December 4, 2022

4 spooky destinations in America that you’ve likely never heard of

5 min read
4 spooky destinations in America that you’ve likely never heard of

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America has its fair share of scary spots.

Halloween celebrants will soon be looking for haunted houses to get themselves into the spooky spirit.

They may also want to travel to frightening destinations that are well-known, including unique sites in Salem, Mass., or Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.

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Here are four spine-chilling destinations if you’re hoping to find a terrifying place to visit or discuss during a Halloween party.

These four scary destinations are all located in America. Seen in this stock image is a set of creepy steps in what appears to be an abandoned building in an undisclosed location.

These four scary destinations are all located in America. Seen in this stock image is a set of creepy steps in what appears to be an abandoned building in an undisclosed location.
(iStock)

Eureka Springs, Ark.

In Arkansas, the city of Eureka Springs is said to be a haunted destination that attracts paranormal thrill seekers.

The city said its history records show that “Eureka Springs had more mortuaries, funeral homes, and undertakers per each citizen than most other U.S. cities,” according to the Eureka Springs Arkansas blog.

Ghost stories have been passed down in the city, which is nestled in the Ozark Mountains of Northwest Arkansas, and has preserved Victorian homes in downtown Eureka Springs that are recognized on the National Register of Historic Places.

The 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa is said to be haunted by former patients of Baker Hospital.

The 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa is said to be haunted by former patients of Baker Hospital.
(Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Haunted tours are plentiful in Eureka Springs, including the 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa, which some say is “America’s most haunted hotel” due to reports of paranormal activity. 

Visitors can also book a ghost tour at the 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa, which briefly served as the Baker Hospital, where a man named Norman Baker reportedly treated cancer patients with fake cures while he posed as a doctor.

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Other spooky tourist activities include a ghost hunt at the 1905 Basin Park Hotel, a reported former hideout for Chicago gangsters, and a 90-minute walking ghost tour with Haunted Eureka Springs, which takes guests to popular destinations and tunnels (also known as “The Catacombs”) that are said to be eerie. 

Bodie, Calif.

About 100 miles southeast of South Lake Tahoe is California’s ghost town Bodie.

The town once had an estimated population of 10,000 in 1880 after gold was discovered in the area, but now the long-abandoned town has been turned into a California State Historic Park, according to Bodie.com — the town’s tourism website.

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“Bodie, California is a town frozen in time, and preserved by California State Parks in a state of ‘arrested decay,'” the tourism group wrote of Bodie’s history.

Bodie State Historic Park is a gold mining ghost town in California.

Bodie State Historic Park is a gold mining ghost town in California.
(Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

The town was once bustling with miners, gunfighters, store and saloon owners and gambling dens. Residents of Bodie reportedly abandoned the town after a second major fire on June 23, 1932, destroyed much of the town, according to Bodie.com.

Bodie became a National Historic Landmark in 1961 and a California State Park in 1962. Structures that are preserved in Bodie include buildings, businesses, a cemetery and railways.

Stories have been passed down claiming the town is guarded by ghosts and any visitor who takes an item or rock from Bodie will be cursed with misfortune, according to Legends of America – a historical travel website.

Savannah, Ga.

Georgia’s city of Savannah prides itself on being “known as the most haunted city in America,” according to the city’s Visit Savannah tourism website. 

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“Walk into any historic building or cemetery in Savannah and you may catch sight of ghostly presences surrounding you,” the city wrote in an article that listed various haunted spots in Savannah.

In the listicle, the tourism board highlighted the Hamilton-Turner Inn, a hotel in which visitors have reported seeing objects move, a mysterious cigar-smoking man on the roof and hearing children’s laughter.

The Hamilton-Turner Inn is said to be a haunted hotel in Savannah, Ga.

The Hamilton-Turner Inn is said to be a haunted hotel in Savannah, Ga.
(Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal ImageGroup via Getty Images)

The travel website also mentioned the Marshall House, a rumored haunted hotel that served as a hospital for Union soldiers during the Civil War and a Yellow Fever treatment center in the 19th century.

Guests have reported seeing ghosts in hallways, hearing nonexistent children running around and finding faucets that have been turned by themselves.

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If a drink and a chance encounter with the paranormal are desired, Visit Savannah named the Moon River Brewing Company — a beer house where guests and staff have reportedly seen ghosts pass by, throw bottles and play tricks. 

One of the ghosts is said to be a lady dressed in white who haunts the restaurant’s top level. Other paranormal activities have been reported from the basement.

Portlock, Alaska

The Alaskan ghost village of Portlock has attracted believers of Bigfoot, Sasquatch and yetis to the southern edge of the Kenai Peninsula. Residents of the mining village abandoned it, claiming a hairy creature killed people, according to Only In Your State — a U.S. travel website.

Locals reportedly called the dangerous creature a “Nantiinaq,” and blamed it for leaving large footprints and marks on dead bodies. Nantiinaq roughly translates to half-man, half-beast in Alutiiq, an indigenous language that can be traced back to Aleut people

From 1931 to 1949, multiple dead bodies had been found in forests and washed up in the lagoon, according to Only In Your State.

Sightings of the Nantiinaq reportedly ramped up during that time and contributed to the entire village relocating to neighboring villages and towns. Portlock’s post office reportedly closed in 1950 and the U.S. Census dissolved it as a Census-designated place in 1980.

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It’s currently unknown if a person or creature caused the killings in Portlock. 

Still, some locals in neighboring villages say the area is haunted or frequented by Nantiinaq, according to Only In Your State.

Tours aren’t typically offered at Portlock. However, in recent years, Bigfoot documentarians have traveled to the area to explore the legend of the Nantiinaq.

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