Conjur up a spooky mix of history and mystery in Witch City.
Salem, Mass., one of America's first cities is a great getaway for a today's modern family — walking down the charming, cobblestone streets lined with old clapboard homes is a transporting experience.
Thanks to the now-infamous Witch Trials of 1692, Salem is known as Witch City. The town is sure to cast a spell on you whatever time of year you visit.
Salem is a great trip anytime of year, and it's just a quick and easy 17 miles north of Boston. It offers plenty of family friendly restaurants and shops, including Ye Old Pepper Company, the first candy store in the country.
Salem's downtown can be navigated by foot by following a red line painted on the sidewalks, or download their new iPhone app to help you.
The town is covered with every sort of witch on a broomstick image you can conjure up...
.. even Samantha Stephens of "Bewitched" fame is glorified with a statue.
Approximately 200,000 people from all over the world come to spend Halloween in Salem, fully booking hotels and inns as early as April.
The hop on/hop off Salem Trolley hits all the cities attractions. Catch the trolley in October when it is transformed into a spooky multimedia trip through the supernatural.
Visit the Salem National Maritime Historic Site to learn about Salem's important role as a seaport in the 18th Century and take a tour of Friendship, the replica of a period cargo ship.
On the ship kids can see how sailors lived in dark, cold, cramped conditions.
The Witch Trial Memorial was created for the event's 300th anniversary. The stark monument has rock walls and is inscribed with the statements of innocence made by those wrongly accused of sorcery.
The Gardiner-Pingree House, built in 1804, is one of several owned by the Peabody Essex Museum as part of the Essex Institute. The house is open for guided tours and features 18th- and early-19th century furnishings.
In the 17th Century, The Witch House was home to Jonathan Corwin, head of a prominent and wealthy Puritan family and a judge for the trials. The museum offers an amazing look at period architecture and puts the witch panic into historical perspective.
Salem is the birthplace, home and inspiration for writer Nathaniel Hawthorne. The seaside house that inspired "The House of the Seven Gables" is part of a national historic district that includes Hawthorne's birthplace, seaside gardens and more.
Take a guided tour of the U.S. Customs House made famous in the novel "The Scarlet Letter." Nathaniel Hawthorne actually worked in the Custom House as surveyor from 1846-1849. However, it isn't nearly as creepy as his description in the book,
Visit the "Dry Goods Store" selling the exotic imports of the time. Young kids will enjoy the Bonded Warehouse where the imported goods are on display. Also, make sure to find out when the Salem Theater Company will be telling spooky and scary stories.
Inside the Witch Dungeon Museum, the witchcraft trials are brought to life by professional actors and a script based on the original trial transcripts.
The whole city gets involved in the "Haunted Happenings," which kick off early in October. There are more than 140 festive events, like the Grand Parade, where kids from all over Salem march to the Commons to kick off the festivities.
Salem Tour: A Harbor View
Salem Tour: Witch Crossing
Salem Tour: The Salem Lighthouse
Salem Tour: Pickering Wharf at Salem Harbor
Salem Tour: The Bronze Witch
Salem Tour: The Bewitched Statue
Salem Tour: Modern Meets Historic
Salem Tour: The Salem Trolley
Salem Tour: The Friendship in the Harbor
Salem Tour: On the Friendship
Salem Tour: The Witch Trial Memorial
Salem Tour: Gardner-Pingree House
Salem Tour: The Witch House
Salem Tour: House of the Seven Gables
Salem Tour: The U.S. Customs House
Salem Tour: Sunset in the Maritime District
Salem Tour: The Witch Dungeon Museum
Salem Tour: Haunted Happening Grand Parade