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Haunted or Hoax: Seven Spooky Places in Orlando

It’s the season of tricks and treats, and Orlando serves up healthy helpings of both. Long before Halloween Horror Nights™ began thrilling visitors, these Orlando ghost stories kept the Halloween spirit alive year round. But as the stories get passed from generation to generation, it can be hard to separate fact from fiction. Are these places truly haunted or is it just local legend? There’s only one way to find out! Here are seven spooky places in Orlando to explore – if you dare.

Hamburger Mary’s

You may think you’re just stopping for a delicious burger and entertaining drag show but this Hamburger Mary’s has a few more tricks up its sleeve. Located on Church Street in one of downtown Orlando’s oldest districts, locals say this burger joint is home to the ghost of a young girl from the 1800s. She is known to tap on the windows, wave at guests, and skip down the street late at night.

Orange County Regional History Center

For history that never dies, visit the Orange County Regional History Center. Formerly an Orlando courthouse, legend says the building is haunted by the specter of serial killer Ted Bundy. Inside you can explore the courtroom in which he was convicted and perhaps even catch a glimpse of him along the corridors.

Lake Lucerne

Continue your downtown Orlando ghost tour by visiting Lake Lucerne on South Orange Avenue. This quiet, unassuming lake may seem peaceful but locals have reported spooky sightings by the shore. A mysterious lady in white is said to appear after dark under an old oak tree and vanish into the night.

Lake Eola

No need to panic; this phantom dog has more in common with your own friendly pup than with the gruesome hound of the Baskervilles. Witnesses say the small brown terrier frolics along the eastern side of the shore, then disappears into thin air.

Enzian Theater

The Enzian is the perfect place enjoy independent, foreign, or classic films, as well as a brush with the supernatural. Said only to appear on moonless nights around 1 a.m., this ghost manifests itself as a disembodied head, screams, and vanishes into the kitchen next door, presumably for a late-night snack.

Oviedo Lights

If glowing orbs are more your style, check out the Oviedo Lights. A spooky phenomenon popular with local teenagers in the 1940 on through into the 1970s, no source for the lights has ever been discovered, although theories range from gristly tales to swamp gas. You’ll find the lights suspended in midair at the bridge crossing over the Econlockhatchee River. But watch out! The eerie lights have been said to chase cars on occasion.

Spook Hill

Also popular with the youth of yesteryear, this gravity-defying destination seems to roll your car uphill. A weathered sign offers a tale of a battle between a Seminole chief and alligator as explanation, though a variety of local legends and conflicting stories exist. The only thing we can really be sure of is that Spook Hill Elementary across the street has one of the most spirited mascots ever – Casper the Friendly Ghost.

Whether you’re ghost hunting across Orlando or seeking thrills at theme park celebrations, you’ll be near all the action at Rosen Inn International. Even the most dedicated ghost hunters need a break so relax in the sunshine by our pool, enjoy a delicious meal at our restaurants, and take a nap in your air-conditioned guestroom. To book your Orlando getaway call 407-996-1600.

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