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In the spirit of all things wicked and wonderful (it’s Halloween somewhere, right?), we brushed the dust off the map to find the world’s creepiest destinations. These 6 places are the stuff that horror movies are made of, literally.

RELATED: The 7 most spooktacular Halloween celebrations in the U.S.

A dark secert lie beneath the picturesque facde of this Italian island - Photo by tedlum

A dark secret lie beneath the picturesque facade of this Italian island – Photo by tedlum

1. Poveglia, Italy

Known as the haunted hospital island, Poveglia Island is Venice’s dark side. Barely visible when standing on the southern edges of beautiful Venice, Poveglia is far enough out of sight for lots of terrible things to happen here. In the 1700s the island housed a quarantine station for those with infectious diseases as the plague ripped through Europe. The locals believe that more than half the island’ssoil is made up from the remains of plague victims.

Over the centuries the island remained a hospital and in the early part of the 20th century it took on mentally ill patients. The hospital director at the time was a cruel and possibly mentally ill himself who is said to have performed horrific experiments and lobotomies on his patients. Many of the procedures were carried out with simple tools like hand drills and chisels and killed many. Legend says that the ghosts of his victims finally put an end to the hospital director’s tortures by driving him to leap to his death from the hospital tower. The hospital closed for good in 1968. With the sheer number of people who have taken their final breath on this tiny island, there’s no wonder why it’s considered one of the world’s most haunted places.


This hotel is in need of some ghost busters for sure – Photo by Paul Sableman

2. Hotel Monteleone: New Orleans, LA

With hundreds of years of Cajun, African, and Spanish history sprinkled with a little voodoo, the Big Easy can give off some very creepy vibes. Among the city’s most creepiest are its old hotels, cemeteries, and historic mansions. Hotel Monteleone is famously haunted by the spirits of little children. The 14th floor (which is actually the 13th floor) is said to be the epicenter of the hotel’s paranormal activity. In the late 1800s a young boy named Maurice Begere died of a fever while his parents were at the theater on the 14th floor of this hotel.

His grief-stricken parents returned to the hotel many times trying to reconnect with the boy and finally one night the boy returned and told his mother “Mommy, don’t cry. I’m fine.” Guests regularly report seeing a young boy about 3 years old (The age Maurice was when he died) playing in the halls or even entering their rooms only to disappear. Other guests have reported the elevator stopping on a floor that wasn’t requested and the doors opening to ghostly children playing the halls. Surprisingly, the 14th floor is the most requested room in the hotel and especially around Halloween time.



All that’s missing is a hand reaching up out of the grave – Photo by

3. Salgótarjáni út cemetery: Budapest, Hungary

On the far outskirts of Budapest lies a forgotten cemetery straight out of a horror movie. The tall, imposing stone gates now face an outlying set of train tracks with an eerie silence only broken a few times and hour by a passing train. A knock on the gates results in two large guard dogs rushing to the iron bars jaws slapping as they attempt to ward off any unwelcome visitors. Inside, the giant walls of the once magnificent cemetery are rows of impressive tombs of certainly important people of their time.

Salgótarjáni út cemetery is the oldest Jewish burial ground on the Pest side of the city but fell into ruins after most of the Jewish population was forced out of the area during WWII. After a short stint as a Soviet Military hangout, the forest is slowly trying to take back the land growing around the massive stone and marble burial chambers. Over the years many of the tombs have been opened and looted of anything of value. The disturbed and derelict cemetery is sure to have at least a few angered spirits still hanging around making it a place you may not want to visit after sunset. Not open to the public, tours can be arranged through Budapest 101.

RELATED: 3 Perfect Days in Budapest


Dark pasts always make for the best ghost stories – Photo by Franx’

4. Castle of Good Hope Cape Town South Africa

As with any good haunted building, this castle comes complete with unexplained footsteps and mysterious light flickers, but the castle’s dark past holds even creepier secrets. The castle in Cape Town was one of the first colonial buildings in South Africa and was the site of many horrors of early colonization. In the bowels of the castle, there are cells that were regularly filled with escaped slaves, rebellious natives and even Zulu kings. Records claim that one winter, rapid floods filled the cells drowning the prisoners left shackled to the walls.

The castle grounds were the site of terrible deaths and tortures. One of the most notorious parts of the castle was the Donker Gat (or dark hole in English) which was a windowless dungeon used as a torture chamber. The castle grounds were also the site of countless hangings of up-risers. However, the most famously haunted hanging was of a castle guard who ended his own life by means of the bell rope. The bell is still said to mysteriously ring by itself. To add to the terror, multiple visitors have reported a large black hound roaming the grounds who leaps at them but vanishes before striking. Restoration of the castle occasionally unearths abandoned rooms that have been sealed by brick forcenturies and experts agree that there are more mysteries of the castle left to be discovered.

RELATED: 3 Perfect Days in Cape Town


The people behind the costumes at HHN Orlando get so into their characters it’s scary – Photo by

5. Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights

Halloween Horror Nights is where the scariest movies transform from film into real life. Some of the greatest minds in horror film come together to scare the crap out of you, but it seems some real life spirits may have been conjured in the process. Every year a few films are selected to be brought to life with complex sets and highly calculated scares. Among this year’s spooks are American Horror Story, Halloween 2, The Exorcist, and HHN’s homespun Harley Quinn-esque character Chance. The 2016 Exorcist haunted house in Universal Orlando must have done too good of a job of channeling the spirit of Pazuzu as many things in the house seem to move and change on their own. Universal Studios Orlando is a perennial winner for scariest haunted house and is definitely worth a visit if you enjoy a good scare.


Who knew the creepiest part of Prague is also one of the most beautiful – Photo by

6. Old Town Prague, Czech Republic 

With more than 1,200 years of history, the central European capital is sure to have a few haunted spots. What’s surprising about Prague‘s most haunted sights is that they are also some of its most popular things to do. One of the city’s most paranormal structures is the picturesque Charles Bridge. Once the site of public executions, the bridge is said to be frequented by the ghost of the men killed here.

Second on the list of creepiest places is the Old Jewish Cemetery with more than 100,000 people buried in a tiny plot. The city refused to allow the cemetery to be expanded and according to Jewish beliefs, the remains of the deceased can’t be removed so they were forced to bury people on top of existing plots and just moving all the headstones to the top. According to the Kabbalah, if a burial is not properly performed the soul of the dead is stuck in a state of turmoil and cannot find rest. So, there’s a chance you may encounter some souls at unrest while walking the grounds.

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Hannah & Adam | Getting Stamped Bloggers
Hannah & Adam are travel writers & photographers who have called the road home since 2013. Their passion for adventurous travel has brought them to 60 countries and counting. They blog about their adventures on their travel blog

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