Courtesy of Celebrity Cruises
Halloween lovers and scary movie fans looking for some real haunted places to visit don’t have to search too far.
All over the world, there are plenty of spooky sites to explore that will send a chill down your spine. From shuttered insane asylums to Renaissance castles with underground dungeons, here are some of the scariest places to visit around the globe.
Step into any of these haunted locations—if you dare—and try not to jump when you hear something go bump in the night.
Built in the mid-nineteenth century, The Whaley House in San Diego’s Old Town neighborhood was the first brick building in California and served as a granary, city courthouse, theater, and general store.
Today, it’s a historic house museum that attracts visitors from all over the country who want to admire the house’s Greek Revival architecture or experience the hauntings that have long been rumored to take place within the centuries-old home in San Diego.
The brick house was built on top of the execution site of the thief Yankee Jim Robinson, who supposedly has been haunting the Whaley family ever since they moved in back in 1857. The Whaleys later suffered their own tragedies, including the death of their 18-month-old son, Thomas, who died of scarlet fever, and the suicide of their younger daughter Violet, who was jilted by her conman husband.
For decades, residents and visitors of The Whaley House have reported hearing strange sounds, such as heavy footsteps and a baby’s cry, while others swear they’ve seen a young woman walking around the second floor of the house. It’s no surprise that The Whaley House has twice been deemed the most haunted house in the United States.
Located a few miles off the coast of San Francisco, Alcatraz is perhaps the most infamous prison in American history. The maximum-security penitentiary system was initially built in the nineteenth-century to house war criminals.
Later, in the early 1930s, it was converted into a federal prison, where the worst felons in the country were sent to do their time. (Famous Alcatraz inmates include Al Capone and Robert “Birdman” Stroud.)
Throughout its years of operation, tales of torture and abuse plagued Alcatraz, and it became known as the one prison where no one was ever able to escape alive.
Even before Alcatraz closed in 1963, guards had already reported hearing strange noises and witnessing supernatural sights in the middle of the night. Since then, visitors and rangers have continued to claim the prison is haunted by the spirits of former inmates, including Capone, who’s banjo music has been heard coming from the shower where he used to play.
Today, visitors can experience the eeriness of Alcatraz by taking a tour of its facilities and stepping into one of the prison’s solitary confinement cells, which inexplicably remain freezing cold, even during the warm summer months.
With a spooky history full of voodoo queens, vampires, pirates, and witches, New Orleans has more than earned its title as the most haunted city in the United States.
While some travelers might prefer to take in a jazz show or sample the city’s famous beignets, there are also plenty of tours and haunted places to visit to keep supernatural hunters busy for days.
Take a walking tour around the French Quarter and visit famous haunted houses, including the Lafitte Guest House, which is haunted by the spirit of a young girl who died of yellow fever; and the Old Absinthe House, where the ghost of Andrew Jackson is said to visit from time to time.
If you’re feeling extra brave, stop by the LaLaurie mansion, a grand house with a grisly history of torture, or the St. Louis Cemetery, a 250-year-old graveyard, where Marie Laveau, a.k.a. the Voodoo Queen, was laid to rest.
A haunted tour of the ghosts of Charleston always includes a stop in the Unitarian Graveyard, one of the oldest cemeteries in Charleston and one of the spookiest places in the South Carolina city.
Overgrown with weeds and plants, the Unitarian Graveyard is reportedly haunted by a lady in a white wedding dress who walks amongst the crumbling tombstones and graves at night. Many believe the apparition is the spirit of Anna Ravenel, the woman who is said to have inspired Edgar Allen Poe’s heartbreaking last poem, “Annabel Lee,” about a young woman who died before getting married to the love of her life.
Pirate shipwrecks, Indian burial sites, and unsolved murders all play a part in the spooky past of Bar Habor, Maine.
Take a red cloak tour and walk around the town’s Old Burial Ground, go inside the haunted Art Deco Criterion Theatre, and try not to cover your ears as you hear scary Wabanaki indigenous tales that will keep more than one tourist up all night.
Visit a haunted hotel by stopping in the Fairmont’s Chateau Frontenac in Quebec City, where two ghosts have reportedly never checked out.
Be on the lookout for a woman in a white nightgown who likes to pay guests a visit while they’re sleeping, or the 17th-century governor of New France, Louis de Buade de Frontenac, who died there before marrying his fiancée and spends the evenings looking for her in the halls of the hotel.
Plan Your Next Cruise to Visit These Haunted Places
If you’re not afraid of the dark and are looking for some of the scariest places to visit around the world, book your Celebrity Cruise vacation today. Sailing around Europe, Canada, the United States, and more, Celebrity’s ships visit many of the locations of these haunted sites, whether you’re up for a Halloween cruise or a casual ghost hunting.
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