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SeaWorld San Diego Halloween Spooktacular 2021

SeaWorld San Diego Halloween Spooktacular 2021


SeaWorld San Diego Halloween Spooktacular is making a splash this fall season! SeaWorld Hallowen Spooktacular takes place every Saturday and Sunday through October 31st, 2021. Read up-to-date details on what’s included with the ticket price for this family friendly event. There are many changes for 2021 you need to know!

My family and I received complimentary admission to SeaWorld San Diego to enjoy the Halloween Spooktacular event in 2020. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Mom Rewritten uses affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission if you purchase through the links in these posts. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more information, see the Privacy Policy and Disclosures tab.

SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular 2021

These are a few important things to be aware of before attending SeaWorld Halloween events. Health and safety measures have been heightened at all SeaWorld parks. Yes, SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular will still permit children to dress up in costumes. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with all the Halloween fun Spooktacular changes for 2021. 

  • All guests 2 years of age and older must wear face coverings while indoors during the SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular, even when dressed in costume.
  • SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular tickets will only be sold online. Tickets will NOT be available for sale at the gates. Guests must purchase tickets and then book a separate day reservation in advance.
  • Park capacity is limited each day.
  • Enhanced cleaning protocols in the parks, as well as additional hand-washing and sanitizing stations.
  • Seating for shows will be socially distanced and limited in capacity. All guests must wear masks, even when seated.
  • Facial masks may be removed in designated relaxation zones or while dining.
Sesame Street Bay of Play & all rides are closed

SeaWorld Safety Protocols

Let me share my personal notes about these safety measures. I appreciated the heightened cleaning as I saw many employees wiping tables in dining areas and cleaning railings inside queues. Lots of hand sanitizer locations everywhere you turned.

While the park capacity is limited, there are areas with higher traffic. Touch pools including the bat rays would get congested. There aren’t any physical barriers or dividers around these pools. If social distancing is important to you, aim to visit these pools towards the end of the evening when parks are less busy.

Queues to enter indoor aquariums are longer, as the employees limit the number of guests indoors. This means you might be standing outside of a length of time waiting to enter. It can be very warm in the sun, so be sure you’re wearing sunscreen and bring a hat!

Details About SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular 2021

When does SeaWorld Spooktacular Happen?

SeaWorld Halloween dates for 2021 -through October 31st, 2021. SeaWorld’s Spooktacular event is held only on Saturdays and Sundays.

Follow the candy to the “Candy Garden” treat trail

Can We Still Experience Everything at SeaWorld San Diego?

SeaWorld is definitely one of the top things to do outside in San Diego! Rides are in full operation and all animal encounters, aquariums and shows are available. Read my complete SeaWorld San Diego guide for additional family touring tips.

Tickets & Reservations Required

For the best pricing, tickets for SeaWorld San Diego Halloween Spooktacular should be purchased ahead of visiting.

You’ll be able to purchase Annual Passes on the SeaWorld website as well. Additional incentives include free parking, discounts on dining and merchandise. Annual passholders receive entrance during SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular and Christmas Celebration. They may also purchase the dining package at a discounted cost. 

Costumes Encouraged, But Not Necessary

I brought Halloween costumes for our two littlest, just to help them get in the spirit of the event. You can totally collect treats without the costume but it is fun to wear one if you have it. I brought extra clothes for the kids to change into when they didn’t want to wear their costumes anymore.

Rainbow Unicorn & Where’s Waldo?

There is a dress code for costumes during SeaWorld Halloween. The rules and restrictions are listed on the SeaWorld website. Children 12 and under may wear a Halloween costume (no adult costumes allowed). Face painting is not permitted, except what is done by an artist in the park.

Spooktacular Candy Trail

Yes, kids can still get their candy fix during this annual fall event! Changes to the 2021 SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular are detailed here.

  • In order to participate in the trick or treat trails, a SeaWorld candy bag is an additional charge. (Trick or treating had been included in previous years). The cost of the treat bag is $3.99 per person.
  • For health and safety reasons, guests cannot bring their own treats bags. You must purchase the exclusive SeaWorld Candy Bag in the park to participate in candy collection.
  • Only kids aged 12 & under can participate in the Spooktacular candy trail (in the past, adults were encouraged to collect candy as well).
  • For 2021 there are several “Candy Garden” treat drop locations.
  • My kids each received a variety of candies, including Twizzlers, Airheads, Nerds, Skittles and Land of the Gummies.
Little girl holding treat bag at candy chute during SeaWorld Halloween spooktacular
Candy drop in 2020

Pumpkin Scavenger Hunt

The Spooktacular Pumpkin Hunt is a fun add-on to your SeaWorld Halloween day. Purchase a map, then as you tour the park, search for 10 hidden animal themed pumpkins. Mark each location on the map with the included stickers. When you have found all of them, redeem for an exclusive prize!

My kids and I purchased the map at the SeaWorld Shop for $12. Each of the pumpkins to look for in the scavenger hunt are large, real pumpkins with a hand-painted image on the side. Some of the locations are a little tricky to find! I won’t spoil what we received as a prize but my kids were happy.

Dance Party Fun

Families are encourage to dance at the Monster Mash Dance Party. Located in SeaWorld’s Village Square, there’s a live DJ hosting the music and fun. Another option is even more ideal for little ones. The Sesame Street Halloween Dance party features everyone’s favorite furry friends.

Due to it’s popularity, the Sesame Street Dance Party happens in two locations (at the exit of Wild Arctic & also next to Explorer’s Reef Cafe). The characters are standing on stationary float platforms, where they’re available for photo opportunities. There’s singing and toddler fun in the area, if you can get your kids to participate. Mine were both too nervous to approach the characters! This event happens at the two locations all day long between noon and 7 pm, without a set schedule. Aren’t these Sesame Street floats adorable?!

Party at San Diego’s SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular for FREE?!

Did you know that kids admission to SeaWorld San Diego is FREE in the month of October? In fact, LOTS of San Diego amusement parks, museums and restaurants offer freebies for kids in October in San Diego. For every adult ticket purchased, you’ll be able to bring in a child for free.

Contact my affiliate Get Away Today for more details on booking a Southern California vacation. Use code REWRITTEN for an extra $10 off any 2+ day hotel & ticket package.

Favorite SeaWorld Shows

The following shows are operational during the SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular (and other days of the week). My friend Becca at This Crazy Adventure Called Life outlines more details in her article about SeaWorld Zoo Days.

  • Dolphin Days
  • Orca Encounter
  • Sea Lions Live

Kid’s Halloween Costume Contest

This event was new for 2020, located at the Fall Festival Stage near Nautilus Amphitheater (where Pets Rule is usually held). Judges choose their favorite costumes in various categories (creativity, spookiness, silliness and cuteness).

Winning costumes receive SeaWorld Bucks for kids to redeem for food or merchandise purchases in the park. Those who would like to participate must sign up outside of Nautilus Amphitheater 45 minutes before contest start time. Space is limited for this event, on a first-come-first-served basis.

Dia De Los Muertos Celebration

Several times a day on weekends, the Ballet Folklorico performs at the Nautilus Amphitheater. There is also a festive ofrenda area in celebration of Dia de los Muertos, near the entrance to the bat ray touch pools. 

Are Animal Exhibits Available During SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular?

Yes, all animal exhibits and aquariums are open for guests during the Halloween Spooktacular. Dozens of jack o’ lanterns are on display at SeaWorld’s Shark Encounter! As a result this aquarium takes on an even more frightening appearance. The following exhibits are also open during this event:

  • Orca Encounter viewing area
  • Sea Turtles
  • Sea Lions
  • Otters
  • Penguins
  • Dolphins
  • Flamingos
  • Explorer’s Reef with Bamboo Sharks, Cleaner Fish, Rays, and more.

Other Halloween Fall Festivities at SeaWorld

  • Hay Maze – Fall characters greet guests as they make their way through this family-friendly maze.
  • Mermaid Meet n’ Greet – Halloween-themed mermaids pose with guests in an interactive treat trail.
  • Sesame Street Countdown to Halloween Show – Favorite characters gather in this sweet show for younger kids.

Fall Foods to Dine + Drink

Given the success of area foodie festivals, including SeaWorld San Diego Seven Seas Food Festival, it’s no surprise to find a new food and drink options geared to the grownups.

With the All Day Dining Deal to the SeaWorld Halloween Spooktacular ticket, guests can enjoy their choice of fall-flavored food, brews and cocktails.

Pina Colada was yummy on a hot day!

It’s important to note that some locations say they may stop serving up to an hour earlier than closing. My kids and I wanted to eat at Explorers Cafe at 3:50 pm, however it was already closed (with park closure time at 6 pm).

I’m guessing this might have been a popular location and they ran out of food? In any case, the BBQ Chicken Pizza I ordered earlier in the day was tasty and the kids didn’t mind the cold chicken tenders. Read the Taste of Fall BBQ & Craft Beers Menu ahead of time to know where to dine first.

Looking for more Halloween events in Southern California?

What sounds like the most fun at SeaWorld San Diego Halloween Spooktacular?

This article originally published on Sep 25, 2017 and has been updated and republished to reflect event changes.


Thursday 8th of October 2020

Hi thanks for the great update about the 2020 Spooktacular event at Sea World San Diego. We like to take our son every year. I have one question about the Sesame Street Dance Party. Are the characters out at a specific time or are they out there the entire time? There is no schedule online and I tried calling Sea World but I was on hold forever. Thanks again!

Julie Bigboy

Thursday 15th of October 2020

I checked with SeaWorld staff about this question and was told that they are now in two locations, at alternating times. Nothing set in the schedule.

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