Haunted places and ghosts

Explore Romania’s haunted realms through chilling tales and eerie encounters, where myth and reality converge to captivate the adventurous soul.

Romania is the land of myth and magic, with a rich culture of legends, folkloric fairytales and even horror stories. From haunted castles and abbeys, inexplicable supernatural events, ghost, vampires and demonic nuns, there is something for every paranormal enthusiast who is brave enough to venture down the roads leading to the following 4 haunted travel destinations.

1/ Carta Abbey

Carta Abbey

The infamous Carta Abbey is located on the land of Transylvania. Built in the shape of a cross between the years 1202-1206 by the Cistercians monks, it is the most eastern monument of this religious order in Europe.

The Cistercians were Catholic monks of French origin who built their abbey in unpopulated areas and who lived according to strict rules: they fed only on the fruits of their labor, they were not allowed to eat meat and they dressed only in clothes made by themselves. 

Their principle was “pray and work.” However, by the 15th century, they began indulging in luxurious lifestyles, and the abbey was dissolved in 1474. Nowadays, it functions as an Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Although Carta Abbey has quite a few unique touristic attractions, it is on our list for one sole reason: its reputation of haunted place, which made it the prime filming location for the horror movie series The Nun. According to the local legends, the abbey is haunted by the spirits of the medieval monks who died here due to the harsh living conditions. 

It is said they were fasting all year and feeding mostly on boiled beech leaves, cheese, a few vegetables, and occasionally fish. They all slept in the same room and were covering themselves with hay, as heating the rooms was strictly forbidden. The monks died young, and they were buried on the grounds of the abbey. Their graves can still be seen there.

Paranormal events such as walls vibrating, chairs being moved around, and many other inexplicable events have been reported by the priests who preached at Carta Abbey before.

2/ Hoia-Baciu Forest

Hoia-Baciu Forest

Hoia-Baciu is considered the world’s most haunted forest. Situated in Transylvania, this forest is surrounded by many tales consisting of disappearances, time travel, inter-dimensional portals, ghosts, UFOs and many other paranormal phenomena.

One of the most well-known legends is the one that in fact gave the forest its name. It is said that many years ago, a shepherd went into the forest with 200 sheep, never to be seen again. Although the locals looked for him and the animals, they were never found and believed to have disappeared without a trace.

Another famous tale is that of a five years old girl, who one day wandered into the Hoia-Baciu Forest, and disappeared, just like a local shepherd. The young girl returned 5 years later in a daze, wearing the same clothes and looking like she disappeared the day prior. She had no recollection of what happened to her, or how.

Over the years there have been many suspicious events surrounding Hoia-Baciu Forest, to the point where locals are afraid to venture forth. Various people reported coming out with suspicious rashes, burns, nausea, headaches and feeling unsettled.

Scientists concluded that there are different areas in the forest with higher radioactive levels than usual, which could explain some symptoms, and even the reason why some of the trees are bent in unnatural ways, or why there is a clearing where vegetation refuses to grow.

There are many haunting stories surrounding this lush forest, from ghostly figures, glowing orbs, clouds of dark mist, UFOs, or demonic forces, which attract every year brave visitors who wish to satisfy their curiosity.

3/ Iulia Hasdeu castle

Iulia Hasdeu castle

Iulia Hasdeu castle, also known under several nicknames such as “Magus Castle” or the “The Spiritist Temple at the foot of the Carpathians”, was built between 1893-1896 in Campina, by the Romanian writer and historian Bogdan Petriceicu Hasdeu, and dedicated to his only daughter’s memory Iulia Hasdeu. In 1888, the genius girl, aged only 19 at the time, died because of tuberculosis.

Since then, this castle is said to be one of the most haunted places in Romania. During the night, Iulia can be heard playing her piano, covered only by her father’s applause, or on some other nights, the old writer comes out the window and howls like a wolf.

Her presence can be felt everywhere in the castle, from her name being engraved on the 2 stone chairs at the entrance, to her portrait, her furniture, the wallpaper with her favorite flower and even a hole in the wall for her spirit to move freely.

The grieving father built the castle as a way to communicate with his daughter through various spiritualism sessions. All the occult meetings were described in a diary by Bogdan Petriceicu Hasdeu himself.

From December 23, 1890 to April 18, 1903, the transcription of a number of 101 summaries of spiritualism sessions was preserved. According to them, Iulia talked about the house, gave her father advice on various issues and even talked about her previous lives. It is said that even the plans of the castle were given to the old scholar by Iulia’s spirit in one of their sessions.

4/ Banffy Castle

Banffy Castle

Banffy Castle is nowadays renowed for being part of the music festival Electric Castle in Transylvania, however it has a dark history.

Initially built in the 17th century by the Banffy family, the castle was redesigned in the baroque style 100 years later. The members lived here until 1944 when, during World War 2, the Germans occupied the castle and turned it into a military hospital until the end of the war.

During this time, many soldiers died either because of their wounds or because of sickness. It is said the ghosts of the soldiers can still be seen wandering around the castle grounds.


Venture forth into a haunting exploration of Romania’s fantastic culture and landscape and discover some unsettling tales of the past.

From the ghostly sightings at Carta Abbey, to the mysterious depths of Hoia-Baciu Forest, the spiritual song within Iulia Hasdeu Castle and the terrifying spectral history of World War 2, Romania has something for every traveler who wishes to test their bravery.

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