12 (or so) brilliant half term & Halloween activities in Oxfordshire


10 (or so) brilliant half term & Halloween activities in Oxfordshire

What to do in Oxfordshire this October half term and Halloween

We’ve scoured the length and breadth of Oxfordshire and put together a list of the best October half-term and Halloween activities, events and things to do in Oxfordshire.

There are loads of things to do with kids – even if a downpour threatens to send you inside – including child-friendly shows and great things to do indoors with the kids over the October half-term in Oxford and across Oxfordshire.

And dare we mention that ‘Trick or treat’ season is also upon us. What to do with little ones dressed up for a celebration that may very well look and feel a little bit different this year due to the “rule of six” as well as local lockdown restrictions across many parts of the country.

Have a look at our suggestions below and get planning. We hope this list will help you to find all the half-term activities near you that you need to experience truly amazing half term days out this October from 24 October to 01 November.

1. Pick your own pumpkins

When: Until 31 October

It’s that time of the year. That’s right, pumpkin season is here. Whether you associate it with Halloween or not, Pumpkin picking, a somewhat American concept, has taken off in the UK, with patches and pick-your-own farms springing up all over the place. Here are our favourite places to go to make the most of pumpkin season in 2022.

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2. Explore science and creative activities for everyone

When: 06 to 29 October

IF Oxford science and ideas Festival brings together hundreds of researchers with thousands of people in a festival every year – with science, ideas and creative activities for everyone to explore. There’s something for everyone, with activities for young children and families and sessions for teenagers and adults to enjoy alone or as a group in venues across Oxford.

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3. Roll up, roll up to the circus

John Lawson’s Circus at Millets Farm Centre

John Lawson’s Circus at Millets Farm

23 to 29 October
Millets Farm Centre

Roll up, roll up! John Lawson’s Circus is back at Millets Farm Centre this October Half Term with a thrilling, fun family show featuring all-new and popular acts especially for you! The circus is located next to the maze field at Millets Farm Centre and each performance lasts approximately 1 hour, with shows at 10.00am, 12.30pm, and 3.00pm.

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4. Take a tour of one of the most haunted places in the UK

Spooky Tours at Oxford Castle & Prison Ghost Fest

Spooky Tours at Oxford Castle & Prison Ghost Fest

15 & 21 to 31 October
Oxford Castle & Prison

Are you brave enough to visit one of the most haunted places in the UK? Hear the haunting stories of their 1,000-year past and discover the tales that are too dark to be included in daytime tours! Explore the vaulted well chamber, visit the punishment cells and go underground into the dark and spooky Crypt. Head to the top of St. Georges Tower to view the dreaming spires as the city lights twinkle.

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5. See a new farmyard musical about the joy of unlikely friendships

Pigs Might Fly at Oxford Playhouse

Pigs Might Fly

24 to 27 October
Oxford Playhouse

Pigs Might Fly at Oxford Playhouse is a bold and energetic new musical by Golden Toad Theatre following the air-raising adventures of Pintsize, the youngest and most daring piglet on Mudpuddle Farm. Based on the book by Michael Morpurgo, Pigs Might Fly features catchy songs, puppetry and slapstick humour to bring the farmyard to life!

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6. Conjour some spooky science

October Half Term Family Days at Science Oxford

October Half Term Family Days at Science Oxford

22 to 29 October
Science Oxford Centre

Visit the Science Oxford Centre for spookily fun science and woodland pumpkin trail for all the family this half term. Explore, discover and play in the Exploration Zone, where children and grown-ups alike have fun experimenting with interactive exhibits. Go on a Halloween Pumpkin Trail and explore the mysterious woodland for magical mini-beasts. And don’t forget the Water Lab is open.

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7. Enjoy an enormous fireworks display

Henley Spooktacular Bonfire & Fireworks

Henley Spooktacular Bonfire & Fireworks 2023

28 October
The Henley Showground, Hambleden

Henley Spooktacular Bonfire & Fireworks is a spectacular spooky night of spine tingling fireworks and thrilling entertainment for the whole family. Dress up and come and enjoy a fairground, hot food and drink, bonfire, light show and, most importantly, a jaw-dropping 30-minute fireworks display, choreographed to a freaky Halloween soundtrack.

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8. Visit a spooky Victorian station

Hallowsteam! at Didcot Railway Centre


29 & 30 October
Didcot Railway Centre

Young visitors are invited to come along dressed as witches, wizards, ghosts, ghouls, zombies and skeletons to a spellbinding Hallowsteam event. Climb aboard a working steam train for a trip to a spooky Victorian station specially decorated with cobwebs, spiders, bats and more. Here you can also step into a “haunted” carriage.

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9. Take a ride on a miniature train

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The Cutteslowe Park Miniature Railway opened for the 2022 season in April and will be running miniature locomotives for passenger carrying rides on various dates in 2022, including 30 October. The railway was built and developed by the voluntary efforts of the members of City of Oxford Society of Model Engineers (COSME).

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10. Join a spooky halloween trail

When: Various dates

As Halloween creeps closer and the days shorten, join with family and friends during the October half-term holiday to explore any one of these fun and spooky Halloween trails in Oxfordshire.

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11. Take a halloween themed afternoon tea

Spooky Afternoon Tea at Waddesdon Manor

Spooky Afternoon Tea at Waddesdon Manor

22 to 30 October
Waddesdon Manor, Aylesbury

This Halloween, treat the kids to a spooktacular Afternoon Tea. Expect sweet treats with ghostly and ghastly themes. And there’s an eerie twist to regular afternoon teas for adults too.

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12. Get outside and embrace autumn

When: Various dates

To help you make the most of your half-term, the National Trust in Bucks, Berks and Oxfordshire has all kinds of family-friendly events, nature adventures and spooktacular Halloween trails on offer. The kids won’t get bored.

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13. Wander through spooky rooms at The Witch’s House

The Witch’s House at Cogges, Witney, Oxfordshire

The Witch’s House at Cogges

21 to 31 October
Cogges Manor Farm, Witney

There’s witchery afoot this autumn as the manor house and grounds at Cogges Manor Farm are transformed into The Witch’s House for a Halloween-themed October half-term.

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