Several people and cultures around the world are fascinated by horror stories and spooky locations. Here are some of the most well-known haunted areas around the globe and the stories behind them.
1. Poveglia Island
Poveglia Island has a history of multiple horrendous events on its grounds. In 1793-1814, the government of Venice used it as a quarantine ground for people infected with plague. This means that around 160,000 people spent their last days on the island, and ended up being buried there. To add to this, a few battles took place on that very island, causing more bodies under it.
During the period of 1922-1968, Poveglia Island hosted a mental hospital. It is said that several patients were tortured and either butchered or thrown down from the tower.
Poveglia Island’s grounds are believed to contain more human remains than soil.
The island has been off-limits for years now. A few people who sneaked their way into it ended up having to be rescued after they felt consistently haunted by a presence.
2. Ancient Ram Inn, Wotton-under-edge, UK
The Ancient Ram Inn is considered one of the most haunted places in Britain. Built on an ancient pagan burial ground and associated with the energies of the Stonehenge, the inn is a host for several mysterious souls. For a long time, the inn was home to the slaves and masons who were working on a church nearby. After they moved out, a priest occupied its rooms. The most recent occupant was Mr. John Humphries, who made it his home. Humphries claimed to have met all the ghosts that haunted the place on his first night there. He also revealed that he found disturbing remains of murdered children and pagan rituals on its grounds. However, he continued to live there till his death in 2017.
Of the several spirits that haunt the Ancient Ram Inn, one is believed to be a woman who was accused of being a witch. During the 1500s, at the peak of witch hunts in the country, the woman sought asylum in the inn. She was eventually captured but there have apparently been sightings of her on the grounds. Another ghostly occupant is a previous innkeeper’s daughter, who was supposedly hanged on the grounds. She supposedly continues to live in the inn, with other spirits including children, slaves and many others.
Among the several spirits in the inn, the spirit of a Bishop is considered the most potent. Several ‘mediums’ and paranormal investigators claim to have experiences immense energies for the Bishop’s room. One medium was even thrown out when she tried to enter the room.
The inn continues to attract several paranormal enthusiasts.
3. Island of Dolls, Mexico City, Mexico
The Island of dolls came into existence as a result of Don Julian Santana Barrera’s self-imposed exile to the island. During one of his early days on the island, he claimed to have come across the body of a little girl floating in the canal. However, what caused her death and what happened to her body is still unclear. Don Julian’s family believes that this is probably false.
They also claimed that Don Julian was not of stable mind. This is evidenced in his actions that followed. Don Julian found a doll down the stream which he believed to be the little girl’s. As a gesture to appease the spirit of the little girl, he hung the doll from a tree. But he did not stop there. He went on to dig out several more dolls from the ground and from trash cans to eventually build what came to be known as the Island of dolls. A lot of these dolls are decapitated, missing limbs, or even missing their entire torsos. Naturally, the island is the stuff of nightmares.
Don Julian’s death added to the mystery of the place. His body was found at the exact place where he claimed to have found the girl. After his death, the site attracted an influx of people who were fascinated by the creepy island. A lot of people hung more dolls in his honor.
While the place itself is creepy in its appearance, several people have claimed to have seen the dolls come alive at night. Some have seen the dolls open their eyes and heard them whisper to each other. At night the island is rarely silent.
4. Isle of Wight, England
Often referred to as the “Ghost Island”, the Isle of Wight is considered one of the most haunted places in the UK.
Ventnor Botanics garden is currently home to some of the most beautiful plants in England. However, the compounds of the garden have a much darker history. It used to be the grounds of a hospital where patients with deadly diseases were treated. Several people died there and were probably even buried there since the diseases were contagious. Since then, there have been sightings of nurses and patients in the compound. The hospital was demolished in 1969, but some parts of it remain as ruins, which adds to the eeriness of the place. There have been claims of ghost sightings even after the building was demolished. The Botanical garden often has ghostly nurses and patients around it and around what remains of the hospital building.
St. Catherine’s lighthouse attracts visitors for reasons more than just the spectacle of the sea. The lighthouse is the last resting place of three of its keepers during World War 2. All three died in an enemy bomb blast. The legend is that they still reveal their presence, through vanishing things, random footsteps and felt presence.
One of the main attractions of the island is the old manor house at Knighton Gorges. The building was supposedly home to a series of tragedies and eventually demolished by its owner in 1821. But several people claimed to have seen strange things at the house at different points in time, and still continue to do so. Adding to the eeriness of the incidents is that gargoyles, which used to be on the walls of the house, seem to be among the apparitions.
5. Port Arthur, Australia
The history of Port Arthur is one of extreme human conditions. The place reeks of broken souls and muffled cries. In the 1800s, Port Arthur hosted many convicts, including women and children who were forced to live in inhumane conditions. They were regularly subjected to torture and made to do extreme physical activities, including manual labor. Most of them died from the physical exertion and the horrendous living conditions. The place resonates immense sadness and despair. Reportedly, even people who are utterly unaware of its past find themselves plunge into extreme gloom when they are in Port Arthur. Apparently, children have unexplained, extreme reactions to the place.
If the energy and history of the place itself isn’t scary enough, several people have claimed to hear disembodied human interactions there. The sound of children laughing and women muttering is often heard, without any evidence of anyone being there.
The ghost of a woman in a blue dress is often reported, with some photographic evidence.
6. The LaLaurie Mansion, New Orleans
The Lalaurie mansion became a huge sensation among paranormal enthusiasts after it was featured on American Horror Story. The mansion is known for and named after the Lalauries and their extreme cruelties towards the slaves they owned. However, the creepy history of the Lalaurie mansion did not begin with the Lalauries. Its previous tenant was brutally murdered in his room, after he claimed to be consistently bothered by a “Sprite” who apparently threatened to haunt him till his death. Although his friends did not take him seriously at first, his murder fuelled their suspicions that he might have been right about spirits in the house. The policed considers his murder a robbery but none of his belongings were taken.
Daphne Lalaurie was a cruel mistress, to say the least. Her extreme cruelties came to public attention when one of the slaves set herself ablaze in the kitchen, unable to bear the torture. A part of the house burned down and people gathered in violent protests in front of the house. Daphne Lalaurie escaped never to return. The police found people tied up in the basement, and several layers of human skeletons in the compound well, including that of a child.
After many years, in the 1900s, the building was used to run a school for girls. Several girls saw mysterious apparitions and spirits in the building that harmed them physically. A spirit of the little girl is often found at the window where she supposedly jumped from. Interestingly, the ghost of the Lalaurie mansion is known for interacting with visitors, acknowledging their presence through lights.
7. Lizzie Borde house, Fall river, Massachusetts
The Borden house attracts a lot of visitors around the year. So much so, that it is now turned into a bed-and-breakfast with everything set the exact same way they were when the Bordens lived there. The house is infamous for the brutal murders of Andrew Borden and his wife, Abbey Borden, who were hacked to death, allegedly by their own daughter, Lizzie Borden. Lizzie was acquitted, but probably because at the time, officials did not believe that women were capable of crime. Since then, there have been sightings of the murdered souls, often loitering around the house, even peering at the visitors.