It's that time of year again, the time when we pay money and voluntarily enter a haunted house or spooky, fog-filled cornfield to have someone scare the living bejeebers out of us.
But what haunted houses give you the best bang for your buck?
Well, we went to all of them so you don't have to!
If you're going to visit a haunted house in the Triangle or Triad-area this Halloween, here are the ones you need to visit!
Editor's note: When I go to a haunted house I want more than just jump scares and a masked creature chasing me with a chainsaw - which obviously doesn't have the blades attached. I mean let's be real, with all of the gore we see in movies and television nowadays, fake blood and a man yelling in my ear aren't going to cut it. I want something that preys on my fears and well, makes me feel in danger and helpless. And that is what most of these haunted houses will give you.
5. Darkside Haunted Estates
This haunted attraction has been scaring people for over 20 years and they have one the of better locations - it's literally in the middle of nowhere in Middlesex.
This place pays attention to little details like smell; their Slaughterhouse has a potent smell of mustiness and death mixed, making it all the more haunting.
While they offer several frightening attractions, they are short; just when the scares are getting good, the haunted house is over. DHE is great for all ages but it seems to be more popular among families and teenagers.
If you're looking for a place with short waiting times where you can see some of your favorite haunted characters and meet some new ones along the way then this place is for you.
Location: 11875 NC-222, Middlesex, NC 27557
Price: $20 ($2 for parking)
Number of actors: 150
Number of attractions: 5
Highlight: The Fright Trail. This section has you walking through a haunted trail, and along the way, you stop at several mini-attractions. This setup is nice because the scares are sporadic and while they catch you off guard, it also gives you a chance to catch your breath.
4. Clayton Fear Farm
Note: Clayton Fear Farm asked us to refrain from taking pictures inside their attractions.
Clayton Fear Farm has a lot to offer for the whole family. During the day, the young ones can experience events like hayrides, a corn maze, a pumpkin patch, and more. But when night falls, the ghouls come out to play.
When the business started, it had just one haunted house but they've grown and now they can't keep the lines moving fast enough. They offer a myriad of frightening attractions that will have you begging for the exit.
It's no surprise that many locals gravitate to CFF, especially because it's so close, but it seems to be a high schooler's paradise. I spent most of the night trying to avoid a high school jock running into me because he was about to pee his pants rather than enjoying the attraction I was at. If you're an adult looking to take a break from the teens, I'd go as late as possible.
Location: 1620 Loop Road, Clayton, NC 27527
Number of actors: 70-80
Number of attractions: 7
Highlight: The food! While Clayton Fear Farm offers screams, they're also serving up some scary, delicious treats! As soon as you walk in, the scent of caramel popcorn and all the other goodies they have to offer wafts through the air! Fun fact: This family-run business has been in the Boyette's family for years; it actually got its start as a produce farm.
3. Haunted Forest at Panic Point
Panic Point has been a fan favorite for years, which is no surprise based on their quality of scares.
The place is constantly filled with screams of terror; the frights are so good they even had our very own Jonah Kaplan turning away.
While this place is the epitome of a fright fest, it could be too much for the young ones at times.
Location: 2808 Cedar Creek Rd, Youngsville, NC 27596
Number of actors: 90
Number of attractions: 6
Highlight: The Haunted Forest. This attraction is what Panic Point is known for and it's for obvious reasons. Their forest is packed with scary attractions, making it perfect for everyone in your group.
2. Kersey Valley Spookywoods
Kersey Valley Spookywoods is a hair-raising, must-see Halloween event.
They offer a wide array of attractions and even let you help save the world from zombies. One of the greats parts about Spooywoods is that they create almost 90 percent of their creatures on site.
You may see Jason or Freddy walking around but once you take a walk in the woods, you'll be greeted by even scarier mythological creatures!
The selection of attractions makes this place a great time for the whole family because they have something for everyone.
Location: 1615 Kersey Valley Rd, Archdale, NC 27263
Price: $20 ($5 for parking)
Number of actors: 160
Number of attractions: 10
Highlight: Village of the Damned. While this attraction isn't super scary, it's super fun! You're given a laser gun and are asked to help the military fight zombies who have taken over a Puritan community. The mission is based in a foggy cornfield, but what really makes this great is the ambiance which makes it feel like authorities are really flying above you.
1.Woods of Terror
If you're up for the drive, Woods of Terror is the spookiest and most haunting attraction to go to. They offer everything, from your favorite horror movie villains to creatures they've created themselves.
One of the best parts about this place is their actors. Not only are they so in tune with your fear - I swear they can smell it - their scares are perfectly and flawlessly timed.
But this place isn't about having masked men follow you, they put you in the action.
They begin each night with their Monster Parade, and after the monsters make their entrance, the purge is announced and everyone goes wild! It's an immediate sense of fear and a great way to set you up for the night of screams and scares that lie ahead.
Not only can you look forward to spooks while you round corners, but you can expect to face your worst fears - whether it's complete darkness, monophobia, clowns, or spiders, they've got it all.
They definitely keep you on your toes; from the minute you enter to the second you leave, you'll be asking yourself, "Why on Earth did I do this?"
Location: 5601 N Church St, Greensboro, NC 27455
Price: $15-35 ($5 for parking)
Number of actors: 113
Number of attractions: 13
Highlight: Blackout Terror. You definitely don't want to skip this one! While many places have you walk through a dark room, Woods of Terror kicks it up a notch by making you wear a hood - yes, a hood. Wearing the hood adds an extra sense of insecurity. While you're relying on your hands and ears to get you through, your mind starts to play tricks on you, but be cautious while using those senses because you never know where danger is lurking.
Honorable mention: House of the Fury, an experimental haunted house experience, is opening in Raleigh on Thursday. It is an interactive, immersive narrative in which the choices you make directly impact what happens next. ABC11 will feature the new attraction when it opens.
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