We’re all willing to welcome autumn with open arms on one basis: spooky season has officially started, with Halloween mere weeks away.
But even if you don’t celebrate the holiday, as an Arab—there’s a good chance you love a good spooky tale. The region is chock-full of ancient urban legends surrounding spirits, jinns and ghouls that date back centuries—and we’re here to revel in a few places where some of our favourite stories originate.
These are the Arab world’s most (allegedly) haunted places.
Al Qasimi Palace, Ras Al Khaimah
Built by the late Sheikh Abdelaziz bin Humaid Al Qasimi, the palace is said to be one of the UAE’s most abandoned places. After being completed in 1985, the grandiose four-story palace remained abandoned for over three decades, apparently due to claims of paranormal experiences.
Grand Aley Hotel, Beirut
The hotel was built in 1926 by three Lebanese brothers on a hilltop overlooking the town of Aley and was once the town’s first luxury hotel. Today, the abandoned hotel is said to be home to non-human entities, with strange voices and screams occasionally heard.
Azemmour City, Morocco
You’ve probably heard of Aisha Kandisha. The angry female spirit is said to call Azemmour City home. So, if you’re a young man walking around Azemmour City, you might want to watch out. Kandisha is said to prey on men, possessing them and assaulting them for centuries. If you’re one of the unlucky ones, you’ll recognize her as a beautiful young woman with the legs of a goat.
Baron Palace, Cairo
Built in 1911, Baron Palace remained abandoned for years. The two-story mansion which was designed by French architect Alexandre Marcel only to be neglected after has long been rumored to be the home of numerous spirits, with lights often flickering inside.