Let’s be honest, there are a lot of lush and creepy looking forests out there. Usually, in the winter time in most places, when all that’s left are dead leaves and twigs, there’s an air of decay and mystery running around. These forests are certainly not all haunted, but more often than not, a forest during winter looks dead and a little scary. All year round though, there are plenty of stories around the world surrounding truly terrifying forests.
Ghost stories only grow in popularity over time. Plenty of people want to believe in something their eyes can’t see. Could they truly ever see something that their minds can’t fathom? Bigfoot doesn’t live in any of these woods. Nor does the Chupacabra or even the Blair Witch. But there are other places with legitimate nightmares that stalk the forests. You have your backpack ready? Here are 10 Haunted Forests Only The Brave Dare Visit.
10 Isla De Las Muñecas - Mexico
In English, this Mexican forest translates to Island Of The Dolls. Right in Mexico City near Xochimilco, yes you are imagining correctly if you’ve never seen or heard of the place. Something straight out of a movie like Annabelle, are dolls of all kinds hanging and decayif and filled with whatever overgrowth would grow on them.
According to the story, a young woman had drowned in a nearby canal. She was found near the island. The owner, Julian Santana began experiencing strange events and when a doll washed up nearby he assumed that it belonged to the girl and hung it as a show of respect. He hung dolls for fifty years to try and expel the spirit. Tragically, Santana died, and his body was found in the same exact spot the girl’s found in.
9 Hoia Baciu - Romania
A forest located in Transylvania, Romania; need we say more?! A UFO sighting in 1968 and ghost stories of all kinds have led to visitors stating feelings of unease and constantly being watched. The forest was named for a shepherd who wandered in with his flock of sheep and never was seen again. According to the forest’s website, people brave enough to traipse through have also felt physical harm, rashes, nausea, vomiting, burns, scratches. You name the unusual feeling, and a person who has survived the Hoia Baciu has reported it. Oddly enough, no vampire stories.
8 Aokigahara - Japan
The Seas Of Trees is located at the base of Mount Fuji, Japan. There are spots of a porous lava that somehow are very quiet. The atmosphere itself feels eerie.
That quiet has given way for the forest to become Jukai, or The Suicide Forest. The site is reportedly haunted by Yurei, ghosts of the dead in Japanese mythology.
7 Black Forest - Germany
The name says it all - “The Black Forest.” That should sound spooky enough for anyone to not bother entering. Supposedly, the forest is haunted by werewolves, witches, and the devil.
Reportedly, a tall disheveled man with crazy eyes would compel children to enter the forest and confess their sins, and they would never be seen again. It makes sense that The Schwarzwald, this Black Forest, is the setting for a lot of “Grimm’s Fairy Tales.”
6 Doon Hill - Scotland
Besides the legend of the Loch Ness Monster, Scotland has plenty of myths about several of its forests. In Doon Hill, there is one Scotch Pine Tree amongst a sea of oak trees. According to the legend, the tree is the opening to the Fairy Queen’s Underground Palace.” No one is supposed to know that, but in 1691, a reverend let the cat out of the bag in his book, angering a lot magic practitioners. They cursed the reverend, and his spirit has haunted Doon Hill ever since.
5 Devil’s Tramping Ground - United States
In Bear Creek, North Carolina is the purported Mouth Of Hell. At the Devil’s Tramping Ground, The Lord Of Darkness himself haunts a barren circle in the ground. Supposedly nothing has grown 40 feet near the ring for over one hundred years. Rumors abound that dogs growl incessantly near it and refuse to get close, no matter what. If that doesn't make your spine tingle with fear, we don't know what will.
4 Dow Hill - India
The nickname for Dow Hill is “The Land Of Orchids.” From the blood-curdling, bone-chilling stories though - do not let that pretty name fool you. Several people, for over a century or so, have claimed they’ve been followed by a headless body of a young boy there.
If that’s not enough to make you stay away, there are also all kinds of footsteps heard, murders have supposedly happened, red eyes float in the darkness, and the nearby boy’s school is considered equally haunted.
3 Broceliande -France
There are some who believe that the King Arthur Excalibur legend was birthed at the Broceliande Forest in Brittany, France. The forest suffered a terrible fire in 1990. Supposedly the Tomb Of Merlin is located here as well. The haunting part comes in the form of Arthur’s sister, Morgan le Fay, forever imprisoning unfaithful men who travel there.
2 Epping - England
At least ten murders of all shapes, genders, and ages have happened in Epping, England since 1966. In the 1700s, it was the hideout of a Highwayman bandit, Dick Turpin. With those kind of true stories, it’s no wonder plenty of Essex residents thinks that the forest is haunted.
The site is known for spooky sounds and housing Turpin’s ghost. The overgrown look of the forest, which supposedly hasn’t been trimmed since the 1800s, certainly adds to the ominous vibe.
1 Ballyboley - Ireland
In the town of Larne, druids used to perform rituals to open the Celtic Otherworld. Supposedly, between the 15th and 17th centuries, there were a slew of disappearances in the forest. In the mid-nineties, two men reported having heard a woman screaming. When rushed to the forest in an attempt to be good Samaritans, they were met with a tree covered in blood. When they ran away, they turned back to look and saw four figures covered in rags, heads hooded. If anything could convince you to never try helping a person in need, it would be running into those four figures in the deep, dark woods.