When you think about visiting the Sunshine State, the first thing that usually comes to mind is a seaside paradise.
However, you might be surprised to learn that every corner of the state hides ghostly tales and spooky sightings behind picturesque palm trees and theme park thrills.
Any paranormal enthusiast traveling to Florida can find a treasure trove of haunted history and ghost hunting adventures alongside its scenic ocean views. Here’s a look at the most haunted places in Florida!
- 1. St. Augustine Lighthouse, St. Augustine
- 2. Blue Anchor Pub, Delray Beach
- 3. Ocean Key House Resort and Spa, Key West
- 4. Coral Castle, Miami
- 5. Casa Monica Hotel, St. Augustine
- 6. Bellamy Bridge, Marianna
- 7. Deering Estate, Palmetto Bay
- 8. The Biltmore Hotel, Coral Gables
- 9. The Devil’s Tree, Port St. Lucie
- 10. The Cuban Club, Tampa
- 11. Bilheimer Capitol Theater, Clearwater
- 12. The Palace Saloon, Fernandina Beach
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1. St. Augustine Lighthouse, St. Augustine
100 Red Cox Dr, St. Augustine, FL 32080
Of the many ghostly attractions found in St. Augustine, the St. Augustine Lighthouse is among the most famous. It is known as one of the top haunted places in Florida.
Heading to St. Augustine? Book this ghost walking tour, the best in the area!
At the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum, you can learn about more than 500 years of maritime history in Florida. You can also participate in several different guided tours that explore the shadowy side of this historical site.
You will delight in true stories that detail the complicated history of this 147-year-old lighthouse. These tales feature many of St. Augustine’s resident ghosts and ghouls, some of which still haunt the grounds to this day.
You can also rent some ghost hunting equipment on-site or bring your own if you have it.
2. Blue Anchor Pub, Delray Beach
804 E Atlantic Ave, Delray Beach, FL 33483
The Blue Anchor Pub has a unique history dating back to 1840s London. It was built during the era of Jack the Ripper and was destroyed in a fire some years later.
Its surviving wooden facade and interior were then salvaged and shipped to America. The remains survived in New York City until 1996. Afterward, the bones traveled to Delray Beach.
It turns out that the old wooden frame was home to a Victorian ghost named Bertha Starkey.
Bertha once lived above the pub in London, and one fateful night her husband discovered Bertha in bed with a lover. The husband killed Bertha and the other man in cold blood.
Over a century later, some say Bertha’s ghost still haunts the Blue Anchor Pub. Like clockwork, Bertha makes herself known every night at 10 o’clock by banging pots and wailing loudly.
3. Ocean Key House Resort and Spa, Key West
0 Duval St, Naval Air Station Key West, FL 33040
If you want to enjoy a luxurious stay at an upscale hotel in Key West, the Ocean Key House Resort and Spa is sure to meet your high standards.
The first building to stand where the Gulf of Mexico meets the Atlantic was a high-rise condominium called Reflections Time-Share. It was built in 1982.
Heading to Key West? Book this Ghosts & Gravestones Tour to see the real haunts!
Reflections was renovated in 1989 and became The Ocean Key House Hotel. Noble House Hotels bought it in 1998.
Aside from the cushy accommodations and amenities, visitors to the Ocean Key’s third floor have also reported experiencing paranormal activity.
There are reports of a spirit moving guests’ belongings around, tales of mysterious cold spots, and whispers about an unseen presence that guests can feel sitting on the edge of their beds.
Some guests mention hearing ghostly sighs and the sound of jingling keys. Other guests have reported seeing curtains move on their own, along with lights flickering on and off.
4. Coral Castle, Miami
28655 S Dixie Hwy, Homestead, FL 33033
Known affectionately as “Florida’s Stonehenge,” this 1,100-ton coral rock structure was designed and built over 28 years by a mysterious man named Edward Leedskalnin.
Leedskalnin never shared just how he constructed this strange Floridian wonder, but between 1923 and 1951, he built Coral Castle on his own, carving it with his bare hands.
Edward lived inside his awe-inspiring creation for the last 11 years of his life. According to some, he remains there even in death, making it one of the haunted places in Florida worth visiting.
Visitors have reported sightings of Ed before sunrise, putting around his magnificent castle and taking measurements at the crack of dawn.
Coral Castle has also been noted as a hotspot for UFO activity in the region. Sightings of alien life forms and huge UFO formations are just some of the unbelievable tales surrounding this man-made wonder.
5. Casa Monica Hotel, St. Augustine
95 Cordova St, St. Augustine, FL 32084
Built in 1888 by famed architect Franklin W. Smith, the original building was bought that same year by a businessman named Henry Flagler. Richard C. Kessler purchased it in the 1990s and reopened it in 1999 as the Casa Monica Hotel.
The hotel’s 4th floor is famous for its plentiful paranormal activity.
Guests and ex-employees have reported hearing the sound of children’s footsteps when the floor is empty. Inside room 411, guests claim to have been awakened by many shadowy figures standing inside the room.
One floor up, in room 512, the ghost of a man who hung himself there is said to visit guests during the night.
A first-floor suite called the Ponce de Leon has been witness to radios turning on and off by themselves. The same room is also home to the ghost of a woman dressed in all white.
Heading to St. Augustine? Book this ghost walking tour, the best in the area!
See Related: Haunted Casa Monica Hotel: Ghosts on Every Floor
6. Bellamy Bridge, Marianna
4057 Bellamy Bridge Heritage Trail, Marianna, FL 32446
Famed far and wide as the most haunted bridge in Florida, the Bellamy Bridge is home to one of the United States’ oldest recorded ghost stories.
The bridge’s long history began in 1830 when Dr. Edward C. Bellamy purchased land on both sides of the Chipola River. Bellamy settled the land and named it Terre Bonne Plantation. He built a large manor house about a half-mile east of the river.
While the plantation house is long gone, a small family cemetery remains. Two gravestones mark the site, but only one name is readable on the old stones, that of Elizabeth Jane Croom Bellamy.
Elizabeth died in 1837, and legend has it that her spirit stayed behind to haunt the bridge forevermore. The oldest record of the haunted bridge appeared in Marianna newspapers towards the end of the 19th century.
Ghost sightings usually tell of a misty female figure in a long dress walking back and forth on the bridge. Some tales speak of strange, floating blue lights that appear at night, following the ghost-like spectral fireflies.
Urban legends about Elizabeth tell of her tragic death in a fire on the night of her wedding.
Elizabeth soon became known far and wide as “the burning bride” because her wedding gown caught fire and killed her the very same night she married Edward Bellamy’s brother Samuel.
Whether or not you have an encounter with Elizabeth, the Bellamy Bridge is undoubtedly one of the haunted places in Florida that should be on your list.
7. Deering Estate, Palmetto Bay
16701 SW 72nd Ave, Miami, FL 33157
If you find yourself in sunny Miami, you can get up close and personal with the spirit realm at a haunted 1920s era mansion called the Deering Estate.
Between 1913 and 1918, a wealthy industrialist named Charles Deering bought up hundreds of acres of the Atlantic Rock Ridge.
For 10,000 years, this picturesque spot where the Everglades meet Biscayne Bay has been settled by indigenous peoples, followed by European settlers and freed Bahamian slaves.
When you visit the estate, you can learn all about Deering’s long history and even attend their famous ghost tours, where you’ll hear chilling tales of spirits and hauntings dating back thousands of years.
Visitors and staff alike have shared hundreds of unique stories about their paranormal experiences that you can enjoy while walking in the epic footsteps of Miami’s oldest settlers.
8. The Biltmore Hotel, Coral Gables
1200 Anastasia Ave, Coral Gables, FL 33134
If you’re looking for more scary sites in Florida where you can stay overnight, the Biltmore Hotel is an excellent option for you.
Built in 1926 by a developer named George Merrick, the building quickly gained a reputation as the premier place for galas, golf tournaments, and glittering fashion shows. Its pool was once recognized as the largest swimming pool in the world!
During WWII, the Biltmore was used as a military hospital and continued functioning as a hospital for veterans when the war ended. The hospital closed its doors in 1968, and local teenagers would often sneak into the abandoned buildings.
They emerged with tales of ghosts and spirits wandering around the grounds. Urban legends sprung up about floating specters and ghosts dressed in military uniforms.
The Biltmore was renovated in the 80s and reopened for business in 1987. Despite the new veneer, the paranormal activity never ceased.
Guests and employees still report ghost sightings and unexplainable phenomena, including the sound of babies crying through the walls and vanishing guests that poof into thin air.
9. The Devil’s Tree, Port St. Lucie
1982 SW Villanova Rd, Port St. Lucie, FL 34953
If you travel to Florida’s Oak Hammock Park, you’ll find an ancient tree with a bloody past and a notorious reputation.
The infamous tree has seen multiple murders in its history and is now known far and wide as a potent source of paranormal activity.
While the Devil’s Tree might appear inconspicuous at first glance, it has witnessed some of the most gruesome and sinister murders in the history of Port St. Lucie.
In the 1970s, a disturbed man named Gerard John Schaefer used the tree as a site for his murderous deeds and stained the tree’s history with death and violence.
As a local police officer, he would lure female hitchhikers back to the tree where he tied them up, tortured them, and killed them. He buried many of his victims under the tree.
According to legend, many have tried to cut down the Devil’s Tree, but all attempts have been mysteriously thwarted. So the tree stands to this day.
Some say Schafer’s victims haunt the women’s restroom in Oak Hammock Park and that their screams can be heard inside, along with the unexplained slamming of stall doors.
10. The Cuban Club, Tampa
2010 N Avenida Republica de Cuba, Tampa, FL 33605
One of the most interesting scary places in Florida is the legendary Cuban Club in Tampa.
Back in the early 20th century, many Cuban mutual aid clubs were established in Tampa, where residents could pay 5 percent of their paychecks to join. Tampa citizens managed and supported these societies to aid and benefit their culture and community.
Each club had its headquarters where members could gather and socialize together. El Círculo Cubano de Tampa, or the Cuban Club, was designated for light-skinned Cubans living in Ybor City.
In the 1920s, an actor supposedly committed suicide on stage after forgetting his lines. It’s reported that his ghost haunts the Cuban Club to this very day.
Another ghost story surrounding the club is that of Little Jimmy, a 9-year-old boy who drowned in the Club’s old swimming pool. Contemporary witnesses claim that Jimmy is a playful ghost who likes to prank guests by messing with their flashlights.
At the Cuban Club, pianos play long, sad tunes all on their own, and a woman dressed in a long white gown wanders the halls. Here you’ll find no shortage of interesting history and bone-chilling spirit sightings to liven up your vacation.
11. Bilheimer Capitol Theater, Clearwater
405 Cleveland St, Clearwater, FL 33755
While the Royalty Theater first opened its doors in 1921, it wasn’t until 1981 that parts of its haunted history finally started to make sense.
That year the Taylor family bought the building, prompting the discovery of the skeleton of a man named Bill Neville inside the balcony during scheduled renovations.
The Taylors sold the theater in 1996, and by 2008 it had fallen into foreclosure. So the City of Clearwater and Ruth Eckerd Hall bought it and called it the Capitol Theater.
Clearwater’s Capitol Theater is widely known to be haunted, and there have been many reports of paranormal activity there over the years. Some say the chandelier swings back and forth on its own, others claim ghosts set off fire alarms, and some guests have even captured glowing orbs on film.
Two spirits supposedly call the Capitol home: one is Bill Neville, whose body remained forgotten on the balcony for decades.
Legend has it that Bill was a regular guest at the theatre who was murdered by tourists long ago. Bill loved coming to the theater, and many think his spirit stayed on after death.
There is another ghost at the Capitol called “The Captain” who sports a goatee and a fisherman’s hat.
The Captain stalks the theater’s halls and is known to accost female guests. He is also infamous for occasionally being loud and bothersome during shows.
12. The Palace Saloon, Fernandina Beach
117 Centre St, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034
The Palace Saloon holds the distinction of being Florida’s oldest continuous bar, and so it’s no surprise that it has a reputation for ghost sightings and paranormal activity.
The saloon was built in 1878 as a haberdashery and converted into a bar in 1900. The building retains much of its original interior and is also home to the spirits of those who visited in life.
Reportedly you can find the ghost of a Carnage and a Rockefeller at The Palace Saloon, but there is a ghost named Uncle Charlie that steals most of the spotlight.
Charles Beresford was a bartender at the Palace from 1906 to 1960, and even when he died, “Uncle Charlie” enjoyed serving patrons at the saloon.
Bartenders have reported feeling a cold chill when they try to replicate a coin toss game Charlie used to play with customers, and patrons mention seeing strange, humanlike shapes through the windows after closing.
In 1999 the saloon suffered from a fire, and while the flames gutted most of the building, Charlie’s room was hardly damaged at all.
Sometimes Charlie’s ghost is said to play the saloon’s old piano at night, as he did in life, even though Plexiglass encases the piano’s keys.
I hope you enjoyed our list on the most haunted places in Florida. Check out other top haunted states next:
- Haunted Casa Monica Hotel
- Haunted Places in Texas
- Haunted Places in California
- Haunted Places in Illinois