40+ October & Halloween Bucket List Ideas for Families

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October is the heart of fall. It’s a time for celebrating, enjoying time with family, and bundling up in preparation for winter. With so much to do during this time of year, how do you know where to start?

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What better way to enjoy the spirit of October than with your very own bucket list? A bucket list is a list of things you want to do before you “kick the bucket,” but it’s actually much more than that. You can make a bucket list for just about anything! Here are 40+ October and Halloween bucket list ideas that are perfect for families. 

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Bucket List Ideas to Celebrate Halloween

On October 31st, the Celtic people believed the boundary between the living and the dead blurred. Today, Halloween still relies on this ancient tradition. With lots of scary stories, treats, and haunts, this is a thrilling time of year. Celebrate Halloween with these bucket list ideas below. 

1. Carve pumpkins

According to popular legend, a man named Jack tricked the devil and found himself forever trapped in purgatory. To keep his ghost from entering homes, families carved pumpkins with scary faces for their entryways.

Today, this tradition is alive and well with lots of fun and scary pumpkins at each doorstep! 

2. Host a scary movie marathon

A scary movie marathon (or a not-so-scary one) is a great way to welcome Halloween. Watching near-death experience movies is always a thrill, too.

3. Tell ghost stories

Gather around and share your best ghost stories. Everyone has a favorite ghost story, even if it’s made up. 

4. Visit a haunted house

Haunted houses are a fun Halloween tradition. Give yourself a friendly fright!

5. Go trick-or-treating

Trick-or-treating is all about candy and excitement. Going trick-or-treating as a family brings everyone together. 

6. Host a Halloween party

Invite friends and family to your home for a Halloween party. Host a costume contest, bake yummy treats, and celebrate the spookiest time of year. 

7. Decorate your home

Bring the thrill of Halloween into your decorations. With fake spiderwebs, jack-o-lanterns, and other ghoulish finds, your home has never looked scarier. 

8. Bake Halloween cookies

What holiday is complete without cookies? Create some delicious treats just in time for Halloween!

9. Play flashlight tag

Flashlight tag is a great anytime activity, but it’s especially perfect for Halloween! Playing is simple. Wait till it’s dark, go outside, and use flashlights to “tag” the next player. 

10. Learn the history of Halloween

Finally, take a trip through history to learn how Halloween developed over time. It’s interesting to discover just how this ancient tradition got its start. 

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October Bucket List Ideas for Families and Kids

Embrace fall and all of its warmth with some family traditions. October isn’t only about Halloween. Try these things below to explore a new side of this time of year. Create your own traditions to enjoy year after year. 

11. Visit a pumpkin patch

A pumpkin patch is the perfect family outing for the fall. Pick your own pumpkins or take some cute photos.

12. Drink apple cider

Is there anything better than a warm apple cider on a chilly day? You can make your own apple cider at home for a sweet treat or get some at a local pumpkin patch. 

13. Go on a hayride

This time of year is all about the harvest. Explore a farm near you with a fun hayride. 

14. Get lost in a corn maze

Corn mazes are a fall tradition stemming from the harvest season. Just keep track of your steps — you don’t want to get lost! 

15. Go camping

The weather in October is usually perfect for camping. Enjoy the cooler air with a night out camping. See autumn’s effects on nature for yourself. 

16. Take a hike

Another way to explore the changing of seasons is by taking a hike. Visit a local park to see the leaves changing for yourself. 

17. Take a graveyard tour

In many traditions, October is the time to visit the graves of loved ones. Honor this tradition by taking a graveyard tour and learning about those who passed on. 

18. Pick apples

Apple picking is one of the best ways to enjoy fall. Many apple farms open their gates to let families pick their own apples. Yum!

19. Host a bonfire

Escape the chilly air with a family bonfire. Better yet, make s’mores.

20. Make pumpkin pie

Finally, make a pumpkin pie as a family. Not only does it taste great, but it’s a perfect ode to October. 

October Bucket List Ideas for Couples

The changing seasons bring everyone closer together, especially couples. Share October with your significant other with these bucket list ideas for couples. Bundling up is so much better when you do it together! 

21. Escape to the mountains

This is the perfect time for a getaway. Flee from the hustle of city life by escaping to the mountains for a quiet retreat. Whether you enjoy a rustic cabin or a luxurious hotel, it’s all about being together. 

22. Sip on spiked cider

Enjoy a more grown-up version of apple cider with a boozy version of an old classic. Adding a bit of champaign to apple cider creates a very delicious mimosa.

23. Take couple photos

October is the perfect backdrop for your couple photos. Try taking pictures in a pumpkin patch, farm, or your favorite park. 

24. Make a couples costume

Celebrate Halloween in style with a couple’s costume. Dressing up is so much fun when you do it together. The more creative, the better. 

25. Cook a seasonal dinner

Visit the farmers market and work together to make a seasonal dinner. From squash to pumpkin, there’s so much to choose from. 

26. Start your end of life planning

All of this talk of Halloween brings up a lot of thoughts about death and the afterlife. Use this time to work through an end-of-life planning checklist together as a couple. 

27. Volunteer 

This is a great time of year to reflect on what you’re grateful for. Use this time to give back to those who are less fortunate by volunteering together.  

28. Pass out candy

Just because you’re an adult doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the fun of trick-or-treating. Create joy by passing out Halloween candy in your own neighborhood. 

29. Make candy apples

Candy apples are an exciting fall treat. Make some together as a couple to share in some old-fashioned, sweet fun. 

30. Start your holiday shopping

Get a head start on your holiday shopping during October. You’re bound to land better deals! 

October Bucket List Ideas to Do with Friends

Fall is also a great time to reconnect with friends. From celebrating the fun of Halloween together to getting active, here are the best October bucket list ideas to do with friends. 

31. Go to a football game

Fall is also football season. Join together to root on your favorite team! 

32. Run a 5K

The nice weather makes this the perfect time of year to get active. Run a local 5K and get your body moving. 

33. Celebrate Oktoberfest

Take a hint from the Germans and celebrate Oktoberfest. There’s bound to be an Oktoberfest celebration near you with all the beer you can imagine. Cheers to that! 

34. Host Friendsgiving

Thanksgiving is always in November, but you can get a headstart on a friends-only dinner. Invite all of your closest friends to your home for a Friendsgiving feast. Have everyone bring their favorite dish to make a delicious potluck.

35. Visit a theme park

Theme parks do a lot of fun Halloween events during October. Why not hit one up with all your friends? You might even be able to get off-season tickets. 

36. Enter a Halloween costume contest

Put your group costume to the challenge by joining a local costume contest. You might end up winning the whole thing! 

37. Try pumpkin lattes

For all the coffee drinkers out there, make a day of trying all the pumpkin spice lattes in your city. Is Starbucks really the supreme winner?

38. Recruit childhood Halloween costumes

Take a trip down memory lane by working together to recreate Halloween costumes from your childhood. The more embarrassing, the better. Bonus points if you take lots of photos! 

39. Go on a road trip

Road trips bring everyone together. Take a friends-only road trip to the mountains, a local city, or a fall festival. 

40. Share what you’re thankful for

Last but not least, reflect on what you’re thankful for. This is a time of year for reflecting on your relationships and what matters to you. Write letters to your friends or just let them know how you feel. 

Make the Most of October

October is often overlooked in favor or other holiday months, but it really is a time of excitement. Embrace the best of October and the fall season by creating your very own bucket list. Whether you’re enjoying this time with family, friends, or significant other, there’s so much to do. 

Challenge yourself to really experience the history and tradition of October. From watching your favorite Halloween movies to passing out candy, this is a time to come together with those you love. 

If you're looking for more, check out our full list of bucket list ideas to do before you die.

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