Grab your treat bag (you may need two), and practice saying those three magic words. We know which neighborhoods you should hit this Halloween. Here are our favorite family-friendly spots to seek out your Halloween haul. After all, nothing makes for happy haunting quite like a ghostly bag full of the sweetest treats!

screen-shot-2016-10-06-at-3-12-52-pmphoto: Flickr Creative Commons

This hidden, quaint section of La Jolla offers a warm community feel for families wanting a traditional trick-or-treating experience. Get your beachy Halloween on at the awesomely-decorated shops along La Jolla Blvd. Then, make your way into one of the nearby gated communities for easy back-to-back treats without a long walk. The community of Bird Rock asks residents to stop handing candy out at 8 p.m., so arrive early!

Mission Hills
This neighborhood goes all out with over-the-top decorations, ghoulish goblins and creepy crawlies around every turn. Residents often report upwards of 500 tricker-or-treaters at their door! Tiny tots might be scared by some of the more elaborate hauntings, but families with older kids will get a kick out of the spooky sights on Sunset Boulevard.

In this quaint community, you’ll see trick-or-treaters from every family member. Even the doggies venture out in costumes (on leashes of course). These happy haunts make for a terrific trick-or-treat. Park near the Starbucks on Adams and Marlborough then follow little ghosts and goblins deeper into this howlin’ hood. Homes on Edgeware and Canterbury Drive tend to get backed up with lines, so be prepared for the crowds.

Carmel Mountain
The highly walkable cul-de-sac streets of Carmel Mountain make an easy path to fill up your goodie bag. Little ones who tire more easily can head to Carmel Mountain Plaza’s trick-or-treat festival from 3 – 5 p.m. Participating stores hand out candy, and you can partake in balloon art and listen to live music from 80’z All-Stars.

trickortreatphoto: Leah Singer

Scripps Ranch
Residents in this upscale neighborhood often hand out full-sized candy bars and even dollar bills! Scripps Ranch Marketplace also offers an annual event for families looking to celebrate a couple days before Halloween. There you’ll find fun rides, store treats and more.

Del Mar Heights
This suburban neighborhood (just east of Del Mar) has plenty of treats and stroll-able streets. But save time to attend the Del Mar Highlands Town Center Community Halloween event. From 4 – 6 p.m. on Halloween, ghouls and goblins can trick or treat at participating stores and enjoy live music by Wild Nights. Several restaurants will be offering dinner specials too, so stick around for eats that are more than candy.

If you’re in the armed forces (or have friends who are), military housing complexes are some of the best spots to go trick-or-treating. A high density of families means tons of kids in costume and parents eager to share the experience.

Where are you going trick-or-treating in San Diego this year?

— Leah R. Singer