Self-Guided Charleston Ghost Tour
Want to find Charleston’s spookiest spots? Take a self-guided Charleston ghost tour. From the oldest gardens in America to the Holy City’s ties to the American Revolution, this city has guaranteed ghosts. Read on for hotels, pubs and graveyards to spook and delight.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #1: Battery Carriage House Inn
Want an entire night of spook? Book an overnight at the Battery Carriage House Inn. Charleston ghost tour enthusiasts will find what they need at this hotel located close to the French Quarter. Built in 1843, this spot advertises a headless torso wandering the halls.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #2: Blind Tiger Pub
Put your feet up and grab a beer without missing any ghosts. Blind Tiger has a storied history. When South Carolina tried to legislate alcohol in the 1800s, Blind Tiger (a.k.a. speakeasy) pubs erupted in Charleston to fill needs that had been banned by Governor Tillman. Illegal drinking and gambling became popular, and this pub is thought to be haunted by a Blind Tiger of its’ own. Enjoy a beer in this converted 19th-century house and keep an eye out.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #3: Circular Graveyard
If the ghosts of the 1800s are too recent for your taste, check out the Circular Graveyard. This spooky spot is thought to be the oldest English burial ground in the city. 730 people are named on the stones here, with many more thought to be buried beneath your feet. The earliest unmarked grave is from 1695. Alongside ghosts, you’ll find gravestone art with everything from skull and crossbones to angelic carvings.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #4: Fort Sumter
Fort Sumter is a popular Charleston attraction. It’s the place that started the Civil War and the only stop on this Charleston Ghost Tour that’s solely accessible by boat. Because of its landmark war history, Fort Sumter is a popular ghost attraction. Find Civil War soldiers in your path as you learn about this place’s role in Charleston history. Previous visitors have seen ghosts re-enacting the war on Fort Sumter’s fields.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #5: Magnolia Plantation
Embrace fresh air on your Charleston ghost tour with a beautiful garden stop. See the gardens and visit ghosts inside the plantation house. Once owned by the Drayton family, Magnolia Plantation was founded in 1676 and is the oldest public gardens in America. The Plantation House tour will guide you through the house as it was in the 19th century. Multiple iterations of houses were built on this plantation so keep a lookout for Drayton family members walking alongside you.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #6: Old City Jail
The Old City Jail was Charleston’s jail from 1803 to 1939. This haunted spot held murderers and petty criminals for over 100 years. In exploring each floor of the jail, you’ll find cells that held prostitutes, thieves and other criminals. It doesn’t take much imagination to picture the life and death of these criminals. Public records say this was a site of numerous hangings. A popular stop, this one was featured on Ghost Adventures. Wander and see if you can find America’s first female serial killer, she was jailed here.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #7: Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon
Perfect as a daytime stop on your Charleston ghost tour, the Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon has a spooky history above and below its grounds. During the American Revolution, the dungeon was a military prison that held and tortured British soldiers, enslaved people, American prisoners of war and private citizens. Spirits of prisoners are thought to wander underground. Above the dungeon lies the Old Exchange, which was a popular party spot 200 years ago. George Washington was a guest in 1791 in the Exchange and in it, city leaders held dances, dinners and concerts for Charleston high society.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #8: Pink House
Another Charleston Ghost Tour stop that’s famous for its unsavory history is the Pink House. Come find spirits still lurking here. This historic spot was at one time a bordello, a tavern and a place that pirates at port could count on to find women, food and drinks. Built in 1712, its extensive haunted history includes female ghosts, thought to be one-time Ladies of the Pink House.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #9: Poogan’s Porch
Interested in animal and human spirits on your Charleston ghost tour? Come to Poogan’s Porch for a delicious meal and a chance to see some spirits. When one of Charleston’s oldest restaurants is housed in one of its oldest buildings, you’re almost guaranteed to see something spooky. Former owner Zoe St. Armand has been spotted trying to leave the restaurant (see photo above on the second story). And if you feel something brush past your feet? That’s just Poogan, the terrier. He’s the dog known to haunt the restaurant.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #10: Powder Magazine
Powder Magazine is South Carolina’s oldest public building. Its many iterations make it a prime ghost-hunting spot. This building was originally an arsenal back in the 1700s and was used by the Continental Army in the American Revolution. It was also the site of a blacksmith shop and a printing shop. Spirits from all phases of the Powder Magazine’s history are thought to be housed here. The rumored place to see pirate Anne Bonny is the Powder Magazine. She’s been spotted here before, alongside other ghosts left behind during the war.
Charleston Ghost Tour Stop #11: Unitarian Graveyard
The Unitarian Church is the second-oldest church in Charleston. The graveyard is popular for its tombstones, overgrown with trees — and for one famous ghost. Lavinia Fisher has been spotted in this graveyard. Fisher was a highway robber and serial killer that was executed nearby. She is thought to walk the graveyard.