Autumn is a great time of year to visit London. The capital’s parks are littered with beautiful reds, browns and golds as the tree’s leaves fall and collect on the ground, while there’s a huge array of attractions for all the family to enjoy – not least those themed around Halloween, of course, at the end of October.
And, on that note, why not during a short-break with the family in London, combine doing something suitably fun and frivolous for the most spook-tacular day of the year with a visit to one the greatest zoos anywhere on the planet, namely ZSL London Zoo in Regent’s Park? Why not, indeed. Especially as the place is holding a special attraction between 21st and the 31st October this year (all throughout the autumn half-time holiday) that’s full of Hallowe’en-influenced and -inspired activities.
Mummies, Masks, Spell-Casting and More
But what sort of activities, I hear you holler like a screaming banshee? Well, your little devils can enrol in the zoo’s very own Ghoul School, in which – dressed as their favourite Hallowe’en ‘character’, naturally – they’ll learn how to wrap mummies, cast spells, create magical masks at the Bat Cave and carve our perfectly horrid pumpkins at the Pumpkin Patch, all before finishing things off by going for a boogie (thankfully without any bogeymen!) at the Pumpkin Party come the end of the day.
More generally, there’s a whole roster of other Hallowe’en-themed things going on, with the opportunity to discover fascinating artefacts of the natural world at the Grimm Curiosity Shop and, for little ones especially, to take a seat and hear ‘terrible tales’ courtesy of the zoo’s Spooky Storytellers, as well as spooky-dookied-up versions of the venue’s usual talks, feeds and demonstrations involving many of its animals across all its enclosures.
It should also be pointed out that the special Hallowe’en half-term activities run from 11am-3.30pm each day during the aforementioned period, while the pumpkin carving activity requires an additional payment of £3 for carving one pumpkin or £5 for carving two.
Like it or not – and it’s fair to say you may find it something of a scary experience! – between the dates mentioned above, you can also pop along to the zoo and relish a tour of the place that focuses not so much on its natural-world highlights but its supernatural sightings. Yes, being that it celebrates its 170th anniversary this year, the zoo has been around long enough to have cultivated quite the reputation over the many decades for both encounters with apparitions and tales of spin-tingling assignations.
And, to elaborate on that point, whether or not you and yours throw yourselves into all the Hallowe’en shenanigans, the zoo is still a fantastic place to visit (especially if you’re staying at the nearby Montcalm hotel London Marble Arch), thanks to its incredibly diverse collection of 750 different species of animal, all of which can be seen daily within they’re excellently laid out enclosures. So, do give the zoo a go – it would be wicked not to!