A spooky road trip guide for the brave!
Nowadays, Florida is renowned for its beautiful sandy beaches, incredible climate and parties, but it wasn’t always like this. There was a time when the state was known for its agricultural prosperity, towns dedicated to farming and sawmill production popped up and down the state. But as natural resources were exhausted, economic depression took hold, or hurricanes, and freezes devastated the land, many of these towns were abandoned.
These days these settlements are but a shadow of what they used to be, and many believe them to be inhabited by the ghosts of ages past. So if you’re ever in the mood for a spooky roadtrip with friends, we highly suggest checking these Florida ghost towns out for some paranormal activity!
At its height, Stiltsville was rife with gambling dens and bars including the Bikini Club, a grounded yacht that offered free drinks to any woman clad in a two-piece swimsuit and provided a deck for nude sunbathing. But the extensive damage done by hurricanes and the closure of the Bikini Club turned Stiltsville into a ghost town, a mere reflection of what it once used to be. The remaining houses are still functioning however, and can be accessed by navigating the shallows of Biscayne Bay by boat or kayak.
2. White City
A mix of active and ghost town, White City in St. Lucie County was founded by the Danish back in 1893, inspired by Chicago’s World Fair. In 1894 a man who called himself Colonel Myers showed up in town promising great changes for the town but instead took the villagers’ money and disappeared into thin air. Later, the Great Freeze of 1894-95 damaged great part of the crops driving farmers out of the town.
Nowadays, you can still visit some of the original structures like the Jorgensen House, Captain Hammond House and White City Marketplace and locals believe the conman Myers still roams the town in all of his ghostly glory. Many restoration efforts have been mysteriously destroyed, and personal items, such as gold watches, have been reported as disappearing without a trace.
Slavia was founded in 1911 by a group of Slovakian immigrants who moved to Florida from Ohio in the search for new land on which agriculture and wholesome values could reign once more. Unfortunately, the Slavia Colony Company disolved in 1920 and the remaining acres were divided between the stockholders. Today nobody lives in Slavia except for the transparent figure of a young boy said to be that of eleven year old John Mikler, the first person to be buried in the town back in 1933.
Hopewell, originally known as Callsville. was founded as a plantation shortly before the Civil War. Surrounded by a citrus grove the area swiftly prospered turning into the town of Hopewell. No one really knows why hopewell was abandoned in the first place — guess it didn’t turn out to be all the residents had hoped for. Today the citrus groves have begun reclaiming the town and residents of the nearby Hillborough say that if you walk through them around dusk you will be surrounded by a deafening choir of voices belonging to those who once called Hopewell home.
5. Fort Dade, Egmont Key
Built on Egmont Key during the Spanish American War, this ghostly fort saw little to no action and was abandoned shortly after the war ended. Today you can see forts, power stations, observation posts, bunkers, and other military relics. Former park rangers have not only reported hearing phantom gun fire at the fort, but they also claim that the 137 year old lighthouse on the island often turns on without anyone operating it.
See also: 9 Of The Most Haunted Spots Around Miami