Things to Do

Four Scary Ghost Tours Around the DC Area

Why wait until Halloween to visit old haunts?

Illustration by Manyun Zou.

1. Alexandria

Guides swinging lanterns on the Ghost & Graveyard Tour lead visitors to Old Town sites where apparitions have been reported, such as the city’s former icehouse and the home of George Washington’s doctor. The tour skews more informational than spooky, which can be a good thing because kids are welcome. $13 adults, $7 children;

2. Annapolis

The atmospheric streets of Maryland’s capital are the backdrop for a glow-stick tour with Annapolis Tours & Crawls. The 17th-century city has a long history of murder and mayhem in its mansions and on its shadowy docks. The tour even passes by the James Brice House, considered one of the state’s most haunted. $18 adults, $12 children;

3. Capitol Hill

Capitol Hill Haunts is DC’s newest. Its route reveals how America’s most significant buildings, including the US Capitol and the Supreme Court, are said to be haunted by specters, many of them former politicians not content to rest in peace. Not all ghosts are human: Capitol guards maintain that they’re frequently taunted by a “demon cat.” $17 adults, $10 children;

4. Georgetown

The Ghosts of Georgetown Walking Tour gathers in front of the Old Stone House, the oldest unaltered building in DC—and said to be haunted. Guides lead participants through alleys and streets, talking about curses that have followed families for centuries. The tour concludes at the infamous “Exorcist steps.” $20;

This article appears in our September 2016 issue of Washingtonian.