Salem, Massachusetts, is an admired city to visit, especially if you’re taking a trip around the New England region. The town is popularly known for the historical Salem witch trials that took place back in the late 17th century, when locals were publicly executed for allegedly practicing witchcraft. But speaking of witches, did you know that Salem was also where Hocus Pocus was filmed?
The famed Sanderson Sisters, played by Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy, have been the queens of Disney Halloween movies for decades now, and it’s so intriguingly spooky that most of the Hocus Pocus filming locations were in a town that is known for having actual, alleged witches in its history. So if you’re planning to visit Salem, especially in the month of October, get your spell books and come relive the adventures of our favorite Hollywood witches by following our Hocus Pocus itinerary!
Where Was Hocus Pocus Filmed?
1. Salem Pioneer Village
Address: 310 West Avenue
If you remember the movie’s opening scene featuring Thackery Binx as a human prior to his cursing as the iconic black cat, then you’ll recognize Pioneer Village. Built in 1930 at Forest River Park, Pioneer Village was the first living history museum in America. The best time to take a tour of the place is around June to September, but there are also festivals and events that are held there throughout the year.
2. Private Residence
Address: 4 Ocean Avenue
The real-life home served as Max Dennison and his sister Dani’s house, where the Sanderson Sisters were first resurrected. Although this house is a private residence, it’s still a place you can pass by while going on your own little Hocus Pocus tour.
3. Phillips Elementary School
Address: 86 Essex Street
Located in Salem Common, this actual elementary school is recognized as Max and Allison’s school. But by the time the building had served as a place to shoot the movie’s high school footage, it had actually finished its run as a working school the year prior. And although it’s not currently open to the public, you can still see its exterior while at Salem Common.
4. The Ropes Mansion
Address: 318 Essex Street
The Ropes Mansion is owned by the Peabody Essex Museum, but served as Allison’s house in the movie. One of the more iconic scenes from the movie was when Max attended a halloween party here, and you can see why the mansion is one of the most prominent 18th century homes in the city. The beautiful, luscious gardens in the back of the mansion are open to the public and are free to visit!
5. Old Town Hall
Address: 161 Essex Street
Located in Derby Square, Old Town Hall was the location of another iconic party scene from the film. During the town Halloween party, Bette Midler (who played Winifred) sang the evocative and memorable “I Put a Spell on You” in this building. Today, it’s open to the public and actually hosts the Salem Museum and where Cry Innocent performances.
6. Old Burial Hill Cemetery
Orne Street in Marblehead
Located in Marblehead, less than 15 minutes away from Salem, Old Burial Hill is the place where the film’s cemetery scenes were filmed. It’s actually one of the oldest graveyards in New England, so if you’re really wanting to get spooked, then maybe visit this cemetery for a good ol’ fashioned Halloween night.
Have you ever been trick-or-treating where “Hocus Pocus” was filmed? Share your adventures with us on our Wide Open Roads Facebook!