While Australia hasn’t quite embraced Halloween the way other countries have, it’s certainly not because we don’t experience the paranormal.
In fact, we have some of the most haunted sites in the world.
To get you into the Halloween spirit, here are five of Australia’s most haunted properties.And check out the 2021 update on the most haunted properties in Australia here.
Oakabella Homestead, Western Australia
Established in 1851, this homestead has a reputation as one of Western Australia’s most haunted houses. It is said that the bones of black cats are built into the doorways of the house to ward off evil energy.
Perhaps the builders should have used a few more though, given the paranormal activity that occurs here.
There have been several deaths and accidents at the homestead over the years, including a three year old child who died when a window collapsed on him, and a former occupant named George who accidentally shot himself while cleaning his gun.
The story of how the current caretaker, Canadian Lorette Wright, came to the isolated WA property is eerie in itself. She says she often dreamt of the homestead as a child and came to the property after a chance encounter with the owner at the Geralton Races, calling it fate.
She describes the place as having a certain ‘fury’. She has had her ankle broken after being pulled off a ladder while painting George’s old bedroom, despite being the only one at home at the time.
She said George was also not happy when she rearranged some furniture in the house, making banging noises until she moved everything back to its original place. Other guests commonly notice the smell of ashes from a freshly lit fire, despite the fireplace not being in use since 1997.
It’s not only humans that notice strange things at the property – her dogs refuse to go into the former children’s bedroom.
Beechworth Asylum, Victoria
Mayday Hill Lunatic Asylum operated as a mental hospital from 1867 to 1995. Positioned on a hill in Beechworth, the elevated site was chosen in hope that the property’s elevation would cure patients of their illnesses and the winds would carry their conditions away.
To be admitted to the asylum only two signatures were required, but eight were needed for release, meaning very few people walked out alive.
Patients were subjected to restraints such as wall shackles and strait jackets, and electroshock therapy was routinely carried out.
There have been many sightings of the tormented souls of patients, including the ghost of a Jewish lady who was thrown out of an upstairs window, a pleasant matron who roams the corridors, and kitchen hand and former patient Tommy who tugs at visitor’s clothing and pokes their ribs.
The Princess Theatre, Victoria
Melbourne’s Princess Theatre is said to be haunted by baritone Frederick Federici, who died on stage in 1888. Having just finished his performance, he was being lowered beneath the stage when he had a heart attack and died instantly.
After his death, performers reported seeing him on stage taking final bows with them, and his ghost has been seen by others in the theatre over the years, even sitting in the audience for some performances. For many years after, a seat was saved for him in the dress circle for all opening night performances.
Monte Christo Homestead, New South Wales
Monte Christo is considered to be Australia’s most haunted site. Built in 1885, the Crawley family lived here until 1948 and witnessed several deaths during this time.
This included an infant who was dropped down the stairs, a maid who was believed to have fallen off a balcony and a stable boy who allegedly burned to death.
Furthermore, the unknown son of a caretaker was found curled up next to his mother’s dead body in the caretaker’s cottage, where he had been kept chained for forty years. He was then taken to an asylum and died shortly afterwards.
After the Crawleys left, a group of caretakers took over but one of them was found murdered in the caretaker’s cottage. The spirits who appear are said to be of these people who died, along with Mrs Crawley herself, who was so overcome with grief following her husband’s death that she rarely left the house.
Visitors have reported seeing strange lights and figures, feeling presences and touches and hearing whispers. Children who visit often throw tantrums around the staircase where the child died, or experience a force blocking them from walking up the stairs.
Dead and mutilated cats have also been found in the kitchen.
Blundell’s Cottage, Canberra
Originally built in 1860, this cottage housed the Blundell family from 1874 for sixty years.
In 1892, sixteen year old Florrie Blundell died in this house from severe burns following an ironing accident.
Visitors nowadays have reported seeing Florrie’s ghost standing in the gardens. Some also experience an overbearing, burnt flesh smell inside the home.
Visitors can rest assured that Florrie is said to be a friendly ghost, and particularly enjoys when teenage girls of her own age come to visit.