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Terror Behind the Walls

Premier haunted house in Philadelphia’s historic prison

Terror Behind the Walls

You may not be the only one wandering the cellblocks of Eastern State Penitentiary. Credit: M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia


September 15 – November 4, 2017 (Select dates — View full schedule)

Note: The information below is from 2016. Stay tuned for more information about this year’s event as it becomes available.

Overview of Terror

The massive Eastern State Penitentiary — a gothic, castle-like structure in Philadelphia’s Fairmount neighborhood — is also home to one of the nation’s largest and most ambitious and top-rated haunted attractions, Terror Behind the Walls.

Once the most famous and expensive prison in the country, Eastern State Penitentiary now stands as a living ruin with long empty cell blocks and remnants of the past. The frightening setting and professional scares make Terror Behind the Walls one of the country’s top-ranked haunted attractions.

Designed to be high-startle, Terror Behind the Walls includes Hollywood-quality special effects and lighting, digital sound, animatronic creatures and custom props. Over 200 performers are needed for six separate attractions in the 11-acre complex.

Frightening Attractions

Terror Behind the Walls is more frightening than ever. Expanding on a terrifying option introduced in 2013, visitors can decide if they want to be fully immersed in the action by marking themselves to be potentially grabbed, held back, taken into hidden passageways and maybe even become part of the scares.

Venture into the Machine Shop, the most interactive attraction ever devised for Terror Behind the Walls. Visitors will be led deep into the cellblocks into a space never before open to the public. Expect industrial nightmares and unique one-on-one experiences that will surely stick with you.

Additional attractions at Terror Behind the Walls include the brand-new Break Out, the Lock Down, a riot inside Cellblock 12, said to be the most haunted spot inside the penitentiary, Detrius, a walk through an original 1800s cellblock and the overgrown prison greenhouse, Infirmary, a frightening look into the world of prison medical treatment, and the Quarantine, an interactive, 4D experience.

Photo Sneak Peek: 14 Reasons Why Terror Behind The Walls Is The #1 Haunted House in America

The haunted history of Eastern State makes it the perfect setting for the largest haunted house in the country, Terror Behind the Walls. Check out our photo tour of Terror Behind the Walls and discover why people flock to Eastern State Penitentiary every year to get scared.

Photo Preview of Terror Behind the Walls

VIP Experiences

Quick Pass
Anxious to get scared? Hop to the front of the line with the Terror Behind the Walls Quick Pass available online only.

The Hex Challenge
Take your experience to the next level with the Hex Challenge, which entails going into secret rooms at the beginning of each of the six attractions where you’ll then be dared to take on special challenges, join forces with the creepy characters and more.

After Dark VIP Tour
You may run into the actual spirits of Eastern State Penitentiary during this hour-long, guided walking tour of the history prison. Explore the cellblocks at night with nothing but a flashlight to guide your way, then skip to the front of the line to experience Terror Behind the Walls.

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Fright and a Bite
Have a scary romantic evening with dinner at one of six restaurants in Fairmount, followed by a trip to Terror Behind the Walls. The package includes dinner, a ticket to Terror Behind the Walls and a Quick Pass to skip to the front of the line after dessert. Participating restaurants will feature Halloween-themed menu items like the Bloodlust Burger or Tacos from the Baja Lagoon. Advance reservations are required. Click the button below for more information.

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More Information

For more information on Terror Behind the Walls at the Eastern State Penitentiary, click the button below.

More on Terror Behind the Walls


Eastern State Penitentiary
N. 22nd Street and Fairmount Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19130
(215) 236-3300

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