If you’re a horror movie fanatic or love a cheap thrill to get your heart racing and adrenaline pumping, you’ll be pleased to know Auckland is a pretty creepy place. From abandoned orphanges in Grey Lynn to reports of military ghosts in Devonport, Auckland is a ghost-buster’s dream. If you think you’ve got what it takes to hunt down some of Auckland’s most infamous spirits then keep reading, but don’t say we didn’t warn you…
Let’s start with what is hands down the creepiest place in Auckland: Spookers. Once home to psychiatric patients in the 1900’s and had more recorded numbers of staff deaths from suicide than patient deaths. The incredibly freaky buildings still stand and you can go through the wards and grounds with Spookers addition of dressed up actors and special effects—as if the grounds weren’t scary enough.
Chances are you didn’t realise this popular hangout spot is actually, like, incredibly freaking creepy. Aside from being home to the Auckland Museum and Wintergardens, Auckland Domain is said to be haunted by three witches who were hung in the trees in the 1800’s. They even have a statue of the “witches” in the Domain and, legend says if you drive down the lane and turn your lights off, the witches will appear shaking and screaming. Scary!
Whau Lunatic Asylum
The former asylum, now turned Unitec Insititute of Technology, is one of the creepiest buildings in the country. Built in 1865, the Whau Lunatic Asylum saw hundreds of deaths, including 60 people who died from typhoid in 1922. The grounds also saw two fires—one which burned a female inmate to death. Students and tutors have reported being pushed and followed by shadows as well as witnessing screaming, lights flickering, and objects flying across the room. If you’re up for it, take a wander around the grounds and just feel the erriness of this place.
With military ties dating back to 1888, the Northhead Tunnels will get your heart racing and hair standing on end as you navigate your way through the pitch black corridors. The network of tunnels were used during World War I and II but are now open to the general public to walk through…if they dare. Be warned, people have reported seeing men in army uniforms, flashing lights, fast-moving shadows and blasts of wind in the underground rooms.
If you’ve never noticed the haunted house on Richmond Road, make sure to take a peek next time you’re strolling through the inner city suburb of Grey Lynn. Carlile House was a home for orphans since 1886 with rumours that there was a fire in the early 1900’s that killed 43 young boys because of a neglected candle. The house isn’t open to the public but the view from the street is enough to send chills down your spine.
The grand Mt Albert mansion was once owned by the famous Kerr-Taylor family who hosted swanky soirées for the elite. Since then, the keys have been handed over to Heritage New Zealand. The house is now open to the public in all its preserved glory—creepy ceramic dolls included. There have been numerous eye witness accounts of members of the Kerr-Taylor family hanging around the house, suggesting the mansion has some guests that aren’t quite ready to leave yet.
Auckland Ghost Tours
If you don’t think you’re quite ready to explore any of these haunted spots on your lonesome, join a group of other avid ghost hunters on the Auckland Ghost Tours. The tour departs daily from Britomart Train Station and investigates public hangings on Queen Street, the 1918 influenze pandemic, Vulcan Lane murders, beheadings, cannibalism and burials in Auckland. You’ll never look at Auckland the same.
- Get Spooked: Auckland’s Haunted Spots
- 50 Things To Do In Auckland
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Image Credit: Andrew Wilson