Scary Places to Visit in Rome

With thousands of years of history, it's no wonder that Rome is full of ghosts and spooky places. That's one of the reasons why a visit to the ancient city can make for a fun and exciting time, especially around Halloween. The following are some of the most spooky and mysterious attractions that Rome has to offer.

  • 01 of 05

    Crypt of the Capuchin Monks

    The Crypt of the Capuchin Monks
    ••• Dnalor 01 / Wikimedia Commons / Creative Commons BY 3.0

    A church made entirely out of the skeletons of its former friars? That's exactly what you will find at the Crypt of the Capuchin Monks. Located right off the haughty Via Veneto, the crypt is decorated with the bones and skulls of more than 4,000 monks, all arranged into interesting patterns, such as starbursts and crucifixes. The crypt is as fascinating as it is creepy.

  • 02 of 05
    The Catacombs of St. Domitilla
    ••• Dnalor 01 / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 3.0

    Thousands of Romans, including saints and popes, were buried in the vast network of catacombs outside of Rome on the Via Appia Antica (the Appian Way). The largest and one of the oldest catacombs to visit is St. Domitilla. You can also visit San Callisto, which contains 14 papal crypts, and San Sebastiano, where Saint Sebastian was buried (the church of Saint Sebastian rises above the catacomb).

  • 03 of 05

    The Vatican Necropolis

    The Tomb of Leo XI at the Vatican.
    ••• De Agostini / G. Cigolini / Getty Images

    Like the catacombs on the Appian Way but located below Vatican City, the Vatican Necropolis or I Scavi are a spooky look at the tombs of dozens of popes, including St. Peter. Given its famous residents, I Scavi is one of the holiest sites in Rome. But it certainly becomes spooky when one pauses to think that they are walking amongst the remains of the church's most storied figures.

  • 04 of 05

    Museum of Purgatory

    The outside of the Sacro Cuore e del Suffragio
    ••• Blackcat / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 3.0

    In the small church of Sacro Cuore Suffragio near Castel Sant'Angelo is the one-room Museum of Souls in Purgatory (Museo delle Anime del Purgatorio), which chronicles various instances of souls trapped in that space between heaven and hell. Witness evidence of purgatory (i.e., the paranormal), such as handprints burned onto pages of books, and be spooked for the rest of your visit.

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05

    The Monster House

    Near the Spanish Steps, at Via Gregoriana 28, is the Palazzo della Maschera Grottesca, a 16th-century palace that boasts the face of demon as part of its façade. While visitors are not permitted inside the palace, they can stand outside and marvel at the menacing monster mouth that makes up the doorway.