Haunted London

London may be best known for the royal family, double decker buses, and bangers and mash ... but every city has a dark side. Go behind the scenes of some of the city's most legendary, haunted places.

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Tower of London

London’s castles crawl with spirits. The most haunted of them all? The Tower of London — where "off with her head" wasn't just a saying, it was reality. In 1536, Queen Anne Boleyn was arrested and beheaded at the Tower Green, a green space within the Tower of London. Other royal ghosts lurk in the castle, too. Arbella Stuart, cousin of King James I, was allegedly murdered in the Tower of London. While you’re there, be sure to check out the Bloody Tower, where two young princes, Edward V and Richard, were believed to be murdered by the Duke of Gloucester. These young boys’ voices and screams are heard throughout the tower.

Hampton Court Palace

Located just outside London, Hampton Court Palace swarms with royal ghosts. Catherine Howard, the adulterous wife of Henry VIII, supposedly loiters around at night. In 2003, CCTV cameras at the palace reported a strange sighting: The alleyway doors at Hampton Court burst open in the middle of the night. If you’re not too scared, visit the place yourself and check out the great hall, royal chapel, maze and gardens. You’ll feel the haunted vibes all around you.

The London Dungeon

The London Dungeon allows visitors to delve into the ancient capital’s most horrible history experience. Featuring live actors, thrilling rides and exciting special effects, the Dungeon is truly interactive, bringing the horrors of historic London to life.

British Pub

This traditional British pub has a very spooky past. In the 1800s, a young man known as Cedric cheated at cards at the Grenadier and was beaten to death on-site. As a way to pay off the young man’s debts, modern-day visitors can attach money to the ceiling of the pub, which is covered with currency from all over the globe. Even if you’re not a believer of the supernatural, you’ll love the patriotic look of this place.

The Tube

Located in the borough of Islington, this London Underground station has a haunted reputation. In 1758, Anne Naylor, a young girl, was allegedly murdered by a hatmaker and his wife in a building that was torn down in the 19th century to make room for the new train station. From the station’s opening in 1863 to the present day, travelers on the Tube claim to hear Anne’s cries and screams in the train’s haunted tunnels.

The British Museum

Death looms large at the British Museum. Check out the Colombian death masks, Japanese coffins and the amazing wax death mask of Oliver Cromwell. And, of course, the British Museum has whole rooms dedicated to those macabre, death-obsessed ancient Egyptians, including the tomb-chapel of Nebamun and lots of mummies!

Theatre Royal

London’s renowned Theatre Royal, Drury Lane has had countless haunted sightings over the years. Both actors and staff members have claimed that they saw Joseph Grimaldi, inventor of the modern clown, and the so-called “Man in Grey.” The latter was allegedly stabbed in the Theatre Royal, and his bones were discovered in a side passage in 1848. The theater isn’t too spooky, though: Rumor has it that an appearance by one of these ghosts is good luck for performances.

Bruce Castle

Bruce Castle, which is located near Tottenham Cemetery in London, was the site of a gruesome suicide. It’s said that in the latter half of the 1600s, a woman named Lady Constantia Coleraine jumped from an upstairs balcony of the castle and died instantaneously. Folklore has it that every November, around the time of the lady’s death, a figure can be seen jumping from the same balcony. If you dare, take a trip to the castle and nearby cemetery.

The Ghost Bus Tour

The Ghost Bus Tour takes you around London, the West End and even goes south of the River Thames. Onboard, actors and technical trickery combine to create a complete scare tour experience.

Jack the Ripper Tour

Between 1888 and 1891 anywhere from five to 11 women were murdered by Jack the Ripper. Jack the Ripper was never caught and to this day his identity is unknown. Today, you can take a Jack the Ripper walking tour and visit many of the locations where his victims were found.

Covent Garden

The Covent Garden Tube station is a must-see. This London Underground stop places you smack dab in a great shopping area and one of London’s best theater districts. Before heading up the elevators of the station, channel ghosts at this spooky destination. Allegedly, an actor named William Terriss haunts the station occasionally. Staff members at Covent Garden claim that they have seen Terriss walk across the platforms in a gray suit. Other employees have heard bizarre noises on the platforms when no travelers are there.

The London Bridge Experience

The London Bridge Experience is a two-part tourist attraction situated within the arches of London Bridge. First, enjoy a fascinating trip back in time as the London Bridge Experience delves through the history of the bridge. The second part is a full on scare attraction that utilizes special effects, computer-generated imagery and real characters.

Old Bailey

The Central Criminal Court, otherwise known as the Old Bailey, has a disturbing past. The court sits on the former site of Newgate Prison. Ghosts seem to wander the area surrounding the Old Bailey. If you’re looking for a ghost-filled pub, sit down for a drink at the Viaduct Tavern on Newgate Street. One ghost, Fred, apparently pours out guests’ drinks and flickers the lights at this spooky pub.

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey is an inevitably haunted destination, considering that it houses more than 3,000 buried bodies. The most common spirit that haunts Westminster Abbey is Father Benedictus, a former Benedictine monk of the abbey. In 1900, a woman reported a vivid sighting of him. After about 25 seconds, Father Benedictus vanished into the walls of the church. In 1932, two visitors reported talking to him. He’s typically thought to appear between 5 and 6 p.m.

St. Paul's Cathedral

St. Paul’s Cathedral is definitely an eerie place to visit. Its most well-known ghost is a whistling clergyman, who haunts the west end of the chapel. In Ghosts of London, author Elliott O’Donnell recalls meeting an American couple who witnessed a black cloud suddenly appearing in the chapel. Regardless of the legitimacy of the folklore, St. Paul’s Cathedral is a wonderful place to visit. Cross the nearby Millennium Bridge for pedestrians and visit the Tate Modern museum for a culture-filled afternoon.

Highgate Cemetery

This creepy cemetery opened in 1839 and was the go-to burial spot for Victorian socialites. But by the 1960s, Highgate Cemetery fell into a state of disrepair and decay. On Swain’s Lane, a street that cuts through the cemetery, several paranormal incidences have been reported. Some Londoners even claim to have seen a vampire lurking in the darkness. If you’re brave enough, check out Hampstead Heath, a large London park close to Highgate Cemetery that is also reportedly haunted.

Clink Hostels

If you're looking for a macabre place to stay in London, Clink Hostels provides the perfect solution. Built inside an imposing 19th-century courthouse, you can sleep in one of seven authentic prison cells with original features like heavy doors and barred windows.

50 Berkeley Square

50 Berkeley Square is currently the home of Maggs Bros, antiquarian book dealers, and is well worth a visit on a London sightseeing tour. It is said that the attic room of the house is haunted by the spirit of a young woman who committed suicide by throwing herself from the top floor window.

Bank Station on the London Underground

The London Underground’s Bank station gets its name from the nearby Bank of London, an architectural sight to see on your trip to the city. At Bank station, one ghost repeatedly stalks the underground. Sarah Whitehead, who is known as the Black Nun and was the sister of Philip Whitehead (a fraudulent banker at the Bank of London), searches for her convicted brother in an all-black outfit. Travelers at Bank claim to see Sarah’s ghost on platforms and passageways in the station. Some visitors also complain of an unexplainable stench coming from the station’s tunnels.

SCREAM at Madame Tussauds

Located deep within Madame Tussauds, SCREAM is an inner chamber where things take a scary turn. Here, visitors are taken into a maximum-security prison taken over by the unhinged inmates. A great interactive London scare experience in one of London’s top tourist attractions.

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