Santa Ana, California, ranked at the top.
More than 69 percent of Americans are planning to celebrate Halloween this year, be it with buckets of candy or the perfect costume. If you’re really committed to getting spooked, know that not all cities celebrate October 31 with equal dedication.
WalletHub, a personal finance website, set out to determine the absolute best cities in the United States for Halloween. They analyzed 100 of the most populated cities in the country and ranked them according to friendliness of trick-or-treaters, their Halloween parties and activities, and the weather revelers can expect at the end of October.
Scores even considered a city’s population of children, the number of candy and chocolate stores, costume shops, pumpkin patches, and haunted houses per capita.
According to the company’s research, Santa Ana, California, ranks as the No. 1 city for Halloween this year, thanks largely to a perfect score for trick-or-treater friendliness. New York City followed just a few points behind in the No. 2 spot, with Jersey City taking No. 3. Both, apparently, have amiable trick-or-treaters. The Big Apple can also boast the world’s largest Halloween parade, with some 60,000 costumed participants and upwards of 2 million spectators.
Travelers seeking affordable Halloween parties may want to Phoenix, Arizona, which has the lowest average ticket price of any city (Miami, on the other hand, is the most expensive). And if all you’re really looking or this Halloween is an exceptional sugar high, your best bet is Honolulu, which has the highest number of candy and chocolate shops per capita. Hawaii’s capital is also home to one of the most haunted places in the country.
Despite scoring well for Halloween weather and activities, Birmingham, Alabama, fell to the very bottom of the candy bag this year.
Still not sure where to spend the creepiest night of the year? Check out Travel + Leisure’s own list of the best towns for Halloween.