Now that October is finally here, we officially declare that it Halloween season!
To kick the festivities off right, let’s explore some of the most famous horror film locations around the country that you can actually visit.
Written by Amelia Johnson
Photo by Carter Andrews
The scary ‘Black Hills Forest’ of the 1999 horror film The Blair Witch Project, where the villain haunts a small Maryland town is actually Seneca Creek State Park. Today, you can go picnicking, kayaking, rent boats + enjoy the scenic Seneca Creek all without the fear of witches! 45 minutes away, the town of Burkittsville, in which the legend of the Blair Witch originated in the film, has had an on-going relationship with fans ever since.
Photo by Van Terry
The Monroeville Mall just outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is the sight of cult-classic, Dawn of the Dead (1978). Two Philadelphia S.W.A.T team members, a traffic reporter + his television executive girlfriend seek refuge in a secluded mall from flesh-eating zombies. Dawn of the Dead is considered to be one of the best zombie movies + has a 93% approval rating on the movie critic website, Rotten Tomatoes. Today, the mall reminds visitors of its past as the sight of this famous movie by offering zombie laser tag, official plaques and a twice yearly “The Living Dead Weekend” that celebrates the iconic film!
Photo courtesy of the Timberline Lodge
Set as the fictional, isolated hotel called the Overlook Hotel in the 1980 film, The Shining, is the Timberline Lodge. Although the film takes place in Colorado, the actual Timberline Lodge is located on Mount Hood in Northern Oregon and remains an active mountain resort to this day! Contrary to common belief, only the exterior was used in the film. The majority of The Shining was filmed at Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire, England which was used for the interior scenes.
Photo courtesy of livethemovies.com
Although the majority of M. Night Shyamalan’s 1999 film, The Sixth Sense, was filmed in the city of Philadelphia (also where the story takes place), we choose to highlight St. Augustine’s Church. St. Augustine’s church is where the audience sees Cole Sear (Haley Joel Osment) + Dr. Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis) meet for the first time. Additionally, this church is where Cole seeks refuge from his demons. Take a trip to Philly + travel to each of the filming locations (especially St. Augustine’s Church)!
This historic apartment building, The Dakota, is the set of the fictional building, The Bramford in the 1968 film, Rosemary’s Baby. In the film, The Bramford is known for its dark past + is coincidentally where Rosemary (Mia Farrow) conceives the child of Satan. Additionally, it is the same apartment building where John Lennon + Yoko Ono once lived and is also the location of John Lennon’s murder in 1980.
Photo by Jenee O
This set of steps located in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington D.C. is the backdrop for the scene in The Exorcist (1973) where Father Karras plummets seventy-five steps to his death, ultimately sacrificing himself to kill the demon, Pazuzu. Today, the steps are commemorated with a plaque + attract movie lovers for a perfect selfie spot.
Photo curtesy of The Gas Station
This gas station turned barbecue joint, is the location of the 1974 horror classic, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Here, a group of ill-fated friends discover that this “gas station” doesn’t sell gas at all + must escape a killer cannibal who wears a flesh-skin mask. The gas station turned into a barbecue restaurant in 2016 + sells horror film memorabilia. Definitely capitalizing on the theme of murder, the restaurant has a sign hanging outside saying “We Slaughter”.
Photo by Craig Philpott