Halloween is all about spooky surprises and things that go bump in the night. Some of us are content with creepy costumes and decorations, but for others, the holiday offers an opportunity to venture across the veil into a dark, mysterious world of spirits and their stories.
Do you believe in ghosts? If you’re looking for an experience that goes beyond trick-or-treating this Halloween, why not take a road trip to a real haunted location?
North America is home to a spooky array of log cabins with haunted histories and restless phantoms. Here are ten locations you can tour or stay in for chills and thrills this fall.
Resting on the edge of Ontario’s White Otter Lake, this three-story log cabin is a destination you can reach only by boat or plane. During your visit, stop at the grave of Jimmy McOuat, who built the cabin by hand as a gift for his bride before his death by drowning in 1918. You might catch a glimpse of McOuat’s waterlogged ghost wandering the grounds.
Located in Robertson County, Tennessee, this 1800s-era log cabin was once the home of John Bell and his family, who were tormented for years by an invisible spirit. The “Bell Witch” was a chilling female entity who spoke to the children, physically assaulted family members and apparently even caused the death of the family’s patriarch. If you opt for a tour today, you may hear the mysterious sounds that plagued the Bells as you explore the now-empty home.
Nestled in the woods of Shenandoah National Park, The Corbin Cabin dates to the early 1900s and is one of the oldest structures in the park. If you’re up for a hike, you can rent the log cabin for the night. Just keep an eye out for the ghost of Nee Corbin, who died in childbirth and still clings to the cabin, wandering the forest and treading the wooden floors.
One of six cabins in a plantation village in Fort Worth, Texas, Foster Cabin was home to Harry Foster and his wife in the 1800s. Adapted into a living history museum and open to visitors, the cabin still echoes with uncanny footsteps and the lingering scent of Mrs. Foster’s perfume.
Venture deep into the Great Smokey Mountains National Park to chance an encounter with the legendary Lucy, the ghost of a young woman who perished in a fire that destroyed the cabin where she and her parents lived in the early 1900s. Today, she still wanders the path on Roaring Fork Trail, looking for a ride. If you’re up for camping and exploring the cabin rebuilt at the site of the fire, she might follow you.
Make your way down to Savannah, Georgia, to book your spooky stay in this 1799 historic pine cabin known for its longtime lady resident. The ghostly Laura lived here for 50 years before her death, tending the house and planting flowers, and she supposedly continues her care from beyond the grave. If you spend the night, she might greet you by flickering the lights, keeping you warm with the scent of burning wood, or gracing the dinner table with her presence.
Part of the U.S. National Register of Historic Places, the Austin Log House is an early-19th-century cabin located in Austintown, Ohio. While it was hidden for years under a larger house, the Historical Society restored the landmark and allows the public inside and on the grounds for tours. But watch out — you might spot the rumored headless soldier who stalks the area.
8. Fort Meigs
Stationed in Ohio, Fort Meigs rests on the ancient site of a Native American burial ground. During the war of 1812, soldiers staying in its log bunkhouses faced slaughter from an unexpected Native American attack. Today, you can explore the grounds and the bunkhouse on a ghost walk, where you might see the flashing lights and hear the thunder of muskets from ghosts still roaming the site.
Positioned in the mountains of Sunset, South Carolina, the Shamrock House dates to 1925 and possesses 10 acres of beautiful grounds for large groups of overnight visitors to explore. But there may be a chill in the night. Before you tuck yourself into bed, keep an ear out for the quiet sobbing of Nancy, the ghost of a beautiful young preacher’s daughter who overdosed on opium.
10. Mathias Cabin
If you’re up for a hike, head to Clearcreek Metro Park in Rockfield, Ohio, for a glimpse of the chilling Mathias Cabin. It’s not meant to host guests, but this cabin will make an impression on anyone who passes by. If you venture up the path to the windows, it will speak to you in strange voices, with wavering lights and the occasional ghostly face peering through the glass. Set up camp nearby if you’re brave enough!