When we were kids, we thought that ghosts were the most terrifying things in the world. Even as we were growing up, the irrational fear of the supernatural had been ingrained in us.
But, have you ever bothered to ask yourself why you’re scared of them? Because if you have, then you’d realize you’ve been afraid of the wrong thing.
People are significantly more terrifying because, well, what type of creature would go through the trouble of mastering how to instigate fear in the heart of others, just for fun?
The following are only some of the most horrifying interactive haunted house experiences in the world.
The creators of these attractions have carefully developed ways to put their visitors through physical, psychological and emotional torment; which is why you should really reorganize your list of fears. After all, the person next to you has the potential to be the next Hannibal Lecter.
1. McKamey Manor – U.S.A
Dubbed as the most disturbing haunted house in the world, MCKamey Manor is basically designed to make you live your own nightmares. Prior to the haunt, owner Russ McKamey, builds a twisted relationship with his victims just so he can get inside their brains, allowing him to create a truly unique experience.
Nobody really knows what goes on in that place, but we do know that it includes having your head locked in a cage with a snake, being shoved into tubs of ice water and dowsed in warm, sticky, blood-like fluids. Not to mention, some videos did show people being force-fed stuff that we’re pretty sure aren’t supposed to be inside your body in anyway whatsoever.
The rules are simple.
First of all, you have to be at least 18 to go in, and that requires parental approval. Or you can go with the easier way and wait until you reach 21.
Before even being qualified for an interview with Russ, you have to be given the all-clear by a medical expert, as you have to be in good mental and physical condition to participate. You also need to pass a background check, courtesy of McKamey Manor. If you make it this far, you get to be interviewed via a phone or video call.
The best part is, after you do all that, you have to sign a 40-page waiver stating that you are aware of the risk you’re taking. The waiver also covers people not haunting the place if they die there.
If you decide to go, just keep in mind that the haunt can last up to 10 hours and that the creators are dead serious about two rules; only two people at a time and, our favorite, no one passes through the same door twice.
In other words, you don’t go out the same way you go in. Ever.
2. The Dent School House – U.S.A
What makes this house attractive is the fact that it has quite an unsettling story. The legend around it is that in 1894, the building was first opened as a public school, one of the best actually.
In 1942, several students known for ‘disrupting the classroom’ disappeared. Turns out, they never made it back home from school. Three years later, four more students went missing from the school, and without a lead on the case, the police weren’t able to do much.
A few years later, in 1952, a disagreeable smell spread through the premises. Around the time, three more students went missing. After students and personnel complained about the smell, it cleared up, only to come back again in 1955, when more than seven kids had disappeared.
This time, the smell was suffocating to the extent that several students were sent home after vomiting in the hallways. The parents got mad and barged in through the basement doors where the smell was strongest. Over seven children’s bodies were found there; some were flattened and laid behind bricks, some were stuffed in barrels or crumpled and shoved in boxes.
All eyes went towards the Janitor, Charlie McFree, but the police never found him, and after the gruesome carnage that took place there, the school was shut down for good. However, it is haunted by the spirits of those children who are mostly peaceful, although the same can’t be said about Charlie’s spirit.
The haunt takes you through the abandoned hallways that haven’t been touched since the school closed. It even takes you through the infamous basement where a recreation of the 1955 incident takes place, which makes it a decent Halloween attraction despite no one having filed lawsuits against the owners… yet.
3. Super Scary Labyrinth of Fear – Japan
As the name suggests, that house is in fact, super scary. Once recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the scariest haunted house in the world, the place has been known to make people from all over the world break down in tears.
The attraction is resurrected in place of a torn down hospital which grants it a solid backstory. The history behind it was about a site where a surgeon harvested patients’ organs to perform human experiments; the ‘cut out half your brain and see what happens’ type.
Before you’re put in the labyrinth, you will enter a briefing room where you are shown a video explaining the history of the hospital. The labyrinth is designed to work on a psychological level rather than a physical one. The dim hallways, slightly lit with a shade of green along with red blinking lights, neatly do the job.
But what takes it over the top are the bodies falling from the ceiling, the creatures breaking off from the wall then going after people. Not to mention the movie-grade make-up and set design: blood stained bathtubs, ripped hospital beds, rusty operating tools and split open corpses lying everywhere.
What also counts as a nice touch is the creatures standing still in the way. The fear of not knowing whether or not they’re going to come after you does quite a number on visitors’ brains.
One of the greatest things that make the Labyrinth of Fear stand out is that there is no specific path, and no maps are provided, which guarantees that every experience would be dependent on the corridors you choose to go through.
Because of its psychological aspect, this is definitely a lasting experience.
4. Nightmare in Budapest – obviously not France
This interactive tour takes place in a modest warehouse on the outskirts of Budapest. Despite not having a dark backstory, depleting physical torment or extreme manipulation of the mind, it made its way to the list because of its ability to submerge participants into its darkness.
The said fine establishment does that using various techniques. To begin with, from outside, the warehouse looks like something straight out of a horror movie. From the moment your tour starts, the place unleashes everything it has on you. Hallways so dark that it won’t make a difference if you’re walking with your eyes wide open or sealed shut. Then, in all the right places, white lights start flashing to reveal butchered bodies hanging from meat hooks.
The actors are extremely professional – so much so, that at some point you’re going to have to actively remind yourself that this isn’t real. Another thing that the place is famous for is the creativity of its design. Even the tiniest of details are taken care of, building compelling scenes that combine various props together to make creations that are out of this world, like the outcome of breeding a human being with a tricycle.
They also split people away from their group, which some might consider annoying seeing as though they won’t be able to go through the experience with their friends. However, if you are going there for the right reasons, to be reminded of how weak fragile humans are, then you would appreciate their dedication to their parts. Plus, you can scream as much as you want and live to tell false tales of your bravery.
All in the Spirit of Scary, Spooky Fun
Haunted houses may be a fun experience for family and friends; however, their existence in the first place is questionable. Do people go there to feed their hunger for thrill, without actually being in danger? Or is it an excuse for the creators to set free their sick, twisted desires without being prosecuted? Either way, creators and customers are definitely satisfied for the time being…
Until one of them snaps and seeks the real thing, and the real horror begins.