In case any of you were looking for a haunted camping destination, it appears as though St. Augustine, Florida is the place to go. St. Augustine is the oldest city in the United States and is home to many incredible historic places and attractions – several of which are inhabited by misty figures, apparitions, and all things that go bump in the night. Considered to be one of the most haunted cities in America, I am almost positive even the hardest to scare will get some goose bumps while visiting St. Augustine.
Founded by Don Pedro de Aviles of Spain in 1585, St. Augustine is 4 centuries deep in rich history and culture, architecture, natural scenery, and pristine Atlantic Coast beaches. So during the day, be sure to take advantage of all these spectacular things and at night…if you dare, prepare to be haunted by the spirits who reside within the walls and halls of all these amazing landmarks, 5 of which, will be described as you keep reading.
Said to be one of the most haunted places in the city and listed on the Florida and National Register of Haunted Places. Tourists and locals alike, visit the old jail to experience the supernatural stories firsthand. Who wouldn’t want to, if not only to debunk the stories yourself but experience your own, as well? Henry Flagler, a major contributor in the city’s development, built the jail in 1891 and conditions were reported to be incredibly inhumane. Some of the most dangerous criminals were housed within the walls of this jail in maximum security and 8 men were hung from its gallows.
The largest structure of its kind in the USA, the 17th century fort stands, as it has for many centuries, guarding the coast against invasions and surviving more than 300 years of battles and weathered many storms. Supernatural enthusiasts flock to the fort to investigate the accounts of inexplicable events for themselves. It is said that a light is seen shining from a fixture in one of the watchtowers that does not have any electricity. There are also sightings of a Spanish Soldier standing at the edge of the fort, looking out to sea, right before sunrise or sunset. In the dungeon there are reports that many feel as though someone with cold hands is touching them and many have felt queasy and cold while strolling through. Many visitors have also reported misty shapes, glowing orbs, and even the see-through shape of a person in their photos and videos.
Unlike regular hospitals you enter feeling fine and leaving with quite a different feeling. It is said upon entry, you will experience an unnerving sensation of a sad, heavy presence surrounding you. This building was rebuilt in 1821 to replace water lines and the workers reported thousands of human bones buried underneath the hospital. This building sits upon a Timucuan burial ground – Native Indians that were settled in St. Augustine in its earliest years. Reports have shown moans, screams and cries can be heard, while misty sightings of patients in hospital gowns, and the outline of bodies laying in the beds can be seen.
Opened in 1812 to offer a final resting place to those who were of faiths other than Catholic, this cemetery is believed to hold approximately 436 bodies and was open to burials until 1884. A variety of ghosts, that can be spotted day and night, reside in this grave yard. The most famous sighting is that of Judge John B. Stickney. The judge was well liked and known for offering free legal advice to neighbors while he was living and now he has been spotted sitting in a tree and roaming the grounds.
Built in the 1600s by Spanish settlers, this lighthouse served many years until tidal erosion and harsh weather damaged the structure beyond repair. Its replacement, built in 1874 in considered a historic landmark today and is visited by thousands each year. It is well-known for its ghostly inhabitants and has even been featured on the popular TV show Ghost Hunters. Several tragic deaths have occurred over the years but 2 are well-known. The lighthouse keeper feel to his death while painting the tower and can still be seen as an apparition watching over the tower. Also, 2 young girls drowned when the handcart they were playing in broke and fell into the ocean. They can be seen and heard, to this day, roaming outside and inside the tower.
Now that we know a bit about all the creepy, haunted places that can be visited; let’s talk about the places you can stay nearby so you can experience all of these scary, historic landmarks thoroughly. As their website states, you will be “well-situated to explore the historic city of St. Augustine from this campground on Anastasia Island.” This campground being the KOA of St. Augustine Beach. Please visit their website to book your reservations now and learn more! The second place that is recommended is Anastasia State Park. Please stop by their website to research camping amenities and book your trip so you can make it to St.Augustine before the Halloween season ends!