The horror genre is often times very tied into location. Creatures are bound to forests, to darkness, and haunted hills. Monsters do not come from nowhere, but from our environment and the anxieties about where we live.
Europe is certainly no stranger to horror. It has suffered famous murders such as Jack the Ripper and seen the worst of plagues such as the Black Death. Fear in Europe has spawned legends such as Dracula and of witches and ghosts. So of course horror movies get filmed in Europe as well! Here are ten locations for horror film tourists to check out in Europe.
10 Wismar and Lübeck, Germany - Nosferatu
Made all the way back in 1922, Nosferatu was shot in northern Germany. One such location was Wismar which was filmed with its market square, harbor, and St. Mary's Church. In Lübeck, they filmed at the abandoned Salzspeicher and in the churchyard of Aegidienkirche.
Nosferatu may be old, but it has become known as one of the most influential pieces of cinema, mostly notably for the horror genre.
9 Osea Island, Essex, UK - The Woman In Black
Osea Island is Essex is a tiny privately owned piece of land. Often times it is visited by artists and musicians for some solitude and its recording studio. Like in the film The Woman in Black, which was filmed there, the island is only accessed through a narrow path that is only passable every seven hours due to the tide.
The Woman in Black came out in 2012 and is often referenced as the horror movie with Harry Potter in it since Daniel Radcliffe played the main character. The film was pretty spooky and atmospheric thanks to this little island.
8 Florence, Italy - Hannibal Lecter
One of the most famous horror characters ever is the cannibal, Hannibal Lecter. What made him so interesting is that he had refined tastes and was somewhat of a classy guy. Maybe that is why Florence, Italy, is an important location in his life since it is so famous for the arts.
There are locations speckled all over Florence to check out if you are a Hannibal fan. You could check out the Palazzo Vecchio, the grand Santa Maria Novella Pharmacy, and the cloister of Santa Croce convent.
7 Anwoth, Scotland - The Wicker Man
The Wicker Man is a horror classic. Now we are talking about the original 1973 film here, not the one with Nicholas Cage and the bees scene. The film takes place on a remote Scottish island known as Summerisle. However, the real filming locations are on the Scottish mainland. The village of Anworth in Dumfries and Galloway has the church ruins that are in the film. You can also find the schoolhouse there.
The best part is that the film was about a pagan cult, and there are actual real pagan sites you can find around Scotland that you can check out while you visit.
6 Belchite, Spain - Pan's Labyrinth
The Spanish film, Pan's Labyrinth was unique in that it had the elements of a horror movie, a fairytale, and a historical drama all into one.
Part of the movie was filmed in an actual ghost town known as Belchite. A new town was eventually built, but the ruins of the old one that was destroyed in 1937 still stand as a memorial to the Spanish civil war. While the town was once available to explore on one's own, now you can only go there with a guide from a local tourist board.
5 Windsor, UK - The Rocky Horror Picture Show
This Victorian Gothic country house in Windsor dates back all the way to 1859. However, it was a site for a cult musical film directed by Jimmy Sharman. That's right, The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
The real building that serves as the film site is Oakley Court, a hotel that looks over the River Thames. So you can actually stay here but it will likely be difficult and expensive due to its popularity. It has an award-winning restaurant, a golf course, indoor pool, and tennis courts.
4 Alderminster, UK - The Haunting
In Alderminster, there is a Gothic mansion that served as a filming site for the 1963 horror film, The Haunting. The building is the Ettington Park Hotel. So like the site for The Rocky Horror Picture Show, you can actually spend a night here if you have the means to do so.
The hotel has four stars, an oak room restaurant, and 18th-century historic features. Even if you have never seen The Haunting, you will still feel as though you are an an epic haunted mansion.
3 Cornwall, UK - The Witches
The Witches is a dark fantasy comedy based on a book by Roald Dahl that came out in 1990 but some consider it a part of the horror genre since the villains are evil witches who kill children. It was this film that won Anjelica Huston two awards for Best Actress.
The movie was captured at The Headland Hotel and Spa in Cornwall. So hooray, another location you can spend the night at!
2 St Michael's Mount, UK - Dracula
Dracula has many films and this one came out in 1979 and was portrayed by Frank Langella. While the story took place in Whitby, Yorkshire, it was actually filmed in the southwest region of Cornwall where you can find many dramatic landscapes.
You can find the beautiful St Michael's Mount, which played the part of Count Dracula's castle. Besides that, you can also see the asylum which is Camelot Castle Hotel and the village where Dracula attempts to get on the ship, which is Mevagissey.
1 London, UK - 28 Days Later
This 2002 post-apocalyptic horror film had a lot of scenes in London. London, of course, is filled with places where movies have been filmed. The main character wakes up from a coma in the city and explores it to see the aftermath of the zombie apocalypse.
To show how desolate the world had become, they filmed normally busy places as now abandoned. These sites include Westminster Bridge, Piccadilly Circus, Oxford Street, and Horse Guards Parade. The film crew had to close down the streets in order to film them as abandoned!