For many people, the idea of staying over at a haunted hotel is a nightmare scenario, but then there are those who love historical horrors, mysteries and murderous stories of the past.
Do you fit into the latter category and fancy a trip this coming Halloween?
We’ve rounded up seven of the most frightening hotels to stay at in the UK, guaranteed to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, courtesy of travel experts, eSky.
Just don’t blame us if you hear bloodcurdling screams in the night.
Malmaison Oxford, England
This castle-turned-hotel has housed many vicious characters.
It was built by William the Conqueror – who had a pretty uneventful death – but the real story begins when it was transformed into a prison during the Victorian era, and held some of the UK’s most feared criminals.
Many of the original features still remain, including the dungeons – used for executions back in the day – along with the barred windows and the bare stone walls.
But the creepy characteristics of the venue are nothing compared to who you might encounter in the night: Mary Blandy, a murderer who poisoned her own father, along with monks and former prisoners.
Mary was hanged for her crimes and her spirit is said to remain in the hotel, where she haunts the visitors.
Look our for poisionous vials.
Ballygally Castle, Northern Ireland
If you’re a light sleeper, bring earplugs, because Lady Isabella likes to knock on doors and then vanish into thin air.
When she was alive, the Lady was married to a cruel man known as Lord James Shaw. When she gave birth to their child, he took the baby from her and then locked her in a room at the top of the castle.
As for how she died, there are two theories; one claims that Lady Isabella fell from the tower window while trying to escape and the other, possibly more gruesome ending, says that Lord Shaw or one his men threw her from the window.
Despite how she was treated in life, she’s apparently a pretty nice spirit.
She’s not the only ghost at Ballygally; Madame Nixon, who lived in the castle during the 19th century, also lurks in the shadows.
The ghosts have even taken over a small tower room in the hotel, which is so haunted that it’s now closed off from guests and has been given the name ‘The Ghost Room’ or ‘Lady Isabella’s Bedroom’.
Ruthin Castle, North Wales
You’d never imagine that the picturesque Ruthin Castle, surrounded by greenery and the vast hills of Clwydian Range would be the location of a gruesome murder.
Hundreds of years ago, Lady Grey found out that her husband was cheating on her, and blinded by rage, she murdered his mistress.
She was sentenced to death, but didn’t want to leave her castle and so has remained there ever since.
Lady Grey is the hotel’s most famous poltergeist, though other sightings include a soldier with one glove and a little girl, according to Haunted Rooms.
The Shelbourne, Northern Ireland
Perhaps Stephen King used the ghost of the Shelbourne as his inspiration for The Shining twins.
Mary Masters was just seven years old when she died in 1791, and apparently she can be heard giggling as she runs around the hotel at night.
Whatever you do, don’t follow the sound of her voice.
The Bell Inn, England
Paranormal activity is, er, the norm at The Bell Inn.
A long time ago, an unsolved, mysterious murder took place when the hotel’s landlady was pushed out of the window in room 10 and died.
Her spirit still wants justice and so she has stuck around.
Guests and team members at the hotel have also seen a hooded monk and heard children playing in empty rooms.
Missing British backpacker’s bag found on rock near beach where she vanished
The Langham Hotel, England
Do you dare to stay in room 333?
If you do, don’t be surprised if you encounter a man from Victorian times, said to have committed a murder-suicide in the room and who refuses to leave.
Dalhousie Castle, Scotland
We’re not quite sure why female ghosts tend to be known as ‘grey’, but here’s another one for you and it’s a very sad story.
During the 13th century, a 16-year-old girl now known as the Grey Lady, fell in love with a local stable boy.
Because he was an unsuitable choice, she was exiled to the castle’s tower, where she died of a broken heart.
Look up towards the castle when you arrive, she’s known to wave to guests.
by – metro.co.uk