Haunted New Orleans: Voodoo, Cemeteries, Vampires and Witchcraft

“New Orleans can be very, very gloomy,” said vampire novelist Anne Rice when Where interviewed her in October 2001.

“Twilight can be oppressive and frightening, but it’s also very beautiful: The sky really does turn violet; the sunsets really can be blood red, and the cicadas really do sing. I’ve described it many times in my books. But as you walk through the streets, you can be oppressed by so much that is worn at the edges and broken. But that is also the beauty of it.”

Rice no longer lives here (she now resides in California), but her words still ring true. New Orleans, with its gas-lit streets and centuries-old aboveground tombs, can indeed seem creepy. Here, ghost and cemetery tours aren’t offered only during October but year-round, while vampire and voodoo legends take on a life of their own. In recent years the city’s supernatural side has become big business—and big fun.