Tower of Terror

As the Halloween season sets into full swing, it’s the ideal time for thrill seekers and scare fanatics alike to get into the holiday spirit. Fresh off the heat of summer, amusement parks are opening their doors for fall and decorating for the season of the witch!

Aside from creepy decor and festive snacks, many theme parks also offer exciting experiences and attractions around this time of year such as Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights or Disney’s Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party… but regardless of the season, some parks offer spooky rides year round! Today we’ll be discussing some of the best-themed rides to tackle this Halloween!

5. The Legend

The Legend at Holiday World
Jeremy Thompson (Roller Coaster Philosophy), via Wikimedia Commons

The Legend at Holiday World in Santa Claus, Indiana is a wooden coaster in the Halloween section of the park. Although on first glance it appears to be a relatively typical wooden coaster, the theming around this ride is what solidifies it as a contender on this list. The Legend is themed around the story of the Headless Horseman and guests are guided into a schoolhouse like the character Ichabod Crane taught in the original “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”. As the coaster finishes its ascent up the lift hill and prepares its 113-foot descent into a covered tunnel, the ominous sound of a wolf howling surrounds the area before the train plummets into darkness.

4. SAW: The Ride

Saw The Ride, Thorpe Park
Image: Thorpe Park

This rollercoaster in Thorpe Park is themed around the Saw franchise and features the iconic character of Billy the puppet. It opened in the park in 2009 as a combination dark ride and coaster and features one of the steepest freefall drops in the world at 100 degrees.

The ride itself is marketed as “the world's first ever horror movie-themed rollercoaster” and offers a number of scares with a number of saw-themed traps the riders narrowly avoid, screaming victims of the puppet, and video screens set with countdown timers while Billy laughs and mocks the riders. All of these horror elements combine for a uniquely frightening ride experience perfect for a scare-seeker this Halloween!

3. Revenge of the Mummy

Revenge of the Mummy, Universal
Image: Universal

How better to celebrate the spooky season in Orlando than a ride on Revenge of the Mummy during a stroll through Universal’s popular Halloween Horror Nights event? This indoor coaster opened in Universal Hollywood and Universal Studios Florida in 2004, and Universal Studios Singapore in 10. It has since become a favorite for many park goers. With a thrilling mix of physical sets, drops in the dark, and practical effects, the Mummy is essential for a Halloween visit. Just remember to bring Brendan Fraser his cup of coffee!

2. The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror

Tower of Terror
Childzy, via Wikimedia Commons

It would be impossible to make a Halloween essentials list without mentioning the Tower of Terror. Themed around the beloved series The Twilight Zone, the Tower of Terror is an intimidating presence looming over Disney properties. Originally opening in Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 1994, the Tower of Terror spawned additional incarnations in Disney’s California Adventure and Disneyland Paris.

Today, two of these towers remain. The version in California Adventure was overhauled and rethemed for Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout which opened in 2017. Regardless, this classic haunted hotel still stands in Orlando and Paris, ready to welcome more guests to the Twilight Zone. 

1. Haunted Mansion

Haunted Mansion, Disney
Image: Disney

Was there any doubt for the number one spot? The Haunted Mansion sets the precedent for spooky family friendly rides. A classic at the Disney properties, the Haunted Mansion and its 999 happy haunts has spawned two separate live action films and has amassed a large cult following since its opening in Disneyland in 1969.

With the popularity of the first incarnation, more versions of the Haunted Mansion were added over the years and now inhabit five separate Disney parks worldwide. If you’re looking for a good scare this Halloween season, we definitely recommend dropping by for a visit.


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