Spookiest Sights in Europe

As Halloween quickly approaches, I wanted to highlight some of the spookiest European sights. The continent has a long history of war, famine and disease; all of which provides an ideal setting for paranormal activity. Some of the ones on this list are Europe’s most visited and otherwise famous for its architecture or refined culinary offerings, but just like any large city, also contains a shadowy past. Are you ready to explore the spookiest sights in Europe?

Top 6 Spookiest European Sights

Gloucestershire, England

Ancient Ram Inn
Ancient Ram Inn

When you think of the England, the county of Gloucestershire likely isn’t the first place you’ll associate with the word “spooky” – that is until you pay a visit to the Ancient Ram Inn, in the town of Wotton-under-Edge, arguably one of the most haunted locations in Britain.

It might look like any other charming English countryside inn but don’t let the looks deceive you. Originally built in the 12th century AD above what was once a pagan burial ground, the inn was also said to be a place where devil worshippers gathered and offered children as sacrifices. Paranormal reports from guests included mumbled voices, screaming, and ghostly apparitions. If that isn’t enough, the current owner himself said that a violent ghost dragged him out of bed on his first night there and that he also discovered two child skeletons underneath the inn’s main staircase.

Vodnjan, Croatia

Vodnjan Mummies
Vodnjan Mummies

As it turned out, you don’t need to go to Egypt to view mummies in their original tombs because the town of Vodnjan in Croatia has a collection of them too. But unlike the carefully prepared ones in Egypt, the bodies that were mummified here didn’t appear to have used proper embalming techniques, puzzling even those within the scientific community. As a result, the display of decaying bodies makes Vodnjan not only one of the spookiest European sights, but also one of the most stomach clenching. On a more positive note however, some people believe that the body of St Nicolosa, considered to be the best-preserved mummy in Europe, has healing powers.

Kutná Hora, Czech Republic

Image via Flickr by Milan Boers, CC BY 2.0
Image via Flickr by Milan Boers, CC BY 2.0

Travelers with keen interests in medieval architecture and the history associated with the Dark Ages will likely have the city of Kutná Hora on top of their must visit list. A mere hour west by rental car from Prague, this city is known primarily because of the Sedlec Ossuary, a Gothic chapel that contains skeletons of tens of thousand plague victims, now carefully arranged and constructed into bizarre works of art. Visitors will find a giant chandelier made up of tibias and fibulas and a creation of what appears to be a coat of arms adorned with skulls. Also known as the Bone Church, this now famous attraction attracts visitors from around the globe.

Cluj Napoca, Romania

Hoai Baciu Forest, Spookiest Sights in Europe
Image via Flickr by Swithun Crowe, CC BY 2.0

Many horror enthusiasts will argue that Bran, the sight of the Dracula-inspired castle, is Romania’s scariest town and certainly one of the spookiest European sights, but you’ll likely rethink that sentiment when you step foot into the Hoia-Baciu Forest. Located in the city of Cluj Napoca, the forest contains oddly bent trees that contribute to its eerie ambiance, ensuring goose bumps as you tread along its unmarked trails. Not only that, but reports of unexplained disappearances, ghost sightings, and strange electronic malfunctions within makes it a destination only for the bravest souls.

Paris, France

Image via Flickr by Emanuel Cifuentes, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Image via Flickr by Emanuel Cifuentes, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

If strolling above ground cemeteries isn’t enough of a thrill, then you should try visiting the Paris Catacombs, located underneath the City of Light’s medieval cobblestones. Considered the “world’s largest grave” because it contains the remains of close to six million people, it also happens to be one of the most visited attractions in Paris. The areas open to the public represent just a small section of the overall size but it’s enough to make even the boldest individuals feel a tinge of fear in their spines.

Dargavs in North Ossetia, Russia

Image via Flickr by Sergey Norin, CC BY 2.0
Image via Flickr by Sergey Norin, CC BY 2.0

This abandoned settlement in the north Ossetian region of Russia hits the nail as one of the spookiest European sights and rightly so. The sights of stone huts that stand on the hillsides might appear somewhat fascinating at first but be forewarned that these seemingly beautiful architectural creations contain remains of families that once resided there. If you’re brave enough to take a peek inside, you’ll see human bones and skulls sitting right next to their materials possessions. Should you decide to go, just make sure there’s enough gas in your rental car.

About Iris A

Website: http://www.travelingwithiris.com

Born in the Philippines, but grew up in Texas, Iris has been traveling and writing about her experiences for well over a decade. Her work has been published on well-known travel sites like Hipmunk (#hipmunkcitylove) and D Magazine Online Travel Club. She has been all over Europe, the US, and has recently started exploring Latin America. She loves trying local cuisine and visiting UNESCO deemed World Heritage sites. Her favourite city is New York, with London, following a close 2nd. You can follow her on Twitter @sundeeiris or through her travel blog, Traveling With Iris.

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