While some travelers prefer to visit beaches, magical attractions like Disney World, or national parks, others are intrigued by ghosts and spirits. These fearless tourists travel the country in search of the most haunted places in America.
If you’re more curious about the supernatural than terrified (like I am), these eight spooky spots better be on your travel bucket list!
Naturally, a city with raised cemeteries is going to top our list of haunted places in America! New Orleans is technically situated below sea level, meaning the tombs of the deceased were designed to be above grounds.
And, with a rich history including the War of 1812 and the French Quarter, you can bet there’s a ghost or two hanging around you at any time during your trip. A few of the most haunted spots in the city include:
- Hotel Monteleone– Known to have an elevator which stops on the wrong floor and is home to the spirits of playing children.
- St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 – The oldest cemetery in the city!
- Lalaurie Mansion – You may have heard of Madame Lalaurie’s torture chamber on the hit TV show, American Horror Story.
- Muriel’s Restaurant – This building was haunted long before it became a well-known restaurant.
The best way to see these haunted sites and hear the chilling ghost stories is on a ghost tour! Sign up for a spot ASAP. Tours fill up fast!
From the Alamo to the historic cathedrals, San Antonio, TX is filled with haunted happenings around every corner. The city is one of the oldest in the country, leaving room for centuries of eerie events.
Legend has it, you can still hear the prisoners groaning in the Alamo and see ghostly figures patrolling the grounds at night!
Among the most haunted spots in the city are:
- The San Fernando Cathedral – The story goes that many of the ghosts here are unaware that they’ve passed on…
- The Spanish Governor’s Palace – This area served as an executioner’s arena during the 20th-century.
- Alamo Street Theater – Now converted into a hot dog restaurant, the old theater houses the spirits of a young boy, off-key actress, and many others who once graced the stage.
- Gillespie Mansion (also known as Midget Mansion or the Donore Manor) – Some awful and strange things happened in this mansion… you’ll have to go on a ghost tour to find out exactly what!
Like many of the most haunted places in America, San Francisco’s history is filled with sadness, tragedies, and a lot of awful deaths. Chinatown, for instance, is said to be home to the souls of those lost in the Cameron House fire. Chinatown residents and visitors also mention seeing or feeling the presence of spirits in the neighborhood’s alleyways and establishments.
In addition to Chinatown, the following destinations around the city are said to be filled with paranormal sightings:
- Alcatraz – The notorious prison is known to have ghostly appearances and whispers throughout the cells and halls.
- The Queen Anne Hotel – Home to one of San Francisco’s nicest spirits. The headmistress of the school never left her position, even in the afterlife.
- The Presidio – This haunted destination has been featured on several ghost hunting shows. As a national cemetery and old military base, it’s home to a lot of spooky spots and sounds.
- Golden Gate Park – The park has two notable souls: The White Lady and the Police Officer.
- Sutro Baths – Although known as one of the Bay Area’s top hidden gems, this secret spot also has a haunted past!
4. Salem, MA
Arguably, the most haunted spot in America, Salem, MA is a paranormal traveler’s dream come true. If you’re in search of lost souls, spooky stories, haunted happenings, and other spine-tingling experiences, there’s no better place to visit than Salem.
As the backdrop for the Salem Witch Trials, this tiny New England town is famous for its annual Halloween celebrations and as an eternal place for ghost hunters. Get ready to experience truly odd things when you visit Salem. You never know what ghost is lurking over your shoulder!
A few of the haunted places in Salem include:
- House of Seven Gables – This is the house of the Hawthorne family. John Hawthorne was a judge at the Salem Witch Trials.
- A&B Salem – While the restaurant serves excellent fare, it comes with a side of hauntings!
- The Old Burying Point Cemetery – The spirits here are often captured on film. Bring your camera!
- The Witch House – This is the only house still standing used in the Salem Witch Trials.
If you’re looking for a place to stay in Salem, consider staying at the haunted Hawthorne Hotel. That is if you’re not scared!
Colonial Williamsburg depicts 18th-century life in Williamsburg, VA through interactive activities and spaces, wandering actors, and other opportunities. This historic city also has its fair share of haunts.
Colonial Williamsburg even offers a Haunted Williamsburg tour for guests! You’ll have the chance to tour buildings not open to the public and hear about the famous ghosts that roam the halls and grounds of Colonial Williamsburg.
Other haunted places in Williamsburg include:
- George Wythe House – George died by being poisoned and allegedly still roams the house today!
- Peyton Randolph House – This house alone is known as one of the most haunted places in America. There’s a lengthy history of mistreatment, sudden (read: mysterious) deaths, and other strange occurrences in this home.
- Fort Magruder Hotel – Directly facing Civil War battlefields, this destination is ripe with ghost stories and hauntings.
- King’s Arms Tavern – A tavern worker met her untimely fate in the restaurant as the result of a dropped candle. Today, tavern employees can confirm she still roams the halls!
For travelers intrigued by ghost tours, you’ll find a plethora of options in Williamsburg. These tours book up quickly in the fall thanks to Halloween, so be sure to place your reservations early on.
6. Gettysburg, PA
During the Civil War, approximately 51,000+ soldiers died in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. As a result of the bloody battles, Gettysburg schoolhouses, hospitals, and several homes are among the most haunted places in America.
If you walk the 40 acres of battlefields, legend has it you may hear cannon shots, the cries and screams of soldiers, and other disturbing sounds.
Some of Gettysburg’s most haunted spots include:
- Sachs Covered Bridge – Those venture to the bridge note mysterious orbs and signs of eerie looking soldiers. Rumor has it, this is where traitors were hung after abandoning the battle.
- Devil’s Den – This spot on Gettysburg’s battlefields is known to be one of the most haunted in the area. You can still see the footprints from Civil War soldiers.
- Hoffman Mansion – This mansion is only accessible via certain ghost tours and is known to have more spirits than rooms!
- Jennie Wade House – The house is the location of the war’s only direct civilian death. Legend has it, the bizarre nature of her death is what keeps her from leaving.
7. Chicago, IL
Chicago has also had its fair share of misfortune. From the Great Chicago Fire to the Valentine’s Day Massacre, the city has been the unfortunate backdrop to many deaths. For ghost hunters, however, this leaves Chicago, IL being a prime destination for discovering the paranormal.
Everything from hotels to bridges and restaurants to alleyways seems to be haunted in this Midwest metropolis.
For the best chances of spotting a ghost, head to these spots in Chicago:
- The Congress Plaza Hotel – Once a hangout spot of Al Capone, spirits now roam the halls.
- Death Alley – Located behind the former Iroquois Theatre (now the Nederlander Theatre), Death Alley is where the souls of the hundreds of patrons who perished in the devastating 1903 fire remain.
- H.H. Holmes’ Murder Castle – Once again, American Horror Story draws from eerie history. H.H. Holmes built himself a maze of a building, which locked victims inside through numerous traps. With a name like Murder Castle, you know this destination is beyond haunted.
- The Drake Hotel – The Lady in Red is the Drake Hotel’s most notorious guest… who never leaves.
Although not a ghost tour, the Chicago Crime Tours feature several destinations and stories connected with the paranormal!
St. Augustine is the oldest city in the country. Of course, it’s one of the top haunted places in America!
With paranormal happenings at destinations like the Castillo de San Marcos and St. Augustine Lighthouse, ghost hunters from all over the globe flock to this seaside haunt.
Hit the beach during the day and hunt for ghosts at night at haunted spots including:
- Castillo de San Marcos – The site of a love triangle gone wrong, two lovers vanished without a trace… until their bones were found in the basement.
- St. Augustine Lighthouse – The old lighthouse caretaker never left his post, even after death.
- The Old Jail – It sounds like a place out of a Scooby Do episode, but the Old Jail was where prisoners were tortured, executed, and kept in some awful conditions. Naturally, it’s now home to many spirits.
- Spanish Military Hospital – Visitors note feeling immediately depressed, sad, and wary once entering the building.
Similar to the other haunted places in America, there are several St. Augustine ghost tours you can go on to maximize your spirit spotting!
Visit the Most Haunted Places in America—If You Dare
Are you brave enough to tour some of the country’s spookiest spots? If so, book your trip with Tripster now!