Top Ten Most Haunted Places to Visit in Cornwall
With Halloween just around the corner, we’ve been delving into spooky stories and mysterious tales from Cornwall’s past. From a screaming kitchen maid, to a beast roaming the moors and even encounters with Merlin’s ghost, here are the top ten most haunted places to visit in Cornwall (if you dare).
Undoubtedly the most famous of our haunted places to visit in Cornwall, The Jamaica Inn is considered one of the most haunted places in the whole of the UK.
With a colourful history as a smuggler’s den, many spirits are said to haunt it, including a spiteful highwayman wearing a traditional three-cornered hat who is often seen walking through the doorways.
Other sightings include a distressed mother and her crying baby and reports of raised voices arguing in the old Cornish tongue.
Although the picturesque woodland walk through Kennall Vale is a family favourite for a weekend stroll, it has a somewhat darker past. It was once one of the largest gunpowder works in the UK and in 1838, a gunpowder explosion tragically killed many workers and destroyed five mills.
Apparently a gentleman named William Dunstan, who died in the explosion leaving his wife and ten children, continues to haunt the area.
Looking out over Falmouth Bay, Pendennis Castle in Falmouth has provided a safe lookout since the 17th century. Just a 10 minute drive from The Greenbank, this popular Cornwall tourist attraction may well be one of the most haunted places in Cornwall.
The castle is supposedly home to at least eight ghosts. The piercing screams of “Maud”, a kitchen maid, who reputedly fell to her death at an unspecified time in the castle’s past, have been heard by staff and visitors alike. The chilling sound of children’s laughter and phantom footsteps have also been reported over the years.
Want the chance to experience one of these spooky encounters? The castle is running Halloween half term events.
Bodmin Jail was built by prisoners in the 18th century on the order of Henry VIII. A ghost named Selina Wedge glides through the jail in a dress at night. Selina was believed to have killed her youngest son in exchange for marriage, only to be jilted at the very end as the man didn’t want her after all. It is said that her loud cries echo through the walls.
Today, the eerie building has been transformed into a tourist attraction and a hotel which offers a range of paranormal tours and events throughout the year.
The ruins of this 12th century castle, where five ghosts roam, is the setting for some spooky encounters. Three ghosts haunt the nearby Camelot Hotel where they play mischief on the guests. From knocking paintings from walls and tipping bins over, to even trying to give people a bed bath in the middle of the night.
One of the most famous ghost sightings at Tintagel is one of King Arthur’s mentor, Merlin. Babbling in a language that is foreign to all, even the Cornish, he is said to live in a cave just underneath the castle.
Famous for its bleak beauty and mythic legends, Bodmin Moor is shrouded in mystery.
You’ve most likely heard of the legend of the Beast of Bodmin Moor. Since the 1980s, there have been more than 60 sightings of a large black cat, which some say has sharp, prominent teeth and is as large as a leopard. Unexplained livestock attacks have only added fuel to the fire. Whilst no cat has ever been caught, and no verifiable evidence found, many still think twice about strolling the moors alone.
Ghostly apparitions are also said to haunt the bleak landscape. Like that of young servant Charlotte Dymond, who was killed by her boyfriend in a jealous attack on 14th April 1844. Her ghost is said to haunt the moor on the very same day every year wearing her Sunday best outfits.
You might be forgiven for thinking that this old pub in this popular Cornish coastal town is like any other, but it conceals a spooky secret.
It is said that long-dead landlady, Lil Barron, haunts her former pub. In 2012 a picture of her disappeared and with no explanation the pub started flooding on a regular basis. When the picture was found and put back in its rightful place, the flooding immediately stopped.
One of Cornwall’s prettiest churches, St Winwaloe’s, otherwise known as The Church of Storms, also has its own stories to tell.
The church, which dates back to at least the 15th century, and is a well-known filming location for TV series, Poldark, has been no stranger to spooky sightings. In 2006 a spooky photo went viral after a holiday maker took a photo in which he said he was ‘photo-bombed’ by a ‘bowler hat wearing ghost’. In 2020, a spooky apparition appeared in a couple’s selfie in the same graveyard
The ruins of Wheal Coates tin mines at Chapel Porth, near St Agnes, date all the way back to 1870 when hundreds of tonnes of copper and tin were mined there by local people.
The National Trust owned site is a popular place to visit for tourists and locals alike, but it is said to hold a darker secret. The historic mine is said to be haunted by the ghosts of the miners who died there while working in dangerous conditions.
This Elizabethan manor near Padstow is said to have many ghosts that regularly haunt its halls. A boy has been seen running in the kitchen, women were spotted in the staircase and a Green Lady is believed to be staying in the manor after she “leapt or was pushed to her death”.