Danse Macabre: Spooky Spots for Halloween

This week I’ve been missing home and gearing up for Halloween. I’ve gotten little hints of the holiday here and there in Italy, but it’s still, by and large, something that’s only becoming a thing in Italy now. Back home, I never went to any haunted houses really except for the one at Hebert’s Candy Mansion as a kid (and everybody went there just for the sundae bar at the end). While I may not be well versed in the haunted house, entertainment front, here are a couple of spooky, macabre, and allegedly haunted places. I’m drawing on some old knowledge here, so take everything with a grain of salt.

The Lizzie Borden House
The Lizzie Borden House

Lizzie Borden HouseAnyone who grew up in Massachusetts knows the story: Lizzie Borden took an axe dot dot dot. I’ve written about her Fall River house where the controversial murders took place before, but I want to point out that the venue offers tours and is also a bed & breakfast. There have been a couple of those Haunted America shows done at the house, so I don’t think I would actually want to stay there…

SalemWhen people think of Massachusetts and Halloween, they always look to Salem. When I was a kid. I was thoroughly freaked out by it, but when I returned in middle school it seemed kind of desolate and less scary. That said, the town is still cool to visit at Halloween, and if your’e going to go to Salem, this may be a good time to do it.

Savannah–The most haunted city in America, Savannah packs a punch with its ghost tours. I went in third grade, so my knowledge isn’t very profound, but I do remember being scared during the ghost tour. My friend who goes to school there told me that he’s seen shirts which say “Boo y’all,” so I think the city is pretty into it. Aside from the ghosts, the city is a really nice, old, southern place which is enjoyable in and of itself.

Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini, Rome–Finally, this is more macabre than haunted, but in Rome there’s an old Capuchin monastery where the monks there fashioned the skeletons of their deceased brothers into chandeliers and decorations of sorts. It’s a very odd place to visit with a much different tone from the Colosseum or Piazza Navona, and there are absolutely no pictures allowed.

Finally, a lot of cities have their own ghost tours that are worth looking into. Newport has one which I’ve reviewed, and even Bowdoin has one. So, have a happy Halloween, everyone. Read your Gillian Flynn, watch American Horror Story, and jam to Ghostbusters and Monster Mash. And be careful, because you never know where you’ll bump into creepy puppets.

Creepy puppets at Bologna's Museo della Storia
Creepy puppets at Bologna’s Museo della Storia

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