things that go bump in the night

August 17th, 2009

Rattling pipes, creaky floorboards, and strange noises in general – these can all be part of staying somewhere other than one’s own bed.  However, here’s a collection of places where there’s an actual reason for the sounds – ghosts!  Get into the Halloween spirit this October with a stay in or visit to some of these haunted hotels and houses.  Boo! 

Jared Coffin House – Nantucket, MA

Check into Room 223 to bunk in with the ghost of a Whaling Captain (an experience you arguably can’t get at the nearby Whaling Museum!).  Guests of Room 609 meanwhile have had nighttime visits from the apparition of a little girl.  Other ghosts are known to roam the halls and rooms of the historic property in the heart of Nantucket town.  Not a believer?  Just ask the Innkeeper who has had a few “run-ins” with said spirits, including being pushed from behind while working the front desk – alone!

Homes and Buildings of the UK National Trust (Visit for Free as a Member of The Royal Oak Foundation)

Crown Liquor Saloon – Belfast

Sharing a ‘snug,’ (an individual wooden booth) with ghosts is not exactly the idea when meeting friends for drinks. On Great Victoria Street in the center of Belfast, tales of the haunted saloon are quite common. The Crown Liquor Saloon acted as a haven for weary Great Northern Railway travelers centuries ago, and the old watering hole still plays host to Victorian-era haunts today. One visitor recalled sitting with three ghostly men and a woman in one of the famed booths while waiting for her friends to arrive for cocktails.

Ham House – Surrey

“All Dogs Go to Heaven” may be the case for most; however, for one King Charles Spaniel, Ham House is his final resting place. The dog’s portrait hangs in the gallery, but a livelier version of the pooch can be “seen” meandering the halls. A recent investigation by the Ghost Club, a paranormal research organization based in London, concluded that there may be as many as fifteen ghouls (not to mention other ghostly dogs) dwelling in the property. The property kindly requests you leave your Fido at home.

The Old Post Office – Tintagel, Cornwall

The flickering lights in the old post office didn’t deter the custodians from their daily duties. However, it did inspire the use of the antique Spagnolli receiver, a predecessor to morse code, to make sense of the flashing lights in the converted manor house. The flashes spelled out the word “Noah” repeatedly – eerily enough, the surname of a previous resident.

Blickling Hall – Norfolk

“Oh, the lady signed for it… the lady in the Dining Room,” said two delivery men returning a painting to the estate home. The house administrator was supposedly the only person living in Blickling Hall at the time, so who could the ghost have been but that of Anne Boleyn, who called the property her childhood home. Following her inability to bear a male heir for Henry VIII, Anne was executed. Yet on the anniversary of her death each year, visitors can expect to see her ghost. The ‘Grey Lady,’ a nickname given to the apparition for her long grey dress with lace collar, has been spotted looking across the lake and riding up the drive in a coach drawn by a headless horseman.

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