When you think of San Diego, you probably think of sunshine, beaches, and great weather, right? A major city in Southern California, San Diego lies along the coast of the Pacific Ocean and is adjacent to the Mexican border.
Yet what many people don’t know is that San Diego is one of the most haunted cities in the United States. It’s not as surprising when you consider the ancient history of the city; San Diego is often referred to as “the birthplace of California.” Before European settlers made their way to the area, it was the home of the Kumeyaay, a Native American people whose civilization goes back 12,000 years.
The Whaley House
Today, the city is home to many sites which people swear are haunted. Take the Whaley House, which is so spooky that even the United States Department of Commerce lists it as a haunted house. The building is on the site of the city’s earliest public gallows.
Visitors to the house report feeling a chill in the air when standing on the stairs where Anna Whaley was held at gunpoint. Her husband, Thomas Whaley, has been sighted on the landing, wearing a black coat and a wide-brimmed hat. In other areas of the house, people can smell the scent of perfume and cigarettes or hear the sound of a baby crying. In others, curtains and lights have been known to move and flicker.
There are more than a dozen well-known haunted areas in San Diego. If you want an up-close seat for the action or perhaps are just skeptical and don’t believe in hauntings, book a night in one of San Diego’s haunted hotels.
The Hotel Del Coronado
The Hotel Del Coronado, built in 1888, is one of the largest wooden buildings in the country. Shortly after it was built, two women committed suicide at the hotel, both of them taking their unborn children with them. Visitors swear that the ghosts of these women still haunt the hotel, as do the ghosts of a little boy and girl, a hotel caretaker in the dining room, and a Victorian lady on the dance floor.
You can also board the Star of India ship, a boat which has been noted for attracting misfortune for over a century. Built in 1863, the ship has been the site of many tragic deaths. Today, it is known for the supernatural events that occur on board. Visitors report feeling cold hands touching them, and objects moving on their own.
The Horton Grand Hotel
The Horton Grand Hotel is haunted by the ghost of Roger A. Whittaker, a mid-1800’s gambler who was caught cheating at the hotel and shot to death. Guests who have stayed in his room, room 309, report ghostly encounters. The room often grows uncomfortably warm, and guests have reported seeing the bed shake and lights switch on and off. They have even seen objects moving around by themselves, guided by unseen hands.
Other spooky places include the Point Loma Lighthouse which is still haunted by former inhabitants and the William Heath Davis House which is a full of supernatural phenomenon.