Haunted Halloween: Harpers Ferry, West Virginia

In honor of Halloween, TripAdvisor.com established a list of the 10 best haunted tours in the United States. We’ve been counting down the top 10 all week and we’re finally to #1:

Ghost Tours of Harpers Ferry in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia

Harpers Ferry was the backdrop not only to a Civil War battle but also John Brown’s raid on the town’s armory. The O’ Be JoyFull company has designed the Ghost Tours of Harpers Ferry to be a 90 minute walking tour discussing the history and haunted events of this town, especially its historic “Lower Section.”


In the early 1970s, restaurant owner Shirley Dougherty began experiences unexplained hauntings in her restaurant. Despite not believing in ghosts, it appeared the believed in her. She began a quest to research the building her restaurant sat in and eventually discovered a lasting history of the entire town and the deaths that had occurred there. She eventually published a book of her research, A Ghostly Tour of Harpers Ferry. This ghost tour is based on the stories Shirley Dougherty collected along with stories from the National Park service. The history has been authenticated by numerous sources so you know you’ll be getting an authentic ghost tour when you head to Harpers Ferry. Not only is it authentic, it is the oldest ghost tour in the United States.For additional discussion of the history of Harpers Ferry, you should look to O’ Be JoyFull’s other tour, the Historical Town Walking Tours. The historical tours are the #1 attraction in Harpers Ferry and will teach you all about the history of this town near the state lines of West Virginia, Virginia and Maryland.

Enjoy the Town Around the Tour


You can also explore the outdoors at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. The Appalachian Trail runs partially through this national park and the hiking trails are beloved by those in the DC area looking for things to do outside the city. The Historical area includes most of the town’s “Lower Section” but you need to explore more than just the city section to truly see its beauty. There are bridges, rivers, and even battlegrounds to explore. For amazing views, climb up the Cliff Overlook Trail. If you want to overlook Civil War encampments, climb the Stone Fort Trail. There are many sites to see in this park and don’t be afraid to climb high to see them all.

As you head back to your hotel, stop by the Cannonball Deli. It’s a tiny place with a limited menu that really delivers. The gyros and pizzas are popular dishes and locals love to stop in for the desserts. Fork You, a food blog in the Charleston area, gives a rave review of the place here. Be sure to comment back here if you try it.


Try the Laurel Lodge for a great bed & breakfast experience in Harpers Ferry. This B&B was featured on the HGTV show If Walls Could Talk. You’ll start your morning here with a two course breakfast including fresh breads and a hot course. The view here overlooks the Potomac River and is nestled off the Appalachian Trail.

So we’ve reached the end of our countdown of the top 10 haunted ghost tours in the Unites States. Hopefully you’ve learned how to incorporate a ghost tour into any vacation, whether you want to experience nature, history, romance or adventure. Happy Halloween everyone!

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I'm Julie, I love to travel, I'm very hyper and I like to "hype" things and from that, TravelHyper was born. I'm a Missouri native and I cover St. Louis travel ideas as well as my own travels. I also like to focus on places I want to visit and budget travel ideas by creating trip plans. There's so much world out there and I hope you'll find that it's worth seeing and that vacation doesn't have to be out of reach to you.

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