Dark, foggy Seattle is a spooky kind of town, full of plenty of murder legends and ghost stories. Our creepy mythology extends beyond ghost tours and programmed haunted houses, leaving plenty of room for self-guided or last-minute spine-tingling exploration.
Before you hit your Halloween parties, here’s a kind of choose-your-own-adventure guide to our creepiest (or just very festive) locales, perfect for a low-key Spooktober adventure—old and storied Gold Rush buildings, current and former graveyards, abandoned places, and more.
Whether you’re a seasoned local or a new visitor, maybe you’ll discover something new through our ghost stories. Or, if you’re one to shy away from a good fright, maybe just visit a pumpkin patch or head to your favorite bar that just happens to allegedly be haunted. It’s up to you!
Let’s start with the basics: Visiting a place that’s haunted. Thankfully, we’re absolutely lousy with them.
If you’re not sure where to get started, we have kind of a master list of Seattle’s most notorious haunted places, including the former mortuary and current Irish pub at the Butterworth Building near Pike Place Market (which is, just generally, quite haunted).
Our hotels—many dating back to the Gold Rush—are also the subject of legend. We’ve mapped out the most storied haunted hotels, from the Hotel Sorrento (haunted by Alice B. Toklas, allegedly) to Thornewood Castle, which has to be haunted from the name alone (but has some tales).
If you ask around, though, you’ll find most older buildings have their stories, like the Rendezvous in Belltown. Liminal Earth—formerly Liminal Seattle—is a tool for people to map their metaphysical experiences, and chances are you’ll find a strange happening nearby. We spoke with the project’s founders last year.
Technically these should qualify as haunted places, but cemeteries are really their own category. From massive campuses like Evergreen Washelli to notable gravesites like Chief Sealth—and even a former graveyard—get acquainted with the Seattle area’s most notable cemeteries here.
Have you not gotten all your fall farm Instagram shots yet? Some of the area’s pumpkin patches are open through Halloween—and while some have spooky programming, like zombie hayrides, many offer wholesome, festive fun, like regular hayrides. We’ve mapped out the best pumpkin patches over here.
One of the Pacific Northwest’s most beloved pastimes is a gorgeous nature hike—but why not add a spooky air to it? You are, after all, walking through the woods in one of the country’s darkest locales.
Some of our creepiest hikes are more like casual strolls, like visiting the popular campus of a former mental hospital. Others take you on dirt trails through, in one case, abandoned railway infrastructure. Another hike takes you to a ghost town submerged beneath a lake. Pick your comfort level on our map over here.
Seattle is home to a few filming locations, but our woodsy vibe lends itself especially well to the horror genre. Movies like The Hand that Rocks the Cradle and The Ring got their spine-tingling vibe from our spooky backyard—and while it’s not quite a horror movie, it’s the same environment that made the town of Twin Peaks such a surreal place. Hopefully you don’t actually relive a horror movie, but you can get a good hair-raising from standing in a creepy spot.