Skip to Content

35 Things To Do During Samhain: Celebrating the Pagan New Year

Please note that posts on this site may contain affiliate links

Things To Do During Samhain: Samhain is a time to honor the cycle of life and death, to remember loved ones who have passed on, and to celebrate the mysteries of the unknown. It is a time of reflection, introspection, and gratitude for the abundance of the harvest. Whether you are a pagan, a witch, or simply someone looking to connect with the spiritual side of life, there are many ways to celebrate Samhain. Here are 35 ideas to inspire you.

Pagan Activities for Samhain

  1. Set up an altar to honor your ancestors and loved ones who have passed on.
  2. Perform a Samhain ritual or ceremony, such as a dumb supper or a bonfire.
  3. Create a protective talisman or charm to ward off negative energy during this time.
  4. Practice divination, such as tarot readings or scrying, to gain insight into the future.
  5. Learn about the history and significance of Samhain, and the role it played in ancient pagan cultures.
  6. Use traditional pagan symbols for death, such as skulls, bones, or black candles, in your Samhain decorations.
  7. Celebrate with a pagan Halloween party, complete with costumes, music, and food.
samhain celebration ideas

Secular Activities for Samhain

  1. Carve pumpkins or decorate your home with other seasonal decorations, such as gourds, hay bales, or autumn leaves.
  2. Bake seasonal treats, such as pumpkin pie, apple cider donuts, or caramel apples.
  3. Host a Samhain-themed movie night, with spooky films and snacks.
  4. Go on a nature walk to appreciate the changing colors of the leaves and the crisp autumn air.
  5. Take a trip to a pumpkin patch or an apple orchard with your family or friends.
  6. Visit a haunted house or participate in a ghost tour.
  7. Attend a costume party or dress up in a traditional Samhain costume, such as a witch or a druid.

Nature Activities for Samhain

  1. Collect fallen leaves, acorns, or pinecones to use in seasonal crafts, such as wreaths or centerpieces.
  2. Go on a nature scavenger hunt to find signs of the changing season, such as migrating birds or ripening fruit.
  3. Meditate outdoors, surrounded by the beauty of nature, to connect with the energy of the earth.
  4. Go on a nighttime hike or stargazing excursion to observe the constellations and the beauty of the night sky.
  5. Plant bulbs or winter crops, such as garlic or onions, to prepare for the next growing season.
  6. Take a hot air balloon ride or a scenic drive to enjoy the breathtaking views of the fall foliage.

Kid’s Activities for Samhain

  1. Make seasonal crafts with your children, such as leaf rubbings, paper mache pumpkins, or spooky decorations.
  2. Go on a nature scavenger hunt with your kids, encouraging them to find different types of leaves or acorns.
  3. Host a Halloween party for kids, with fun activities such as bobbing for apples, pumpkin decorating, or a costume parade.
  4. Read spooky stories or legends around a campfire, to introduce children to the traditions of Samhain.
  5. Create a small altar with your children to honor the spirits of their ancestors or lost pets.
what to do on samhain

Connecting with the Dead During Samhain

  1. Light candles or incense in memory of loved ones who have passed on, and reflect on the impact they had on your life.
  2. Hold a ritual or ceremony to connect with the spirits of the dead, using tools such as a pendulum, an Ouija board, or a spirit board.
  3. Visit a cemetery or a burial site to pay respects to the departed and reflect on the circle of life.
  4. Write a letter to someone who has passed on, expressing your gratitude or sharing your thoughts and feelings.
  5. Participate in a Samhain ritual or ceremony with a group of like-minded individuals, to share the experience and connect with the energies of the season.

Learning About Death Rites in Other Cultures

  1. Research death rites and traditions from other cultures, such as the Day of the Dead in Mexico, or the Ghost Festival in China.
  2. Visit a museum or exhibit about death and mourning practices throughout history.
  3. Attend a lecture or workshop on death and dying, to gain a deeper understanding of this universal human experience.
  4. Read books or watch documentaries about near-death experiences or reincarnation, to expand your knowledge and perspective on life after death.
  5. Volunteer at a hospice or a funeral home, to support those who are dealing with the loss of a loved one and gain insight into the importance of death rites and ceremonies.
how to celebrate samhain


Is Halloween a pagan holiday?

Yes, Halloween has pagan roots and is closely connected to the ancient festival of Samhain. The modern-day holiday has evolved over time and is now celebrated by many people around the world, both as a secular holiday and as a religious one.

What is a dumb supper?

A dumb supper is a traditional Samhain ritual in which a meal is served in silence, in honor of loved ones who have passed on. It is often done with family or close friends and can be a powerful way to connect with the spirits of the dead.

What are some traditional Samhain costumes?

Some traditional Samhain costumes include dressing up as a witch, a druid, or a mythical creature such as a fairy or a dragon. The important thing is to choose a costume that represents the spirit of the season and connects you to the energies of the earth.

What are some pagan symbols for death?

 Some pagan symbols for death include skulls, bones, and black candles.

How do Wiccans celebrate Samhain?

Wiccans celebrate Samhain as the most important Sabbat of the year, marking the end of the old year and the beginning of the new. They often hold rituals or ceremonies, create altars to honor ancestors, and perform divination practices to gain insight into the future.

What is the significance of the thinning of the veil during Samhain?

The thinning of the veil during Samhain represents the idea that the boundary between the world of the living and the world of the dead becomes more permeable during this time, allowing for communication and connection between the two realms.

What is the history of Samhain?

Samhain has roots in ancient Celtic and pagan cultures, where it was celebrated as the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter. It was a time to honor ancestors, prepare for the coming winter, and connect with the spiritual energies of the earth.

Can you give gifts during Samhain?

Yes, giving gifts during Samhain can be a meaningful way to honor loved ones who have passed on, or to show appreciation for the blessings of the harvest season. Some common gifts include flowers, candles, or food items.


Samhain is a time of reflection, remembrance, and celebration of life and death. Whether you are a pagan, a witch, or simply someone looking to connect with the spiritual side of life, there are many ways to honor this ancient tradition.

From pagan rituals to nature walks, from kid’s activities to connecting with the dead, there are countless ways to celebrate the cycle of life and death during Samhain. So light a candle, cast a spell, or go on a nature hike – whatever you choose to do, remember to embrace the mysteries of the unknown and the beauty of the changing season. Happy Samhain!