Essential Guide to SeaWorld Orlando’s and Busch Gardens Tampa’s Howl-O-Scream in 2023

  • By Tammy van der Westhuizen
  • Published 28 September 2023
  • Revised 02 October 2023
Essential Guide to SeaWorld Orlando’s and Busch Gardens Tampa’s Howl-O-Scream in 2023
  • By Tammy van der Westhuizen
  • Published 28 September 2023
  • Revised 02 October 2023
Essential Guide to SeaWorld Orlando’s and Busch Gardens Tampa’s Howl-O-Scream in 2023
  • By Tammy van der Westhuizen
  • Published 28 September 2023
  • Revised 02 October 2023

Amidst the menacing glow of Jack o' Lanterns and the ominous bubbling of cauldrons, one Halloween celebration promises scares like no other: Howl-O-Scream. At SeaWorld Orlando, it was voted Best Theme Park Halloween Event by USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards in 2022 for its bewitching yet wickedly fun experience. 

So, mark your calendars on select nights from 8 September to 31 October 2023, when SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Garden Tampa will transform into a realm of haunted houses, scare zones, coasters, sinister shows and more. 
Tickets for this separately ticketed night-time event are in high demand, so don't wait too long to secure yours. Join us as we delve into the frights, chills and thrills of SeaWorld Orlando's and Busch Gardens Tampa's premier Halloween happenings... 

Enter If You Dare - Haunted Houses

Howl-O-Scream presents five haunted houses stationed around SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa parks, each with a distinctive theme and narrative yet all designed to deliver maximum fright from monstrous encounters.

At SeaWorld Orlando, the overall theme centres around the mythical Sirens whose haunting songs wreak havoc upon the seas. Explore an ensemble of characters, immersive props, and chilling decorations within these haunted attractions:

D3LER1UM666 Laboratories

A brand-new haunted attraction beckons you to step into a research facility perched precariously above the abyss of the sea's inky blackness. Within its shadowy confines, you'll unravel the harrowing secrets lurking on the ocean floor and bear witness to the catastrophic experiments gone awry. Beware, for you shall also cross paths with Frost, a chilling siren harbouring a desire for your very soul. 

Dead Vines: Nawlins Nightmare

Venture deep into the threatening alligator-infested bayous of Louisiana as you journey through haunting grand estates and New Orleans cemeteries. Encounter the chaotic energy of Bourbon Street and enter the chilling home of Hex, a siren from the swamps. Here, a malevolent force fiercely guards its territory, hiding among dense vegetation and shadowing your every step. Will you emerge unscathed, or will you find yourself ensnared within this petrifying abode for all eternity?

Beneath the Ice: The Meltdown

In this frozen wasteland, uncover a hidden lair concealing a startling secret - the capturing of the ice siren, Frost. A team of researchers has vanished, leaving behind a gruesome trail of blood and a horde of monstrous mutations. Can you break free from the icy clutches of Frost, or will you survive the fire siren Flame’s rescue attempt, blazing the frozen facility to a puddle of nothing?

Captain’s Revenge: Drowned in Darkness

An invitation awaits you aboard a legendary pirate ship, but this crew conceals more sinister intentions. As you explore the haunted vessel, it becomes clear that the captain and his mates seek retribution on Darkness, the sea siren. Prepare to confront a ghostly wrath or risk joining the crew to face an eternity doomed at sea.

Blood Beckoning

This returning haunt transports you to a long-forgotten Halloween borough, where a spiteful coven of immortals, led by the mesmerising siren Scratch, quench their unholy thirst by feasting upon the lifeblood of the lost and the forsaken. Brace yourself to confront their vengeful rage or risk becoming a willing participant in their unending nocturnal feast. 

In Busch Gardens Tampa, horror equally abounds. Expect passageways, jump scares, and hideous encounters as you creep through the haunted houses. Four returning favourites, one of which has revamped horrors and special effects, plus one brand new haunted house, deliver nightmares to all who brave the threshold. The featured haunted houses include:

D.H. Baggum's Circus of Fear

Introducing the brand new haunted house to Howl-O-Scream: D.H. Baggum's Circus of Fear. Step right up to witness the most terrifying show in town. Within this eerie circus tent, you'll encounter deformed jesters, contortionists, mystics, and a host of shadowy creatures. Make sure you remain firmly in the role of the observer, for this chilling performance is not one you'd want to be a part of.

Stranglewood Estate

Step into Stranglewood Estate, once a vibrant house pulsating with life and laughter. Now, the house ghost, Mrs Stranglewood, fiercely protects her home and haunts all who enter. Expect sudden twists and scares as you uncover the secrets of Stranglewood Estate.

The Residence: Home for the Holidays

Return to the comforting embrace of home illuminated by the gentle glow of Christmas lights, only to discover that there's more than meets the eye. The most wonderful time of the year has transformed into an eerie and unsettling experience. Welcome to The Residence, where home is where the horror is.

Witch of the Woods

A mysterious witch has taken over the woods and has cast a spell on all who enter. She has lured unsuspecting travellers into her lair, where she tortures them with her wicked ways. Will you fall prey to her charms or break free from her curse?

The Forgotten: Uprising

A year has passed, and lately more and more people have been going missing. The great battle has begun, and the only way to survive is to be brave, fearless, and survive the Night.

Reserved only for hardcore horror lovers, the haunted houses separate the fearless from the faint-hearted. One lingering question remains - which category do you belong to?

Watch Your Back in the Scare Zones

And just when you think you have survived, a new omen awaits in the form of macabre scare zones, plunging you deeper into your darkest nightmares. Positioned strategically along the park's open-air pathways, these zones will keep you on high alert, never knowing what might lurk in the shadows or behind the next bend.

At the SeaWorld Orlando park, expect seven scare zones in total and three new scare zones set to premier new themes this year. For a gorefest of epic proportions, we love Toxic Turmoil’s chemical wasteland of mutated creatures, where the deranged clowns at CarnEvil Pier await your arrival for an utterly bizarre encounter. We also recommend keeping your wits about you through the spooky streets of Blood Light District and Portal of Passage’s thrilling horror show. Meanwhile, those seeking crowd-pleasing scare zones from last year can look forward to Witchcraft Bayou, Frozen Terror - Alive in the Ice, and what lurks beneath in Terrors of the Deep.

Meanwhile, at Busch Gardens Tampa, six scare zones unleash hell in the form of haunted scarecrows, bleeding zombies, hideous fairies, and ghastly corpses. Howl-O-Scream diehards may remember the terror of returning scare zones of Beyond the Veil’s sinister forest, The Junkyard, Raven’s Mill’s chopping and crushing factory, and The Shortcut. Two new additions - Sin City Zombies and Big Ed’s Demolition Derby - promise an epic showdown and an extra dose of Halloween horror that you won't want to miss.

Brave the Terrifying Shows

Beyond the haunted houses and scare zones, Howl-O-Scream also boasts thrilling shows designed to keep you thoroughly entertained and on the edge of your seat. 

SeaWorld Orlando presents three distinct shows, each with its unique theme and style. The fan-favourite dance classic Monster Stomp returns to the stage, resurrecting horror icons like Jack the Ripper. Siren's Song will captivate you with haunting musical numbers, while the aquatic horror experience of Cursed Lagoon promises an unforgettable and one-of-a-kind spectacle.

Entrancing the crowd at Busch Gardens Tampa are Cirque X-Scream’s spellbinding acrobatics and The Rolling Bones rock anthems. Plus, Scare-E-Oke presents the opportunity to either enchant or terrify the crowd with your vocal prowess.

Let the Horror Flow at Themed Bar Experiences

If you're in search of a momentary escape from the terror or simply crave some spooky libations and treats, the themed bars are an essential aspect of the Halloween celebrations. Each eerie establishment at SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa boasts its own distinctive ambience, menu, and entertainment, with some cleverly hidden within immersive settings that amplify the Halloween horror.

Take Flight on Coasters in the Dark

Elevate your screams as you soar on hair-raising roller coasters during Halloween at SeaWorld. From the lightning-fast Mako to the treacherous plunge of Ice Breaker to the forbidding flight of Manta's coaster or the groundbreaking thrills of Pipeline: The Surf Coaster – each of these rides promises a trembling journey through darkness.

Howl-O-Screamers at Busch Gardens Tampa offers high flying shrills aboard Iron Gwazi's record-breaking heights, SheiKra's heart-stopping 90-degree drop, Cheetah Hunt's electrifying triple-launch adventure, and Florida's tallest launch coaster Tigris.

Soaring over the pale moon rising, these rides deliver electrifying excitement. But when you're ready to descend from the spectral heights, the entire park awaits your exploration, ready to unveil more Halloween mysteries.

Are you ready to brave the underworld this Halloween? Browse SeaWorld Resort Holidays 2024 & 2025 to dive into a world of frights, thrills, and Halloween chills.

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