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Top 10 Most Haunted Places In The World

By Ankit Karki | May 22, 2023 04:37 AM

Creepy doll inside a haunted antique clock
Creepy doll inside a haunted antique clock( Source : instagram )

Top 10 most haunted places in the world are 1. Poveglia, 2. Stanley Hotel, and 8 more. Historical landmark Alcatraz Island has ghosts of people who died there.

Ghosts have been a part of human society ever since the concept of God emerged. Like the almighty, the existence of ghosts can't be proven.

But, it has not stopped people fascinating about the afterlife and the existence of supernatural entities. Famous paranormal researchers like the Warren couple have time and again shown that otherworldly beings exist even though we may not be able to fully explain them.

Human fascination with the subject is evident from the success of horror movies like The Conjuring, Annabelle, Insidious, Paranormal Activity, and more.

In many suspected hauntings, there are logical explanations to disprove the presence of ghosts. However, in other cases, the evidence is so overwhelming that researchers can't deny the existence of a supernatural entity.

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1. Poveglia

Front view of the Poveglia island in Italy
Front view of the Poveglia island in Italy( Source : com )

Scariest places on Earth include the infamous Poveglia. It is a small island in northern Italy in the Venetian Lagoon between Lido and Venice.

Starting in 1776, the island became a quarantine center for people suffering from infectious diseases and the plague for over a hundred years. The mental institute was finally closed over five decades ago in 1968.

Poveglia is often described as the most haunted place on earth. The island has a church, hospital, bell tower, administrative and housing buildings, and an octagonal fort.

It is estimated that 100 to 200 thousand people have died on this island. Among whom, many were left to decompose in the plague pits.

Fishermen passing through the island have claimed to hear the noises of people screaming along with the sound of the bell. The spirit of a young girl named Little Maria is one of the most distinctive ghosts inhabiting the island.

Former patients like an amputee named Pietro and another man named Frederico are also occasionally spotted roaming Poveglia.

2. Stanley Hotel

Lady poses at the famous staircase inside the Stanley Hotel
Lady poses at the famous staircase inside the Stanley Hotel( Source : independenttravelcats )

Most haunted place in America is often cited to be the Stanley Hotel. The hotel is a famous attraction in Estes Park, Colorado built by American entrepreneur Freelan Oscar Stanley in the 1900s.

Stanley Hotel is the inspiration behind Stephen King's 1977 novel, The Shining. In fact, King is one of the most authentic witnesses to the haunting inside the hotel.

In 1974, the author and his wife Tabitha stayed at the hotel for a few days during which he repeatedly saw terrifying dreams. He would often wake up sweating and had uncontrollable jerks.

The Stanley Hotel is believed to have housed several ghosts, earning the unofficial title of Disneyland for ghosts. Almost all rooms of the facility are reportedly haunted. The haunting can range from the appearance of shadowy figures and creepy laughter to flickering lights and items moving without any explanation.

The ghosts in the hotel are not fans of vacuum cleaners as the machines are regularly shut down by invisible forces.

The lodge's room no. 217, where Stephen King occasionally stays, is believed to be haunted by the ghost of Elizabeth Wilson. Wilson was the head housekeeper in 1911. Although she didn't die in the room, her ghost is frequently spotted cleaning it.

Similarly, other haunted areas of the hotel are the vortex, concert hall, icehouse, and the fourth floor.

3. Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle front view captured under clear sky
Edinburgh Castle front view captured under clear sky( Source : pexels )

Edinburgh Castle is a historical castle located in Scotland. It sits at the top of a black volcanic rock at an elevation of 430 feet above sea level.

The castle is believed to be thousands of years old although the exact year of its construction is not known. It has housed several historical figures like Saint Margaret, King David II, Queen Regent Mary of Guise, King James IV, Oliver Cromwell, and more.

As the most besieged castle in the UK, Edinburgh has seen countless deaths inside its premises. It was attacked 23 times throughout the history of Scotland.

Visitors have talked about hearing the sound of bagpipes and drums on quiet days. The bagpipe is believed to be played by a piper who got lost in the tunnels below the castle.

Similarly, visitors have also reported spotting a headless figure inside the castle. Several ghosts, believed to be from the Napoleonic Wars, are occasionally seen roaming the premises.

4. RMS Queen Mary

RMS Queen Mary is an ocean liner permanently docked in Long Beach, California. The tourist attraction currently serves as a museum and hotel.

RMS Mary originally sailed as a British ocean liner for over 30 years from 1936 to 1967. Long Beach authorities purchased the ship in 1967; they removed the boiler rooms, turbo generator room, water softening plant, stabilizers, and forward engine room. The fuel tanks were also filled with mud to maintain their center of gravity.

As of 2023, the US Coast Guard labels it a building as it doesn't have any propellers.

Queen Mary was named one of the top 10 haunted places in a report published by Time magazine in 2008. A stateroom located inside the ship is reportedly haunted by the ghost of a person who was murdered there.

The ghosts of two girls killed by their father haunt room B474. Similarly, the spirit of a little girl is said to stalk the swimming pools.

Overall, there have been reports of over 150 ghost sightings aboard the RMS Queen Mary. Visitors have regularly spotted wet footprints near the first-class swimming pool even though no one was near the pools.

5. Lizzie Borden House

Front view of Lizzie Borden House in Fall River, Massachusetts.
Front view of Lizzie Borden House in Fall River, Massachusetts.( Source : tripadvisor )

The most haunted house in the world is unofficially dubbed as the Lizzie Borden House. It is a residential home in Fall River, Massachusetts.

The villa is named after a former owner of the house and a suspected murderer.

On August 4, 1892, a couple named Andrew Borden and his wife Abby were found murdered at the house. The suspect was Andrew's daughter and Abby's stepdaughter Lizzie Borden.

Andrew and Abby were attacked multiple times with a sharp object believed to be a hatchet. However, investigators could not find any blood on the crime scene and cleared Lizzie of the charges.

Meanwhile, the house is believed to be haunted by the restless spirits of Andrew and Abby who are still looking for justice.

Today, the Lizzie Borden House is a famous tourist attraction in Massachusetts. You can take a ghost tour, buy merchandise, or even stay in the room where Andrew and Abby were murdered.

6. Fairmont Banff Springs

Fairmont Banff Springs pictured alongside nearby mountains and forests
Fairmont Banff Springs pictured alongside nearby mountains and forests( Source : thevancouveriteblog )

Fairmont Banff Springs is a luxury hotel in Banff National Park, Canada. The hotel has been in operation since 1888.

It consists of over 700 rooms and suites along with a great view of Mount Rundle.

The Ghost Bride is one of the most famous ghosts of the hotel. The stories of her haunting have been in circulation since the 1920s. According to locals, the ghost was a young woman about to get married. However, she fell down from the marble staircases and died on the day of her wedding.

Visitors have claimed to witness a dancing ghostly figure in a wedding dress. Similarly, Sam McCauley, also known as Sam the Bellman, is also said to haunt the facility. He was the head bellman of the hotel during the 1960s and 70s.

Instead of scaring visitors, the ghost of Sam has actually helped them on occasion. As per a local tale, two women asked for a bellman after their key didn't work. The bellman was initially busy with something else. When he approached the two ladies after nearly 15 minutes, the door was already unlocked. One of the ladies mentioned that an older staff helped them.

When the women described his looks, the description matched that of Sam.

7. St. Augustine Lighthouse

St. Augustine Lighthouse front view pictured under blue sky
St. Augustine Lighthouse front view pictured under blue sky( Source : stfrancisinn )

The St. Augustine Lighthouse is a lighthouse and museum located in St. Augustine, Florida. It was constructed in the 19th century between 1871 and 1874.

Owned and managed by a private organization, the tower is believed to be haunted by the ghosts of the Pittee sisters. Hezekiah Pittee, the Superintendent tasked with the construction of the lighthouse, had three daughters named Carrie, Mary Adelaide, and Eliza.

The three sisters played with the railway cart that brought the construction supplies from the Salt Run dock. They often rode down to the waters in a roller coaster-like fashion.

A wooden board was placed at the end of the track to stop the railway cart from going down into the water. On the morning of July 10, 1873, the three sisters along with an unnamed African-American girl rode the cart towards the water. However, the wooden board meant to stop the cart was not yet placed.

It caused the cart to tip over into the water. A worker witnessed the incident and ran to the rescue. However, he was only able to save the youngest child, Carrie. Since then, the ghosts of the three girls who died that day are said to haunt the lighthouse and the areas nearby.

Over the years, several lighthouse keepers have recounted stories of their encounters with the ghosts. James Pippen, the last keeper to live at the tower, shifted to the 1941-built Coastal Lookout Building after claiming that the Keepers' House was haunted.

Similarly, visitors have spotted the ghostly figure of a little girl who disappears without any explanation.

8. The Catacombs of Paris

The Catacombs of Paris are mass underground graves in Paris, France. They store the remains of over six million people.

The Catacombs became accessible to the public in the 19th century. The mass burial sites have regularly been inflicted with stories of hauntings and terror.

It's a local belief that dark forces inside the Catacombs before active after midnight. Cataphiles, who have stayed overnight, have reported hearing voices from the walls. The voice allegedly tries to persuade the visitors to go deeper and deeper until they can't find out way back.

Similarly, the ghost of a man named Philibert Apsairt haunts the place once every year on November 3, the anniversary of his death.

In the 1990s, a video camera was found inside the catacombs. It contained footage that played a disturbing sound. It became evident from the video that the person holding the camera was lost. The video suddenly ends as the man drops the camera. As of 2023, no one knows the man's identity along with what caused the strange noise in the video.

9. Alcatraz Island

The insides of the Alcatraz prison with a former prison guard
The insides of the Alcatraz prison with a former prison guard( Source : loc )

The most haunted places on Earth list is not complete without including Alcatraz Island. Located in San Francisco, California, it was once infamous for hosting the Alcatraz Prison.

It housed several notorious criminals, including Al Capone, The Birdman of Alcatraz, Alvin Karpis, Frank Lee Morris, and more.

The island initially served as a US Army Military Prison but later changed to a maximum security federal penitentiary in 1934. It remained operational for 29 years since 1963. After three prisoners named Frank Morris, John Anglin, and Clarence Anglin escaped from the facility in 1962, the prison's security became a serious concern.

Further, authorities determined the cost of operating the penitentiary was much more than other similar facilities which led to its ultimate closing in 1963. As of 2023, it operates as a famous tourist spot and museum.

During its time as a prison, hundreds of criminals were tortured and some even lost their lives. Cell 14D is one of the most haunted spots inside the facility. A prisoner was placed inside the cell in the 1940s. One night, he started screaming that a strange creature was trying to murder him.

The prisoner described that the creature possessed glowing eyes. He was found dead the following day; the cause of his was dismissed to be strangulation.

Visitors of the facility have mentioned hearing moaning and crying sounds from Blocks A, B, and C. Some even claim to have heard the music of banjo reportedly played by the ghost of Al Capone.

10. Ham House

The Ham House is a historical mansion in London. Constructed in the 17th century, it was once home to a Duchess of Lauderdale named Elizabeth Murray.

The mansion was built in 1610 and leased from King Charles I by an Englishman named William Murray in 1626. It was later renovated by Murray's daughter Elizabeth. The property has survived the Parliamentary rule and the English Civil War.

The Ham House shows the characteristics of a stereotypical haunted house from a horror movie. The creepy features include unexplained footstep sounds, cold spots, unexplainable rose scents, and shadowy figures.

Reportedly, over 15 ghosts currently haunt the mansion, including a ghost dog. Other spirits known to stalk the property are the ghosts of Elizabeth, John MacFarlane, Charlotte Walpole, and more.

Bonus: More Haunted Places To Explore

Abandoned scary places

Unhabited creepy places are abundant around the world. Local legends and folklore help popularize the scary locations and people's experiences with the paranormal.

Most hunted cities in the world, according to Discovery, are:

  1. Forbidden City (China)
  2. Paris (France)
  3. Poveglia Island (Italy)
  4. Baguio (Philippines)
  5. Sighisoara (Romania)
  6. Port Arthur (Australia)
  7. Norfolk (UK)
  8. San Francisco (USA)
  9. New Orleans (USA)
  10. Kolmanskop (Namibia)

Scariest houses in the world are:

  1. Villisca Axe Murder House (Iowa, USA)
  2. Monte Cristo Homestead (Australia)
  3. Cuban Club House (Florida, USA)
  4. Dragsholm Slot (Denmark)
  5. Ancient Ram Inn (England)

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