Most Terrifying Places in America
The Scariest Spots in the States
Evil lurks in every dark corner while restless spirits haunt America's most frightening spots. Travel Channel is taking you to the creepiest haunted mansions, most terrifying basements and the scariest stretch of road in the States.
After you’ve taken a look at these terrifying attractions -- take a look at Travel's Best Halloween Attractions 2013. Meet our panel of advisors and see the creepy locations they picked to help you plan your next frightening getaway!
The Shanghai Tunnels, an underground network of dark passageways, snake across 9 miles from Old Town to downtown Portland. These tunnels have a sinister past as the center of an illegal maritime practice known as "shanghaiing." From 1870 to 1940, abductors snatched up unsuspecting men and sold them to sea captains to work aboard ships for free. Crafty "shanghaiiers" preyed on their victims at saloons that had trap doors, or dead falls, that released sloshed bar patrons into this subterranean maze. The abductors held the men captive in these tunnels until they were ready to ship them out to sea, sometimes to ports as far as Shanghai. Today, tour guides lead guests through the tunnels, which are said to be haunted by the restless spirits of these captives who died underground.
Old Town Tattoo
Patrons looking to get inked at Chicago's Old Town Tattoo may be surprised to find more than body artwork at this haunted shop. In the 1880s, this spot was home to Chicago's first established funeral parlor. Richie "Tapeworm" Hererra saw potential in this former mortuary and converted the rented building into a tattoo shop in 2003. But the artists and visitors were spooked by all kinds of unnatural activity, including poltergeists that moved objects and a ghostly apparition of a man in a suit. Sadly, owner Richie Hererra passed away of a heart attack while in the building. However, his friends believe his spirit lingers, looking over the staff and sometimes even playing practical jokes.
St. Louis, Missouri
This grand mansion may be a popular inn and restaurant in St. Louis, MO, but its past is not so pleasant. The mansion is marked by 60 years of tragedy for the wealthy Lemp family. At least 4 members of this doomed dynasty died in the house on DeMenil Place. William Lemp committed suicide in his home 1904. When the family brewing business went bad during the 1920s, his son Billy took his own life as well. In 1949 it was Billy's brother Charles who committed the third suicide in the home. The fourth death in the family was a 13-year-old boy who was physically and mentally disabled. He lived his life hidden away in the attic, gazing out the window at the life outside until he died in that same room. Visitors can experience the paranormal -- and may even encounter one of these spirits -- on a weekly ghost tour of the mansion.
Bobby Mackeys Music World
This haunted honky-tonk is a real scream but not just because of the rollicking music and mechanical bull. Even the loudest line dancing can't scare away the ghosts prowling around the basement. Pearl Bryan was just 22 years old when she was killed during a botched amateur abortion in 1896. Then in the 1950s, a love story turned sour when another young pregnant woman killed herself and her unborn child after her father had the child's father killed. With tales of lost love, satanic rituals, botched abortions and suicide, an eerie vibe remains underground in this ghastly hot spot.
San Jose, California
You may know the way to San Jose, but good luck finding your way around the haunted Winchester House. Sarah Winchester inherited the wealth of the prominent Winchester Rifle Company in 1881 after her husband passed away. However, her sorrow from the loss of her husband and the death of her young daughter just a few years earlier left her stunned and sad. To battle her own demons, she began building this rambling Victorian at the bequest of a psychic and some demanding spirits. These spirits became the invisible architects behind every strange nook and cranny as Sarah spent 38 years adding on to the house. Today visitors can check out all 24,000 square feet with 160 rooms (including some that are hidden), 47 fireplaces and staircases that lead to nowhere.
The Whaley House
San Diego, California
Wealthy retailer Thomas Whaley built his family estate in 1857 in San Diego. The only problem was he built his mansion on unholy ground, on the former site of the public gallows where criminals were executed. Whaley's family history was marred with death and suicide, and these restless spirits still haven't left his home. Visitors often find their senses are assaulted by errant house alarms and strange smells -- these ghosts are partial to cigar smoke and heavy perfume.
West Milford, New Jersey
Clinton Road is just 10 miles long, but the drive can feel never-ending when you're racing to keep ahead of the evil spirits that lurk about. This desolate stretch of road has all of the makings for the classic urban legend -- alleged paranormal activity, satanic rituals and phantom trucks that send drivers on a wild ride. More recently, it was a dumping ground for a mob hit man known as the Iceman. No haunted thoroughfare is complete without a dead man's curve, located about 3 miles into the hair-raising drive. The worst part? There are no exits on this lonesome highway.