It’s almost time for the spookiest day of the year, mamas! Trick or treating, crazy costumes and haunted houses have quickly turned Dubai into a Halloween hotspot! Our go-to guide will help you make planning the day’s festivities as easy as (pumpkin) pie, whether you’re scouring the city for sweets and treats or hosting a fun-filled Halloween party at home complete with fang-tastic activities like apple bobbing, pumpkin carving and scary scavenger hunts, we’ve got it all here (plus a lot more) – so let’s get in the mood and prepare ourselves for a frighteningly fun time!
If you’re worried about all the sugar keeping your little ones awake for the rest of the month (and affecting their pearly whites!) perhaps consider opting for healthier treats.
If you fancy your hand at baking, you might want to try creating some of your own spooky Halloween-themed treats. Decorate homemade low-sugar cupcakes (check out our top 5 tips on how to make any baking recipe easier here!) with skeletons, bats and pumpkins (most of the supermarkets sell Halloween themed decor or try specialist shops like Tavola), or get little ones to create their own cookies using Halloween cookie cutters! Of course, it’s important to note when handing out treats that some children may have allergies, so informing their parents if nuts are present (or labelling homemade treats) will ensure that everyone gets to enjoy their spooky snacks!
Some creative knife skills can transform carrot sticks into eerie carrot fingers, apple slices can turn into little goblin mouths and boiled eggs with sliced black olives resembles eyeballs, little spiders and even mini ghosts! Peeled oranges with a cucumber stalk in the top can be passed off as mini pumpkins, and jelly is always an effective Halloween treat (add some sugar-free gummy worms inside!). You could even create a special ‘cauldron’ punch of fruit juice or a blended healthy green smoothie… again, don’t forget the gummy worms for that extra creepy-crawly feel!
Getting the kiddies involved in Halloween food is a fun way for them to enjoy Halloween – from cookie cutting to scary pizza toppings, there are a variety of different foodie activities you can try with them… great for a homemade Halloween party! Apple bobbing is another classic Halloween activity (with a healthy spin!) and pumpkin carving will really get you in the spirit of things.
Costumes & Decorations
The best thing about Halloween is that it’s a good excuse to dress up! From ghosts, zombies and vampires to witches, warlocks and favourite cartoon characters, there’s a whole host of costumes out there. If you really want to get into the festivities then you’d better deck out your home with some horrifying decorations too… you’ve probably already seen Halloween-themed products popping up all over the place, especially in the supermarkets. Check out some of the best places to get your costume and décor fix for this Halloween season!
- Pottery Barn has the works, from faux pumpkins, crows, ceramic skulls to softer looking items like cute pumpkin patch pillows. Your littlies will also get to choose from a wide array of costumes that will put a big smile on their face.
- Kids grow out of clothes so fast, and mamas, we don’t always have space to keep a collection of costumes in the closet. Mr Bens Costume Closet allows you to rent or buy from a really unique selection of outfits for both us and the kiddos. Al Ghazal Shopping Centre
- What do you want to be this Halloween? Party Zone will grant your wish. Fairies, hippies and animals – they have all the outfits. Browse online or check out the store for fun costumes. Dubai Mall; Town Centre, Jumeirah Beach Road; Street 53, Spinneys Market Complex, Mirdiff
- Here at Creative Minds they store everything making it a one stop shop! You name it: costumes, party supplies, décor and more – check out one of their 2 stores and pick up all your goodies. Umm suqeim Road, Al Barsha; Beach Centre, Jumeirah Beach Road
- Again, another place that can cater to as little as your toddlers costume to the halloween do you might be organizing. Look up Party World online or head to the store. Iridium Building Umm Suqeim Road, Al Barsha; Fox Hill 9 Bulding, Motor City
- Toys R Us is sure to stock the perfect outfit for your little one, with plenty of cartoon-themed ones. A surefire place to find decorations galore too. Times Square, Sheikh Zayed Road
- Whatever Disney spell your junior is under, allow them to live the dream this Halloween. What better place to look than the Disney Store? Dubai Mall
- Mamas and Papas has some of the cutest fancy dress, trick or treat bags, some goodies to put around the house to get into the spirit and more! Head to one of many of their outlets in Dubai and let the shopping begin.
Mama, perhaps your looking for something a little more sophisticated? Decor for us ‘grown-ups’ for our elegant get togethers…
- Get your creative hat on and head to Zara Home, to pick up some bits and pieces that will create a room filled with an eerie ambiance. They have a fab selection of lamps, lanterns, candles and even decorative jars that can be used for a petrifying ‘potion display’.
- Ikea home stocks all the basics for a reasonable price. Pick up some orange balloons to create floating pumpkins around the place, or a cheap table cloth where you can possible create the tattered tablecloth look with spider webs scattered around.
- Head over to Home Centre to find your A-Z of home decor. Look out for some wall art perhaps? Some spiral stickers, mysterious canvas’s and even funky mirrors. All you need is a good eye, and have your concept in mind.
Another option is to make your own Halloween costumes! If you’ve got the time, this is a great opportunity to be creative with your kid and make their costume more personal to their interests. It can also be a cheaper and more environmentally friendly option as you can reuse old t-shirts, dresses and shirts to create something new – and guaranteed to fit! You can’t go wrong with a plain black t-shirt, a couple of metres of black netting and a few black sparkly stars from Satwa (or even the big hypermarkets). With the creative use of pinking shears, you can whip up an original witch or bat costume without spending hours on the sewing machine!
Don’t forget that face-paint can be a whole costume in itself, and with YouTube, you can access some great make-up and face-paint tutorials at the click of a button… transform your child’s face into a cat, pirate, Dracula or a cheeky little devil (although the Mamas here tell me that may not require quite as much face-paint!). Remember… if you’re really down to the last minute, a white t-shirt and spare roll of toilet paper can be instantly transformed into a miniature zombie costume!
There’s a huge range of Halloween events this month, with Dubai fast becoming one hotspot for this terrifyingly fun night!
Halloween Cake pops decoration workshop for kids
Head to Al Quoz to try your hand at decorating your own Halloween cake pops. Think scary ghosts, bright pumpkins and jet-black cats on a stick. What more can you want – fangtastic!
Cr8 Hub, Street 8, Warehouse 43, Al Quoz
22nd October 4-5pm
Scary stories and a spook-tacular dinner
Enjoy a frighteningly fun afternoon at BookMunch Café, with an array of different activities on offer, from scary stories to pumpkin carving, face painting and much more. Coupled with a spook-tacular dinner for your little one of pumpkin soup, spaghetti and eyeballs or sausages with ghost mash, your little one is sure to be a happy monster.
AED 120 per child
Al Wasl Square, Al Wasl Road, Jumeirah
Story time 4pm/Dinner 5pm
Baby Pumpkin Party
Book in with Baby Sensory to join their Baby Pumpkin Party. Not only is it a great opportunity to get your kids dressed up, but the class also involves allowing your little ones to explore different sensations that are associated with Halloween, including bonfire and baby safe fireworks. Now we are definitely intrigued how that works!
30-10.30am, 11am-12pm, 12.30pm-1.30pm, 2.30-3.30pm, 4-5pm
AED 100 for 1 hour
Dubai Marina Yacht Club, Dubai Marina
Halloween spookfest party
The Spookfest 2014 claims to be one of the most popular parties in the UAE. With amazing Halloween themed activities, such as trick or treat, treasure hunt, spooky games and the Spooky Costume competition, where kids come dressed in their spooktacular costumes to win exciting prizes, expect a thrilling time to be had by all.
AED 60 – activities and a kids meal
age 3-12 years old
All outlets across UAE
Ghost Town Halloween Party
Situated at Emirates Golf Club, The Ghost Town Halloween Party is set to be a blast. With a caldron full of activities on offer, you are pretty sure to get spooked one way or another. Creep round the ghost cemetery, scream in the horror movie theatre or get fixated at the zombie and vampire dance show; whatever you do, there will certainly be something for everyone. There is even bungee jumping for those who pre book! Scary!
Friday 31st October
Emirates Golf Club
Children under 4 years old free, Children 4-12 years old AED 75, Children 12+ and Adults AED 125
Halloween Party – The Monster Events
Kids Connection at Wafi is turning into a ghoulish ghost house for one day only. Enjoy trick or treating, party games, best costume prizes and a disco dance with your little ones!
Friday 31st October
Kids connection, 1st Floor, Wafi
Halloween Night Irish Style
Irish Village prides itself as being the centre of fun and this Halloween is no different. With games, food and prizes (and of course DJ Marky Mark), get ready for a frightfully good evening!
Friday 31st October 2014, 7pm
Free entry (kids allowed until 9.30pm)
If you are after a brunch then look no further. Offering a Halloween inspired menu of pumpkin soup, pumpkin pie, pumpkin sushi and blood punch, you are sure to get in the spirit of things as soon as you get a taste of these delights. If sweets are more your thing then fear not, the Chocolate avenue will also be embracing Halloween with spooky pastries, pumpkin chocolate and praline making demonstrations by the hotels chefs.
Friday 31st October
Sheraton Mall of the Emirates
From AED 175
Wizarding World of Atlantis Kids Club
Get your spook this Halloween with a fun filled evening at Atlantis Kids Club. Enjoy a very magical trick or treat, arts and crafts and a best costume competition for your little ones, whilst you enjoy the luxury of this 5* hotel.
Friday 31st October
Halloween on the beach
Whooooooo… No that’s not the wind from the gorgeous beach of Riva! For one day only and in the name of Halloween, this club is getting its spook on. From 10am, children are invited to dress up and join in a frighteningly fun Friday. With activities such as a puppet show, face painting and a bouncy castle on offer, you are all in for a (trick and) treat! After enjoying a haunting Halloween menu including creepy pasta and pumpkin chocolate web tart, you can enjoy the club, until the evening when the freakingly fabulous Halloween party will kick off.
Friday 31st October, 10am-2pm and 7pm to midnight
RIVA Ristorante, Bar & Beach, Shoreline Building 8, Palm Jumeirah
AED 225 for set menu in evening
Boo Barre – a freaky workout
Mamas beware: Nyla is turning into a haunted house for the day! With Halloween themed barre classes, expect your work out to get a whole lot more spooky. Get into the spirit of it with fancy dress gym gear, and prepare yourself for some really terrifying tunes! Not only will the best dressed win a prize, you will be spoilt to some healthy Halloween treats in you trick or treat bags after class. Result!
17:45 and 19:00 classes on Thursday 30th October
Nyla House, 675 Al Wasl Road, Umm Sequim
AED 125/class, AED 580/5 classes
Fancy getting your creative on, mama? Be the coolest (and scariest!) mama in town and host a fantastic Halloween themed-party in your own home! This is a great option if you’re worried your little munchkins might be too scared by some of the sights at the big Halloween events.
You can’t go wrong with a black tablecloth strewn with fake cobwebs, as well as some Halloween confetti, a spread of scary finger food and to top it all off, a cauldron punch! Head out to grab some decorations from one of the suggested places above, or simply make your own by cutting out pumpkin or ghost-shaped bunting from white or orange paper.
There are various ways you can have a homemade Halloween… from making your own costumes to baking your own Halloween treats. Organise a couple of games with a Halloween spin, such as ‘Musical Tombstones’ instead of Musical Chairs, ‘What’s the Time Mr. Frankenstein’ (instead of Mr. Wolf!), ‘Pass the Parcel’ (with some scary treats inside!), and grab some orange balloons for a game of ‘Pop Goes the Pumpkin’! The Martha Stewart website has some inspired ideas to help you get creative with games.
Arts and crafts activities are a great way to keep the kiddos busy, and guests can take home their finished products too! From pumpkin carving, to making ‘flapping bats’ or lolly-stick mini zombies, there are tons of ideas you can whip up with some simple craft materials. Take a look at Spoonful and Country Living for some more online inspiration.
To create that party atmosphere, you’ve got to have a spooky soundtrack to play along to!
Some good songs to get the kiddies in a menacing mood are:
- Bobby “Boris” Pickett & the Crypt Kickers’ Monster Mash
- Ray Parker Jr.’s Ghostbusters… who ya gonna call?!
- Richard O’Brien’s Time Warp will get everyone taking a jump to the left, and then a step to the right…
- Vic Mizzy’s Addams Family Theme Song
- Nina Simone’s I Put A Spell On You
- And of course… Michael Jackson’sThriller!
After all the games, activities and freaky-looking party food, why not pop on a Halloween-themed film to settle the children down? Here some options – both classic and recent – that won’t give them nightmares!
- Casper the Friendly Ghost
- The Addams Family
- Scooby Doo
- Hocus Pocus
- Monsters Inc.
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
- Hotel Transylvania
- Monsters vs. Aliens
There are plenty of different options for you and the kids this Halloween and plenty of opportunities for homemade Halloween fun! Get inspired and get into the horrifyingly fun festivities… look out Dubai because we’ve got some super-scary (and Sassy!) spooks coming your way!