San Diego is a beautiful city that offers visitors everything from beaches, to fine dining, great shopping, and incredible history. San Diego is also a city that has numerous haunted locations that paranormal investigators love to visit.
Let’s explore the top 10 most haunted places in San Diego.
Early settlers of San Diego needed to construct a place to bury the dead, thus the El Campo Santo Cemetery opened in 1849. Hundreds of people were buried in one of the most haunted places in San Diego. As the city expanded living residents decided that the graves could either be moved or simply built over. One area of the cemetery became the location for a horse-drawn street car. The idea sounds nice as it served a purpose; however, the line went directly over 18 graves, which were eventually paved over.
At one point there was a considerable amount of paranormal activity at the cemetery. Although it has reduced dramatically there is still some activity. People have experienced extreme cold spots in the area as well as cars refusing to start when parking in the cemetery parking lot. The ghost of a former grave digger is seen at the cemetery as well as a young boy who appears to be trapped and confused.
9. El Fandango
Long ago Jose Manuel Machado moved to San Diego in 1781. Machado had three homes for his wife and 15 children. One of the homes burned to the ground. Many things were built on the spot, currently there is a two story building on the site. It features office rooms, a banquet hall along with indoor and outdoor dining areas. Although the El Fandango restaurant is considered one of the haunted places in San Diego it is not overloaded with paranormal activity. There is said to be one woman who haunts the restaurant. She likes to sit at one particular corner table when the blinds are drawn. People who have seen her state that she is wearing Victorian garb and either appears to be angry or sad. People have also claimed she can float through the air as well as through walls.
8. Robinson-Rose House
Judge James W. Robison built had a home built for him in 1853. The building was not only his home but it also served as an office for a newspaper and a railroad over the years. Eventually the ravages of time completely destroyed the home leaving nothing. To preserve some of history it was rebuilt in 1987 using old photos of the original building and records. The rebuilt building sits in historic Old Town and serves as the visitor center. The Robinson-Rose House not only welcomes visitors but is the home to a host of ghostly and paranormal activity. Ghost hunters and the average visitor have heard footsteps when no one is around as well as witnessing the elevator operating without the assistance of anyone. Some female visitors have felt their hair being pulled and lights have randomly switched on and off. Ghosts and cloudy mists have also been witnessed at this member of the haunted places in San Diego.
The Horton Grand Hotel started out as two different buildings. The buildings were eventually joined together. Moving two different buildings brick by brick from different locations to come together on one was not an easy task but the result was the beautiful hotel that stands today. With the history of the buildings dating back to the late 1800s it is only natural that it is considered to be one of the most haunted places in San Diego.
Roger Whitaker is the most famous of the ghosts that haunt the Horton Grand. How he died is up for debate. Some stories state he died of a gunshot wound in room 309 other stories claim he died on the property long before either building was built. Regardless of how he died he has been seen in the hallway and in room 309. Room 309 experiences a number of mysterious incidents such as incredibly warm temperatures randomly happening even with the window open or the air conditioning turned on. Lights come on in the room on their own, the bed gets shaken and the armoire door opens on its own. Other witnesses have seen the ghost of a former Madame of where a brothel used to stand in the hotel. The four of spades was found in the bathroom of one of the rooms after a couple had been up the previous night playing poker. They had left the cards on the table.
6. Casa De Bandini
The Casa de Bandini restaurant was once the home of Juan Bandini and his family starting in 1829. Later on the Bandini residence became the Cosmopolitan hotel before becoming the Casa de Bandini restaurant. With so many people coming in and out of the building it is only natural that the Casa de Bandini is among the many haunted places in San Diego.
The most seen ghost reported is that of a woman. The woman wears a long dress and at times appears to be translucent. The woman moves through sealed doors and glides effortlessly across the balcony. The lights in the Casa de Bandini switch off and on at will and other lights flicker on a frequent basis.
The Hotel Del Coronado was, and remains, an architectural masterpiece that opened in 1888. It has an ideal seaside location that people from as far away as Europe would come and visit. The upper class and wealthy visitors would bring their servants and stay for extended periods, many staying for months. In more than 100 years the Hotel Del Coronado has been host to everyone from movie stars, to business icons, to princes, and presidents.
The living are not the only ones to visit the luxurious hotel. There are also ghosts that stay at the hotel. The most famous ghost at the hotel is that of Kate Morgan. Kate died at the hotel at the age of 24. The stories related to her death claim she was a married woman who went to the hotel to have a rendezvous with her lover. Other stories claim her male companion abandoned her on her trip to the hotel. She committed suicide after being alone for five days. Since her death a broad range of unexplainable activity has occurred in the hotel. Televisions that turn off and on, lights that flicker, voices and footsteps are just a few things that happen. Other people claim to have seen Kate’s ghost on the beach and around the hotel.
4. Old Point Loma Lighthouse
The Old Point Loma Lighthouse is a two story building that first began operations in November of 1855. The lighthouse operated for almost 40 years before operations ceased. The lighthouse did serve as a family home. The Old Point Loma Lighthouse serves as both a landmark and a tourist destination. Many people visit to see how the family lived and possibly to encounter some ghostly activity. When it was considered one of the actively haunted places in San Diego people believed they saw the ghost of Captain Robert Decatur Israel, the last lighthouse keeper at the site. Odd noises, moaning, and footsteps were common activity experienced by visitors.
3. Del Mar Racetrack
The Del Mar Racetrack has a long history that dates back to the 1930s. Everyone from the Hollywood elite, to business people, to lovers of horses, the races, and more have ventured to the famous racetrack. Many of the most common activities attributed to the paranormal have occurred at Del Mar. people have experienced lights flickering, disembodied voices, and cold spots. Other people have captured shadowy figures on camera. The fifth floor is believed by man current and former employees to be the location of many unusual happenings. Some of these include the elevator refusing to stop at that floor, hallways quickly becoming extremely cold, and some people seeing what they believe to be ghostly figures.
2. USS Midway
At one time the U.S.S. Midway was an aircraft carrier in the navy. It was decommissioned in 1992 after seeing action in Vietnam and being part of Operation Desert Storm in 1991. Today she sits docked in San Diego and is a museum. There have been claims that as many as 30 different ghosts reside on the U.S.S. Midway. People visiting the Midway have had mannequins on the ship move and appear to speak, while others have felt they were not alone when in the sick bay. Additional visitors claim to have smelt what they believed to be old blood and stated the air felt very heavy.
1. The Whaley House
The Whaley House is not only verified as one of the most haunted places in San Diego but it was declared an authentic haunted house by the United States Department of Commerce. It served as the Whaley family home for many years. It was also a storage location for public records until they were stolen while Thomas Whaley was out of town. Many tragic events occurred in the house or on the property. Jim Robinson was hung on the property on what is now the archway between the music room and the parlor. Violet Whaley committed suicide on the property, and a young girl died on the kitchen table after a clothes line hanging outside crushed her throat.
The amount of paranormal activity and sightings in the house is astounding. Windows open and close at will, lights flicker, pots and pans in the kitchen move on their own, and the impressions of someone laying on the beds are visible. People have seen figures in windows, have heard the sounds of a baby crying, which people believe is the ghost of 17 month old Thomas Whaley who died in the home. All of the activity that occurs in the home is too extensive to list.