Are you planning a ghost hunting trip to Wales? Excellent choice! From formidable castles to ancient inns and Gothic mansions, supernatural forces are ‘alive’ in the valleys.
Welsh ghost stories often feature war and strife, sickness and crime, love and loss, and greed. To help target your search, we’ll point you to seven infamous haunted locations that reflect the grim echo of the past and are notoriously active today.
1. Skirrid Inn, Llanvihangel Crucorney
In the shadow of Skirrid Mountain lies the unnerving Skirrid Inn – where you go in for a pint and may find yourself getting throttled by invisible hands!
The oak beam over the 12th-century pub’s stairs once served as a gruesome gallows. Over 180 condemned hung from their necks here. Besides the spirits of executed felons, a hangman is believed to stalk the premises. The ghost of Fanny Price, a young woman who died of over-drinking, is also said to wander about.
Glasses move across tables and disembodied voices murmur from the shadows. Some visitors report feeling strangled, together with a sense of dizziness and nausea.
The pub regularly taps into its darker chapter, hosting ghost hunting sessions using techniques like séances, glass divination, table tipping, and Ouija boards.
2. Plas Mawr, Conwy
Plas Mawr, a grand Elizabethan town house in Conwy, North Wales, isn’t your average tourist stop. Various unexplained phenomena play out regularly within its historically tragic walls.
Two wives of the original owner, both named Dorothy, met untimely ends here.
The first died of illness at a young age, childless. The second fell from the tower stairs while pregnant. Today, their phantom souls roam the halls.
A disgraced doctor who trapped himself in the chimney is also said to linger here. Some say he was trying to escape the crazed owner’s wrath after he failed to save the second Dorothy and her unborn baby.
Cats and young girls are also regularly seen. Phantom footsteps pattering on the floorboards have many visitors jumping out of their skins.
3. Craig y Nos Castle, Powys
Set in the misty surroundings of the Brecon Beacons in Wales, Craig y Nos Castles has gained infamy as the most haunted castle in Wales.
This Victorian pile was once the lavish home of 19th-century opera diva Adelina Patti. Thereafter, Craig y Nos was repurposed as a tuberculosis hospital. Uneasy energies swirl in the nooks and crannies of the property, attracting ghost hunters from all over.
There are loads of theories about the spooky goings-on in Craig y Nos. Some say it’s the lingering sadness of patients treated for tuberculosis in the castle’s later years. Others point to Patti’s flamboyant life, believing her spirit still flits through the opulent rooms. It’s also thought that she embalmed her dog in Craig y Nos, binding its spirit to the castle.
Might the whispers echoing down the corridors and darkened hallways be TB patients, some of them children, seeking a connection? What about the sound of a stick clattering over the radiators and a ball bouncing?
4. Beaumaris Castle, Anglesey
Beaumaris Castle is a majestic fortress on the Isle of Anglesey (even if the building work was never totally completed).
The castle was built by England’s King Edward I in the 13th century. It served as a garrison and saw plenty of battle action – both in the conflict between the English and the Welsh and during the English Civil War.
Its storied history of violence and political intrigue has contributed to Beaumaris being one of the most haunted castles in Wales.
Expect everything from knocking noises on the stones to feelings of being watched and apparitions of soldiers in medieval armour on the garrison walls. In the dungeons, don’t be surprised to see shadowy figures of spectral prisoners. The chapel is also an active area – a monk in traditional robes has been witnessed wandering the hallowed space, sometimes chanting.
5. Margam Castle, Port Talbot
Margam Castle is a 19th-century mansion in Port Talbot. This impressive Gothic-style residence is fertile ground for ghost hunters and thrill seekers. Margam Castle stands on a site that has been occupied for over 4,000 years. It was previously an 11th-century abbey and a 16th-century mansion.
More than a few supernatural presences roam this property. Robert Scott, a former gamekeeper who was shot by a poacher in 1898, is often seen ‘visiting’ on the main staircase. He is a rather unruly force known for slamming doors and throwing pebbles at visitors.
Emily Charlotte Talbot, the original owner’s daughter who died in 1918, is said to wander the castle in a white dress and sometimes plays the piano in the music room.
Other paranormal phenomena include the sounds of children laughing and running in the nursery, cold spots, strange smells, and apparitions of monks and soldiers.
You’ll definitely want to book a ghost tour of this infamous mansion at some point.
6. Llancaiach Fawr Manor, Treharris
Imagine a 16th century manor house complete with upstairs/downstairs drama and wickedness. Welcome to Llancaiach Fawr Manor, the former home of Colonel Edward Prichard and his family.
Mattie is the ghost of a maid who died of a broken heart after being rejected by Colonel Pritchard’s son. There’s also the dark Shadow Man who stalks the manor seeking retribution for being hanged for stealing from the family.
The man in uniform you might discern is Colonel Edward Prichard himself, seemingly too troubled to move on…
Today, the property is a living history museum, where staff are frequently frightened out of their wits by roving spirits.
7. Gwrych Castle, Abergele
Spooky Gwrych Castle is a 19th-century Gothic revival mansion near Abergele in North Wales. It was built by Lloyd Hesketh Bamford-Hesketh and later owned by Winifred, Countess of Dundonald.
The Countess is among the most active ghouls on the property. She is known to hiss at visitors to “Get out” and sometimes communicates via Ouija board. Another ghost seen wandering the grounds is said to be a young female servant who died after falling from a horse.
A volunteer worker at Gwrych Castle even had an encounter with a dead butler: “The handrail gave way to nothingness and I felt something propel me up the top three stairs. Seconds later, my colleague told me the butler died right there on that same staircase.”
4 More Welsh Ghost Hunting Hotspots
To delve further into otherworldly phenomena in Wales, check out:
- Carew Castle, Pembrokeshire – several entities haunt this ruggedly located castle.
- Ruthin Castle, Denbighshire – meet the terrifying Lady Grey who murdered her husband’s mistress, plus other entities.
- Ruthin Gaol, Denbighshire – a throwback to a dark past of hardened criminals and cruel conditions.
- Bodelwyddan Castle – another castle with a deserved spooky reputation.
Ghost Hunt Wales – Ghost Tours
To explore the above properties and many other haunted locations in Wales, you will need to join an official ghost tour. What does a typical ghost tour look like?
- Ghost hunts often use a variety of techniques and paranormal equipment from divination and séances to modern metering and recording devices.
- The investigations are carried out in small teams to bigger groups of over 10 people. Lone investigators or couples are expected to slot in with a bigger group.
- The paranormal teams organising ghost tours usually have pretty advanced equipment for the group to try out. However, serious ghost hunters are welcome to bring their own paranormal investigation equipment.
- Ghost hunts can extend into the early hours of the morning in often chilly locations. Wear layered clothing and comfortable walking shoes.
What is the most haunted castle in Wales?
Craig y Nos Castle in Powys is known as the most haunted castle in Wales due to its many active haunting entities.
Are there haunted mental asylums in Wales?
Denbigh Insane Asylum and Pool Park Asylum are two of the most haunted former psychiatric hospitals in Wales. The Pool Park site is set to be redeveloped while Denbigh is currently off-limits.
Where can I do a sleepover ghost hunt in Wales?
A ghost hunting expedition in Craig y Nos Castle offers the chance of a sleepover as part of the experience.
You will see that spooky tales and ghostly apparitions have haunted Wales for centuries. We hope you have a chance to embark on a journey into the land’s paranormal hotbeds to uncover some of the mysteries. Your adventure doesn’t end here, for those intrigued by the UK’s haunted history, Norfolk offers its own ghost hunts too.