A lot of people love to be scared. Whether it's reading a scary story, watching a spooky movie, or even going out to a haunted house attraction, it can be fun! Scary stuff really gets our hearts pounding and gets our adrenaline up in the most fun ways. Although fictional scary things like movies and books are entertaining, it's even more fun to experience real scares, up close and personal.
Around the world, there are mysterious and sometimes haunted places that draw in visitors from all over the world. But travelers don't always have to go far to experience one of these creepy places. A lot of them are located right in our backyards.
10 The Winchester Mystery House - San Jose, California
The Winchester Mystery House is located in San Jose, California and was the home of Sarah Winchester, heiress to a lot of the Winchester Repeating Arms fortune. The home's construction started in 1884 and construction finished in 1922. What took so long?
Well, the Winchester Mystery House has 160 rooms, is over 24,000 square feet, and 2,000 doors. Some of the doors open into walls or outside while some staircases lead directly to the ceiling. Sarah Winchester believed she was being haunted by the spirits of those whose lives were taken by her family's weapons and building the house forever was the only way to appease them.
9 Clinton Road - West Milford, New Jersey
Clinton Road is a stretch of road located in West Milford, New Jersey that is home to a lot of really unusual urban legends. One of the most famous ones about the spirit of a young boy that allegedly lives off the side of the road, under the bridge. People who drop coins into the bridge claim that they reappear up on the bridge soon after because that spirit brought it back.
Although this legend sounds cute and helpful, there are also a lot of really eerie ones tied to this area. Some people have reported that they've felt hands pushing them if they lean too far over the edge of the bridge even when no one was standing near them.
8 The Mütter Museum - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
There are a lot of really interesting museums around the world. Some display works of art that have influenced pop culture, some how the history of the place they're located, and some are, well, just a little weird. The Mütter Museum is a museum located in Philadelphia that definitely falls into that last category.
If you're interested in human anatomy and all things creepy, visiting this museum needs to go on your travel bucket list. No, it's not haunted, but it does display a huge collection of bones, bodies, and organs that have something unique about them. The Soap Lady, John Wilkes Booth’s vertebra, the Tallest skeleton on display in North America, and Slides of Albert Einstein’s brain are all on display at this museum.
7 Lemp Mansion - St. Louis, Missouri
The Lemp Mansion is a mansion located in St. Louis, Missouri that is said to be cursed. This spooky historical site was built in the early 1860s and was purchased by William Lemp, son of the founder of Western Brewery.
The purchase of this massive home should have been a happy time for the life of this successful and wealthy family. Unfortunately, the events that took place in the family afterward proved to be anything but happy. Multiple members of the Lemp family took their own lives in the walls of the home and misfortune in the form of divorce and financial troubles seemed to surround the family.
6 Bell Witch Cave - Adams, Tennessee
The Bell Witch is a legend that has haunted the Adams, Tennessee area for a long time. This urban legend is one about the spirit of a spooky witch that began to haunt the Bell family in the early 19th century. The family heard noises in their house, had unexplained scratches on their bodies, and were generally terrorized by the spirit of a witch known as "Katie" or the "Bell's Witch."
Today, the Bell Witch Cave, located on the property that the Bell family owned when they were being haunted by this terrifying spirit, is a popular tourist destination. Visitors can tour just the cave or also take a tour of the Bell's cabin at the same time.
5 The Stanley Hotel - Estes Park, Colorado
If this hotel looks familiar, it's probably because you've either read or watched The Shining, a book by Stephen King and a movie by the same name that was based on this terrifying book. In the story, a family moves to The Stanley Hotel to take care of it for a winter and things get scary fast.
There's a reason Stephen King based a story on this terrifying location. King stayed at this hotel and was so creeped out by what he experienced that it inspired him to write that infamous novel. According to visitors, Room 217 and the staircase area called "The Vortex" have the highest levels of spirit activity.
4 Eastern State Penitentiary - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Eastern State Penitentiary isn't used as a prison anymore, but it's still visited by a lot of people and some visitors even claim that its former inmates didn't leave when the facility closed down. Even though Eastern State Penitentiary closed in 1971, it's been called one of the most haunted places in the US.
Visitors have reported hearing ghostly whispers, laughs, and voices coming from the cell blocks or even seeing mysterious figures standing inside them. Tours are given at the facility regularly and during the Halloween season, it's the site of a haunted house attraction.
3 Leakin Park - Baltimore, Maryland
Leakin Park is a park located in Baltimore, Maryland. Although parks may seem like a beautiful place to take a walk, experience nature, and get a little fresh air, Leakin Park is anything but one. Leakin Park has been part of Baltimore's landscape for a long time, but it's gotten quite a reputation in that time.
Since the 1940s, around 70 or more bodies have been found dumped in Leakin Park, getting it the nickname of "Baltimore's Open Air Cemetery." Unfortunately, poor data records make it difficult to know exactly how many bodies have been found there - and how many may be undiscovered in the park. Among the most famous ones are the body of Hae Min Lee, subject of the Serial podcast.
2 Waverly Hills Sanatorium - Louisville, Kentucky
Waverly Hills Sanatorium was opened in 1910 as a tuberculosis hospital, but was closed in 1961 after an antibiotic was developed that helped to reduce the need for a hospital dedicated to people suffering from tuberculosis. Since then, this sanatorium has become incredibly famous as one of the most haunted places in America.
Considering the fact that it used to house hundreds of tuberculosis patients, many of whom were likely not lucky enough to leave its walls, it's no surprise that people have experienced some strange, seemingly paranormal events in this building. Each year, a haunted house attraction welcomes visitors to this building for more than a regular tour.
1 Bachelor's Grove Cemetery - Chicago, Illinois
Bachelor's Grove Cemetery was opened in the mid-19th century and it has under 100 plots. So, why has this cemetery gained such a reputation for being such a famously terrifying location? According to local legends and rumors, this location was used by the Chicago organized crime scene as a dumping ground for bodies in the 1920s and 1930s.
The fact that there were so many people whose bodies were left in this cemetery, paired with the people who were laid to rest for the final time here, means that there's quite a dark history at this spooky cemetery. Over the years, people have claimed to see spirits wandering the cemetery or even seen phantom cars driving out of its gates.