40+ Haunted Sites For People Who Like Hairraising HolidaysBy Luis G
Halloween is just around the corner, and what better treat for our loyal readers than a ghost-filled piece, brimming to the rafters will all kinds of spooks, to mark the occasion? We’ll cruise down the byways of the United States, unearthing – don’t mind the pun – all manner of phantom, poltergeist, and scary ectoplasm-filled entities. Readers, beware, it’s going to get hairy, so if you are the easily spooked kind, brace yourself. We’re not going to be responsible for the types of dreams you have tonight. Let’s talk rules for this article: 45 entries – which, to be honest, are just the tip of the haunting iceberg that is the United States. 45 entries where we’ll unravel the history of a spot and with it give you a clear-cut idea as to why you need a combat exorcist if you want to visit it. Fast, simple, and to the point. Nothing fancy. We scoured the landscape and pinpointed great places you either want to avoid or, for those with a love of dark tourism, make a pilgrimage to. Some will surprise you, and, you never know, some might be right beside you…
The Dry Tortugas
Located in the middle point between Cuba and Key West, the Dry Tortugas is today a national park, but back when it was first created, the place was a fort/prison. It was made to supervise the coast and safeguard the marine route that is the Gulf.
Why is it haunted? It was once a prison that had a massive Yellow Fever outbreak. Hundreds died. Ironically, one of the heroes of that outbreak had been a doctor sentenced to life in prison for his participation in the plot that killed Lincoln. He was pardoned for his heroics during the outbreak.
Captain Tony’s Saloon
Located in Key West, Captain Tony is the maker of the original Sloppy Joe – not at the top of any tourist’s places to visit. This was the place Hemingway drank and passed his days in. An icon of the area that’s seen better days but still has its own dive-like mystique.
In the middle of the tavern, you’ll notice a huge tree — It’s an actual hanging tree around which the place was built. On its branches, pirates, criminals, and highwaymen were hanged. Most of those same ruffians still haunt the premise.
Fort East Martello
Also, in Key West, the Fort East Martello House is where the island houses one of the most devilish creatures in existence — Robert the Doll. The actual haunted doll was the inspiration for Chucky. And the little guy is still causing mischief today.
Robert is such a force of evil that even presidents have paid their respects to the doll, sent letters, and asked him to bless their tenure. It is said that if you disrespect Robert, tragedy will befall you almost immediately after you leave the museum.
The Green Parrot
This Key West watering hole has one of the weirdest and most macabre stories behind it. It was once, and we kid you not, the island’s morgue – along with Captain Tony. During the Great Depression, it became a legendary speakeasy.
The Green Parrot has hosted biker gangs, poets, Navy men, gangsters, and the dead during its time. Some of these visitors, according to many eye-witnesses, still linger about nursing a drink or two and getting up to God knows what.
The Biltmore Hotel
Located in Coral Gables, Miami, the Biltmore Hotel is full of spooks. Where do we begin? Well, one of the ghost that haunts the place is a renowned mobster that was killed during an altercation in the late 20s. He haunts the 13th floor.
Oh, did we mention that during WWII, as if the mobster vibe wasn’t enough, the place was converted into a military hospital? That’s right; hundreds died in its corridors. The site is full of haunts and restless spirits who met tragic ends.
Located in the Sunshine State, Coral Castle is weird. Created by Edward Leedskalnin, the place has no rhyme or reason. And it wasn’t easy to build. The man singlehandedly cut, quarried, and transported each vast rock. And no one knows why.
It is the equivalent of a modern Stonehenge. The place bore witness to all types of supernatural terrors, including ghosts sighting, magic rituals, vampires, UFO flybys, and fairies. If you’re a fan of any of that, then it is a must-go attraction.
Yup, that South Beach, the one in Miami that is also known as the Art Deco District. Why is such a colorful, happening place so haunted? Everyone, including the dead, wants beachfront property and a good place for a nightcap.
The hotels in South Beach during WWII were once used to house soldiers before they were shipped off to Europe to fight the Nazis. Not only that, the area was a stomping ground for gangsters and narcos — and it still is. Is it any wonder it’s haunted?
The Last Resort Salon
Located in Port Orange, Florida, the Last Resort Bar might look like just a note biker hotspot, but it is so much more than that. The place is a supernatural hotspot thanks to one of the nation’s many serial killers.
Aileen Wournos – yes, the one from the Oscar-winning film Monster – lived nearby. Her photo hangs everywhere. This was the place she used to drink in and pick her victims. As the motto of the bar says: “ice-cold beers and killer women.”
The oldest continuous town in the U.S., St. Augustine, Florida, is a ghost hunter’s dream come true. All manner of ghosts and goblins haunts every street, place, and corner. Throw a rock, and you’re bound to hit someone with a spooky tale to tell.
The town has a haunted fort called Fort San Marcos, a haunted lighthouse, a couple of haunted hotels that were homes to bootleggers, a haunted old-time prison, a haunted hospital, a haunted university. Oh, and just for kicks, in the early 20th century, an actual sea monster washed ashore.
Almost out of Florida, right on the border to Alabama, stands the quiet little town of Gulf Breeze. What’s so special about Gulf Breeze? It’s ghost and UFO central. No other place in the United States has such a confluence of supernatural activity.
For some odd reason, Gulf Breeze seems to attract UFOs. To what extent? They build some of their houses in honor of those alien jalopies. It’s a weird, odd little town and it should definitely be added to your haunted itinerary.
Located in Savannah, the Mercer House has a rather infamous history. The place became popular due to a non-fiction book called Midnight in the Garden Of Good and Evil, later made into a great film by Clint Eastwood. But what happened there?
Jim Williams, a man well known for preserving Savannah history, murdered his lover, Danny Hansford, in 1981. Williams was acquitted and died of pneumonia in 1990. Both spirits are said to haunt the Mercer House and reenact their rocky relationship.
A chain of landmasses that can be found just off the Southernmost coast of the United States, this island’s tales and hauntings predate European Settlements. And there are a lot of them. From tales of Native burial mounts to brigands and pirates, the place has it all.
And Oatland Island’s infamy only grew. Why? Because it became a medical experiment facility, in the early 20th century, for the Army and later the CDC. To this day, no one knows what types of experiments were conducted in the place. Oh, and afterward, it was made into a school!
Dunbar Creek is a historical site on St. Simons Island in Georgia. What happened there? In 1803 a slave ship crashed into its banks; the boat toppled – the famous Igbo Landing incident. The slaves escaped. Nonetheless, it was too late. It’s tragic what happened.
Why? The mainland had seen what took place, and the infantry was sent over to salvage them. The slaves, not wanting to lose their freedom, committed mass suicide. They walked into the waters while chanting and drowned. Today, they haunt the area.
Hollywood Cemetery Richmond
The place is the home of the Richmond Vampire. The locals claim that the mausoleum of W.W. Pool is said to be haunted by this bloodsucking fiend. More specifically, Pool himself was believed to be a vampire and was shunned by the town. And the tale gets even weirder. Why is that?
In 1925, a nearby train tunnel collapsed. Dozens lost their lives. In the rescue effort to free a trapped steam locomotive car, the Richmond Vampire attacked the firefighters. They pursued it and managed to follow it into the cemetery, where it disappeared.
The whole area of Gettysburg is said to be haunted by all manner of things that go bump in the night. Remember, this is one of the places that saw the most action during the Civil War. A land drenched in blood and death.
Among the most well-known haunted spots are Little Round Top, The National Cemetery, The children’s hospital, and the Devil’s Den — the former a site that saw the most casualties during the war, so many that the actual Devil is said to live there.
Located in Ballard, Utah, Skinwalker Ranch – also known as Sherman Ranch – is a hotbed of supernatural activity. A reputed site of all manner of paranormal and UFO-related shenanigans. You name it; it’s happened there. This image says a lot about the vibes there.
Most believe that the area is cursed by an actual skin-walker, a Navajo shaman who is pure distilled evil. Every institute and ghost hunter has come to the area, and all have been baffled by the amount of weird stuff it seems to attract.
Hot Lake Hotel
One of the scariest places on the planet, Hot Lake, is a resort found in the Hot Lake area of Oregon. The place was built in 1864. But why is it so scary? What makes this fancy hotel such a paranormal site?
From mysterious deaths surrounding its original owners to bizarre wild parties during the late 19th century, the most important thing about these hauntings and their history is this place was converted into a hospital and later a sanatorium for the criminally insane. No wonder it’s haunted.
Located in Portland, the Shanghai Tunnels is a tourist attraction built around some of the area’s murkiest past. Do you know where the expression “You got Shanghaied” comes from? Well, back in the old days, people were kidnapped and then taken to Shanghai.
These tunnels were built below Chinatown, and all manner of nefarious things happened there. Murders, bootlegging, drug traits, etc. Captains of boats would pay $50 for men to “Shanghai” people. They would get folks drunk and then kidnap them for forced labor.
The Salish Sea
As far as weird tales go, it is hard to hear one that would make you shudder more than the tales that center around the Salish Sea. Located on the shores of British Colombia, the Salish Sea is full of odd stories. From sea monsters to ghost ships, this place has it all.
The oddest thing isn’t a ghost story but an actual scientific phenomenon. Since the turn of the 21st century, severed human feet have been washing ashore. Lots of feet, in shoes, have simply been brought in by the waves. And no one knows why.
The Winchester House
Located in San Jose, California, the Winchester House is just too out there. It has one of the fascinating histories in the country. Firearms magnate William Winchester partly constructed the house with the money he made with his gun business.
When he died, Sarah, his wife, inherited a fortune and a curse. She was sure the house was invaded by all the folks her husband’s tools had killed. So she started constructing a house filled with rooms and passageways so that she could hide from the specters.
The Beverly Hills Bermuda Triangle
This intersection over the years has become a demonic legend in certain circles. Why? Odd things keep happening there. In 1946, Howard Hughes crashed his plane there. Bugsy Siegel was murdered on one of its corners, Ronni Chase was executed there.
And those are only the ones that popped in our heads. The place is said to be haunted by something that lived in the land way before Europeans settled there. Something that has an appetite for lost souls and madmen. Something that attacks the weird.
The Red Triangle
The Red Triangle is an area of the coast of California known for its unusual amount of sharks. Not only sharks but shark attacks. The place is just full of those apex predators, and they seem to be incredibly hungry.
Dozens of surfers have lost their lives there. And, as if that wasn’t enough, cartels love to visit the place to get rid of “evidence.” According to many, this place is prime real estate for ghosts and sharks – what more could you ask for?
In Pasadena, California, the Colorado Street Bridge has a rather infamous history. More than 100 people have ended their lives here. Its first victim, the first person that took a swan dive off it, was in 1919. And, it’s not just lost souls.
This landmark doesn’t just attract people that want to commit suicide. Nope. It also attracts the violent. All manner of murders have occurred on its cement structure, and all manner of fatal accidents. It has been plagued with ghosts from the moment it was built.
What occurred at the Alamo was a war crime. It was a massacre of Texan sodiers by Mexican forces. After the forces of General Santa Anna laid siege to the fort for over 13 days and killed everyone, the men departed. And that’s when the hauntings began.
Santa Anna was sure that if the States learned of what took place there, he would be hunted as a war criminal. So he sent out a party of his men to burn the evidence. The men came back scared to death. When they arrived at the massacre, they said ghosts, devils, and angels with flaming swords were waiting for them.
The Denver International Airport
If you’ve ever been to Denver or had a layover in that city’s airport, then you by now have noticed that the place is weird. The airport is simply off. Strange geometry, a bizarre array of artwork – it’s just odd.
No one knows what is up with the Denver Airport. Many believe that the place’s architect was a Freemason or Illuminati madman trying to conjure up spirits. It is said to be full of all haunts and strange paranormal creatures.
Located in Huntsville, Texas, Demon’s Road is something straight out of a Stephen King novel. Strange tales have originated from the lonely stretch of land. Tourists and locals fear the serpentine road, which became famous after Google Maps captured a ghost girl peeking from behind a tree.
It’s not on many maps, but it has been credited with lots of dark activity over the years. From ghosts resiting in the Old Martha’s Chapel Cemetery to the things – gigantic and hairy – that seem to attack motorists, only the bravest dare stop their car there at night.
The heavily forested Pine Barrens of New Jersey is huge. They are full of nasty stories and supernatural tales. One of the most popular is that of the Jersey Devil. Folklore says the creature is the 13th child of the Leeds, who was cursed by his mother because she was overwhelmed with her previous twelve children.
But it’s not just about the Devil. The area’s allure comes from the fact that it is full of abandoned mills and mines. Hundreds of ghost towns can be found in the area. And, if you needed more, it’s also a favorite dumping ground for mobsters.
Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast
Located in Fall River, Massachusetts, Lizzie Borden’s story is by now as famous as it is scandalous. This is the house where the macabre jump-rope rhyme of our youth was born. Borden was accused of killing her father and stepmother in 1862.
She was acquitted a year later. Visitors can tour the house/museum and even stay in the room where the murders happened. Guests have reported creepy activity on the premise, including weeping walls, footsteps in empty rooms, and apparitions.
Devil’s Tramping Ground
About 50 or so miles from Greensboro, North Carolina, there is an odd patch of land that no animal dares cross. An oddly shaped and mysterious 40-foot extended circle with a rather unique and eerie reputation, one that honors its name.
It is said that every night the Devil himself stamps and dances in the clearing. Folks have seen all manner of wild savage creatures, from our deepest nightmares, near the area. Many claim it is a place for satanic rites.
Lincoln Park Zoo
In the middle of Chicago, Illinois, there’s a ghost-filled zoo. Today, it is the roaming grounds of some of Chicago’s most colorful wildlife, and it is a huge tourist attraction. But, back in the 1840s, it served as the city cemetery.
More than 35,000 bodies once called the Lincoln Park Zoom their last resting place. And as you can imagine, they were not too thrilled when their graves were desecrated and moved. Some remain in the area, and some of their spirits are said to haunt the region.
In the Upper Bucks, Ghost Mountain is a geological formation that has everything a wannabe ghost hunter could desire. It’s chuck full of all manner of creepy crawlers and hellish beasts, from UFO landing sites to Indian burial grounds.
Among the many terrors that are said to haunt the aptly-named area, you can find Wendigos, a pack of albino cannibals, the ghost of an old woman knitting in her home, and even a gaggle of lost wandering wooly mammoths.
Faulkner House Books
Back in the late 1920s, in New Orlean’s French Quarter an a relatively unknown writer rented a couple of rooms. That man would eventually become incredibly famous. His name was William Faulkner. Today you can rent that same room and commune with the man.
The space is supposed to be haunted by none other the Faulkner himself. It is full of spine-tingling tales and odd occurrences. People constantly tell of running into the writer or watching as his spirit sits on his writing desk, thinking.
Just a stone’s throw away from Washington D.C., there’s a colonial town that seems to still embrace some old customs and superstitions. Alexandria is full of ghosts. And something about its streets, still maintaining that 1700s glow, seem to attract them.
There are dozens of ghost tours in the area. Each with carefully researched tales of goblins, and grave robbers, and suicides, and murders. The site is brimming with seedy stories, and each of those has bred a spook or wraith.
Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum
An abandoned mental facility in Weston, West Virginia is by far one of the scariest places on earth. The place opened its doors in 1864 and housed, during its peak years, up to 2,400 patients — when it was initially designed for 250 at most.
Most of the patients were incredibly violent, as well as the doctors and orderlies. Experimentations, death, fire, and suicide were the norm. In 1994 the asylum was shut down but to this day, many claim that the dead linger in its halls.
The RMS Queen Mary
Today a working hotel, the Queen Mary, whose maiden voyage took place in 1936, has its share of sordid stories. It was the belle of the ball for the likes of Clark Gable to Elizabeth Taylor. A huge party boat.
In WWII, it became a troopship called “The Grey Ghost.” During its many travels, it saw numerous deaths, including a murder. Many claim that those who died aboard the ship still hang around the place, and workers have heard screams and seen vanishing people.
The Myrtles Plantation
This is a classic plantation — high foyer, French chandeliers, all the trappings of the Late Antebellum Period. Today, the Myrtles Plantation is bed and breakfast. But back in its prime, it was a slave plantation and it was reportedly built on Native American burial grounds.
There are thousands of supernatural stories connected to this Louisiana plantation. The most prevalent involves Chloe, a young woman who was a slave on the property, that poisoned the plantation’s owner’s kids and was then hanged on the spot by her peers.
If you’ve seen American Horror Story: Coven, then you know the story of Madame Marie Delphine LaLaurie, who was a serial killer. This is one of New Orleans’s most haunted houses. The mansion has many tales surrounding it, and its dark history began with a fire.
In 1834, a fire broke in the mansion and exposed a part of the home. A section that had slaves bound in chains, on the floor, and starving. LaLaurie would torture and kill her slaves whenever they were no longer helpful, or they disrespected her. Today they haunt the area.
Ford Theater And Peterson House
Honest Abe was assassinated one faithful night in Ford Theater. On that day, one of his closest friends decreed: “Now he belongs to the ages.” The Theater where Booth shot him is said to be haunted by his ghost and by that of his assassin.
Across the Theater stands Petersen House. This is the place Lincoln was transported. Hundreds have claimed to have seen or felt his ghost in the place where he drew his last breath. It is one of Washington’s most haunted spots.
All of Salem is haunted. This place is where the famous Salem Witch Trials took place. Nineteen people were hanged and over 200 people were accused of consorting with the Devil. Today the historic district is said to be brimming with apparitions.
One of the most haunted places is the Corwin House. This is the house of Judge Jonathan Corwin, the man who presided over the trials. The foreboding structure is said to be cursed. Dozens of people who have owned it have died prematurely.
House of the Seven Gables
Also in Salem, this house deserves its own entry. It is the house that inspired the famous novel. Aside from being the site of the witch trials, the House of the Seven Gables is said to host all kinds of supernatural creatures roaming its halls.
There have been so many ghost sightings that every October, the staff offers spooky tours. It has been the subject of countless documentaries and books. By far one of the States’ most haunted abode, if you’re into spooks, you simply can’t miss it.
This haunted house is located in Honolulu, Hawaii. Before the island became an American territory, King Kalakaua and his dynasty ruled from this palace. Many things happened on the island, and many, many transgressions took place. Iolani Palace was the seat of power.
Iolani Palace is where the royals slept. And also, after they were overthrown and their island was stolen from them by the Explorer’s Club, they were held as prisoners in the same walls. Some still roam the area and have a habit of scaring tourists.
Amityville Horror House
If you’ve seen the movie, you already know what took place here in 1974. But, just in case, here’s a refresher. In that year, Ronald DeFeo sedated and then shot and killed his parents and siblings. He never revealed a motive.
Supposedly the murders took place to cause the Devil made him do it. The next family to move in only lasted 28 days before heading for the hills. You can imagine why. Today the property is off-limits to the public.
If you’ve seen the C.W. show, Supernatural, then you have an idea of what kind of terror Stull Cemetery holds. The burial grounds are frightening and, to many people, a dangerous place. Aside from your expected ghost sitings, this cemetery is home to more sinister beings.
It is said that one of the seven gates of Hell can be found there. Located in Kansas, this rural cemetery that once had a burnt-out church has a reputation for being one of the seven doors mortals can travel through to get to Hell. And, like all doors, it swings both ways.
The Cecil Hotel
This 700-room hotel has a checkered past. It is so blood-drenched that every couple of years, it gets renovated. The history is so insane and dark that there’s a documentary on Netflix about it. From suicides to murders, all dark things imaginable have taken place in its halls.
Aside from being the last place teh Black Dahlia was seen, one of the most infamous things about it is that Richard Ramirez, the Night Stalker, was a regular of the hotel. If you go online, you’ll find a long rap sheet of claims and horror stories surrounding this place — plus a couple of hair-raising YouTube videos.