FROM haunting wails to ghostly figures appearing in the mirror, those on the hunt for paranormal activity this Halloween have plenty of options across Spain to scare themselves silly.
The Olive Press delved into urban legends and spooky tales to bring you the definitive list of Spain’s most haunted houses.
Surrounded by violent and grisly pasts these properties are surrounded with mystery that only a daring few have explored.
Bélmez de la Moraleda, Jaén, Andalucia
Number 5 Calle Real in the village of Bélmez in Jaén hides a haunting phenomena. Known as the faces of Bélmez, marks have been appearing and disappearing on the walls and floors that look like human faces. This has been happening since 1971 and they are still said to appear now.
Thorax Hospital, Terrassa, Catalunya
Specializing in patients with respiratory conditions this former sanatorium in Terrassa held the highest suicide rate in Spain for a long time. Suicides were often triggered by a psychosis that patients developed due to their agonising drawn out deaths. Rumour has it that the sick were tossed from the ninth floor into the garden, dubbed “the Jungle,” and are said to still haunt the zone to this day.
The mystery of Ochate, Burgos, Castille y Leon
Instead of a single property, the entire village of Ochate in Burgos has been surrounded by paranormal occurrences for years. Since the mid-19th century the village has been completely abandoned due to epidemics that are said to have wiped out the population. There have been reports of a young girl shouting ‘kanpora’ (‘out’ in Basque) and a woman speaking too. Perhaps the most curious was the detection of a UFO in 1981.
The House of the Seven Chimneys, Madrid
Located in Plaza del Rey in Madrid the “Casa de las siete chimeneas’ ‘ used to belong to Captain Zapata and his wife Elena.
However, Zapata died at war in Flanders. After his death Elena was discovered dead in their bedroom, but the cause of her death was never determined as her body vanished without a trace. Servants claimed it was murder whilst others said she died from grief.
Rumours were spread about a secret affair Elena had had with the King and some thought he was to blame but her father was accused and hung from the rafters of the house.
Since then, many have seen a woman walking on the roof of the house pointing to the Alcazar, home of the King, maybe to show what truly happened.
The ghost of Catalina in Casa Lercaro, Tenerife
In Calle de San Agustín on the Canary Island of Tenerife lies the house of the Lercaro family, dating back to the late 16th century. The story goes that Antonio Lercaro had a daughter named Catalina who was forced to marry an older man. Thus she decided to commit suicide by jumping into a well behind the house. As she took her own life the Church denied her a proper Christian burial so many believe that she was buried in one of the rooms of the house and has haunted the property ever since.
Sanatorium of Santo Ángel de la Guarda, Madrid
Built in 1941 this Madrid sanatorium was dedicated to the treatment of illnesses like tuberculosis, leprosy, polio, fibrosis and lung cancer. It was later converted into a mental health facility and was finally closed in 1995. Daring individuals have walked through its halls to find patient records and hospital paraphernalia. Many have also reported strange figures in the corridors, voices, slamming doors and electrical devices suddenly powering off.
Aguas de Busot, Alicante, Valencia
This Civil War era sanitorium in Alicante used to treat children suffering with tuberculosis. Reports claim that for some it was a place of cruelty where nuns would inflict punishments on the children, for example, those who wet the bed were forced to wrap the sheets around their heads and paraded around the dining hall at breakfast time.
Years after its closure in 2002 researcher Pedro Amoros reported seeing a white lady appear in the mirror, which led many more to go and investigate the property.
People reported seeing the lady, creepy shadows and hearing strange voices. Allegedly if you see the white lady in the mirror and she laughs you will be alright but if she is crying something bad will befall you
Old building of the Provincial Council of Granada, Granada, Andalucia
Before belonging to the council, this building was a department store where during a refurbishment in the 1970s builders discovered human bones, including those of children, hidden behind the walls.
Employees reported strange happenings such as escalators working by themselves, lights turning off and on and products moving around.
In 1985 when the Diputación Provincial took over, nothing changed, typewriters and drawers moved by themselves, things would disappear, ghostly figures were seen and screams could be heard throughout the halls.
In 1986, the Omega group, led by Juan Burgos, carried out an investigation with all the evidence corroborating what had occurred. Workers refused to continue working in the building and thus it was closed in 1993.
Teatro Eslava, Madrid
Many will know this building in Madrid now as a popular nightclub and concert venue. However on March 2 1922 after an argument over a woman and a fierce literary rivalry between the pair, playwright Luis Antón del Olmet was shot dead by writer Alfonso Vidal in the old theatre. The spirit of Olmet is said to wander the building to this day, so watch out the next time you party here.
Cortijo Jurado, Málaga, Andalucia
This mansion located in the neighbourhood of Campanillas in Malaga was once owned by the Heredia family. When women began disappearing at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century and their bodies were found on river banks near the house, all fingers pointed to the family.
The bodies were found with marks of torture alluding to the practise of satanic rites. To this day visitors claim to have heard haunting moans from the house as well as seen shadowy human figures in the windows.
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