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Halloween will come quicker than you think. Figure out the best haunted halloween attractions to visit this fall.

5 Haunted Houses to Visit This October

By Bus Travel, California, Cincinnati, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pontiac

When but Halloween can you finally indulge your fantasies of visiting the best-haunted houses in the country? If you’re a true scare-seeker with a lust for fear, then it’s worth booking a visit to one or more of the country’s best haunted Halloween attractions. Here are five that will spook you in no time.

1. Erebus Haunted Attraction

Since 2000, Erebus has earned a reputation as one of the leading haunted attractions in the country. In 2005, it was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest walk-through Halloween exhibit — and it continued to earn the honor for five consecutive years! At more than half a mile long, the house in downtown Pontiac, MI, features four floors complete with truly spooky effects and visuals that are so authentic you could easily find them on any big-screen movie.

What exactly goes on inside? The house belongs to Dr. Goldberg, a quirky character who developed a time machine. He didn’t test it himself, though — he employed others to be his guinea pigs. Each portion of the house is devoted to a different dimension and period in time. You may encounter a dinosaur in one space and an alien in another. Things definitely don’t go very smoothly in this time machine! There’s plenty of physical contacts, too, so be prepared to be handled as you make your way through this house of horrors.

2. The Dent Schoolhouse

The word “schoolhouse” is hardly likely to conjure up haunting imagery, but one visit to The Dent Schoolhouse in Cincinnati, OH, will quickly change your mind. Often recognized as one of the best haunted Halloween attractions in the nation, the schoolhouse lives up to every expectation you probably have of a terrorizing educational facility. There are the requisite scary schoolgirls singing “Ring-Around-the-Rosie” in a creepy singsong tone, the ghoulish classroom led by a decaying teacher standing before an aging American flag, and the filthy halls lined with unsavory characters of all kinds.

As the legend goes, the school opened in 1894 and was closed for good upon the discovery that Charlie McFree, the longtime janitor, had murdered a slew of students in previous years and hid the bodies in the basement. There’s no actual confirmation about the validity of this haunted history, but it makes for an intriguing backstory — and, for those who can’t get enough of a good scary story, it’s just another reason to make it to class on time this Halloween. (If you can’t make it during October, there are also frightful opportunities during Lights Out in November and A Christmas Nightmare in December!)

3. Eastern State Penitentiary

The ruins of Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia, PA, set the tone for a shockingly terrifying time on Halloween. The annual attraction, Terror Behind the Walls, is set within the confines of the notorious prison that opened its cell doors in 1829. The 10-acre facility functions as a museum during the rest of the year and is a United States National Historic Landmark, but you’ll be too distracted by the startling characters and events you encounter during your Halloween adventure.

You have options once you’re inside: You can watch or you can take an interactive approach. If you choose the latter, you could be extracted from your group of friends, sent down a chilling hall, thrown into a cell, or grabbed by an unknown figure in the darkness. There are six attractions in total, so choose wisely — if you love a good fright, you may want to be a real part of the action! Keep in mind that many people think the penitentiary is genuinely haunted. It’s even been featured on paranormal television programs on the Travel Channel and TLC. With that little fact in mind, enjoy your journey inside what could easily be rated the world’s scariest prison.

4. The Queen Mary

It wouldn’t be a true list of haunted attractions without a mention of the Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA. The ship has long been touted as one of the spookiest in the country, and with good reason. The ship’s actual maiden voyage in 1936 set the stage for decades of strife and unusual events at sea. Among them was the occasion when the boat mistakenly sank an escort ship in 1942 by slicing it in half. It’s been reported that more than 45 people have died on board over the years. Ghosts of passengers past reportedly remain in attendance even today. There’s the mysterious lady in white, the engineer who apparently died in the engine room, and the giggling children who run around the pool in first class — an amenity which, it should be noted, has been empty for decades. The Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor event is among the scariest Halloween attractions in Southern California, and it conveniently runs from September through November.

5. The Haunted Trail of Balboa Park

If you’re more of an outdoorsy type, you might want to tackle something different in San Diego, CA. The Haunted Trail of Balboa Park is a one-mile trek through the park’s twisted, deformed trees. This, of course, is no ordinary hike: There are all kinds of ghouls and goblins who do their best to throw you off the trail — you’ll encounter everyone from Michael Myers to Pennywise, who is very likely hanging out in the sewer just waiting for you to arrive. There’s even a Stranger Things house, along with a beyond-spine-tingling farmhouse possessed by none other than Annabelle and the Nun (you may want to watch the Conjuring franchise in advance of your visit). Before you reach any of that, however, you’ll need to make your way through the notoriously tough “eXperiment” maze, a 3,500-square-foot preview of the scarier things to come. You’ll never look at a hiking trail the same way again!

Book Your Halloween Bus Getaway Today

If you’re properly spooked by the best haunted Halloween attractions in the country and ready to make the most of the holiday this year, head straight to BusTickets.com. You can snag tickets to the destination of your choice for reasonable rates. No frights for your wallet here!

References:

http://hauntedpontiac.com/ https://frightsite.com/ https://www.easternstate.org/halloween/ https://www.queenmary.com/ https://hauntedtrail.net/

These locations are perfect for the artsy traveler.

5 Vacation Destinations for the Artsy Traveler

By Ann Arbor, Arizona, Berkeley, Bus Travel, California, Mesa, Michigan, Missouri, St.Louis, Texas

For many people, being surrounded by artwork is just as rejuvenating as a day at the beach. Fortunately, some of the best tourist spots in the U.S. also provide a rich artistic culture. Whether you’ve hit a creative roadblock or simply enjoy eye-catching visuals, these five vacation destinations for the artsy traveler are sure to spark your imagination.

1. Berkeley, California

Considering the namesake of Berkeley, CA, is the Irish philosopher George Berkeley, it’s not a surprise that the Bay Area city has attracted free-thinkers, creatives, and intellectuals for generations. Such a collection of temporary and permanent residents results in artistic viewing opportunities on virtually every block. From galleries and museums to outdoor exhibits and street art, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

One of the most popular spots is the Berkeley Art Center, which showcases work by local artists of all mediums. They also host regular lectures and talks, allowing fans to discuss pieces of artwork with their favorite creators. The Trax Gallery, on the other hand, specializes in ceramics. Visitors can catch exhibits during the fall and spring, but the gallery closes during the summer. However, the second-floor apartment above the studio is available for rent year-round, allowing you to immerse yourself in a creative space during your stay.

The city even combines its love of art with local sweets at the Chocolate and Chalk Art Festival in August. Roam the streets to see sidewalk and wall creations from artists of all ages and experience levels, browse booths ran by local craftsmen, and taste a long list of desserts while sipping on wine or craft beer. Want to show off your artistic skills? Join the chalk art contest; they accept both pre-event and same-day registrations.

2. St. Louis, Missouri

Midwest cities are often overlooked as vacation destinations for artsy travelers, but St. Louis’ collection of eye-catching, man-made artwork and natural visuals rivals that of New York City. Nowhere in the city showcases these qualities better than the St. Louis Art Museum (SLAM). Spanning three stories, the museum features both ancient and contemporary works from around the world. It’s also conveniently located in Forest Park, which is home to The Muny, the Missouri History Museum, and plenty of natural scenery for photographers and painters alike.

The Contemporary Art Museum (CAM) St. Louis is another must-see spot. Along with an ever-changing selection of exhibits, the site hosts regular public forums, artist talks, and lectures. Its location in the Grand Center Arts District provides easy access to some of the other most-visited creative spaces in the city, including the St. Louis University Museum of Art, the Pulitzer Arts Foundation, and The Sheldon Concert Hall and Art Galleries.

3. Ann Arbor, Michigan

With a population just over 120,000, it’s hard to imagine Ann Arbor, MI, as a thriving hub for artists. Yet, that is exactly what the small city has become. Its commitment to providing a creative space and culture culminates in the annual Ann Arbor Art Fair. Held in July, the event actually combines four local art fairs: Street Art Fair, Summer Art Fair, State Street Art Fair, and the South University Art Fair.

Whether you make it to town for the festival or not, there are a plethora of other attractions you definitely want to see. From tattoo art to stained glass, the Ann Arbor Art Center offers a unique blend of exhibits as well as instructional classes. For buyers, the gallery provides personalized assistance selecting original pieces, but there’s also an opportunity to buy prints.

4. Austin, Texas

If your aesthetic preferences fall into the quirky or uncanny categories, then Austin, TX, is the perfect vacation destination for you. Following the city’s unofficial slogan, “Keep Austin Weird,” artists and curators in Bat City like to push the boundaries of creativity. This quality is displayed in various local attractions, like the Museum of the Weird, the Hope Outdoor Gallery, and the Cathedral of Junk. Even though it’s slightly more mainstream, there are also plenty of eccentric exhibits at The Contemporary Austin museum.

5. Mesa, Arizona

While the desert landscape offers eye-catching visuals, the brightly colored artwork and intricate sculptures displayed throughout Mesa, AZ, steal the spotlight. The best place to dive into the art scene is the Mesa Arts Center. Not only does the facility’s museum offer a wide collection of exhibits, but they also offer classes regularly, like glass blowing, and play host to the Mesa Arts Festival every December. Other sites in the city you won’t want to miss include the i.d.e.a Museum and the William Barnhart Studio.

Score Fantastic Deals to St. Louis, Austin & Beyond

Ready to spark your creativity? Save on bus tickets to any of these vacation destinations for artsy travelers at BusTickets.com. A user-friendly website makes the purchase process quick, simple, and efficient. We even make group travel a breeze with our convenient charter bus quote service. Let your artsy flag fly today by booking your bus tickets today!

Looking for some mouth watering pizza? Here are the best cities to get it. Book your bus ticket today.

Top 4 Cities to Visit for Mouthwatering Pizza

By Bus Travel, Chicago, Detroit, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, New York, New York City, St.Louis

Nothing satisfies hunger quite like a fresh, warm slice of pizza. For true fans, the quest to find the most mouthwatering pies is a lifetime journey. While just about every town has at least one good pizzeria, there are a few locations where the quality and taste are next-level good. Prepare your taste buds because here are the top four cities with the best pizza in the U.S.

1. New York

New York City is known for many things, but when you say the city’s name, the first thing that comes to mind is pizza. In fact, the Big Apple was home to the first pizzeria in the U.S. Lombardi’s opened its doors in 1905, serving thin-crusted Neapolitan-style pies, which set the standard for what would become known as New York-style pizza. For that reason, Lombardi’s should be the first stop on your tasting tour. Hit up their Little Italy location for a small Original Margherita pie and calzone.

Dating back to 1965, Di Fara is another favorite eatery of pizza fanatics. The family-owned establishment serves up the same handcrafted pies today as they did 50 years ago. While Lucali doesn’t offer the same historical quality, its fresh ingredients and welcoming ambiance have caught the attention of celebs like Beyoncé and Jay Z. If you hit up Lucali, show up early to get your name on the list and don’t forget it’s a BYOB establishment — so arrive with drinks in hand.

Once you’ve eaten your way through the old-school style pizzerias, switch it up with a non-traditional approach. Ops stands out in the market by using sourdough crusts and a wood-fired oven. Adelina’s, on the other hand, has made a name for itself with a plant-based menu. All of the restaurant’s Italian dishes are vegetarian-friendly, and they even offer a selection of vegan pizzas.

2. Chicago

The battle between New York and Chicago pizza styles is almost as old as the country itself. While New York’s easily foldable pies embody the fast pace of the city, Chicago-style deep dish pizza serves as a hearty, sit-down meal. These qualities are ideal when you need to warm your body and catch a break from the elements, which is a necessity for Chicago natives during long, bitter, and windy winters.

To taste a deep-dish pie the way it was intended, stop by one of the 53 Lou Malnati’s locations in the area. The founder actually worked at the first deep dish pizzeria in Chitown, and some people even recognize him as the father of the pan-pizza style. Two other popular establishments, Pequod’s Pizza and Burt’s Place, were both started by Burt Katz and feature his unique caramelized crust. Yet, if you’re a fan of thin crust pizzas, don’t fret — both Spacca Naplo and Piece serve up Neapolitan-style slices.

3. St. Louis

While it doesn’t quite receive the same level of recognition as some of the other locations, St. Louis is hailed as one of the top cities with the best pizza in the country. Known for its extra-thin, crispy crust, St. Louis-style pizzas are instantly recognizable thanks to their rectangular-shaped slices. The use of a unique processed cheese blend — usually containing provolone, cheddar, and Swiss, also gives the pie a distinct flavor from other regional varieties.

To delve into the pizza scene in St. Louis, start with a visit to one of the oldest eateries in the city: Frank & Helen’s Pizzeria. Not much has changed about the restaurant since it opened in 1956, and that’s exactly why it’s so beloved by locals and tourists alike. Frank’s Special pizza is a long-time favorite of patrons, but you also have the opportunity to craft your own mouthwatering pie from scratch. Other top contenders in the area include Monte Bello Pizzeria and Failoni’s.

4. Detroit

Detroit may have made a name for itself with automotive production, but it can be argued that its best export is pizza. Similar to St. Louis, Detroit-style pizza ditches the traditional wedge-shaped slices for squares. The pies also take their rebellion a step further by opting for a rectangular-shaped pizza instead of a circle. However, their most notable characteristic is the incredibly thick crust, which is cooked until the outside is crispy.

If that description has your mouth watering, put Cloverleaf at the top of your travel itinerary. The pizzeria is hailed as the inventor of Detroit-style pizza. While they now offer contemporary variations, like gluten-free pizza, you can still order the traditional square pies of years past. For a slightly more modern take on the original, stop by Pepe Z Pizza. The pizzeria offers unique ingredients, like Michigan honey and Brussel sprouts, along with vegan and vegetarian options.

Score Travel Deals to New York, St. Louis & Beyond

Want to fill your belly without emptying your wallet? Save on your pizza-themed getaway with BusTickets.com. Our user-friendly price comparison tool makes it easy to find the most affordable rates day or night. Your pizza pie awaits — book your bus tickets to the cities with the best pizza today!

Book a bus ticket and enjoy Midwest spring travel

Midwest Spring Bus Travel Guide: What to See & Do

By Bus Travel, Iowa, Jackson, Kansas, Michigan, Pella, Witchita

A spring getaway is a perfect cure to overcome any remaining winter blues, and no region celebrates the season quite like middle America. But with so many fantastic destinations, it’s challenging to decide where to travel in the Midwest during spring. Fortunately, we’ve taken the guessing work out of bus travel by highlighting a few of the best locations to visit. If you’re itching to hit the road after a long winter, book your bus tickets to these three spots.

Wichita, Kansas

Wichita, KS, offers a rich assortment of spring activities for visitors of all ages. The city places a particular emphasis on outdoor activities, which isn’t surprising considering the rich, lush landscape of the area. Whether you’re traveling as a family or pursuing a solo adventure, here are three locations you won’t want to miss.

Bask in the Aromatic Blooms at the Botanica Wichita

One of the most beloved attractions in Wichita is the botanical gardens. Botanica Wichita offers 18 acres of gardens, exhibits, and horticulture library. While the grounds are open year-round, the site comes to life in spring when over 120,000 daffodils bloom, along with thousands of tulips, wildflowers, and irises. After taking a tour through the mesmerizing gardens, enjoy a gourmet meal at the Garden Cafe.

Become One With Nature at the Great Plains Nature Center

To truly appreciate spring, you need to immerse yourself in nature. In Wichita, the best place to accomplish this feat is the Great Plains Nature Center. Guests have the option to explore the historical and educational exhibits in the Koch Habitat Hall before exploring the 282-acre Chisholm Creek Park. The reserve is home to hundreds of plant and wildlife species, which you can see up close and personal on the paved trails. Admission to the center is free.

Enhance Your World View at the Wichita Art Museum

The Wichita Art Museum offers a well-rounded selection of historical and contemporary art and culture exhibits with regular feature rotations. There are also a variety of programs and events catering to specific interests and age groups, including Senior Wednesday and Art Start. The museum offers free general admission on Saturdays.

Pella, Iowa

Often overshadowed by its big brother Des Moines, Pella, IA, is a hidden Midwest gem. The small town was founded by Dutch immigrants in 1847, and the residents are committed to preserving their heritage. Not only is the town ideal for history and architecture buffs, but for tulip fans, it’s a top contender for where to travel in the Midwest during spring.

Surround Yourself With Blooms at the Tulip Time Festival

Held at the beginning of May, Tulip Time is a three-day festival celebrating the town’s Dutch heritage and the arrival of spring. There are parades held on each day of the event, along with a host of shows and exhibits. Whatever attractions you add to your schedule, you won’t want to miss the Annual Flower Show. The event is open to the public for nine hours, and you can even order tulip bulbs on site.

Step Back in Time at the Historical Village

The flower show is held in Pella’s Historical Village, but a few hours roaming the event isn’t enough time to truly take in the spectacular attraction. The site houses 22 buildings, including a black shop, log cabin, and sod house replica showcasing the first home accommodations of the town’s founders. An admissions fee of $10 for adults ($6 for students) gives you full access to all the buildings and shops.

Jackson, Michigan

Spring bus travel to Jackson, MI, is ideal for families. The small, welcoming city is home to numerous exciting attractions, but there are two options perfectly fit for spring: the Fairy Festival and birding.

Experience the Magic of the Fairy Festival

The Fairy Festival is unlike any other spring event in the region. While it’s designed for younger family members, visitors of all ages are welcomed to get in touch with their inner child for a weekend of imaginative fun. Stroll the Fairy Kingdom, browse the craft booths, and vote for your favorite fairy garden.

Celebrate the Arrival of Spring With a Birding Adventure

One of the first signs of spring is the return of bird chatter outside the window. In Jackson, you can take this welcomed experience a step further by going birding. There are a variety of spots to choose from for this adventure. For hikers, the Kate Palmer Sanctuary offers 53 acres with 100 known species of birds, while the Haehnle Memorial Sanctuary is home to over 200 species on nearly 1,000 acres. There’s even a free bird sighting checklist made specifically for Jackson County.

Book Your Spring Bus Travel Today

Now that you know where to travel in the Midwest during spring, it’s time to book your bus tickets. At Bustickets.com, a few clicks of a button is all that stands between you and an unforgettable vacation. Our price comparison tool allows you to save money so that you can travel even more, and our charter bus quote service makes booking group trips a breeze. Enjoy the season before it’s gone by buying your bus tickets today.

The 5 Most Affordable Vacation Destinations You Can Get to by Bus

By Bus Travel, Eugene, Grand Rapids, Hannibal, Maine, Memphis, Michigan, Missouri, Oregon, Portland, Tenessee

Planning a vacation on a budget is taxing, especially when you’re trying to balance the expense of travel, boarding, meals, and sightseeing. Fortunately, choosing bus travel will cut your costs in half, leaving more money for hotels and food. You can reduce your total costs even more without sacrificing fun by choosing a location that offers plenty of free and low-cost recreational activities. If you’re facing a tight budget, buy cheap bus tickets to these five affordable vacation destinations.

1. Memphis, TN

At the top of every music lover’s travel list is a visit to Memphis, TN. Dubbed the “Birthplace of Rock ‘n Roll,” this city has created some of the most influential artists of the 20th century and, as such, music can be found on every corner. Since it’s such a popular city, bus tickets to Memphis are incredibly affordable. Plus, you’ll also have the opportunity to take in the views of the Smoky Mountains, Missouri Bootheel, or Mississippi Delta along the way, depending on your departure location.

One of the most popular destinations in Memphis is Graceland, and while there’s an entrance fee for the official tour, you can visit the Meditation Garden during set hours for free. You should also stop by The Peabody Hotel at 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. every day to watch the legendary ducks march between their rooftop home and their favorite swimming hole: the lobby fountain. No visit to this great metropolis is complete without a trip down historic Beale Street, where you can grab food and drinks, and enjoy live music inside the halls and on the street itself.

2. Grand Rapids, MI

The family-friendly town of Grand Rapids, MI, is the perfect destination for parents and kids who love the outdoors. While it’s often praised for its popular winter activities, like ice fishing, the small city offers plenty of spring and summer fun as well. If you’re a family of cyclists, then you don’t want to miss out on the miles upon miles of bike trails. The city itself boasts more than 25 parks, some of which offer public water access and beaches, and hosts free events for all ages.

3. Hannibal, MO

If you’re a literary fanatic or history buff, put bus travel to Hannibal, MO, at the top of your summer to do list. As the home of beloved writer Mark Twain and Titanic passenger Molly Brown, the town offers a plethora of museums and historic properties. While some of these sites charge admission for the official tour, you can avoid spending money at multiple locations by reading up on them during your bus journey. Pick your favorite option to utilize your entertainment budget, and then simply snap a picture of the other tourist hotspots for your scrapbook.

Fortunately for budget-minded travelers, there’s nothing the city of Hannibal loves more than a festival. From their annual Tom Sawyer Days to the Big River Steampunk Festival, there’s a constant stream of family-friendly activities that also offer free options. As for paid entertainment, the area offers many affordable choices, like the Mark Twain Riverboat, which offers one-hour long sightseeing cruises for around $20 per ticket.

4. Portland, ME

Portland, ME, is the East Coast’s best-kept secret. The city has flourished as a tech and financial hub in recent years, but its modern amenities oddly compliment its historic identity as a port town powered by the fishing industry. Marveling at the architecture is enough to keep you busy for a few days, but be sure add in a few trips to the beach and a hike along one of their numerous trails. If you love the feel of the ocean breeze on your skin as you dive into a plate of locally caught (and surprisingly affordable) lobster, then book your bus tickets to Portland, ME, before fall arrives.

5. Eugene, OR

Last on the list—but most definitely not least—is Eugene, OR. Often overshadowed by its big sister, Portland, this Pacific Northwest city offers the welcoming atmosphere of a small town with the rich cultural opportunities of a metropolitan city. Its diverse offerings include art exhibitions, music festivals, and craft breweries, and just outside of town, you can delve into Willamette Valley’s blooming wine scene by spending an afternoon at a local vineyard.

Book Affordable Bus Tickets to Portland, Memphis, and More!

If you’re ready for an adventure this spring or summer, turn to BusTickets.com for a hassle-free and affordable approach to travel. Our convenient service allows you to compare tickets from the industry’s top carriers so that you can find the most budget-friendly option.  So what are you waiting for? Tick off the next destination on your bucket list by booking your bus tickets today!