Things to Do

6 Ways to Experience Austin’s Spookier Side

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In a city as colorful as Austin, you can expect to find haunts and urban legends just as colorful. Tormenting recluses, wealthy philanthropists, and playful poltergeist are just a few of the spooks to meet on your next trip. Read on to learn how and where you can meet them.

1. Take A Trip Down Hairy Man Road

Spooky Road

Photo: Pixabay/kylecrider

In the 1800s, a grizzled and beastly hermit resided among the woods surrounding a dusty road in the Brushy Creek area. He’d drop down from the overhanging trees or scramble from the roadside brush to terrorize passing travelers and their horses. Until one day, he was trampled to death by a stampeding wagon. It is said his ghost still haunts the stretch of road which now bears his name.

2. Stroll Among The Headstones Of Austin’s Oldest City Cemetery

Headstone at Oakwood Cemetery

Photo: Facebook/Donny Tidmore Photography

Amidst the rows of weathered angels and crumbling headstones lie the mortal remains of over 23,000 deceased. The 40 acres of Oakwood Cemetery are peppered with memorials in remembrance of the nameless paupers, pioneer settlers, Texas Rangers, and politicians from which Austin was formed.

3. Stop for Lunch At Austin’s Pizza Garden

Austin Pizza Garden

Photo: Facebook/Austin Pizza Garden

From a general store to a Masonic Lodge, a saloon, and now pizza joint, the 137-year-old building has had it’s fair share of characters waltz through its doors. It’s no wonder then that there have been countless stories of phantom footsteps, shadows, and the tingling feeling of being watched by employees and patrons alike.

4. Raise A Toast An One Of The Oldest Buildings In Austin

Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill

Photo: Facebook/Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill

The second-oldest commercial building in Austin may have as many spirits roaming its floors as it does behind the bar. Diners have experienced playful shoulder tapping and employees have heard phantoms rattlings while alone after hours. These playful haunts may be why Austin Ghost Tours use Moonshine to kickstart their twilight excursions.

5. Spend A Night In The 2nd Most Haunted Hotel In America

The Driskill Hotel

Photo: Facebook/The Driskill

Colonel Jesse Driskill opened his opulent hotel in 1886 but was forced to sell it two years later after losing 3,000 cattle and his fortune in a freeze on the northern planes. According to the Texas State Historical Association, he died of a stroke a little over a year later. He still drops in on his favorite haunt from time to time. Employees know he’s checked in by the smell of his cigar.

6. Meander The Streets With Austin Ghost Tours

Texas State Capitol At Night

Photo: Facebook/Austin Ghost Tours

Learn about the ghosts mentioned above and more from Austin Ghost Tours’ knowledgeable guides. While visiting ghostly hotspots on your 90-minute tour, you will be encouraged to take pictures and recordings to share with the group. You never know who might photobomb your AGT selfie.