Salem: the Witch City

I have been wanting to go back to Salem ever since Riley and I visited the small town on the water a couple years ago. We started to plan a trip to Boston with friends and since we’d be going in October, I knew we had to go to Salem. I was so ecstatic to go back during Halloween time! I can’t think of a better time to visit the witch city! I proudly dressed like a witch and it made the whole day so much more exciting ;) it was a chilly and drizzly day and the wind picked up later in the day which made it even colder. I did a lot of research and had a whole list of things we could see and do. I thought for sure we wouldn’t be able to do it all but we actually did! Salem is a small town and is super walkable so it worked out perfectly.

^^^there was this awesome stick instillation right by the clue house and across the street from the hawthorne hotel. these “stickworks” are done by a man who travels around the world to create these masterpieces! super cool!

^^^essex street is the main street in salem and has lots of fun witchy shops and things to see. it’s touristy but so is most of downtown salem. also on essex street is the witch house, which is the last building in salem directly connected to the witch trials. after the trials, the government destroyed most buildings connected to the hysteria. the witch house was the home of jonathan corwin, a witch trials judge.

Everything is so old and has so much history. You can also bet that every building is haunted ;) i wish we had more time to just stroll the streets to see the amazing old homes. we visited a couple of spots from hocus pocus, including old town hall where the dance party was and allison’s house! The Ropes Mansion is said to be the most haunted building in Salem! We couldn’t go inside, but we walked around the gardens. It definitely felt very quiet and mysterious, especially with all of the dying plants.

this is the old burying ground. the second oldest cemetery in the country! it’s home to several of the judges of the witch trials, including john hathorne, the great grandfather of nathaniel hawthorne. right next door is a memorial for the victims of the trials, looking right at the people who accused them to be witches.

we wanted to go to the water and see a few sites there, but the guys had the brilliant idea to walk out to the lighthouse. i say that sarcastically because it was the worst idea ever! it got so windy and was so so freezing cold. we got all the way to the end and took shelter from the wind behind the lighthouse. we noticed it wasn’t raining very hard, it just seemed it because of the wind. then we realized we had to walk back, against the wind. i booked it as fast as i could so i could seek shelter fast but it was torture the whole way! my umbrella had already broken from the wind so i had nothing to shelter me! it’s funny to think about now but i was definitely not laughing then! once the guys met up with us (they were taking their sweet time), we ran into a coffee shop nearby to dry off and warm up with hot cocoa and apple cider! our next stop was ye olde pepper candy companie– the oldest candy compay in america! it’s just a tiny place filled with fun candies made in house. plus i like their name ;) the chocolate witch pops reminded me of the one dani eats in hocus pocus…100 points for you if you know what i’m talking about :)

If you didn’t know, Salem is famous for the 1692 witch trials. And although everyone who was hung (and pressed to death) were innocent of being witches, Salem has fully embraced their witchy history. You can find witches everywhere: on the police cars and as the mascot at the local high school! we loved learning the stories of Salem all day long. We went on a witch tour once the sun went down. luckily the rain had stopped by then but it was so cold, we all thought we might die haha this tour was so impressive and completely worth the price! our tour guide grew up in salem so he has spent his life learning the true history of the witch trials. he told us so many stories and put a name to each victim. it’s so sad what happened but so fascinating. earlier in the day, we went to the salem witch museum as well but i would say to save the money and do a tour instead. the museums are very vague and you only get a tiny taste of the history! i didn’t take any photos of it, but we ate lunch at red’s sandwich shop. it was packed, delicious, and full of history!

cold weather aside, our day in salem was a dream! one of these days i hope to go to one of the costume balls in the posh hotels. the costumes we saw were incredible! i hope you all had a fun and spooky halloween!