If you’re visiting Seattle and are into ghostly sightings I’ll just go ahead and save you some money. Seattle’s ghost tours are very tame. Unless it includes a pub crawl you’ll be hard-pressed to have any fun at all, let alone get spooked.
In fact, Seattle’s underground tour was slightly more spooky than the ghost tours. At least we were underground in creepy old dark buildings.
However, this got me wondering where exactly I could go in Washington if I really wanted to visit somewhere haunted.
Did the most haunted places in Washington stack up to my hometown in Utah? While I wouldn’t go that far, there are a couple of places that will do more than stand the hairs up on the back of your neck.
Here are a few that you should check out if you’re into hauntings (and one that you should probably avoid…)
Most Haunted Locations In Washington That You Can Visit
1. Old Tacoma City Hall
The old City Hall in Tacoma has all of the classic ghost tales. Apparently, a mischievous entity lives here and employees have been locked out of their offices, items have been hurled at people and out windows, and the tower bell sounds by itself at odd hours.
And you don’t have to take my word for it. The police have been summoned on various occasions to investigate the strange goings-on here but have never been able to find a satisfactory explanation…at least for people who aren’t satisfied by the explanation “it was a ghost…”.
This building dates back to 1893 and has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places so any ghosts that live here are safe from future developments!
If you’re in Tacoma and fail to find any ghosts at City Hall you can head to the nearby Black Diamond Cemetary.
Isn’t that a great name for a haunted cemetery? Name aside, residents who live nearby say that have seen apparitions that they assume are long-dead coal miners that move through the cemetery after dark carrying lanterns. I haven’t seen one of these guys yet but you can bet that they’re invited to my next meet-and-greet!
2. Fort Vancouver
If you’re looking for even older ghosts, Fort Vancouver in Southwest Washington has had people living (and dying) in it since it was built in 1824.
Originally a fur trading post and the headquarters of the Hudson Bay Company in the region it is apparently a hotbed of paranormal apparitions and activity.
Fort Vancouver, down in Southwest Washington, is a great place to visit even if you’re not looking for ghosts. This historic location was a 19th Century fur trading post that was the headquarters of the Hudson Bay Company’s operations for this region. It dates way back to 1824.
If you’ve got a meter or are just using your eyeballs to look for ghosts head for Officer’s Row. I can only assume lots of sad and angry men were officers here as they seem to be the ones clinging to this portion of existence. On Officer’s Row visitors report feeling cold spots (ever walked through a ghost?), doors that slam shut or creak open of their own accord, and even disembodies footprints.
There have also been unusual activities noted in a nearby private house, a real-estate office, and even the Grant House Art Center and Cafe!
But, even if there aren’t any ghosts to be had while you’re there, the Fort is a great stop! I still like to think that it’s haunted though.
People say that today Fort Vancouver is the location of a lot of paranormal activity, especially in the houses along Officer’s Row. Investigators say a private residence, a real estate office, and the Grant House Art Center and Eatery exhibit abnormal activity.
People have reported cold spots, doors that open and shut on their own, and disembodied footsteps in the area.
Located in Vancouver, Washington, Fort Vancouver today has replicas of various fort buildings that are fun and educational to tour. And it’s an especially great attraction for families.
3. Kells Irish Restaurant and Pub
If you’re looking for a more well-known (dare we say, mainstream) location to search for hauntings, head to Pike Place in Seattle and look for Kells Irish Restaurant and Pub.
If you can’t find it you can always ask the older locals. But you might have to refer to it by its old name…Butterworth & Son’s Mortuary.
One can only guess why a pub that opened in an abandoned mortuary could be haunted.
Patrons have noted broken glasses, handprints on windows, and even glasses floating from place to place. Some even claim they’ve heard voices…but it’s unclear if that was when they first got to the pub or after several drinks…
4. University Heights
If there was ever a place for tormented souls it’s a defunct school building. Heck, even non-haunted schools are creepy.
University Heights is a Seattle school (or what was once a school) that now functions as a community center.
While the spirits that have been cited here seem to be friendly there’s no doubt that some people avoid the place. Several people have seen a little boy (who attended the school) running through the halls and heard his laughter. What’s more, there have been a couple of reports of entire groups of children singing and laughing together.
I don’t remember much laughter in school so maybe this is my chance to experience some…
5. Northern State Hospital
Next on the list is a classic, a closed-down mental hospital.
Formally the largest live-in hospital for the mentally ill in all of Washington, Northern State Hospital is now full of beings that some people feel are quite malevolent.
While the main hospital is still in quite good condition, many people claim that the abandoned and run-down farm buildings (below) are a hotbed of paranormal activity and disturbances.
Unlike many locations that have well-known spirits or apparitions, Northern State Hospital hosts many apparitions.
If you’ve been chasing ghosts for a while and this place sounds familiar you may have seen it on an episode of Ghost Hunters when there were looking for haunting places in Washington!
6. Oxford Saloon
While you’re up in the Northwest of Washington, head to the town of Snohomish and track down the Oxford Saloon.
(Is it a coincidence that so many people see ghosts at pubs and bars?)
However, the customers here do more than just see ghosts, they claim to interact with them. Ghosts have pulled out people’s chairs for them (in a helpful way), put their hands on their shoulders, and even moved tables around.
Apparently, there are a total of 4 ghosts that live here, including “Henry” a man who was murdered in the saloon (which seems less surprising as the saloon is more than 120 years old).
Even if you’re now after ghosts just stop by and enjoy some killer live music in a saloon that looks straight out of the old west (at least on the outside).
7. Mount Baker Theater
I’m not sure if they were terrible singers that got assassinated or patrons that died of boredom but the Mount Baker Theater apparently has a whole host of unusual happenings.
This theater (located in Bellingham) first opened in 1927 and has been the site of haunting since day one. Visitors report disturbing noises, cold spots, spotlights, and even beings. Oh and if you feel someone running their hands across your shoulders or back, it might just be Judy, the most well-known of the theater’s apparitions.
Regardless, if you’re a theater buff of any level you’ll enjoy the historic stop that this is. Just say hi to Judy for me if you see her.
Bonus: Devil’s Tower
If you want to visit somewhere that might actually scare the bejeezus out of you you’ll want to think about visiting Devil’s Tower in Concrete, Washington. Just be careful, it’s legitimately dangerous and scary. And you’ll probably be trespassing.
To be honest, I’ve visited several of the most haunted locations in Washington and have yet to have something that I would classify as a paranormal experience. Unless you count joy and fun as paranormal.
Be that as it may, if other people in Washington keep seeing ghosts at these locations then I’ll keep trying. Hope to see you out there!