Most Haunted Places in Florida

Posted by junketseo in Tampa Ghost Tours
Most Haunted Places in Florida - Photo

Florida is one of the top vacation destinations in the country (and maybe the world). You could hang with Mickey, Minnie, and the entire gang at Walt Disney World or check out the miles of beaches while soaking in the sun in the place affectionately known as the Sunshine State.

While the southernmost state in America has its share of beaches, theme parks, and tourist destinations, it does have a little something else. It’s a state that has its share of haunted sites, each with its equally sordid stories. If you’re planning on visiting Florida soon and have a knack for all things otherworldly, you do not want to miss some of these cool spots (no pun intended, of course). Let’s get right to it:

The Vinoy Renaissance Hotel


This luxury hotel in St. Petersburg is a place worth checking out. Most guests will often complain about the various noises they have heard during their stay. Some have even said they have felt a presence in the area the moment they walked into the lobby. The spirits that are said to be walking around are a man who appears to be wearing clothes from the 1920s and a woman wearing white and appearing “misty.” This hotel is also where some baseball players in the Major Leagues stayed during spring training, and where some refuse to enter.


Castillo de San Marcos

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This structure was constructed in the 17th century by the Spaniard colonists as a defense buffer against enemy attackers. It was also used as a prison for Native Americans during several wars between the Spanish, British, and Americans and the Seminole tribe. Fittingly enough, it is located in the oldest city in America. St. Augustine was founded in 1565, so it should come as no surprise that so many places in the city are haunted. Visitors of Castillo de San Marcos have seen plenty of apparitions ranging from Spanish soldiers to Native Americans. Light orbs have been a common sighting inside the structure.


The Miami Biltmore Hotel


During the height of organized crime in the United States, it was no secret that many mobsters would often hang out in even some of the most luxurious hotels in the country. Believe it or not, Al Capone had a home in Miami. One such spirit that might have overstayed his welcome is said to belong to a mobster who was murdered over a gambling debt. This spirit seems to be quite mischievous as guests and staff of the hotel reported lights flickering on and off almost constantly. Other unearthly occurrences that may have happened were elevators stopping on the wrong floor and the kitchen doors somehow being held open for the servers coming in and out.


Gilbert’s Bar-House Of Refuge


Many ships have sailed the seas and have never reached landfall because of nasty storms and high-roaring seas. But those who have survived shipwrecks near the Florida coast would often find a place where they could eat, drink, and relax after a stressful ordeal. That was the reputation of Gilbert’s. Located in the coastal town of Stuart, this bar was built in 1876 and housed shipwrecked sailors. While the kitchen hadn’t been in operation for nearly 80 years, those who have visited the old bar reported smelling freshly cooked beef coming from there.


Koreshan State Historic Site


If there is a place where you know it will be haunted, it’s likely where a possible “cult” started. Here, people lived with a man who claimed to be a Messiah. The man was a doctor named Cyrus Teed, and he would eventually rename himself as Koresh. Koresh was the namesake of the religion of “Koreshanity.” Most of his followers decided to pack everything up from their homes in New York and settle deep into a wooded area of Estero, Florida. More than 250 of these followers were said to have resided here. After Koresh died in 1908, his body wasn’t buried. Rather, it was propped up for three weeks until it had to be disposed of. Koresh’s body was interred in a mausoleum soon after and has since been washed away by a brutal hurricane. While the last Koreshan follower passed away 40 years ago, the spirits of these followers were reportedly sighted on the grounds. People who had visited the site would report hearing footsteps and people appearing and quickly disappearing after appearing to take a second look back.


St. Peter’s Episcopal Church


The St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Fernandina Beach is the sight of a famous ghost story that locals never get tired of telling. It is said that the ashes belong to Amelia Duryee, the wife of a deceased military officer. One of the church employees had placed the ashes in front of a mirror which was donated to the church by Duryee’s husband before his passing. Having forgotten about the ashes, the same church employee retrieved the urn the following day but found a large crack in the mirror. No one knows what may have caused it. However, many stories and theories have long been part of the conversation between the locals and those who visit the town.


The Palace Saloon


Not far from the St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Fernandina Beach is a bar where the spirit of a longtime employee is still paying his dues. Except these days, he’s just walking around. A man named Charlie worked at the Palace Saloon and lived in a back room. Charlie passed away years later in that same room. Some have reported seeing the back room’s door open and shut for no apparent reason. When a fire broke out at the Palace Saloon, every room except for one was badly burned. You can easily guess which room was spared. There is a picture of Charlie hanging outside the doorway of the Palace Saloon. If you see a man that looks just like him, you may have just seen his spirit.


Keep reading our blog to learn more about the most haunted places in Florida, and be sure to book a Tampa ghost tour and Tampa Terrors!



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