Halloween is, in my humble opinion, one of the most exciting holidays of the year.

While other days have wholesome traditions, sprinkled with paper hats and chocolate eggs, All Hallows' Eve has a mischievous edge with ghost stories, fireworks, and horror movies aplenty.

And although it would be easy to write the day off as a dressed-up sugar high, it is important to remember the history of this eerie day.

Originating from the Celtic observance of Samhain, the annual festival marking the end of the harvest season and the beginning of the Celtic New Year.

It was believed that the veil between the living and the dead grew weak on the night of October 31st, and many of the traditions we follow today for the sake of a good Instagram snap - such as bonfires and scary costumes - were originally used to ward off unwelcome spirits.

Read more: How the Irish Celts invented Halloween

To help you ease into spooky season, we've found some spine-tingling Irish podcasts that will have you listening out for Banshees in no time.

Fireside
Hosted by actor Kevin C. Olohan, Fireside is an entertaining and educational podcast that delves into the history, craft, and culture of Irish mythology and folklore. From Brian Boru and Cú Chulainn to Deirdre of the Sorrows and The Lady O'Connor, this storytelling podcast will give you a much-needed break from reality.

This October, your fireside bard will be exploring the gothic tales of Irish poetry, music, and literature. In Fireside of Horror II, Olahan reads the eerie ballad of The Lake of the Dismal Swamp, and discusses the pagan feast of Samhain.

For even more spine-chilling content, you can listen back to past episodes such as The Piper and The Púca, The Banshee Welcoming Party, and Fireside of Horror.

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Irish History Podcast
Historian, author and podcaster Fin Dwyer is the knowledgeable host of this historical podcast. Having worked in archaeology for several years, and with a master's degree in archaeology from UCD behind him, Dwyer had his sights set on becoming a modern-day Indiana Jones. However, between the recession and some health issues, he decided to turn to writing and podcasting instead.

While the show mostly focuses on medieval history and the Great Famine, some episodes are perfect for Halloween. We recommend Jack the Ripper and Irish Connections, The Hellfire Club - Debauchery in the Dublin Mountains, and Kilkenny Witchcraft Trial of 1324.

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Spooky FM
A chilling radio station from RTÉjr has mysteriously appeared in time for Halloween for all the family to enjoy. Spooky FM's most terrifying show, Scare Me If You Can, is hosted by Uncle Vlad, a vampire from the heart of Transylvania, and Zombetty, surprisingly chipper considering she’s been dead for 100 years.

It’s time for the children of Ireland to turn the tables and scare the devilish duo with their own tales of terror! You can listen here.

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The Creep Dive
Every Tuesday, Sophie White, Jen O'Dwyer, and Cassie Delaney investigate and report on the lesser-known details of the bizarre stories that you've seen while scrolling through your social media. Their topics of interest range from true crime and conspiracy theories to con artists and the paranormal, as well as general chats and laughs among the gals.

In the run-up to October 31st, we'll be listening to A Guest Ghost Story and The Haunted Spots of Dublin.

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Sexy Beasts
On Sexy Beasts, comedian and podcaster extraordinaire Tony Cantwell and his co-host Marc Jago, explore a menagerie of monsters from folklore, mythology, and movies. Using their specially formulated system, and armed with extensive Wikipedia research, the duo rate the flaws and merits of each beast so as to find the best of the bunch.

The two took a break from appraising apparitions in 2019, but resurrected the podcast in 2020 just in time for spooky season. In the run-up to Halloween, Tony and Jago were on a mission to find the best movie monster of all time. Listen back here.

Real Life Ghost Stories
With their pet cat, Tiny Bim, by their side, Irish woman Emma and Englishman Dan have created a podcast dedicated to paranormal tales and ghostly experiences. Discussing everything from hauntings, ghosts, death, and aliens, the couple review their favourite spooky shows and movies, share listeners' ghost stories, and speak with cynical skeptics.

If you want to send a chill up your spine, we recommend you check out: Faith, Fairies and the Festival of Samhain, The Banshee, Calling Out the Dead, and Ghost Doctor.

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Bandwagons
Have you seen the top trending hashtags on Twitter? Have you watched that viral video doing the rounds on Facebook? Are you all caught up on the latest celeb Instagram stories? If the answer to all of those questions is a resounding no, fear not. Fionnula Jay and Bríd Browne are here to get you up to speed on the watercooler moments everybody is talking about.

Last October, the gals were reviewing horror movies and sharing ghost stories and we have no doubt they'll be doing the same this time around. Their last Halloween episode, Spooky Stories, is sure to send shivers up your spine...

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MK UltraFilm
Hosted by comedian Killian Sundermann and his co-host Mark Byrne, MK UltraFilm is a movie review podcast for cinephiles. Recorded over voice messages between Mark in Berlin and Killian in Dublin, the show measures the duo's reactions to their movie of choice, whether it be a cinematic classic or trending Netflix hit.

Last Halloween, the two posted a Samhain Seance Pod where they review classic horror films including The Omen, Hellraiser, and The Thing. Fingers crossed we'll get another scary edition this October.

This year, the duo returned with a spooky special covering four "hot new horror flicks" - Candyman, Possessor, Titane, and Host.

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Happy Halloween!