Miami may be a young city but it sure has its fair share of curiosities and oddities, many sure to raise the hairs on the back of your neck. If you're looking for a dose of chills and thrills, here are the top haunted places you can visit year-round.
This haunted landmark, in the southern part of Miami-Dade County, is well-known not just for its immense coral structures, but also for the great mystery that surrounds this sculpture garden in stone. Quarried, cut, transported and constructed by Edward Leedskalnin, the huge pieces of stone are often compared to the pyramids of Egypt in their questionable construction. How one man managed to achieve this amazing feat has remained a mystery since Coral Castle opened to the public. Did he have supernatural powers? More of a mystery than a traditional haunt, Coral Castle has always been surrounded in a heavy shroud. Many believe aliens helped Ed; others believe he possessed magical powers. But the undeniable fact is that we may never know the truth. Today, it is one of the must-see museums and attraction you can tour, with narration available in English, Spanish, French or German. Opens daily at 8 am.
City of Miami Cemetery
Amidst the hustle and bustle of downtown Miami's Edgewater/Omni neighborhood, discover what may be lurking behind the tombstones and mausoleums of the city’s oldest cemetery. The City of Miami Cemetery is home to many well-known names, from Julia Tuttle, the "Mother of Miami," to the Burdine Family, founders of the Burdines department store, and the lady (Carrie Miller) who was buried in her bed instead of a casket and encased in cement. Divided into three sections: Jews, blacks and military personnel, this historic landmark is the final resting place for 66 Confederate and 27 Union veterans who are just waiting to spook visitors who roam in the night. The cemetery is open sunset to sundown and it is a favorite lunch spot for workers in the area who visit to meditate or admire the colorful flowers.
Care for a whisper in your ear? That’s just what you'll experience at Deering Estate at Cutler, an environmental, archaeological and historical preserve in Palmetto Bay. Although no one has lived at Deering Estate since the 1980s, many claim supernatural sightings still haunt this beautiful mansion, which is the site of prehistoric burial mounds and fossils that date back 50,000 years. The estate’s ghostly sightings have frequently been documented by members of the League of Paranormal Investigators. Now you can experience for yourself Miami’s most haunted property through Deering Estate’s variety of ghost tours, paranormal investigations and overnight experiences. Tour prices range from $30 for a two-hour ghost tour to $65 for the overnight SPOOKOVER. Visit the website for a schedule of upcoming public tours offered seasonally.
Located in Little Haiti, Villa Paula is sure to grab one’s attention for its history and its beauty. Built in 1925 as the first Cuban Consulate in Miami, the mansion served as the primary residence of Consul Domingo Milord and his wife, Paula. The house, named in honor of Milord’s wife, features 18th-century architecture and consists of 10 rooms, 18-foot ceilings, hand-painted floor tiles and Tuscan columns. After six years of living there, Paula died unexpectedly from complications of a leg amputation, and there began the stories of ghostly activity. Witnesses report hearing footsteps, doors and windows slamming, the smell of Cuban coffee and roses wafting through the air, and apparitions of a one-legged woman in a full-length gown. In 1989, The Miami Herald named Villa Paula the most haunted house in Miami. After renovations and change in ownership since 2003, the villa is now used as an art gallery exhibiting a few Picassos, a Renoir sketch and works by Cuban artists.
At first glance, you wouldn't think Palm Beach with its luxurious environs could be the site of a spooky English pub with lots of spellbinding tales. But in Delray Beach on Atlantic Avenue, you'll find the Blue Anchor. A popular London bar, first opened in 1864, it was transplanted to the U.S. and re-assembled with its original doors and stained-glass windows at its current location in 1996. With it came a lot of history: Winston Churchill as a young lad was known to frequent the spot for his nightly French cognac. But this pub is better known for its notoriety than celebrity clientele; it has been reported that two victims of Jack the Ripper were spotted with a dapper gentleman before their untimely demise. And the death of Bertha Hackey, who was killed by a jealous husband 100 years ago, still haunts the bar, even across the pond. These are a few of the stories that helped annoint it as the "most haunted pub in the U.S." by the Travel Channel in 2004. Go in for some pints and the bangers and mash with a side of terror. The Blue Anchor opens daily at 11:30 am.