But let’s not beat around the bush here – it is the images of witches burning at stakes and creepy old houses that give this town its reputation. And it is a reputation that the town itself thrives on: police cars are adorned with witch logos, a local public primary school is known as Witchcraft Heights, the Salem High School athletic teams are named the Witches, and Gallows Hill—originally believed to be the site of numerous public hangings—is currently used as a playing field for various sports.
However, looking past the ghoulish cultural identity that was reflecting in Arthur Miller’s masterpiece The Crucible, and day trippers here will find a beautiful mix of Americana and small town seaside nostalgia. A visit to the vibrant downtown area will surprise you with its outstanding shopping and dining options. Local breweries specialise in strong cider and craft beer – well worth a taste if the sun is over the yardarm.