Top 10 Haunted Houses in Ohio
The Buckeye State is famous for its rich history, sports teams, and vibrant cities. But it also holds a darker reputation – as a hotspot of haunted houses and paranormal activity. From eerie tunnels to old reformatories, Ohio has several spine-chilling attractions.
Here are our picks for the top ten haunted houses in Ohio. We think they’ll give you goosebumps and inspire you during Halloween season.
1. Carnage Haunted House, Columbus
Voted by visitors as the number one haunted house in the Midwest, the Carnage Haunted House boasts a reputation for authentic details and frights that leave thrill-seekers quaking in anticipation.
This haunted house has been meticulously designed to induce maximum fear and adrenaline with every twist and turn. It is a mecca for horror enthusiasts, especially around Halloween.
Online reviewers rave it’s “good scary fun,” “awesome and fearful,” and call the experience an “awesome time!” Each room of the attraction has unique horrors and heart-stopping scares that lurk around every corner, just waiting to terrorize even the most seasoned visitors. And a cast of superb actors outfitted in gruesome costumes are ready to jump out at you from every dark corner.
If you’re searching for an unforgettable Halloween experience, make sure not to miss out on this must-visit destination that promises to leave you with chilling memories that will haunt your dreams long after you’ve left its sinister embrace.
2. The Dent Schoolhouse, Cincinnati
You wouldn’t expect to see a haunted schoolhouse among the unsettling attractions on this list, but this seemingly innocent schoolhouse has a gruesome history.
Legend has it that the school’s janitor was a serial killer who preyed on his students. Consumed by evil intent, he secretly stalked the halls of the schoolhouse, seeking out vulnerable victims. His heinous acts forever transformed the once idyllic school into a place gripped by fear and unending nightmares.
Today, visitors to the Dent Schoolhouse in Cincinnati report seeing apparitions and hearing children’s laughter echoing through the halls.
3. Factory of Terror, Canton
The Factory of Terror Haunted House in Canton, Ohio, is a must-visit for thrill-seekers. Housed in an abandoned 160,000 sq. ft. aluminum foundry, the Factory of Terror is more than just a haunted house; it’s a fully immersive experience. The attraction features five full-length sections, each uniquely themed to provide a distinct and terrifying adventure.
Beyond the haunts, guests can enjoy ax throwing and five thematic bars, adding to the overall entertainment value.
Notably, the Factory of Terror isn’t just famous in Ohio; it holds a Guinness World Record for being “The Longest Indoor Haunted Attraction” in the world, a title it has won on several occasions.
4. Rockin-R-Ranch Spooky Ranch, Columbia Station, Cleveland
Cleveland’s premier haunted event is the Rockin-R-Ranch Spooky Ranch. This popular event occurs in a sprawling ranch filled with spooky surprises and terrifying thrills, including a haunted house, haunted saloon, haunted barn, a monster zombie clown house, and even a technically advanced haunted hayride!
Each year, the talented team behind Rockin-R-Ranch Spooky Ranch goes above and beyond to provide new, innovative scares that keep guests coming back for more. This haunted attraction has gained a reputation for its highly immersive environment and frightening atmosphere, drawing in locals and tourists eager to test their mettle.
Whether you’re a fan of adrenaline-pumping scares or appreciate the artistry of detailed horror environments, visiting Rockin-R-Ranch Spooky Ranch should be at the top of your list when visiting Cleveland during the Halloween season.
5. Ghostly Manor Thrill Center, Sandusky
While Sandusky, Ohio’s Cedar Point, is known as the Roller Coaster Capital of the U.S., it shares another more sinister appellation with its Ghostly Manor Thrill Center. This top-rated haunted attraction located just six miles from Cedar Point offers an extensive range of haunted attractions that cater to thrill-seekers and horror enthusiasts of all ages.
Each attraction is meticulously designed to provide a unique scare experience, ensuring everyone who visits the center has something to pique their interest and challenge their courage. The combination of eerie settings, spine-tingling sound effects, and heart-stopping surprises guarantees unforgettable memories for visitors.
Among the chilling attractions at the Ghostly Manor Thrill Center, you will find both a haunted trail and a spooky manor. The haunted trail takes guests on an adventurous journey through winding paths surrounded by creepy woodland creatures and other mysterious horrors lurking in the shadows.
On the other hand, the spooky manor beckons brave souls to explore its dark corridors filled with sinister secrets and ghostly residents. No matter which attraction you choose to experience, there is no doubt that everyone in the family will feel their hearts race as they indulge in spine-chilling fun at the Ghostly Manor Thrill Center.
6. Haunted Caves, Lewisburg
The Haunted Caves at Lewisburg are widely recognized as one of the most extraordinary and distinctive haunted attractions. This spine-chilling destination takes the concept of fear to astounding new depths, delivering an immersive experience that will leave even the most steadfast thrill-seekers quaking in their boots.
With its unique blend of spine-tingling scenarios and expertly crafted narratives, every visit to the Haunted Caves promises a truly unforgettable journey through terror guaranteed to leave a lasting impression long after the final scare.
Situated a staggering 80 feet beneath the Earth’s surface, this one-of-a-kind haunted cave provides an unparalleled opportunity for brave visitors to confront their deepest fears head-on. The subterranean setting is home to innumerable spooky surprises that await around every dark twist and turn, but it also imbues the experience with an unsettling atmosphere that amplifies the horror factor tenfold.
So, for those eager to take a chilling plunge into darkness and put their courage to the ultimate test, a trip to the Haunted Caves at Lewisburg offers a truly spine-tingling adventure unlike anything else.
7. Lake Eerie Fearfest, Sandusky
Lake Eerie Fearfest, located in Sandusky, Ohio, is a renowned haunted house attraction that promises a thrilling experience for the bravest visitors. Recognized as one of Ohio’s spookiest haunted houses, it offers an immersive Halloween experience that is open year-round.
Home to four haunted houses and a haunted trail, Lake Eerie Fearfest is a top destination for those seeking a good scare. One of their main attractions is the Ghostly Manor, which has been featured on The Travel Channel’s Best Places I’ve Ever Been.
The Fearfest is near popular destinations like Cedar Point’s Halloweekends, Kalahari Waterpark, and the Great Wolf Lodge Hotel, making it an ideal stop for those seeking a spine-chilling adventure. The Fearfest’s impressive sets, convincing actors, and state-of-the-art special effects contribute to its reputation as one of Ohio’s scariest haunted houses.
8. Licking County Historic Jail, Newark
Historians and thrill-seekers alike will appreciate the Licking County Historic Jail. Known for its paranormal activity, the jail offers guided tours that delve into its eerie past, providing a haunting experience.
The jail, constructed in 1889, has an eerie castle-like appearance reminiscent of the Tower of London. In its day, it is said to have housed many notorious murderers and serial killers. It was here in 1910 that Carl Etherington, a young deputy, was being held for his protection against an angry mob. While attempting to enforce Licking County’s recently passed prohibition laws, Etherington accidentally shot a saloon owner. An angry mob gathered, and unfortunately, the protection offered by the jail was insufficient.
Etherington was beaten to death with a hammer before they dragged him out and hanged him from a telegraph pole at the corner of Park and Second Streets.
It is also believed that at least three sheriffs and 19 inmates perished at the jail over the years. Perhaps it is one or more of them whose howling cries echo through the halls as reported by visitors. Paranormal enthusiasts worldwide flock to the jail annually in hopes (or fear) of encountering otherworldly spirits.
9. The Moonville Tunnel, Southeast Ohio
The Moonville Tunnel in Southeast Ohio is a long-abandoned railroad tunnel with many ghost stories, attracting thrill-seekers and paranormal enthusiasts. A famous tale involves a brakeman who died in a tragic accident and continues to haunt the tunnel, swinging his lantern as a warning.
The brakeman’s legend has become integral to local folklore, and visitors often claim to see his spirit signaling danger in the dimly lit passage. In recent years, preservation efforts have further fueled interest in the tunnel’s eerie history.
Today, the Moonville Tunnel captivates people’s fascination with the unknown, sparking fear in some and curiosity in others. Its spectral legend will likely persist for generations, serving as a reminder of a bygone era.
10. The Ohio State Reformatory, Mansfield
The Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield, known for its setting in “The Shawshank Redemption,” is one of Ohio’s scariest haunted attractions. Its striking fortress-like architecture and rich history contribute to the eerie atmosphere, attracting visitors seeking a spooky experience during the Halloween season.
Ghost stories abound at this historic site, with visitors recounting sightings of apparitions and unexplainable sounds. As night falls, adventurous souls can explore the haunted halls or participate in paranormal tours.
The oppressive environment and chilling tales make exploring the Reformatory an unforgettable experience. Special events for thrill-seekers include overnight ghost hunts and seasonal haunted house attractions. A visit to this intriguing site should not be missed for those seeking a spine-tingling adventure during Halloween.
Boo! Here’s an Extra Scare for You:
The Wells Township Haunted House
The Wells Township Haunted House, located in Brilliant, Ohio, is renowned as one of the state’s most terrifying attractions, offering spine-chilling experiences for the bravest thrill-seekers. Not for the faint-hearted, it guarantees an unforgettable night of terror filled with shocking sights and sounds.
What makes it stand out is its team of professional actors who excel at bringing your deepest fears to life, creating unparalleled fear-induced realism.
Visitors should brace themselves for a heart-thumping, adrenaline-filled experience with unexpected surprises keeping them on edge. As they navigate the dimly lit corridors and face lurking ghastly figures, guests may question their courage and wonder if they will emerge unscathed.
The Wells Township Haunted House is perfect for those seeking a genuinely chilling experience, with only the most fearless leaving with nightmares worth remembering.
The Buckeye State is Spooktacular!
So, you see, the Buckeye State isn’t just flush with great family communities, cultural institutions, amazing places to dine, good schools, and football fever; it’s also chock-a-block with some of the scariest haunted houses around.
And we’re only scratching the surface of spooktacular attractions around the state. From a haunted schoolhouse in Cincinnati, haunted trails in the Lorain County Metro Parks, a haunted mansion in Cleveland, and creepy tunnels, caverns, and woods, Ohio has no shortage of scary attractions.
We hope you’ll add some of these nationally ranked spooky spots to your “bucket ‘o’ blood” list and decide which of them you think is the scariest haunted house.