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Visiting Salem in October

October is the peak season here in Salem, and attractions do sell out. Advance online ticket purchases will be required for both our Guided Tour Package and Grounds and Gardens experience in October. We will not be selling tickets at our admission desk as we are working with limited staff resources this season. Many attractions in Salem are experiencing similar staffing shortages and will also be requiring online ticket purchases. If you do miss out on any ticketed experiences, never fear, there are plenty of things to do to make the most of your trip to this amazing city. Here are a few of our favorite things in Salem to do in your own time.

  • Audio walking tours. We are very excited to offer the “Passages of the Past” and “Hawthorne’s Shadow” walking tours again this season. “Passages of the Past” introduces you to people from many different walks of life who helped to build the Derby Street neighborhood. Literary fans will love “Hawthorne’s Shadow,” a tour of Salem narrated by the author himself, highlighting his ties to his hometown of Salem. The walking tours were developed in collaboration with The House of the Seven Gables and local game theater company Intramersive, made possible by a grant from the Salem Cultural Council.
    Click here to learn more: “Passages of the Past”      “Hawthorne’s Shadow”
  • Adventure Lab geocaching. Adventure Lab offers community-compiled adventures around many of America’s great cities, and Salem is no exception. They suggest allotting an hour or two to complete the Salem adventure, an interactive five-stop tour, answering questions about each stop to unlock a bonus! You can even start here at The House of the Seven Gables.
    Click here for more information: Adventure Labs
  • Halloween costumes. Costumes are not just for kids! We love seeing visitors get into the spooky spirit with fun and creative costumes. If you are planning to do anything indoors in Salem you will need to wear a face mask, and it’s a great way to add another element to your costume. We highly suggest leaving props and large headdresses/costume elements in your car when visiting indoor attractions, especially The Gables. We are a 1668 house with small rooms and tight stair wells and cannot accommodate huge costume pieces. Please note that weapons, real or fake, are prohibited in Salem and will be confiscated by police. Shoes that you can walk comfortably in for long distances are a must, and be mindful of the ever-changing New England weather.
  • Festivals and markets. Salem plays host to many different marketplaces and festivals during October, including The Haunted Happenings Marketplace in it’s new location on Salem Common, Artoberfest at the Salem Arts Association, The Salem Psychic Fair and more. is a one-stop website for details on all of your favorite Salem attractions and events, as well as public health and safety guidelines.

Please remember that all staff and volunteers in Salem are working hard to provide visitors with fun, safe experiences, but with widespread staffing shortages this year we ask that all visitors pack their patience when visiting. Tips and tricks for planning your visit this fall can be found here on our blog.

Date: September 30, 2021

Author: Holly Watson

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