9 of the USA's best spooky experiences

There’s nothing scary about trick or treating - apart from the number of additives in the candy you collect… If you want a real Halloween fright, head over to the USA and try out one of these eery experiences! 

Haunted history in Savannah

The Georgia city of Savannah is often referred to as ‘America’s Most Haunted City’. Take a walk into any historic building or cemetery in Savannah and you might catch a glimpse of some of the city’s famous ghosts. Alternatively get fully into Savannah’s paranormal scene on the Savannah Ghosts and Folklore Tour. On the 90-minute walking tour you’ll be led by candlelight by a tour guide in period costume and learn about the city’s most famous ghosts, local folklore, and the area's strange but rich history.


Nevada’s ghost towns

Looking for a haunted destination? Head to a ghost town in Nevada. The ‘Silver State’ is full of remarkable abandoned towns that allow visitors to get a sense of what life was like in old Nevada. To get the low down on Nevada’s haunted history, take the ‘History Mystery and Ghosts in the Biggest Little City’ tour in Reno. For something more immersive, take part in a 40-minute Ghost Tour or even the ‘Overnight Investigation’ tour at the Washoe Club, in Virginia City, which proudly calls itself ‘one of the most haunted locations in the West’.


Montana’s Eerie Places

Take a trip to to Montana’s famous ghost towns and you might well spot the form of a miner who travelled to the ‘Treasure State’ a century ago, hoping to strike gold. The abandoned towns of Bannack, left, and Garnet were once thriving mining communities and their deserted buildings - and enactments laid on for visitors - give a glimpse into  Montana’s Big Sky past. For a fully creepy experience, visit the Old Montana Prison in Deer Lodge, one of the most haunted places in Montana. Visitors have reported apparitions in empty cells, cell doors closing by themselves and the sounds of crying. You’ll find more spooky sights and sounds - cold chills in a closed room, the clip-clop of a phantom horse’s hooves or apparitions stalking the hallways - at the Grand Union Hotel in Fort Benton, one of Montana’s oldest towns, or Belton Chalet in West Glacier. Get a feel for what you could discover on a haunted road trip in Montana in the latest episode of Montana's 'Discover Your' video series, Spooky Montana.



Haunted homes in North Dakota

There are plenty of creepy places to visit in North Dakota. Try the Home Sweet Home antique shop located in an old, Victorian-era home in Minot, which is said to be haunted by two ghosts. One of them has been known to cause an icy draft and move sweets from dusty jar to dusty jar (yet never leaves a fingerprint). The other is the ghost of a man who drowned in the river behind the house - an accident reenacted at exactly 4:39 a.m.. Other haunted houses include the Totten Trail Historic Inn at Fort Totten, near Devils Lake, where you might encounter the spirit of a beheaded man or the ghost of a civil war soldier, or Fort Abraham Lincoln, which is located in what’s now Bismarck, where visitors experience paranormal experiences where women’s wails and footsteps can be heard pacing the sergeant’s quarters in the Barracks and shadowy figures appear at windows or stalk the Commissary by night.  

Petrifying pirates in North Carolina

North Carolina’s Outer Banks - a 130-mile stretch of barrier islands just off the coast - are said to be haunted by pirates who lost their lives in shipwrecks. The legendary pirate Blackbeard is supposed to have come from this area. Go to Teach’s Hole cove, where Blackbeard was meant to have been decapitated, for the chance to see his headless body swimming and walking along the shores - or pirate reenactments - and stay for pretty, relaxed historic fishing villages. The town of Bath, where Blackbeard is supposed to have lived, recently celebrated its link to the notorious pirate with ‘Bath Town’s Blackbeard 300 Tricentennial Celebration’; but don’t worry if you missed it - all through the Outer Banks there are hotels, restaurants, breweries, attractions and tours named after him. 

Spells in Salem

Famous for the witch trials, the town of Salem in Massachusetts celebrates Halloween - as well as the extraordinary for the full month of October. Expect a Grand Parade and Family Film Nights on Salem Common, ghost tours, haunted houses and more. For a spooky stay in Massachusetts, check in to the Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast Museum in Fall River. This haunted house is the scene of the unsolved axe murders of Andrew and Abby Borden, whose youngest daughter Lizzie was the prime suspect but never convicted. Find out more about this grisly murder mystery in the new film, Lizzie.

Creepy sleepover in Colorado

The Stanley Hotel, left, in Estes Park, Colorado was the inspiration for Stephen King’s famous horror hotel in The Shining. The author and his family were on their way to the Rocky Mountains National Park, but forced to spend the night here because of heavy snowfall. The most haunted room in this 138-room hotel is humber 217, and the one in which King stayed, but there’s plenty of paranormal activity in room 413 too. Book a spooky trip with American Sky and take the Stanley Tour and Night Spirit Tour to learn about the hotel’s history and hauntings.

Tennessee’s frightful theatre

A phantom nicknamed ‘mischievous Mary’ is said to enjoy playing pranks on housekeepers, dancing in the hallways and watching the theatre performances at the Orpheum Theatre, Memphis, Tennessee. Keep an eye out for her sitting in one particular seat in the balcony – seat C5. You’ll find more paranormal activity in Tennessee’s other hotels and theatres including The Thomas House Hotel, in the creepily named Red Boiling Springs. Beds move and dark figures appear at this haunted hotel, which was built on an ancient Native American trail, and has been witness to deaths, murders and accidents.  

Gunslinger ghosts in Goldfield

The spirits of the fortune hunters who sought gold in Arizona haunt the many ghost towns in the state. Head to Goldfield to see old west gun fight re-enactments, take a wagon ride or a trip down the mines. This town perched on a small hill between the Superstition Mountains and Goldfield Mountains, boomed when gold was found here in 1892, but the miners left five years later when the gold supplies dwindled - leaving behind this almost perfectly preserved example of life in the Old West. For more ghosts head to Jerome, one of Arizona’s most famous ghost towns, for the annual October Jerome Ghost Walk. Costumed performers re-enact the deadly shootings, mysteries and love triangles through the former mining town’s narrow passageways and steep streets. Spend the night at the Jerome Grand Hotel, which opened in 1927 as the town’s hospital where guests can take part in ghost hunts, and learn about Claude (among other spirits), who met his demise in an elevator shaft. 

Posted on: 28/10/2018

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