Spooky season is here baby!
Sydney’s got some pretty mysterious nooks and crannies but come October it really wears the Halloween mantle spectacularly well. And while its all sparkly and dazzling on the surface, delve a little deeper and you can find some seriously spine-tingling tales about certain parts of the city. Since spooky season is officially here, we’ve rounded up a bunch of legitimately creepy places in and around Sydney. Are they haunted? Who knows. Will they give you sleepless nights? Definitely.
1. The street with no name, Annandale
This viaduct in Annandale in a rather plush inner-west locality has been nicknamed ‘The street with no name’ by locals. Its often dubbed as one of the most haunted streets in not just Sydney but all of Australia. Its been reported that years ago, the street had a history of violence and murders. Several locals have gone on record and reported feelings of overwhelming fear and anxiety on the road and even sudden temperature changes.
According to Dangerous Roads, children and dogs have also exhibited bizarre behaviour while on the road.
Fancy a visit yourself to see what all the fuss is about?
2. Darlinghurst Gaol
Darlinghurst Gaol has a wicked reputation for being haunted by the spirits of the 76 people who were executed at the gallows. The executions were staged at the gaol’s entrance. In fact, public executions continued to take place at the site all the way till 1908.
Visitors can take tours of the area, now dubbed ‘Starvinghurst’ for its grim past and meagre rations. This is one you’ll want to visit at your own risk.
3. Studley Park House
Built back in 1889, Studley Park House has been the subject of aggressive speculation and ghost hunting galore.
The legend goes that 14-year-old Ray Blackstone died swimming in a dam on the property. Over 30 years later, history repeated itself when 13-year-old Noel William Gregory succumbed to appendicitis in the same house.
It is believed that the two still play together at the mansion with locals reporting sightings and eerie voices heard around the expansive area.
4. Wakehurst Parkway
Wakehurst Parkway is popularly known as Australia’s most haunted road. Surprisingly when you visit it during the day, you wouldn’t associate it with anything out of the ordinary.
And yet over the years several creepy stories about the road have done the rounds. The most famous one being the apparition of a ghostly female figure in the middle of the road which has been reported by a number of bikers and motorists over the years. The locals have even nicknamed her ‘Kelly’. Another popular story revolves around the ghost of a young girl who hops into unsuspecting cars on the Parkway.
5. Q Station
At Q Station, you will now find unique hotel accommodation, wedding celebrations, and one of Sydtney’s best restaurants with one of the best views of the city going around.
However, all of this beautification, dressing up, and modernisation of the former quarantine station (see what they did with the name) can only barely cover up what went on here so many years ago.
In its fifty-year history as s Sydney’s former quarantine station, Q Station saw the arrival of hundreds of migrants from Europe with many carrying diseases and subsequently dying at North Head. An estimated 572 people not only died there but were also buried there and, as such, it is regarded as one of Australia’s most haunted sites.
7. The Town Of Picton
Picton, at just an hour’s drive from Sydney, makes for a perfect escape from the city but not for the faint-hearted as the town itself is home to a number of supernatural sites including the infamous Redbank Range Railway Tunnel (now known as the Mushroom Tunnel), which is one of Australia’s oldest railway tunnels.
The tunnel spans just short of 600 feet (about 180 metres in length) and was used heavily between 1867-1919 connecting Sydney with Melbourne. Then, during WWII, the tunnel was used for storage and was later used for commercial mushroom growing. But, what gives visitors the heebie-jeebies when visiting is the fact that locals claim many people committed suicide by at this very spot, the most notable being Emily Bollard who was killed by an oncoming steam train in 1916. Unfortunately, or not, the tunnel has fallen into disrepair and is unsafe to walk inside. Visitors must remain on the outside, looking in.
Other haunted sites in Picton include the Wollondilly Shire Council, the Old Maternity Hospital (now a private residence), and the Imperial Hotel, which is no longer the local watering hall.
8. Cockatoo Island
In its storied history, Sydney Harbour’s Cockatoo Island has been home to countless people and institutions. For a long time, it was used by the indigenous people of Sydney’s coastal region before becoming NSW’s newest penal establishment in 1839 as well as the colony’s grain storage site.
An archaeological dig in 2009 discovered punishment cells beneath the cookhouse. I wonder if they were there for all the foolhardy convicts that tried to escape. Find out on a tour of the island
9. Gladesville Mental Hospital
The Gladesville Mental Hospital used to go by another name, the Tarban Creek Lunatic Asylum. Thankfully the outdated uses and connotations are slowly disappearing from use and mental health is being given elevated importance in our community, but this is now.
Back when this purpose-built mental hospital on the banks of the Parramatta River was built in the 19th Century, those suffering from depression, abuse, and other illnesses were treated as the same as the clinically insane. It was supposed to be that these people were to rehabilitate these patients, but reports have surfaced that this just didn’t happen.
According to an investigation by the Herald, the bones of 1228 inmates are buried in an unmarked plot with the names of 305 of those lost forever. That’s no way to respect the dead but do you have what it takes to pay your respects?