Places to Stay

Best Hill Country Locations to Spend the Night with a Ghost

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Tony Maples Photography


As a bonafide scaredy cat, I avoid all things scary. I suspect our readership out-braves me by miles. I took this story on for a chance to flex my brave muscles, and because, while ghosts do scare me, they also fascinate me. What better time to explore some local ghost stories than as we begin to round the corner for Halloween? The Hill Country is rumored to host a number of ghosts, stories that run the gamut from charming to downright chilling. Below are four places you could stay overnight with the hopes of encountering a ghost, or several. Dare to spend the night?

The Driskill Hotel – Austin, Texas

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For $399 a night, you can help celebrate this historic hotel’s 130th anniversary and perhaps bunk up with a ghost. This hotel alone houses several spirits and is reportedly one of the nation’s most haunted hotels. Jesse Driskill, a Colonel from the Civil War and the original owner who lost the hotel a year after its opening in a poker match, is reportedly seen often, checking in to the hotel. A lady’s man in life, the Colonel’s appearance is often accompanied by the smell of cigar smoke and often to women.

While at the Driskill you might also encounter little Samantha Houston, a four-year-old that stumbled down the stairs to her death while chasing a ball. Visitors claim they can hear her giggles and the sound of her ball bouncing. A picture hangs in tribute to the young girl, and visitors claim Samantha speaks to observers through the picture. Truth be told, the picture believed to house the spirit of Samantha, is not a portrait of Samantha at all, and there is actually no connection.

Perhaps the most chilling ghost story took place in room 525 — a room alleged to be the location of two separate suicides, both from brides on their honeymoons, but 20 years apart from one another, to the day. Various versions of each story exist. One depicts a young woman rejected at the alter who then went on a shopping spree on her ex-fiance’s card and then shot herself in the bathtub. Her ghost was reportedly seen by a young couple as she accompanied them on the elevator, arms full of shopping bags from high-end retailers.

The Menger Hotel – San Antonio, Texas

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Photo: Flickr/Arthur LeBon

Haunted Rooms reports that the historic Menger Hotel in San Antonio is home to at least 32 ghosts, perhaps most notable Teddy Roosevelt who frequented the hotel and recruited a number of his Rough Riders at the hotel, often over drinks. In fact, the bar is where he is most likely to be spotted.

Because of its proximity to the Alamo, and the number of deaths that took place there, many of the sightings are believed to be of soldiers, and heavy boot steps have been reported throughout the hotel. Kitchen staff has offered reports of utensils floating through the kitchen via ghosts offering to assist.

Enchanted Rock – near Fredericksburg, Texas

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Interested in camping out with spirits? Enchanted Rock is a good option, a site with a tragic history of Native American death, sacrifice, and suicide. The voices and shrieks of numerous Comanche and Tonkawa victims can be heard echoing at night, and sometimes the voice of a woman that jumped from the rock to her death after witnessing the massacre of her tribe.

The Faust Hotel – New Braunfels, Texas

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Reportedly one of the most haunted places in Texas, the Faust Hotel in New Braunfels offers something for everyone. From cats that reportedly jump from table to table to ghosts caught on video, numerous ghost hunters have visited this hotel. Ghosts reportedly float through hallways, through closet doors, and turn on faucets. Reports from paranormal investigators confirm that the elevators move up and down on their own. Ready to book a room?

So are you brave enough to make a reservation at one of these places? Have you already been to one? Share your experience with us!