This post covers the best things to do in Los Angeles in October.
We include a top 10 list as well as a family-friendly, nighttime activities, and free things to do, all updated for 2023.
- Top 10
- Free Things to Do
- Nighttime Activities
- How’s the Weather
- Los Angeles Walking Tours
This section will feature our top 10 activities to enjoy in LA throughout October.
For tips on the most popular activities and ways to find discounts in LA, check out our other popular posts:
- Things to Do in LA (any time of year)
- Walking Tours of LA
- LA Bus Tours
- Tourist Attraction Discount Passes
1. Go to a Concert
There are a lot of concert venues in Los Angeles.
We’ve listed the highlights below, but you can find information about concerts at the links listed below, or click here to find more events.
- Coldplay | October 1st
- Madonna | October 1st
- Arctic Monkeys | October 1st
- P!nk | October 5th
- Incubus | October 6th
- Sting | October 7th
- Macklemore | October 18th
- Snoop Dogg | October 20th, 21st
- Jackson Browne | October 20th, 21st
- Zac Brown Band | October 20h, 21st
- Ohana Music Festival | October 1st | Doheny State Beach | Feat: Foo Fighters, Pretenders, Rainbow Kitten Surprise, and more.
- Los Angeles Folk Festival | October 7th-8th } John Anson Ford Amphitheatre | Feat: Waxahatchee, Willie Watson, and more
- LA's Gates of Metal Festival | October 14th-15th | Garden Grove Amphitheatre | Feat: Evildead, Heathen, Bonded by Blood, and more
See all the concerts happening in Los Angeles.
2. Go to a Sporting Event
October is a great month to watch baseball, soccer, or women’s basketball.
Be sure to chomp on the World Famous Dodger Dog hotdog when you visit Dodger Stadium as you cheer on L.A.’s favorite baseball team.
Check here for all sporting events in Los Angeles.
- Los Angeles Dodgers | might have some end-of-season games
- Los Angeles Angels | might have some end-of-season games
For even more great games and matches to attend, please check this list of sporting events in Los Angeles during the month of October.
For more things to do at night, check the section down below.
3. Go on a Sightseeing Tour
We offer pay-what-you-like tours and plan to introduce new tours soon or you can try our self-guided walking tours.
Check out our calendar to book a guided walking tour.
If you’re looking for a bus tour, we have a great comparison of L.A.’s best.
From hop-on-hop-off buses to nonstop nighttime tours, you’ll find one to suit you here.
Another option is to check out a studio tour. See what it is like to be a working Hollywood actor or a gaffer. Or find out what a gaffer does!
4. Enjoy a Theatrical Production
Although Los Angeles is known more for their movies, this city also often hosts at least a few great musicals throughout the year.
You can find a few of these during the month of September:
- Les Miserables | October 1st (Costa Mesa)
- Rocky Horror Picture Show with Barry Bostwick | October 8th, 28th
- Oliver! | October 13th-22nd
- Ain't Too Proud | October 17th-29th
- Attila | October 8th, 9th
- Peppa Pig Sing-Along Party! | October 19th (Anaheim)
5. Save Money with a Tourist Attraction Discount Pass
To make the most out of your time in LA, and save a lot of money while seeing the sights, consider purchasing a tourist attraction discount pass.
You’ll pay one fee upfront and receive free or highly discounted entry into many of the city’s most popular attractions and activities.
Tourist discount passes work by bundling multiple tickets into one price, usually between 20%-50% the retail price.
Read our post comparing the different LA tourist discount passes. Several bus tour companies, including hop-on-hop-off buses, also offer discounts and deals.
For more ideas for any time of year, be sure to read our master post on Things to do in LA.
6. Attend a Film Festival
See below for a few October film festivals taking place in Los Angeles.
You never know if the films you see on the festival circuit will eventually hit it big!
- Beyond Fest | September 24th - October 10th | Various Theatres
- Awareness Film Festival | October 4th -8th | The Regal at LA Live
Other Movie Nights
- TALKIES: Comedy & Short Films | October 19th | Whammy Analog
For a list of other film festivals in California, see this master list.
7. See a Live Stand-Up Show
Los Angeles is home to some of the most famous comedians in the world, and many others are drawn to perform in the city throughout the year.
As a result, there are usually a lot of great stand-up shows happening in the LA area.
- Chelsea Handler | October 12th, 13th
- Jim Jefferies | October 5th, 7th
- Kevin Nealon | October 13th-14th
- Craig Robinson | October 19th-21st
- Michael Ian Black | October 25th
- LA Festival of Laughs | October 27th, 28th
Stand-Up Comedy Clubs
Check this list of comedy shows to see who else will be performing in the area this October.
8. Get Scared at Knott’s Scary Farm
Embrace the Halloween spirit at the largest Halloween experience in SoCal!
Knott’s Berry Farm completely transforms itself into a haunted haven.
Enjoy haunted mazes and special attractions & shows, and more than 1,000 spooky characters lurking in every corner of the park.
Check the website for more information and tickets!
The scares take place on select evenings from September 21st- October 31st.
9. West Hollywood Halloween Carnaval
One of the largest Halloween gatherings in the country, the annual West Hollywood Halloween Carnaval is a street festival that takes place on Santa Monica Boulevard in WeHo.
Come dressed in costume and expect a large crowd!
The event is free to attend and runs from 6 pm to 10:30 pm on October 31st. (
The website was not updated at the time of this posting, but the West Hollywood City Council has approved the date).
See below for more Halloween events in “Things to do in the Evening”.
10. Visit Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios
Hollywood’s Universal Studios prepares to scare this Halloween with special attractions and mazes for its Halloween Horror Nights.
With a maze, 10 haunted houses (themed along the lines of "Legends Collide", "The Horrors of Blumhouse" and "Halloween" the movie), 5 scare zones, and 2 live shows, you are sure to be both entertained and scared out of your mind.
The horror takes place on select evenings throughout September and October.
Below is just a sampling of the many things to do at night in October.
For suggestions on other nighttime activities, see our post Things to do at Night in LA.
This Halloween event takes place in Long Beach, just in front of the Queen Mary
There's a street carnival, a funhouse, rides, games, food, and more.
There's also an LVCRAFT block party, a pumpkin patch, a boardwalk for trick-or-treating during the day, a shipwreck graveyard, and a pirate's cove.
For tickets and information visit the Shaqtoberfest website.
Take a Haunted Hayride in Griffith Park
The ultimate Halloween scare takes place at the Old Zoo in Griffith Park.
Guests can visit the Haunted Village, take part in a Haunted Hayride, visit the House of Shadows, and “Trick-or-Treat” nightly.
This event can be frightful and is not recommended for children under the age of 12.
Check the Los Angeles Haunted Hayride website for more details and tickets!
Tales from the Other Side Tour
During the daytime, Paramount offers movie studio tours but at night in the autumn they offer a nighttime tour of the Hollywood cemetery.
This famous resting place is the home of many of Hollywood’s favorite stars like Judy Garland, Cecil B. Demille, and Rudolph Valentino.
Champagne and movie candy are included in your ticket.
Join the Fright Fest at Six Flags Magic Mountain
Head up north to Santa Clarita to Magic Mountain Theme Park if you are a thrill-seeking rollercoaster lover.
Stick around as the sun goes down for Fright Fest.
You can expect creepy characters and haunted mazes throughout the park. The evening activities might be too spooky for kids.
Activities take place on select nights between September 8th and October 31st.
For more information, visit the Fright Fest website.
Attend a Movie Screening
Could anything be more LA than spending time in front of the silver screen? It’s even better when you can watch them outside on a nice summer night!
Street Food Cinema is a series of summer movies that partner with food trucks!
Past movies have included such offerings as Mean Girls, Hocus Pocus, Edward Scissorhands, Twilight, Beatlejuice, and The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Each date is at a different location in Los Angeles.
Be sure to buy your tickets in advance!
For more outdoor movie screenings, see our Los Angeles Summer Guide.
Check out a Los Angeles Bar
There are many places to get a good drink in L.A. Below are just a sample of suggestions.
The Slipper Clutch is like an 80s punk rock scene. Cocktails are super fancy but not super expensive since they are pre-batched.
Want to go back in time to a Hollywood-style swing bar? Go to the Cicada Club.
Looking for a themed- bar? Try Scum & Villainy in Hollywood- It is a STAR WARS-themed bar.
Want a really interesting experience? Look for Hollywood’s favorite speakeasy No Vacancy.
FAMILY-FRIENDLY THINGS TO DO IN LOS ANGELES IN OCTOBER
There are lots of things to do in L.A. with families!
Here are a few more kid-friendly activities for the month of October.
See a Movie at the El Capitan Theatre
The historic theatre in Hollywood (it opened in 1926!) offers films with a little extra magic that children and families love.
Now owned by Disney, movie-goers can often expect confetti to fall from the ceiling, live singing, and appearances by Disney cast members.
Manhattan Beach Hometown Fair
Attend the Hometown Fair in Manhattan Beach on October 7th & 8th
This event has a lot to offer for people of all ages. Spend the day strolling through over 300 arts & crafts vendors, enjoy local live music, and take in the artwork of local amateur artists.
Additionally, enjoy food and beverage booths raising money for local non-profits.
For more information, visit the Manhattan Beach Hometown Fair website.
Celebrate Halloween at a Pumpkin Patch
Head to one of the local farms nearby for corn mazes, apple cider, and hayrides.
Take Part in the Aids Walk 10K
A 10K walking event that benefits a number of AIDS and HIV charities, AIDS Walk Los Angeles begins and ends in Grand Park and on the steps of City Hall in downtown LA.
Check the website for more information and to register!
Go to the Cayton Children’s Museum
LA’s Cayton Children's Museum is loaded with hands-on and interactive exhibits for little ones to enjoy!
Located on the Miracle Mile of museums on LA’s westside, the museum also offers classes and an art walk.
And if you're looking for more things to do with the kids, check out our post on kid-friendly activities.
Visit the Automotive Museum
Vintage car lovers flock to the Petersen Automotive Museum where its extensive collection studies the history of the automobile and its impact on culture.
Check out over 250 vehicles in the “vault” as well as a number of rotating exhibits.
For kiddos, there is a super cool Disney Pixar Cars exhibit where you can work to create your own virtual race car.
Los Angeles always has free events for the whole family to attend. In fact, some of the events we’ve listed above are also free to attend!
For even more free activities, see our Guide to Free Things to Do in LA.
The annual Avocado Festival in Carpinteria, California takes place October 6th-8th.
It boasts that it is the largest FREE music festival in California and also has the world’s largest vat of guacamole.
Could there be anything more California than a festival that celebrates avocados? The event is family-friendly and has free admission!
Pasadena Art Night
If you love art, head to Pasadena in October for the twice-yearly ArtNight.
There will be jewelry, drawing, photography, and sculpture. Admission to this event is free and all ages are welcome.
Visit the Art Night website for dates and additional information.
Fall Festival at The Original Farmers Market
Take the family to The Original Farmers Market to celebrate the fall harvest.
This annual free festival will also include arts & crafts vendors, artisan demonstrations, and a children’s petting zoo.
Dates for 2023 haven't been announced yet, so check back on the website for updated information!
Admission is free!
Day of the Dead
The Hollywood Forever Cemetary has a Dia De Los Muertos Festival.
Daytime events include cultural performances, a children's plaza, art exhibitions, dance, and food. Gates are open for those activities 9 AM - 3 PM.
Nighttime events include many of the same offerings, but also an alter display contest. Gates are open 5 PM - midnight.
Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)
MOCA Grand offers free admission to all visitors.
It’s a great way to introduce children to contemporary art and begin the conversation about what defines something as art.
Free Museum Days at the La Brea Tar Pits
Millions of animal and plant fossils have been discovered at the tar pits.
Come check out the story that they tell at the museum. Every Tuesday in September is free at the La Brea Tar Pits!
NOTE: While they aren't currently offering free days at the La Brea Tar Pits, there are several ways to get free or discounted admission.