Spooky destinations across the US

Planning a ghoulish getaway this Halloween? Here are five spooky U.S. cities to put at the top of your travel list.

New Orleans

VooDoo Blues, New Orleans (Image: Alaskan Dude)

VooDoo Blues, New Orleans (Image: Alaskan Dude)

The Big Easy is filled with mysteries, ghost stories and a voodoo-ridden past. In fact, there are haunted sites throughout New Orleans, from St. Louis Cemetery Number One (the final resting place of New Orleans’ voodoo queen, Marie Leveaux) to the Le Pavilion Hotel, where guests report ghost sightings and strange noises. For the best look at New Orleans‘ haunted history, book one of the many ghost-related walking tours through the city.

Washington, D.C.

The nation’s capital is also one of the country’s top spots for spooky sightings. A history rife with battles, assassinations and duels has left a lasting impression on landmarks like Capitol Hill, Lafayette Square, the Hay-Adams Hotel and the United States Capitol, said to be one of the most haunted spots in the city. Take a ghost tour to learn all about the capital’s tragic past and search for the ghosts of Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln.

Seattle

Underground Seattle (Image: eschipul used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license)

Underground Seattle (Image: eschipul used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license)

From an abandoned underground city to markets built on old Native American burial grounds, there are plenty of spooky sites throughout Seattle. After the fishermen retire from a long day of flinging fish at Pike Place Market, the former burial grounds are said to be filled with ghostly apparitions of former residents like Chief Seattle’s daughter, Princess Angeline. Ghost tours of the Seattle Underground expose the corruption that filled the Emerald City’s underbelly and give you the chance to hunt for apparitions for yourself. Quite a few local hotels are also believed to be haunted by the spirits of guests and locals who committed suicide in the early 1900s.

Gettysburg

This pivotal Civil War site remains one of the country’s most haunted destinations. The ghosts of soldiers lost during the war are said to roam Gettysburg National Military Park after dark, while the ghost of Jennie Wade, the only civilian killed in the Civil War, and the spirits of abused children from a nearby orphanage are said to haunt the Jennie Wade House. If you’re up for a truly spooky encounter, spend a night at the Farnsworth House Inn, said to be haunted by the ghosts of Confederate soldiers.

Savannah

Colonial Park Cemetery, Savannah (Image: CosmicGypsy)

Colonial Park Cemetery, Savannah (Image: CosmicGypsy)

Savannah’s southern charm becomes distinctively spooky after dark, when the Georgian-style homes and picturesque cemeteries take on a darker tone. Bloody battles and mysterious murders have left a supernatural mark on what’s been called America’s most haunted city, where the tormented ghosts of children, soldiers, heartbroken women and servants abound in cemeteries, hotels and even an insane asylum. Among the city’s top haunted spots is the Moon River Brewing Company, where a particularly malevolent spirit named Toby has been known to get violent by pushing, slapping or throwing bottles at visitors.

(Main image: Ron Cogswell)