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7 Most Haunted Places in New York

Published May 2016 — Updated September 2021

Indoor Ghost Walk: The Ghosts of Grand Central

This well-rated tour by the Ghosts of New York Group explores indoor hauntings of the NYC transit system. Book a haunted New York tour for some hair-raising stories — or at least a unique beginning to a fall night out in New York. You’ll never pass through Grand Central Terminal again without thinking about the past and all that has occurred since the station opened in 1913.

The White Horse Tavern

Historically a favorite haunt of writers, the White Horse Tavern opened its doors in 1880 and welcomed such famous authors, poets and musicians as Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Dylan Thomas, Norman Mailer, Bob Dylan and Jim Morrison. The self-proclaimed second-oldest continuously run tavern in the city is perhaps most famous because the 39-year-old Dylan Thomas claimed to have downed 18 straight whiskey shots there before his demise in late 1953. His ghost is said to hang about the tavern from time to time. At the very least, patrons can see his photo gracing the walls while they enjoy a bite and a beverage.

New York World-Telegram and the Sun staff photographer: Twachtman, Phyllis, photographer. / Public domain

The Campbell Apartment

This lush cocktail bar in Grand Central Terminal is said to be patronized by an otherworldly and well-dressed older couple sharing drinks and a moment together in the upstairs balcony, even when the bar is closed. Have a drink with friends, and then wander down to the terminal after closing time, keeping your eyes on the seats near the edge of the balcony. The Campbell Apartment is a great refreshment stop along the way as you tour Archer’s 7 Most Haunted Places in New York.

St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery

This stately church is said to be haunted by Peter Stuyvesant, the mythically well-known governor of New Amsterdam during the mid-1600s. The good news is that he seems to be more interested in singing hymns in Dutch and inventorying rum loudly during services than in scaring the living. Still, some people believe they’ve heard the rapping of Stuyvesant’s wooden leg on the church floor — and that can’t be described as anything less than creepy.

The Woodlawn Cemetery

This cemetery is the resting place of hundreds of thousands on Webster Avenue at East 23rd in the Bronx. Your party may or may not encounter a fellow with a flashlight, frantically (and silently) shouting and waving it around behind the Frankie’s Castle monument. You’ll definitely find some outstandingly lovely memorial structures, designed (and, in some cases, forever inhabited by) famed architects. Check out the cemetery map as you enter, and wander the grounds respectfully.

The Algonquin Hotel

The Algonquin Hotel may still be visited posthumously by poet Dorothy Parker, performer Harpo Marx and playwright George Connell. In a group of often-discussed possibly haunted New York City hotels, the Algonquin stands out on many haunting-related lists. Children once claimed that Ms. Parker shushed them when they were being too noisy at this West 44th Street hotel.

The Dakota

The Dakota is the gothic (visual) anachronism of a residential building in-between modern structures near the edge of Central Park West. This location of John Lennon’s assassination (1980) and scene of Roman Polanski’s film “Rosemary’s Baby” (1968), attracts seekers of spooky spiritual experiences along its sidewalk. Maybe it’s the Dakota’s mystique and exclusivity (it’s been the most-viewed co-op listing online for Manhattan and the Upper West Side) that draws the curious, and maybe it’s something more. Unable to enter the building, visitors wander along its 72nd Street and Central Park facade in awe. Are they paying respect to Lennon, remembering Rosemary horrifying experience or channeling something else?

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