6 Haunted European Castles You Can Actually Sleep In
Just in time for Halloween, Holidu, the search engine for holiday homes in the U.K., has put together a list of haunted castles that you can actually rent to live out your spookiest dreams.
Castles were once some of the most important places in many communities throughout the world. Some worked as fortresses against invading armies while others served as opulent palaces for ruling kings and queens. These stone buildings have been homes to triumphant battles, massive feasts, and maybe a tragedy or two. Because of their significance, they were often built on high ground, overlooking their kingdoms in all their glory.
So, not only would staying in a haunted castle be especially spine-tingling, it would also have some excellent views. And because many of these fortresses were built so long ago, they’ve been imbued with some rich histories — and maybe even a few ghost stories.
Holidu rounded up some of the best, most gorgeous castle stays around Europe – because a castle just isn’t a castle unless it’s authentic. You’d definitely be hard-pressed to find a real, ancient medieval castle anywhere in the U.S. Their list includes beautiful French chateaus, Italian Renaissance palaces, and impressive Irish towers.
And not only do these places bring you some historical, European charm, but they’re also close to a number of Halloween-themed activities as well, including scary museums, haunted graveyards, local Halloween festivals, and lots of live performances and parties. Don’t worry if you’re a little bit of a scaredy-cat, because many of these local activities are all in good fun and even have some family-friendly options.
Take a look at Holidu’s list of haunted castle homes that you will be dying to visit this Halloween. .
Castello Leopoldo — Tuscany, Italy
This 16th-century castle in Tuscany is romantic, elegant, and grand. According to Holidu, you can see the island of Elba across the water on clear days. In nearby San Gimignano, the Torture Museum attracts plenty of visitors who aren’t afraid of gore. Castello Leopoldo can comfortably accommodate 20 people and will cost from £1,528 per night (about $1,951 USD).
Château Martinus — Saint-Caprais-de-Lerm, France
Located in the Aquitaine region of France, this fabulous and massive castle can comfortably room up to 18 people. The dining room features a long, wooden trestle-style table and fireplace, so you can pretend you’re a medieval monarch on cold autumn nights. Although the stone walls and decor make this place seem ancient, there’s also a very modern pool area. In nearby Bordeaux, you can take part in the annual Zombie Walk on Oct. 19 if you’re in for some spooky fun. Pricing starts from £301 per night (about $384 USD).
Mazures — Liège, Belgium
This medieval residence is only part of a castle that overlooks the banks of the river Vesdre, in Liège, Belgium. The holiday home is located in the left-wing of the tower and rooms up to four people. But even though you don’t get a whole castle to yourself, you can still enjoy some lovely design features like a medieval bridge and spiral staircase. It also has a modern living room and kitchen for your convenience. The nearby Château de Jehay hosts an annual witch celebration where you can enjoy carnival-like activities, food, and lots of ghostly treats. Pricing starts at £81 per night (about $103 USD).
Castle Schloss Saarfels — Serrig, Germany
You can actually only rent a two-bedroom apartment in this German castle, located near borders of Luxembourg, France and Belgium. Perhaps one of the best perks is the castle’s breathtaking views of Riesling vineyards and river Saar. But if you're looking for Halloween thrills, a horror experience called The Devil’s Exorcist, in Trier, is good for people who aren’t scared too easily. Aptly named, this performance is of an exorcism taking place on a young girl and occasionally the demon will attack the audience too. Prices for the castle start from £159 per night (about $202 USD).
Number 6 Narrow Water Castle — County Down, Northern Ireland
This castle in Northern Ireland originally dates back to the 1680s, but it has been renovated to include a luxury apartment for up to six people. Gaze at the rolling green hills as you sleep like royalty in this palace’s beautiful and modern accommodations. If you are looking for some screams, you can hop aboard a spooky train experience at the Downpatrick and County Down Railway, which will take you to a haunted graveyard and Merlin’s cavern. There are also some kid-friendly activities on board. Prices for the apartment start from £151 per night (about $192 USD).
Château St. Philippe — Saint-Pierre-d'Albigny, France
This French chateau is probably one of the most historic on the list since it dates back to 1032. It was built by the Benedictine monks as a priory, but the current owners have completely restored the castle and preserved its architectural integrity while also bringing it into the 21st century. Because it’s been around for so long, don’t be surprised if you get a few goosebumps. But if you’re looking for even more frights, you can take a quick trip to Château de Miolans, another medieval castle (built around the same time) that was also a state-run prison from 1564-1792. Staying at Château St. Philippe will cost from £1,687 a night (about $2,147 USD).