With Halloween season upon us, we are all starting to feel it in our bones. The days are getting a little shorter, the breezes are much fresher, and there's that autumn scent in the air as people prepare (and then put away) their lawn decorations for the imminent trick or treaters. You probably planned for an awesome halloween party, putting together what you can only assume is the world's scariest costume. Zombie nun back from the grave? Evil clown? Well kids, you ain't seen nothing yet...

The below images are not just eerie, the stories behind them are straight up shiver-inducing! And might we remind you that these aren't some Hollywood movie sets that have been doctored to appear spooky or sinister, unfortunately for us they are real deal places that exist in our world! Places that you can still travel to and visit if you're brave enough... in fact most of them attract ghost hunters from all over the world!

Regardless of where you stand on the whole 'paranormal activity thing', these pictures might just be what it takes to make you think twice. We don't recommend reading this alone or in the dark as it may just send a shiver down your spine.

25 Trinity Loop, Newfoundland - Amusement Park Gone Awry

Once a beloved transportation link in Canada's east that later became an amusement park, Newfoundland's Trinity Loop now lies in ruin. It was shut down in 1988 when other modes of transportation became more in vogue like highways and airplanes. In a bid to keep the history alive, they repurposed it as an amusement park where the train would take people on a loop around the pond or take a spin on the ferris wheel.

When it eventually closed for good in 2004 despite being declared a heritage site, not much was done to alter its state and it began to rot away in decay, only vandals daring to visit. After a being hit with a storm, the remains are mostly ravaged by nature which gives it a truly doomy vibe.

24 Poveglia, Italy - An unsettling Past

This forbidden island, located half of a mile from Venice has a long history of isolation and death. Constructed by the Venetian government from 1793 to 1814 this structure was designed as a plague quarantine station.

In its heyday it held as many as 160,000 diseased persons who remained there until they perished. There is a rumour that says 50% of the soils contents is composed of human remains. It has yet to be fully investigated. If that weren't enough for you, Napoleon also used this island to store weapons. Continuing this tale, by 1922 the island was used as a mental hospital where it is said the Doctor tortured his patients and then saw his own demise by falling off the bell tower. This island is understandably restricted from the public.

23 Pripyat, Ukraine - Deserted and Decaying

The 9th nuclear city in the Soviet Union meant that Pripyat was never a normal dwelling to begin with as its sole purpose for existing was to house the workers and families of the neighbouring power plant. After the nuclear disaster of Chernobyl in 1986, nearly 50,000 residents evacuated and the majority of the world had no idea.

Today, remnants of panic and destroyed dwellings remain as painful reminders of one of the most detrimental nuclear meltdowns in all of history and the harm it caused by trying to cover it up (temporarily). This town is blocked as a yellow zone and remains largely abandoned apart from the occasionally curious tourist.

22 The Great Blue Hole, Belize (sink hole) - Mysterious Deep Sea Cave Claiming Lives

Belize is home to the largest sea hole in the entire world, affectionately nicknamed 'the divers' cemetery'. And for good reason! It is the deepest of deep at 407 feet which tends to attract some of the world's top scuba divers who hope to catch a glimpse of otherworldly tropical fish and formations that lie beneath the water's surface.

Sadly, many never make it out. To give you some perspective, even the most experienced divers in the world won't go deeper than 130 feet so we have only seen the top third of what lies within this hole. Despite upwards of 200 reported non-resurfaces, it's mysterious appearance is said to have emerged from an ancient curse, which draws people in and down they go into the dark blue cave. Perhaps in this case, the only curse is their curiosity...

21 Winchester Mystery House, San Jose, California - A House of Horrors

Located at 525 South Winchester Blvd. in San Jose, this Victorian-style mansion once belonged to the widow of the firearm magnate William Wirt Winchester. Since its inception in 1884, it is said to be haunted by the victims of Winchester firearms.

The build was reportedly advised by a Boston medium who expressed, following her husband's and child's premature passing that the widower must provide a structure to tribute to those victim to the rifles produced by her late husband. The work was nonstop until Sarah Winchester's passing in 1922. Today it remains a tourism peculiarity as it boasts 161 rooms, some of which contain evidence of the former owner's superstitious nature who intended to do everything to ward off those evil spirits.

20 Mary King's Close, Edinburgh - Ancient Plague Spirits Lurk

What may appear much like any other laneway in historic old town of Edinburgh, is the site of a slew of urban myths and legends. Since the 17th century, Mary King's Close has been a popular destination for paranormal research and has been featured on numerous television series reporting hauntings.

Visitors on the Trip Advisor page have mentioned their freshly charged phones lost all charge and that members of the tour group displayed unusual physical symptoms from their visit. Perhaps they're experiencing a taste of what residents endured during the bubonic plague outbreak that ran ramped in these close quarters during the 17th century.

A myth suggests that some 600 residents were sealed off in Mary King's Close by the government to contain the disease, ultimately leading to a cruel and confined fate for many.

19 Veijo Rönkkönen Sculpture Garden, Parikkala, Finland - Intimidating Statues That Stare You Down

Here in Finland lies 500 hand-sculpted cement figurines. A lifetime of mastery by artist Veijo Rönkkönen may appear uncannily creepy, as their modelled to display human behaviour that gives them a lifelike appearance. With 200 of these statues on the property, you may do a double from time to time. Their faces however, resemble anything but human characteristics almost seeming to have (an intentionally) possessed appearance.

If that weren't enough to send you running, a select few statues have been 'decorated' with human teeth! An artist but a recluse, Veijo didn't refuse visitors but seemed rather apathetic to their prying eyes on his property. Following his passing, the land has been sold and will be repurposed for tourist visits for those who aren't put off by a mere few human teeth.

18 Mirny Diamond Mine, Siberia - Russia's Bermuda Triangle

Perhaps the most mysterious and certainly one of the largest holes on planet earth is this open air pit. It is said the vortex it creates is so strong it can suck a helicopter (or basically anything) right out of the sky above it!

At 1000 feet deep and half a mile in diameter, it's strange enough. The fact that it is also a diamond pit - is the icing on the cake for certain. Throughout the 1960's it produced 10,000,000 carats of diamonds each year and 20 percent of them were gem quality.

Its total production wielded a total of 13 billion dollars in diamonds. Ka-Ching! Currently, this open air mine is abandoned with restricted air space above it (safety first!) but something tells us it won't stay that way for long..

17 Ye Olde York, England (all of it) - Horrifying Hauntings on Every Corner

This old town is perhaps the single greatest ghost town of all-time.  They aren't hiding from their haunted history either, it's on display for all to see with your pick of ghost-tours and extra spook-tacular events during halloween, it's a must for any ghost seekers.

From a 700 year old building which allegedly houses 4 separate ghosts (including a ghost-cat!) to a Viking fort, indicators of otherworldly visitors are here in scores. At times shelves get mysteriously stocked at midnight or shop doors are found unhinged inexplicably. If getting your sleep disturbed by being dragged from your bed by a ghost sounds like a dream come true, visit the Golden Fleece or Dean Court for a one of a kind accommodation.

16 The Raven Room, Charlottesville - Edgar Allan Poe's Haunt... Literally

Edgar Allan Poe was a bit of a dark dude, which explains the eerie sensation of standing in his old dorm room, aptly named The Raven Room. Containing original furnishings from Poe's home this room is meant to serve as a shrine to the decorated author but really, it looks pretty darn haunted to us.

Restored in 1924 by an architecture student who was part of the elusive 'Raven Society'  (said to celebrate academic excellence, but we'd be willing to be they were doing séances). This room is still used to initiate new members into the Raven Society during the night, amidst candles and the stuffed bird in true Poe fashion.

15 Leap Castle, Ireland - A Hidden Pile of Bones

One of Ireland's most notoriously haunted locations, this castle has been featured on Ghosthunters and Most Haunted television series.While it's date of origin is often disputed, one thing that's agreed on is that the castle was built over a ceremonial site used by Druids.

What can then only be described as a series of unfortunate events including blood-thirsty owners, numerous crimes and a discovered pile of bones in an oubliette has now lead to the eventual reconstruction and private ownership of leap castle.

While you can't stay at the castle (thank goodness) you can certainly swing by to experience its malevolent forces for yourself. Current owner, Mr. Ryan has been known to give guests an impromptu tour, just be sure to watch your step as accidents are known to happen here.

14 The Tolbooth, Scotland - The Most Haunted Spot in Aberdeen

A once-jail has a story to tell... and it does so in the form of a museum. You can find out about the sordid past of its prisoners. Taking the winding staircase while gripping to the rope railing can be freaky enough but stepping foot in the dungeon-like prison cells takes it to a whole next level.

Keep your hands away from the ghost's erm.. museums' guillotine blade while you freely observe a number of weapons and the town drum. If small rooms or lifelike mannequins make you feel queasy, this may not be your top stop in Aberdeen.

13 Hoia Baciu Forest, Romania - UFO Sightings and Disappearing People

Covering a whopping 250 hectares, this forest is described as 'the Bermuda triangle' of Romania. Apparition sightings, anxious feelings and faces in photos that only appeared once developed, are among the most frequent claims.

In the 1970s it was claimed to be a hotbed for UFO activity with multiple documented sightings.  The eerily shaped trees certainly contribute to the creepiness of this backdrop. Some stories report incidents of missing persons who return seemingly defying any time/aging in the process. A gateway to another dimension? A UFO utopia? It's hard to say what's happening but with so many varied claims, it's evident that this is not your typical forest.

12 Nagoro, Japan - A Town of Lifesize Dolls

Are those dolls riding bikes? They sure are.

In this small town in Japan, they replace the departed with lifesize dolls. Made of straw, these dolls are meant to act as stand-ins for popular activities or places that relatives would normally enjoy. Perhaps as a cure for loneliness in this rural locale that is seemingly losing its residents to big city life. While creative, it is admittedly a bit disjointing but well worth seeing with your own, real-life human eyes.

Or if you prefer, you can learn more about artist Tsukimi Ayano in the documentary about this Nagaro specialty entitled The Valley of Dolls.

11 Casa Loma, Toronto - Only Ghosts Have Lived Here

Casa Loma is located on a hill in a bustling residential area of Toronto. Built by Sir Henry Pellatt he was a leading financier in the early 1900s and controlled 25% of Canada's total economy before eventually facing financial demise.

The ghosts said to roam the decadent hallways and dingy basement tunnels vary from a maid in all white, to a more 'playful' spirit who likes to pull hair. Getting your ghoul on is easier than you might think as every year the castle shuts regular operations down for a big spooky halloween party.

10 Alcatraz, California -  Not Resting in Peace

Extreme feats to escape this inescapable prison has left the structure with a bit of a tortured past. Located 1.25 miles off the shores of San Francisco, the island served as a federal prison from 1934 to 1963 and housed notorious gangsters like Al CaponeRobert Franklin Stroud (the Birdman of Alcatraz), and Alvin "Creepy" Karpis (who served more time at Alcatraz than any other inmate).

It is said that this site is still haunted despite it's sole purpose as a museum, due to the relocation of many burial plots in order to build it. It is said that this has forever disrupted the peace of the resting and they now faithfully haunt the island.

9 Hanging Coffins of Sagada, Philippines - Something Is In The Air

Perhaps just a cultural difference, but still a little outside our comfort zone, is the hanging coffin. An ancient burial tradition is meant to protect the corpse from wildlife and provide eternal peace as the soul is closer to heaven.

To think that this is an exposed mural of motionless bodies is pretty heavy duty, even if their reasoning is sound. When visiting Sagada, it can be typical to see hundreds of coffins fastened to cliffs many of which were hand-carved by those who now rest within them.


7 City of the Dead in Dargavs, Russia - Tiny Houses Full of Bodies

The City of the Dead, it has a nice ring to it, doesn't it?

Otherwise known as the village of Dargavs is located on one of 5 mountain ridges in Russia. While it considers itself a city, we hear it's kind of dead (ha). The truth is the residents are piles of bones within tombs or crypts that appear like tiny houses darted along the base of the mountain. An unusual ceremony that can't be traced back to any particular purpose, it remains an off-putting oddity that many locals have refused to interact with (understandably) for fear of their lives.

6 Sedlec Ossuary, Czech Republic - A Human Chandelier

Beneath the Cemetery Church of All Saints lies this peculiarity. The chapel contains the bones of between 40,000 and 70,000 people. Many of the bones have been arranged as a form of decoration not excluding an enormous chandelier of bones that has within it every bone of the human body.

The disturbing macabre result was originally out of practicality with the goal of making space in the land for new burials. This meant removing and relocating many skeletons. Nothing went to waste, even the coat of arms of the Schwarzenberg family displayed is also made of human bones.