halloween is celebrated in the Netherlands:
- Costume Parties: Like in many other countries, people in the Netherlands often dress up in costumes and attend Halloween parties. These parties can range from spooky and creepy to humorous and fun. You’ll find people of all ages participating in costume events.
- Trick-or-Treating: Trick-or-treating is becoming more popular, especially in residential areas where children go door-to-door asking for candy. Many Dutch households are starting to embrace this tradition. Trick-or-treating is in the Netherlands a more common custom on 11 November when Saint Maarten is celebrated. On this day children go from door to door and sing Sint Maarten songs to get some nice sweets. Saint, Saint Maarten, the cows have tails, the girls are wearing skirts, here comes Sint Maarten.
➔ Sint Maarten, trick or treat
- Pumpkin Carving: Carving pumpkins into jack-o’-lanterns has become a popular Halloween activity, especially among children. Some houses are decorated with Halloween attributes but most of them are not.
- Haunted Houses and Events: Some Dutch cities and towns host haunted houses or Halloween-themed events. These can vary from family-friendly to quite spooky, so there’s something for everyone. Google Maps shows the Dutch haunted houses or as we say “Spookhuizen”.
➔ Google Maps results in Dutch Haunted Houses – Spookhuis – Spookmuseum
- Theme Park: Walibi is the place to be at Halloween. Experience real-life horror in Walibi’s haunted houses. Walibi is THE most Frightful Halloween Event in the Netherlands and it lasts the entire month of October.
Scary! The best Halloween experience in Europe is definitely the Halloween Fright Nights at Walibi Park. The Walibi park is transformed into a Horrifying Halloween setting. Terrifying actors roam the park to scare you senseless. Goosebumps and the sweat of fear will make you bite your nails. Buy extra tickets for the ultimate Halloween experience in a Haunted House. In the daytime you can go with your kids, aged between 6 and 12, to special Halloween experiences, these are the so-called “Halloween Spooky Days”.
➔ Halloween Fright Night and Scarry Days, experience a Frightful Symphony of Screams at Walibi
- Decorations: Many stores and homes in the Netherlands are decorated with Halloween-themed decorations, such as witches, ghosts, cobwebs, and skeletons. Some decorations might be more humorous or playful than scary. In the Netherlands are special party supply stores that sell theme-oriented items. You can find these stores on Google Maps under the term “Feestartikelen winkel”.
- Halloween-Themed Food: Some people enjoy making and serving Halloween-themed snacks and treats, like ghost-shaped cookies, mummy hot dogs, or witches’ brew drinks.
- Halloween Costume Parades: In some Dutch cities, you may find Halloween costume parades or events where people can show off their creative and funny costumes.
➔ Parades – Halloween Costume Parades in the Netherlands
- Themed Festivals and Events: In larger cities, you may come across Halloween-themed festivals or events that offer a range of activities, from live music to costume contests.
➔ Amsterdam Halloween Party at Westergas/WesterUnie
➔ Dutch Festival Agenda Halloween
- Fair: Every fair has its own haunted house or ghost houses as part of the attraction. These haunted houses are designed to provide visitors with a spooky and thrilling experience. Inside, you might encounter various scary scenes, actors in costumes, special effects, and jump scares to create a sense of fear and excitement. Check this side to find a fair nearby.
➔ Fair or as we say “Kermis”. Overview of fairs in the Netherlands
While Halloween celebrations in the Netherlands can be quite fun and lighthearted, they don’t have the same cultural and historical significance as they do in some other countries. Dutch Halloween celebrations often blend elements of the holiday with a sense of humor and creativity, making it a unique and enjoyable experience for those who participate.
Is this spooky feast a tradition in the Netherlands?
It’s important to note that Halloween in the Netherlands is not as deeply rooted in Dutch culture as it is in countries like the United States and Ireland, where the holiday has strong historical and cultural ties. However, it has become a more visible and fun occasion for many Dutch people, particularly younger generations, who enjoy the spooky and playful aspects of Halloween.
➔ Best Yearly Events in the Netherlands