One of the newest European attractions are haunted castles, which are a home to many wraiths, both angry and people friendly. Do you remember how scary the dark was when you were little? You believed in fairies, witches, boogeyman and ghosts, then you grew up and stopped thinking about it. If you want to experience the thrill mixed with anxiety of something grabbing you from the dark, you should visit the haunted castles. Dark legends and myths accompany many fortresses that were once a place of gruesome murders. In previous centuries, brutal tortures and abuse were common practice when it came to prisoners. It is said that the suffering souls of the departed remained in order to haunt their executioners as well as those they stumble on by chance.
While approaching the Chillingham Castle, located in the deep heartland of England, you will surely be impressed by its massive walls and perfectly decorated garden. From the 13th century the castle belongs to the family of the Earls Gray and enjoys a reputation as one of the scariest places in the world, as it is haunted by many ghosts. The most feared is the Blue Boy, which appears exactly at midnight in the Pink Room followed by a horrible scream full of pain and horror. Nobody knows who this boy was and what happened to him, but during the restoration of the castle many years ago, bones of a little boy were found in the wall of that room along with the traces of a blue shirt. At night you can hear the rustle of Lady Mary Berkeley’s silk gown while she wanders the castle searching for her husband who runaway with her sister. It is said that the torturer John Sage, who used to kill the prisoners with pleasure, walks and bleeds through the Chillingham.
The most visited site in England’s capital is the Tower of London. It is one of the oldest castles and prisons, which was for more than four centuries a notorious place where many prisoners were tortured and violently killed. Even today many are horrified but at the same time intrigued by its violent history. Among the many spirits that are believed to wander its corridors and dungeons is Ana Bolen, the famous wife of Henry VIII, who was beheaded here in 1536. Also seen is the spirit of Lady Jane Gray, a cousin of Henry VIII, who ruled England for only nine days. She was overthrown and imprisoned at the Tower of London by Mary Tudor, under the arraignment for high treason, where she was later executed. Visitors reported seeing many spooky scenes like the ominous carriage without horses and furious dogs near Salt Tower, where members of the royal family were held before execution.
If you take a trip to Northern Ireland and stay in a hotel, don’t be surprised if in the middle of the night someone knocks on the door and runs. It’s just the spirit of Lady Isobel Shaw, who loves to joke around with guest in that way. Ballygally Castle was built by James Shaw in 17th century. He imprisoned his wife Isobel in the tower in order to starve her to death. To avoid a slow death, Isobel jumped out the window. Fortunately, she didn’t become a dangerous spirit nor did Madam Nixon, who lived in this castle in the 19th century. It is believed that she roams the hotel corridors at night, rustling her silk dress. The ancient ruins of Berry Pomeroy Castle are a location that must be visited by all serious hunters on the supernatural. According to the most popular legend at night you can see the spirit of the unfortunate Margaret Pomeroy who was locked up in the tower for over two decades by her sister Eleanor, only to be later allowed a painful death through starvation. It is said that the sisters were in love with the same man and Eleanor imprisoned her sister out of jealousy.
Featured image: Chillingham Castle / Glen Bowman