The best haunted hayrides in NY for kids and families

What's better than hayrides in the fall? Haunted hayrides in NY for kids—these will make the whole family scream!

By Oliver Strand and Danielle Valente |
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Photograph: Courtesy Shutterstock

Give your family a Halloween adventure with one of these haunted hayrides in NY for kids. Our spooktacular list provides plenty of reasons to be thrilled and chilled, from creepy decorations to actors in scary costumes.

RECOMMENDED: Your guide to Halloween for kids in NYC 

You can make the excursion extra fun by hitting one of these harvest festivals for families, or heading out for some of the best pumpkin picking NY has to offer.

Be warned: Many of these venues are more suitable for older children and teens, whereas others offer a less-intimidating event specifically for kids. Find the haunted hayride that best suits your Halloween needs and have a scary good time!

After you make it home safely, wrap up the weekend by watching one of the best Halloween movies for kids. Just don't be surprised if your brood wants to sleep in your bed tonight!

Best Haunted hayrides in NY and beyond

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Photograph: Courtesy Headless Horseman

Headless Horseman, Ulster Park

Recommended for: Ages 13 and up; all ages on Children's Day.

This massive Upstate venue registers high on the scary scale—the haunted hayride is strongly recommended for ages 13 and up, and children under the age of 7 are not allowed to take part uunder any circustances. That all changes on the Children's Days held Oct 12 and 26 11:30am-3pm, when the venue shifts gears and becomes family-friendly. After the hayride, visitors can visit the other haunted attractions such as Dr. Dark's Spookarama Black Spider Circus Sideshow. Sound over the top? It is, and it's really fun. Headless Horseman, Ulster Park (headlesshoreseman.com). 

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Photograph: Courtesy Yelp + Carolina S

Sleepy Hollow Haunted Hayride

Recommended for: Ages 8 and up at parents' discretion 

Sleepy Hollow is Haloween Central, with spooky events held all week long. One of the highlights of the festivities is the Sleepy Hollow Haunted Hayride, which follows in the footsteps of Ichabod Crane—just when you start to think the ride won't be too creepy, you're whisked into the woods. Those who (ahem) keep their heads can join block party, and enjoy the music and children's activities. Sleepy Hollow Village Hall, Sleepy Hollow (visitsleepyhollow.com).

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Photograph: Courtesy Jonathan Brinkhorst

Hayride of Horrors

Recommended for: All ages, haunted house 8 and up, corn maze all ages at parents' discretion

The Hayride of Horrors is a 45-minute roll through woods haunted by ghouls and other supernatural forces. But don't worry, there's a snack break...of cyanide cider and decomposing donuts! The hayride is open to all ages but parents should use their discretion, and all children 15 and under must be accompanied by an adult. The haunted house is off-limits to children 7 and under—it is legitimately scary. Hayride of Horros & Haunted House, Hackettstown NJ (hayrideofhorrors.com). 

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Photograph: Courtesy F.M. Longo Jr.

Woodbury Lions Club Haunted Hayride

Recommended for: Ages 10 and up, Children's Hayride all ages 

Ready to be spooked? The annual Woodbury haunted hayride is a great way to get in the Halloween spirit (if you're brave enough). Journey on haywagons through some creepy turns and see who's waiting for your arrival! There will be a Children's Hayride on Oct 19. Lions Club Haunted Hayride, Woodbury, CT (woodburyctlions.org). 

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Haunted Paintball Hayride at Creamy Acres Night of Terror

Recommended for: Ages 12 and up 

Hey, the zombies have to meet their match somehow! Night of Terror in New Jersey offers a unique spin to a scary hayride—you climb on the wagon and fight off the zombie invasion by shooting mounted paintball guns at the walking dead. We're all for an active approach to Halloween scares! Night of Terror Attractions, Mullica Hill, NJ (nightofterror.com). 

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Photograph: Courtesy Unsplash + Tom Roberts

Double M Haunted Hayrides

Recommended for: Ages 8 and up, attendees under 14 must be accompanied by an adult

There's no telling what—or who—is waiting for you at this mecca of horror. When visitors arrive at the Upstate venue, they're led in a tractor-drawn wagon into the dark wood (a recipe for disaster in scary movies), and there's certainly plenty of features to make riders jump out of their skin. If you're not phased by the daunting moonlit antics, check out Double M's Walking Undead Prison or the shenanigans from the Schadenfreude Circus. Double M Haunted Hayrides, Ballston Spa (doublemhauntedhayrides.com).

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