Friday the 13th: 13 Road Trip Destinations for the Brave


 

Are you planning on doing a road trip, but Friday the 13th is in the way? Lucky you, because then you’ll have the chance of doing the unluckiest (and scariest) road trip ever!

 

Maybe it’s due to the horror movie franchise, common superstition, or common sense, but most people would never, ever have these spots on their road trip. For the brave ones, however, this is a real challenge! If you’re the first kind of person, no problem, just enjoy the safety of your cosy little bunker. On the other hand, if you’ve got bravery running through your veins, these 13 scary spots will make your heart pump like never before. Are you lucky enough to visit them without any mischance?

 


1. The Chapel of Bones (Évora, Portugal)

The Chapel of Bones is one of the most well-known – and, yes, gruesome – monuments in Évora and all of Portugal. This little religious building has its interior walls completely covered by human remains – mainly skulls. It was built in the 16th century by a monk that wanted to share the idea of life being transitory. This idea is well shown in the entrance, with a warning saying: “We, bones, that are here… for yours we await”. 

After this one, we cannot throw you a bigger bone for you to visit the weirdest place in Portugal. 

 

2. Beau-Séjour Palace (Lisbon, Portugal)

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to be in a haunted house like the ones in the movies, welcome to this 19th-century manor in Lisbon. Or should we say, “hellcome”? It’s said to be haunted by its previous owner, the Baron of Glória. All kinds of strange occurrences happen here, from non-existing bells ringing, to windows opening and closing even when there’s no wind whatsoever. 

The house is open to visitors every day except Sundays, and it’s free of charge. But will you continue to be a free spirit afterwards? 

 

3. Reina Sofia Museum (Madrid, Spain)

A modern art museum has everything to be a little bit tedious, right? Wrong! Because before being a museum, this building was an army hospital, which explains the paranormal activity: bizarre apparitions, elevators that work without being powered and several voices in the central part of the museum. So, if scary places are your poison, welcome to the ex-hospital perfect for you! MWUAHAHA!

 

 

4. House of seven chimneys (Madrid, Spain)

Currently the seat of the Ministry of Culture, this house has a twisted past. Legend has it a young woman named Elena lived here. Her husband was sent to Flanders, to participate in the Battle of San Quentin, where he died. Soon after, Elena was found dead in her bedroom. Was it suicide because of heartbreak? Here comes the plot twist: afterwards, her body strangely disappeared, which led some people to believe she was murdered. Since then, a lady in white is said to be seen walking on the roof of the house. 

This story was forgotten, just like this manor. But during the restoration of the building, the remains of a woman holding gold coins (from the time of Philip II) were found in the basement.

 

 

5. Château de Brissac (Maine-et-Loire, France)

The “tallest castle in France” is where the most infamous French ghost lives: the green lady, or “la Dame Verte”. She was in an unhappy marriage, having such a distant relationship with her husband that they didn’t even sleep in the same bed. One night, a servant woke up her husband, informing him that his wife was having an affair with a man called Pierre de Lavergne. He ran to her bedroom and caught them red-handed, killing them both right away. 

Since then, the green lady is seen walking by the castle’s corridors, screaming and moaning for losing her life. 

 

 

6. Catacombs of Paris (Paris, France)

It sounds creepy (and it is), but Paris has a whole complete city underneath it. Ok, maybe it doesn’t have the largeness of a major city (nor the enchantment of Paris, of course), but it’s more than 150 km of tunnels that give form to one of the most complex mazes already built. And to top this off, in 1780, all the city cemeteries were full, and burying the dead inside the city walls was forbidden. So what did the people do? They emptied the cemeteries and filled the catacombs with the remains of more than 6 million deceased. 

But don’t fool yourself into thinking that those skeletons (and their trapped spirits) are the worst of these catacombs. The tunnels are so confusing that if you get lost (and, believe us, it’s quite easy for that to happen) it will be hell to get back to the surface. 

 

 

7. Charleroi power plant tower (Charleroi, Belgium)

Once the main power source of Charleroi, this power plant tower now energizes any explorer that craves for adventure in abandoned places. Sorry, ghost lovers, this place is not haunted. But don’t give up just yet, since it can be really creepy.

Built in 1921, it was completely abandoned in 2007 after being responsible for 10% of Belgium’s total CO2 emissions. Nowadays, you can visit this place and be amazed by natures’ mightiness and also by its silence – sometimes interrupted by weird unexplainable sounds.

 

8. Train cemetery (Roux, Belgium)

We want to make sure you don’t lose track of creepy abandoned places that aren’t haunted, so here’s another one: a train graveyard.  Here, you’ll find about fifty abandoned trains that have been rusting since 2000. These trains were mainly used in the Charleroi region as a means of transport to all the industrial sites. After they started to close down, the trains weren’t necessary anymore, leaving this station and a lot of trains completely forgotten. 

Pay a visit to this uncanny place – after all, it’s free and you’ll not miss a train, no matter how late you are. 

 

 

9. Château de Noisy (Celles, Belgium)

We’re sorry to say that this place has already been demolished. But one thing that cannot be taken down is the history of this spine-chilling ex-manor. First, it was owned by French aristocrats that escaped the guillotine. Then, it was turned into a children’s orphanage (there’s nothing like this for an epic horror story, right?), it was taken by the Nazis during World War II and finally, in 1992, it was forgotten – then acts of vandalism, a major fire and huge storms led this chateau to ruin. 

Despite the strange occurrences that happened here (where did you think the name “Chateau Noisy” came from?), this manor was recurrently visited by curious explorers and photographers – and, for their safety, the current owners had to demolish the place.

 

 

10. Spreepark (Berlin, Germany)

Have you ever played one of  those post-apocalyptic video games where nature has taken control of cities and everything humans ever touched? Well, Spreepark is exactly like that. A theme park lost in time, where nature has its fun covering everything in green year after year.

At the moment, it’s possible to make a visit during the weekend if you book a guided tour. A Ferris wheel, a roller coaster and other – now spooky – abandoned attractions are waiting for you. But if you decide not to go there, well, it’s not the end of the world… Or is it?

 

11. Wolfsegg Castle (Burggasse, Germany)

A beautiful Bavarian Castle that has everything to be wonderful… but that also has everything to be terrifying! Since the 1500s, people have been reporting strange occurrences. “Why?” you ask? Because of a man that killed his adulterous wife after finding out about her affair. Shortly after her death, the husband and both his sons died. Was it a morbid coincidence or a thing from the underworld?

From then on, people started hearing weird noises coming from nearby caves and seeing a “White Woman” that softly walks the Castle hallways. If this isn’t the place to visit on a Friday the 13th, we don’t know what is.

 

 

12. Lake Reschen (South Tyrol, Italy)

You’re a little bit unlucky when, on a Friday the 13th, you accidentally drop your phone down the loo. But it requires an incredible amount of bad luck to have your power company deciding to submerge the entire area where you live, to then build a dam to produce electricity. We’re not going into detail, but that’s basically what happened here, submerging an entire town, except the tower of its 14th-century church.

But the weirdly-crazy story doesn’t end here. Rumour has it that on cold nights you can still hear the churches' bells ringing. What’s the problem about this? None, if the bells weren’t removed one week before the “voluntary flood”, in 1950!

 

 

13. Poveglia Island (Venice, Italy)

What if we told you a great part of the world’s evil is concentrated in one unique place, surrounded only by water? Yes, it’s Poveglia Island. When the world was wrecked by the bubonic plague, the Romans decided to separate the sick from the healthy ones. What did they do? They sent the sick to this island, where they were left to die. And like this wasn’t bad enough, after that, in the 20’s, a mental hospital was built here to welcome all the mentally ill – there’s no need to say what kind of experiments those people were subjected to, right?

There’s currently no legal way to visit this island, but there are a few locals capable of taking you there by boat. We don’t advise you to go, but we’re not scary enough to stop you from going (but remember: the island is!).
 

With all these amazing spots waiting for you, you're only unlucky if you miss them. Select the dates, create an itinerary, choose your campervan and go Indie throughout Europe!

About Friday the 13th

Some say this superstition is due to the history of Jesus: on the Last Supper, there were 13 people present, the night before Jesus' crucifixion (on a Friday); others insist that its origin dates back to Friday, 13 October 1307, the day Philip IV of France arrested hundreds of the Knights Templar. But whatever the reason (or reasons), these unlucky spots will allow some travellers to get really lucky for having the opportunity to visit them. 

 

 

 

 

 

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