Trick or treat - Creepy Castles
The eeriest day is upon us – when supernatural activity is believed to be at its highest and ghosts and ghouls roam the earth under the cloak of Hallowe’en.
Although Europe probably doesn't celebrate Halloween with the same fanfare as they do on the other side of the pond, the fascinating Old Continent, with its long and tempestuous history and frightening legends is a great place to experience spooky goings on.
Across the continent there’s a plethora of castles which are still used today that are said to be occupied by the ghosts of scorned lovers, murdered owners and otherworldly beasts who play a continued part in their eventful stories.
EMF meters in hand the Flexicover team has tracked down the very creepiest European haunted castles for your ghost hunting pleasure.
Houska Castle, Czech Republic
North of Prague lies a castle that’s more than a castle, it’s also said to cover a hole that’s a gateway to hell. The belief stemmed from reports of winged demonic creatures pouring out of the hole and circling the area. During its construction in the 13th century to contain these creatures, a man was lowered down into the hole and witnesses say that when he was pulled back up seconds later, he had aged 30 years – but no one knows what he saw down there. Today, the hole is covered by a chapel featuring pictures of angels and demons, but the sightings of the creatures continue and locals still keep well away from it. A self-guided tour is available for those brave enough.
Moosham Castle, Austria
If the Salem Witch Trials in the States sounded horrific, they’re nothing compared to the gruesome fate of the 17th century women who found themselves on trial in Moosham Castle. Women accused of witchcraft were beaten, tortured and some were ripped apart between two horses. It’s said that many still roam the ground today, along with Anton, the resident caretaker during the trials who was charged with watching over the women in the dungeons. Now preserved as a museum, visitors have reported feeling a ghostly presence, being watched, touched, as well as doors opening and closing on their own. Spooky...
Bardi Castle, Italy
Built in 900AD in the Emilia-Romagna region, the castle’s own Romeo and Juliet love story has left an indelible mark even today. The tale goes that the lord’s daughter Soleste was in love with the captain of the knights, Moroello. Waiting for his return from battle one day atop the fortress, she finally saw riders approach, but they were that of their enemy’s colours. Overcome with grief at her loss, she jumped to her death. The riders were in fact Moroello and his men, wearing their enemy’s colours to disrespect them. On learning of his lover’s death, he too killed himself. The ghost of Moroello has appeared numerous times, sometimes accompanied with sad music, and reported images of these sightings are on display in the castle – if you dare to visit.
Bran Castle, Romania
Located in the Carpathian Mountains in Transylvania, this chilling gothic castle perched on top of a hill is the inspiration behind Bram Stoker’s mythological character. In the 15th century, the House of Draculesti’s most infamous member was Vlad the Impaler, who gained notoriety for killing his enemies with spikes through their heart. The Hungarian king ordered his capture and ended his reign of terror by imprisoning Vlad in the dark dungeons of Bran Castle. Today, over half a million visitors annually come to experience its heightened eeriness. Just don’t forget to pack the garlic!
Niedzica Castle, Poland
Set on the banks of the picturesque Czorsztyn Lake, Niedzica Castle is as stunning as it is sinister. On the road to the 14th century hotel, a sign on the road warns visitors that they’re entering a haunted area. Legend has it that the nightly apparition is that of Umina: an Inca royal who was brought back from South America by one of the castle’s owners in the 1860s, along with Inca treasure. Legend has it that Umina was murdered by a thief while trying to protect her fortunes and she still appears every night to scare away anyone who comes close to the castle.
Wherever you plan to head to for your next trip it’s good to know that Flexicover is committed to providing your with the highest level of cover to ensure you are safe and secure 24 hours a day when away.