Halloween is the perfect time to tap into your spooky side, and if your family is anything like mine, that means one thing: A trip to a local haunted house.
Metro Detroit and Ann Arbor is filled with frightfully spook-tacular options packed with animatronic creatures and characters running around with chainsaws, but a visit to an (allegedly) real haunted spot really ups the creep factor — even if you’re not hunting for ghosts.
And since southeast Michigan has such a long and rich history, we have no shortage of locations that may or may not play home to otherworldly residents and offer up a chance to teach kids about local history.
Note: Some of these locations only offer historical tours and others offer haunted tours. Some tours may not be appropriate for younger kids. Parental discretion is advised. Check ahead for COVID-19 protocols.
This military fort was built on the banks of the Detroit River in the 1840s and features several historic structures including barracks and a jailhouse. A Native American burial ground sits on the site and it is rumored that several Civil War-era soldiers haunt the grounds, most notably in the tunnels. Voices and a feeling being watched have also been reported.
Explore the haunted side of this historical site with the Tours After Dark, which runs select dates September-October.
This historic firehouse has caught fire twice and the second fire claimed the life of fire chief, Alonzo Miller. After his death, reports of voices, knocks and doors opening and closing began coming in.
Learn the history of Michigan’s firefighters through daytime tours at the museum. Who knows, maybe you’ll experience some of this unexplained phenomena.
This now-abandoned psychiatric hospital was once the largest asylum in the country before it closed in 1981. More than 7,000 graves are on the property and paranormal activity, including screams and apparitions, has been documented on this site.
Historical and paranormal tours are available with the latter lasting five hours and guided by experienced investigators.
This mansion turned fine dining establishment was built in the 1894 and was once the home of David Whitney Jr. Watch for the Paranormal Dinner Tours, which take guests on a paranormal journey around the mansion and through the garden after a four-course meal. Experiences have included full apparitions and lights flickering.
This is the oldest continuously operating, non-denominational cemetery in the city and is the final resting place of many famous Michiganders. For the seekers of the paranormal, orbs and mysterious light have been reported. This cemetery also features an arboretum along with peace and quiet for visitors. Check the website for regular monthly cemetery tours.
The founders of the city of South Lyon are buried in this historic cemetery. Ghost tours are held periodically throughout the year for curious guests ages 12 and up.
The birthplace of the Model T is rumored to experience bizarre occurrences, such as doors slamming and odd noises. So many reports have rolled in that the plant actually offers ghost hunting tours this time of year.
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