Whether you believe them or not, reports of paranormal activity in the real world can be endlessly fascinating. I hesitate to say that the haunts on this list are film-worthy, because we all know that horror movies based on real life events can be done terribly *cough*HauntingInConnecticut*cough*, but then sometimes you get a Conjuring so who knows. These places have not, to my knowledge, been given the screen treatment, and they all have great stories to tell.
1. The Ancient Ram Inn
Located in Gloucestershire, England, the Ancient Ram Inn is almost one thousand years old and said to be host to numerous spirits and demonic activity. Evidence of satanic worship (including sacrifices) has been found on the property, the spirit of a witch is said to reside in one of the upstairs rooms and a succubus reputedly attacks visitors.
2. Isla de las Muencas
Off the coast of Mexico there’s a small island that is home to thousands of dolls in various states of decay, said to be placed there by Don Julian Santana Barrera, the man who owns the island, to comfort the spirit of a little girl who he found drowned on the coast. The macabre collection has been built up over the years, and visitors to the island contribute to it. Julian was eventually found drowned in the same spot he said he’d seen the little girl.
3. Byberry Mental Asylum
Since Byberry was closed in 1990 amid reports of patients living in terrible conditions, rumours abound of restless spirits wandering the abandoned halls, a psychotic patient still living in the catacombs beneath the building, and satanic sects practicing strange rituals on the site. Even the demolition of the hospital hasn’t put an end to the stories.
4. Bobby Mackey’s Music World
A country music bar in Kentucky, Bobby Mackey’s Music World is infamous for the paranormal activity that is said to thrive within its walls. A horrific murder took place on the location in the 19th century where a young woman was beheaded by her lover and his friend as a sacrifice to the devil. A young woman committed suicide after her boyfriend was killed by her father. In recent years, a caretaker underwent an exorcism after an alledged demonic possession. A well in the basement is reputed to be a portal to hell. This and countless other accounts of dark activity make the club a hotspot for paranormal enthusiasts around the world.
5. Greyfriars Cemetery
One of the few locations I’ve actually visited (the above photo was taken by me), Greyfriars Cemetery is located in Edinburgh, Scotland. This area is actually closed off – I took the photo through a gate. The reason is that various people have claimed that they were attacked here by what has become known as the Mackenzie Poltergeist. I had a look into Mackenzie’s tomb and while I can’t say anything paranormal happened while I was there, the cemetery is very creepy. I’ve never seen so many carvings of skeletons. If you visit Edinburgh, pay a visit to the tunnels beneath the city as well.
6. 50 Berkeley Square
Reputedly the ‘most haunted house in London’, 50 Berkeley Square looks perfectly innocuous from the outside. However, the house was once the centre of horrific tales of demonic activity. A number of people are said to have been driven mad and died shortly after encountering something unnamable in the attic room.
7. Leap Castle
Located in Ireland, Leap Castle dates back to the 15th century and has a long history of murder, corruption and violence. People have caught sight of a horrifying demonic creature on the property known only as ‘It’, ghostly children play in the grounds, and the tragic Red Lady stalks the halls searching for her murdered baby. Many other ghosts have been sighted at the castle and it’s one of Britain’s most popular haunted attractions.
8. Bhangarh Fort
People are actually forbidden to enter this abandoned fort in India at night because it’s said to be so haunted. Legends state that the city is under an ancient death curse, and even military officials refused to enter the fort after sunset when asked to investigate the supposed hauntings.
9. Poveglia Island
Poveglia is an abandoned island off the coast of Venice, Italy. It is forbidden to visit the island due to the demonic activity said to occur there. Thousands died at Poveglia – when the plague swept through Venice, the sick were sent there to die and their bodies were burned and buried in mass graves. Later, the site became a mental hospital and a corrupt doctor apparently committed suicide by jumping from the tower. Many visitors have left terrified by what they experienced on Poveglia, and it’s now known as a cursed place.
10. Poenari Castle
Forget Bran Castle, Poenari is the real home of Vlad the Impaler. Obviously the castle has a bloody history, and strange moving lights have been sighted in the surrounding area. The castle is also said to be haunted by Vlad’s first wife, who flung herself from the battlements because she believed she would be captured by the invading Turks.
I hope everyone had a good Halloween. I definitely did! I was Poison Ivy
I’m having friends over tomorrow for a Halloween film marathon (Hocus Pocus, Ghostbusters, Halloween, Trick ‘r Treat, Halloween). I’ve had a great time doing these lists, and it’s given me plenty of inspiration for future posts. Thanks for reading!