Americans love getting scared for fun. America Haunts, an industry association of premiere haunt attractions nationwide estimates there are more than 1,200 professional haunted houses, 300 theme parks with horror-focused attractions, and approximately 3,000 charity-run spook shows nationwide.
America Haunts has put together a list of 2018's best haunted attractions Spooky World in Litchfield is ranked number two in the nation. Collectively these haunt attractions stir up over $500 million in ticket sales. The most distinguished have a history of brewing up scares through monstrous creativity, investment, and technological expertise for today's more discriminating consumer.
According to America Haunts, the best cannot just masquerade fright through costumed creatures and jack-o-lanterns in pitch dark. It takes wicked ingenuity to entertain using fierce storylines, advanced costuming and prosthetics, seemingly perilous leaps by cast using sophisticated gear, and responsive animatronics. Well beyond the skeleton crews of yesteryear, these haunts orchestrate casts and crew that exceed 200 people per night.
The list of the best is a secret no more. Here are descriptions of the top five:
- Bennett's Curse, Baltimore, Maryland: A legendary haunt famous for its themed and immersive experiences that are as unique as they are terrifying. Monster Fest, launched in 2018, showcases their unrivaled costume scare cast in even more detailed settings. Visitors experience everything from the classic horrors in Legends of Halloween to the epic scale of Underworld, the immersive world of Inferno 3D, and Ravenbrook Asylum.
- Spooky World, Litchfield, New Hampshire: Visitors feel the unsettling reality of five frightful attractions in their trail of terror to Nightmare New England and the mile-long Haunted Hayride. Haunt fans will enjoy a campus of entertainment with a twisted spin, such as Monster Midway, zombie paintball, go-karts, mini-golf, batting cages, carnival concessions, tarot card readers, fire-pits, and bars.
- Erebus, Pontiac, Michigan: This world-renowned four-story fortress of fear provokes blood-curdling screams throughout its half-mile walk indoors. Its intense special effects and elaborate sets feature things that will grab, bite, land on top of its victims, and even bury them alive! After years of preying on its victims' phobias and senses, it is now a staple in Metro Detroit's Halloween tradition.
- Haunted Hayride and Bates Motel Haunted House Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: An incredible display of terror and mayhem awaits those who enter. The high-tech special effects cater to fans looking for high startle and high action. This haunt puts victims up close to capture the realistic detail and in range to be a victim. Fans feel transported to another time and world, witnessing levitating spirits and moving floor boards. The creepy sixth-sense of being watched is ever-present and the peering animatronic props, including a 20-foot tall rock monster, will blow visitors away.
- 13th Floor Haunted House Denver, Colorado: In most buildings, the 13th Floor does not exist. But hidden in this building, it's very real in the form of a haunted house built for haunt enthusiasts' darkest fears. Legends and nightmares alike will come to life with a gut-wrenching ride to untold nightmares 13 floors straight down. Amphibious creatures and even a rogue nun will trigger fear. This attraction doubles the cast stunts using zip lines, fliers, wall crawls, and sliders to bring scares eye-to-eye with visitors.