Getting Your Scare On: What to Do on Halloween 2023 in Lisbon

This year, there's stuff for swingers, Democrats, kids, people afraid of clowns, and other ghouls and monsters.

Halloween hasn’t been fully embraced by Portugal— after all, it’s sort of an American thing— but that doesn’t stop some spots from putting on their spooky show. Here are a few things going on this Halloween 2023 worth checking out if you’re planning to go tricking, treating, or masquerading.

FOR THE KIDS

What could possibly be scarier than mixing politics with kids, candy, and Halloween? You can find out for yourself at the family-friendly Democrats Abroad Halloween meetup at the famous Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara from 16h30 to 18h30. Those in the best costumes (both under and over the age of 18) will have the chance to compete for age-appropriate prizes. Trick-or-treaters are welcome! The organizers ask that anyone interested RSVP so they can keep track of the polls…er…numbers.

Need costumes? Where to Buy Costumes in Lisbon

Also: Getting Thrifty: The Second-Hand Stores of Lisbon

FOR THE FOODIES

From 19h to 3h, Bel Amour on Avenida Liberdade is hosting a Halloween party with a themed set dinner menu for 25€ including a starter, main course, dessert, and a glass of wine. There will be live music by Olivier de La Vega and a surprise spectacle or two. Entry is free as is a “bloody Halloween- themed cocktail,” but don’t think you can waltz in there underdressed. Costumes are expected if not mandatory.

FOR THE CULTURED

The Teatro da Comuna invites you, in exchange for 10€, to exorcise your evils, celebrate the end of summer, and ring in the new harvest year starting at 22h on the night when the dead might rise and possess the living. Even though the church condemned Halloween and burned witches and healers at the stake, the organizers want to make it right by hosting a memorable Halloween night guaranteed to be both haunting and enchanting. No more details are available as to just how they plan to do this, but we like surprises. 

FOR THE OLD-SCHOOLERS

From 23h45 to 6h, boogie the night away in costume at Plateau, one of Lisbon’s oldest (and mustiest) dance clubs. The folks at this long-standing club have invited DJ Pedro Roda to spin his wheels and his decks until the very wee hours of the morning, and might very well be worth checking out just for the novelty factor. Costumes are not required, but that’s no excuse for you not to give it a go. 

FOR THE SWINGERS

Little Big Apple is preparing one doozy of a party starting at 22h with surprise guests, music, and more. Costumes should be movement-friendly, as this party is all about spooky Swing dancing. Stay in character by flasking it up under your flapper skirt or stashing it inside your dancing wingtips! More details will be announced soon, but that shouldn’t stop you from practicing your moves in the meantime.

FOR THE CARNIES

Like clowning around? Then you’ll love spending Halloween night at the Creepy Circus party at Quimeira Brewpub between 19h and 1h! Prepare to celebrate with a lot of humor and yes, a lot of clowns. Tackle your potential coulrophobia (fear of clowns) by dressing like one, and you have a shot at one of many prizes during the night while you move your oversized shoes to killer live music all night long.

FOR THE EXPLORERS

For just 8€ per person, the Caminhando group is leading a guided tour through Monsanto from 20h30 to 23h30. The tour will start from the meeting point at the University of Lisboa and will cover several trails that pass the most emblematic points of Monsanto. Bring your flashlight and use and abuse your imagination as you pass key viewpoints and points of interest such as the Moinho do Penedo, the Keil do Amaral, Montes Claros Gardens, Alvito Recreational Park, Luneta dos Quartéis, Escarpa, and more.

FOR THE FREAKS

It wouldn’t be a proper Halloween to-do list if we didn’t mention Trumps’ annual Halloween party from 23h45 to 6h. They’ve prepared a demonic forest, abandoned cabin, and surprises to conjure screams through the half-closed windows. Luckily, they’ll be drowned out by DJs Arezzo, Filha da Mãe, Flipside, and Phil. Prepare for the best kind of bloodbaths and carnivores of all crests and creeds because literally, anything can happen! Admission is €20 with 1 drink included. And it wouldn’t be Trumps if costumes weren’t highly recommended.

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Dating back to the Celts, the caretos are perhaps the oldest tradition alive today in Portugal though for many years the practice became nearly extinct.

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