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Top 5 spookiest places to visit on a Halloween road trip

Ellie Dyer-Brown, 11 months ago

10 min read

  • Advice
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WhoCanFixMyCar maps out the top 5 spookiest places to stay on a ghoulish getaway, including Dalhousie Castle which is pictured above.

The nights are getting longer, there’s a definite chill in the air, and the spirits are growing restless. Halloween is almost upon us!

This year, instead of cozying up on the sofa with a toffee apple and rewatching your favourite Halloween flicks, why not hit the road for a ghoulish getaway at the top 5 spookiest places to stay in the UK?


Pendle Hill, Lancashire

Near Burnley in Lancashire, Pendle Hill is notorious for its association with fierce witch trials and savage executions. Twelve people were accused of committing a series of local murders in 1612, and witchcraft was said to be involved in the killing.

All twelve witches lived near Pendle Hill. One died in prison, and of the remaining eleven - two men and nine women - only one was deemed to be innocent. The other ten were found guilty and hanged. 

The witch trials that occurred at Pendle Hill are among the best recorded and most well known in British history. 

Were the witches really guilty? Head here on your road trip and you might just find out from one of their wandering spirits…

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Croft Castle, Herefordshire

Dubbed “the most haunted house in the Midlands”, Croft Castle is said to be haunted by seven strange spectres, the most notable of which is the relentless Welsh freedom fighter Owain Glyndwr.

In the 15th century, Glyndwr instigated a war of independence against the English. Although the war was unsuccessful, Glyndwr became a Welsh folk hero; not only is he the last native Welshman to have held the title of the Prince of Wales, it is also said that he is awaiting the call to return and liberate his people. 

The other notable ghost is that of Herbert Croft, the Bishop of Hereford. When the castle was closed to the public for renovations in 2013, a lone security guard thought he saw someone gazing out over the fields beyond the castle. This was strange since he had just checked that the building was empty and secure for the night. 

The security guard checked the castle again - it was completely empty. Nobody in sight. As he went to leave for the second time that night, he saw the same figure looking out from a window above. Again, he checked the castle, and again, he found no one inside. 

After the renovations were completed, it is said that the security guard visited the castle and, upon entry, spotted a painting of Herbert Croft. He was immediately struck by a sense of familiarity and felt certain that it was Croft who he had seen gazing from the castle window.

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Photograph "Croft Castle at Christmas" by c.art on Flickr (no changes made).


Bagdale Hall, Whitby

While Whitby is famous for its golden sands and top-notch fish and chips, this little seaside town has a darker history lurking beneath the surface. Not only did Dracula wash up on those same golden sands in Bram Stoker’s 1897 novel, the oldest building in the town is also said to be haunted.

Bagdale Hall is an atmospheric Tudor manor house that was built in 1516 and still stands today as a hotel. However, stay there at your own risk - it’s one of the most haunted buildings in the country!

Former owner of the hotel, Browne Bushell, was executed with charges relating to piracy. After his death, he returned to haunt the hotel, and he has been spotted many times gliding up and down the stairs. 

That’s only the beginning of the creepy goings on which have been experienced over the years by guests and staff alike. Cleaners regularly report that they can hear voices whispering, while lights often switch on and off seemingly by themselves, objects move with no explanation, and a child can sometimes be heard crying in empty rooms. 

This is surely one of the best places for a ghoulish getaway. 


Dalhousie Castle, Edinburgh

Situated just a few miles outside of Edinburgh, Dalhousie Castle is the oldest inhabited castle in Scotland - and the most haunted!

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The two ghosts to look out for here are Sir Alexander Ramsay and Lady Catherine, who has become known as the “Grey Lady”. 

The Ramsays held possession of Dalhousie for longer than any other family, but Alexander was captured by William Douglas and reportedly starved to death - since then, his ghost has been spotted roaming the castle.

Lady Catherine is most often seen in the dungeon or on the battlements, staring blankly ahead and fading away if anyone gets too close. 

Dalhousie Castle has become so well known for its spooky goings-on - including the sound of footsteps down empty corridors and objects moving on their own - that the hotel sometimes runs ghost tours explaining all the ghastly things that have caused spirits to linger.

Even if you don’t spot any ghosts, eating dinner in the dungeon beneath a suit of armour is still a great experience to tick off your Halloween road trip list. 

Special thanks to Dalhousie Castle who provided the fantastic image above and in the header of this article.


Pluckley, Kent

Pluckley might look like a quaint, picturesque village, but don’t be fooled by first appearances - it’s actually the most haunted village in Britain according to the Guinness Book of World Records!

Pluckley is reportedly home to between twelve and sixteen ghosts, including the screaming man (who fell to his death in the brickwork factory), the highway man (who was impaled by a sword and pinned to a tree) and an elderly woman who reportedly set herself on fire while she was sleeping.

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Photograph "St Nicholas' Church, Pluckley" by Josh A. Tilley on Flickr (no changes made).


Hopefully our top 5 spookiest places to stay have got you in the mood for a ghoulish getaway. If you’re planning to hit the road this Halloween, make sure your car is road trip ready by checking out the most common causes of car breakdowns and our top tips for how to avoid them.

And, if the weather turns bad during your trip - which, let’s face it, is quite likely, we do live in the UK after all - then we’ve got you covered with our tips for driving in the rain.