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The best scary podcasts to keep you up all night

It doesn’t feel like long since the start of summer, but believe it or not, Halloween is right around the corner. As the dark nights roll in, fall is the perfect time for Gothic novels, spooky horror movies, and, of course, hauntingly good podcasts — mug of pumpkin-spiced chai optional. There are plenty of scary podcasts to choose from, whether you’re looking for fictional dramas or strange-but-true tales of things going bump in the night. Whatever you’re h(a)unting for, you’ll find something in our list of the best scary podcasts. And if you’re looking for something that won’t leave you cowering under the covers, check out our roundup of the best podcasts.

Audio drama/fiction 

The No Sleep Podcast

This award-winning anthology of short original horror stories is now in its 18th season, with over 500 episodes to listen to. Each episode has a haunting, atmospheric soundtrack that ensures you’re truly immersed in the tale. Be warned, though — as the name suggests, this is definitely not a podcast to listen to in bed unless you plan on staying awake all night.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher


It may only have seven episodes, but Blackwood is the type of spooky audio drama that you’ll want to listen to during daylight hours. It follows the story of a trio of podcasters investigating the legend of a local monster, The Blackwood Bugman. It’s a sort of found-footage drama, with listeners stumbling across the podcasters’ tapes and discovering that the legend might be only too real — and that there may be a reason the creature has remained a secret for so long.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Archive 81

Whether you’ve seen the Netflix series of the same name or not (that was sadly canceled after just one season), this found-footage podcast about “horror, cities, and the subconscious” is worth a listen. Archive 81 started back in 2016 and tells the story of Dan Powell, an archivist working at the Housing Historical Committee of New York State. The season kicks off with recordings made by Dan — and then we find out that Dan himself is missing, and the show is actually being hosted by Mark, Dan’s friend, who’s hunting for him. From there, things just continue to get stranger and stranger. This is one of the most unnerving podcasts on our list — its sense of unpredictability is what makes it so spooky. There are three seasons and two miniseries to listen to.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher


In this gothic tale, Lily returns to Mt. Absalom, Ohio, to care for her estranged mother, Dot. The town’s vibe is a bit Twin Peaks-y — don’t dine at the only late-night restaurant — and the boarding house where Dot lives has an unsettling atmosphere … and it’s not just the tension between mother and daughter. Luckily, there’s a lot of humor to get you through those moments as well. There are over 75 episodes, and season four has just wrapped.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Ghosts in the Burbs

This is one of those podcasts that will have you wondering what’s real and what isn’t. You’ll want to start at the beginning to get the full arc, though each episode is its own discrete tale. Here’s the premise: Liz Sower, a former librarian, meets different Wellesley, Massachusettes, residents who tell her about their ghostly encounters. Consider it frights for suburbanites.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher

The White Vault

If you’ve ever seen The Thing, then you know that scientists plus an isolated research station equals horror. In The White Vault, a team treks to Svalbard, Norway, to make repairs at a remote monitoring station. The story is told in a found-footage format, with a cast of characters trying to figure out what’s going on — especially after they figure out they have bigger problems than a malfunctioning transmitter.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

The Horror of Dolores Roach

Soon to be a TV show on Amazon, The Horror of Dolores Roach actually started as a one-woman play starring Daphne Rubin-Vega. Over the course of eight episodes, Rubin-Vega’s character, the titular Dolores, goes from former inmate to masseuse to a modern-day Sweeney Todd. Macabre morsels, coming up.


The Magnus Archives

The Magnus Archives podcast.

This podcast has been around since 2016, so there’s plenty of material to keep you entertained. Jonathan Sims works for the Magnus Institute, an organization that researches the weird and wonderful. He’s recording different creepy occurrences from the archives, but as the episodes continue, you’ll start to realize these stories might somehow be connected …

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Alice Isn’t Dead

A truck driver is recording an audio diary as she escorts her cargo around America, narrating the factories and roadsides she’s passing. But her trip isn’t about the travel-sized deodorant in her 16-wheeler. She’s looking for her wife, Alice. Quickly, though, someone — no, something — starts following her, too. If you enjoy the podcast, you can now pick up the novel.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher


Mixing interviews, news reports, and a public radio-esque voiceover, Limetown almost sounds like it could be real. Reporter Lia Haddock investigates the unexplained disappearance of all 326 residents of a mysterious town. How could so many people simply vanish, and why was the town’s research facility so secretive in the first place?

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Eerie (true?) tales

Ghost Town

Ghost Town podcast.

If haunted hotels, paranormal experiences, abandoned buildings, infamous true crimes, and the weird and wonderful are your bag, you’ll love Ghost Town. Jason Horton and Rebecca Leib discuss and explore some really out-there topics on a weekly basis, from The Swiss Guard Murders of 1998 to the devil doors of Notre Dame Cathedral and their dark history.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher


Rituals podcast.

Whether you loved the remake of The Craft or prefer the dark, edgy ’90s version, Ritual is a podcast about all-things occult. Every week, co-hosts Christine Schiefer and Em Schulz take a deep dive into the dark arts, the mystical, and the downright strange occult happenings throughout history. This is a great listen for Halloween.



This podcast’s clever title gives you an idea of its subject matter and how the hosts relax to record the episodes — discussing spirits while sipping spirits. Hosts Julia Schifini and Amanda McLoughlin have a love of myths and legends, and they discuss mermaids, ouija boards, clowns, and urban legends over a glass or two. There’s lots of banter between the two to help keep the tone light.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Last Podcast on the Left

Last Podcast on the Left.

With over 750 episodes and counting, Last Podcast on the Left is one of the most popular horror podcasts out there. Each episode tackles real and imagined horrors, from the latest true crime news and serial killers to tales of haunted houses and witch trials.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher

Cabinet of Curiosities

If you like your creepy tales with a side of history, Aaron Mahnke’s Cabinet of Curiosities ticks both boxes. Tune in twice a week for two bite-sized stories that are as bizarre as they are unsettling — like the seemingly innocuous board game with suspected ties to Nazi Germany.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Camp Monsters

Gather round the campfire for tales of impossible creatures in North America’s wildest regions. Camp Monsters reminds you of that time you thought you saw something scurry into the woods, just beyond the beam of your flashlight, or heard a twig crack behind you and knew it was a creature too large to be a raccoon. Turn out the lights, make some s’mores, and find a friend to cozy up with for this spooky podcast.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify


Snap Judgment presents Spooked podcast.

Spooked started as a Halloween episode of Snap Judgment, but now it’s a separate series. Host Glynn Washington admits there are some things that defy explanation, and the collected stories from real people will have even skeptics wondering, “What if?” Our favorite episodes include Shadow Men, The Curse, and Lost in Time — all from season one.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify


If you haven’t yet heard this folklore podcast — which is also an Amazon Prime TV series — it’s the perfect season for it. The early episodes are especially good, with tales of creepy dolls, warlock cults, and curses. Creator Aaron Mahnke’s voice really draws you into each story, and his team deeply researches the history behind vampires, werewolves, and other supernatural beings from around the world, as well as mortal murderers like H.H. Holmes.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify


Unobscured podcast.

Another podcast from Lore’s Mahnke, each season is a deep dive into a particular subject. The first is the Salem witch trials, the second is spiritualism — and the third is Jack The Ripper. If what you mostly remember about 17th-century Salem comes from The Crucible, the first season will give you far more detail, along with historians’ perspectives on the tragic events.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Haunted Places

Haunted places podcast.

If you love ghost tours, Spotify-exclusive Haunted Places is the perfect listen. From Denmark’s Dragsholm Castle to the Roman Colosseum to a Serbian town called Kisiljevo, these locations all have histories of paranormal presences. We’d recommend keeping the lights on for this one.


Strange and Unusual

Who starts off a podcast about curses by discussing the bubonic plague and Romeo and Juliet? That would be Alyson Horrocks, host of Strange and Unusual (not to be confused with Allison Horrocks, co-host of the American Girls podcast). A melange of otherworldly entities and unusual murders, each episode is well researched, fascinating, and freaky.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher

Pleasing Terrors

Storyteller Mike Brown is a tour guide in Charleston, South Carolina, and puts his expertise to use recounting creepy stories of hauntings, history, and folklore. Like Alyson Horrocks, Brown likes to meld seemingly unrelated subjects in his stories, like The Wizard of Oz and the Black Dahlia murder.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

The Dark Histories Podcast

The Dark Histories Podcast.

Another podcast that skips between paranormal and true crime, Dark Histories brings some strange stories to light. Host Ben Cutmore’s lulling British accent might help you fall asleep … if the topics weren’t likely to give you nightmares.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

For horror movie fans

Every Horror Movie on Netflix

Every Horror Movie on Netflix podcast.

Even if you’re a gore hound who’s seen every single horror movie going, we guarantee the Every Horror Movie on Netflix podcast will introduce you to some lesser-known movies you’ve never heard of (and some you wish had stayed that way). New epsiodes drop every Thursday, and the team watches, reviews, and discusses every movie on Netflix. Recent highlights include Umma, Eerie, and John Carpenter’s Vampires.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Who Goes There

Who Goes There podcast.

Recommended by Dread Central and hosted by Matt Smith, Jorge Gonzalez, Chris Franco, and the occasional special guest, Who Goes There looks at a different horror movie each episode. An off-the-cuff take on movie discussion, there’s very little preparation, plenty of humor, and a healthy dose of cynicism, too. It’s been on the go since 2013, so there are over 200 episodes to listen to.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher

Horror Movie Survival Guide

If you’re the detail-oriented sort who gets caught up wondering exactly how you get to be The Final Girl or hunting down obscure details in every horror film you watch — this is the podcast for you. Each episode sees hosts Teri Gamble and Julia Marchese take a deep dive into horror, exploring alternative casting choices, picking out bizarre details, and filling you in on facts you never knew — or knew you needed to know — about your favorite horror movies.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher

Faculty of Horror

Andrea Subissati and Alexandra West don’t just love horror movies, they study them. Both have written books on the topic and bring academic, feminist perspectives to the dissection of films like The Faculty, Night of the Living Dead, and Candyman. It’s way less scary than actually watching the films themselves — yet still entertaining. But they do intersperse clips, so be warned — you can’t escape the creepy voice of the Babadook.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

For scaredy cats and kids

Stuff You Missed in History Class

Listen to the SYMHC podcast and learn about the marvelous Edward Gorey, the disappearance of Aaron Burr’s daughter, and the history of Halloween candy. The topics aren’t always creepy, but even when they are, the way the hosts talk about them isn’t.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify


If you want to eschew ghosts, goblins, and ghouls of all kinds but still like a bit of a scare, mysteries are a great way to go. Shedunnit is all about some of the best mysteries, those from the golden age of detective fiction. Caroline Crampton hosts the show, which looks at the authors behind the stories. Get ready to add a lot more books to your reading list.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify


This is the kind of podcast you’ll wish existed when you were a kid — if you were the kind who loved R.L. Stine or Christopher Pike books. Speaking of Pike, you might want to keep your eyes peeled for Mike Flanagan’s The Midnight Club, based on the book of the same name. Back to the podcast! Each episode revolves around urban legends like Bloody Mary or Slender Man, with host Elise Parisian explaining each legend and its origins — or topics ranging from ouija boards to mummification. It’s suggested for ages eight and up.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher

My Neighbors Are Dead

My Neighbors Are Dead podcast.

If you watch scary movies through your fingers, chances are you miss the characters in the background, like a clerk who sells the teens who are about to be murdered their beer and snacks. In My Neighbors Are Dead, Adam Peacock has other comedians improv as these lesser-known survivors who watched the horror go down.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

The Creeping Hour

This is a great podcast for kids aged eight and older. The hosts are three friends who listened to so many horror stories that they became monsters themselves, but that hasn’t stopped them from telling scary stories. There are only eight episodes, but it’s still well worth a listen.

Apple Podcasts  Stitcher

A Very Fatal Murder

A Very Fatal Murder podcast.

A Very Fatal Murder is kind of like Limetown’s funny cousin. It’s a parody of S-Town-style podcasts from The Onion. David Pascall is a reporter who is on a quest to win a Pulitzer Prize, and he thinks he’s found the winning story with the mystery he’s sharing on the podcast. A prom queen’s murder has taken a small town by surprise, and Pascall wants to solve the case. It has a short run of just six episodes — so you can easily binge through it in one sitting.

Apple Podcasts  Spotify

Editors' Recommendations

The 10 scariest horror podcasts

Podcasts are a dime a dozen these days -- but fortunately for horror fans, the quality quite closely matches the quantity. Also, quite luckily for the fans of the horror genre, the popularity of podcast creation is still on the rise.

Like audiobooks, podcasts have turned into a popular form of entertainment because it only requires that we listen. We can listen to music, an audiobook, and even podcasts while we’re doing our daily routine: when we’re getting ready for work in the morning, while we’re working out, while we’re commuting to or from work, and when we’re taking a relaxing bath. And with horror podcasts, we at Puzzle Box Horror especially enjoy allowing these creepy stories into our brains during the relentlessly sleepless nights, when an audio-only creepfest entitles us to retreat to the safety of our comfiest blanket while the darkness envelopes us entirely ...
10. Ghosts in the Burbs
Ghosts in the Burbs is a podcast made by a children’s librarian, who interviews her neighbors in Wellsley, Massachusetts about stories that no one would ever want to tell children. While she doesn’t bring all the special effects of music, special editing, or anything extraordinary, it’s her content that drives the creepy content of her podcast–while the stories don’t need to be heard in any particular order, we still recommend that you start at the beginning so you can get the full experience that Liz brings us with her dark tales that lurk in the otherwise sunny Wellesley.
9. The NoSleep Podcast
If you follow the NoSleep subreddit, then you’re probably not a stranger to the NoSleep Podcast, but if you’ve never heard it before, then give it a listen–there are so many plausible horror short stories that are a variety of styles as well as perspectives, but the one thing that they all share is the quality of scares. You’ll be consistently spooked by the stories told by NoSleep and you can thank us later.
8. PseudoPod
It seems like PseudoPod is kind of a horror-household name, they have amazing narrators, read some of the best horror short stories, that have come from some of the best authors around. There is something for everyone with this insanely simple and blood-curdling story-telling experience, it stands to reason if you don’t like one you should try another one, you’ll find something that you’re bound to enjoy.
7. Knifepoint Horror
Where other podcasts have an amazing track, or melodious narrators with voices of angels, who can emote through their presence of voice alone, Knifepoint Horror seems to only use the strengths of the narrator voices as well as limited sound effects somehow makes it feel like you’re there in the room with the characters. It makes you feel as if you might be the one that will next fall victim to the horrors that the characters are made to face. We highly recommend this podcast if you want something that will make your skin crawl at its best points and intrigue you at its slowest parts.
6. The Other Stories
A self-proclaimed modern take on the Twilight Zone, it doesn’t fail to deliver with its eclectic collection of author contributions as well as narrators along with stellar audio effects make this an immersive experience, but what really makes this podcast special is the agonizingly spooky and mysterious nature of these short stories. The variety available with The Other Stories is perhaps one of its most attractive qualities of this horror, sci-fi, and thriller fiction show–but there’s also the themes that they tackle with each chapter. We even came up with a list of our favorites, so take a look at this podcast, we guarantee you won’t regret it!
5. Limetown
This horror mystery podcast gives the feeling that there is something real going on, it has the depth of a real news story–kind of like a forensic crime documentary. There is something wonderful about the production value of this particular podcast, as it features a fictional host of the fictional American Public Radio who is trying to solve the mystery of several hundred people vanishing from a town in Tennessee a decade ago. The interesting thing about this particular ongoing story is that there are moments where, despite being reminded that it’s pure fiction, that you can’t really be sure of whether or not it’s real. What’s more, there are moments where you might entertain conspiratorial beliefs about it being an elaborate cover-up. Regardless, it smacks hard of the Orson Welles’ adaptation of the H.G. Wells classic War of the Worlds as a radio broadcast that convinced many people that the world was being invaded by creatures from another planet.
4. Video Palace
So if you were to stumble upon Video Palace without any previous knowledge of what they were about, you might think that the narrative was a true story–it starts when the narrator’s girlfriend wakes him up after he began sleep-talking in a non-existent language. They decide to do a full investigation into what could be causing this and what they end up finding is something of a mystery that needs to be solved. The thing that really makes this fictional podcast feel all-the-more real, is the real-life writers, bloggers, and filmmakers that have their own history in the horror genre.
3. Unwell
There’s something very unwell about Mount Absalom, Ohio–even if everything about it screams hospitality. When Lily Harper returns home to Mount Absalom to look after her mother, Dot, she encounters all of the things she hated about visiting her mother during the summers. This podcast is amazingly done, with impeccable audio and a quirky sense of humor that doesn’t overwhelm the darkness and malice that lays beneath the facade of niceties. If you want to disappear into a story, then this is an incredible one to immerse yourself in.
2. The Magnus Archives
You likely won’t find a better anthology podcast throughout the entire horror genre than the Magnus Archives. This series plays out each episode with total impartiality. Research briefs are presented to listeners without objective, and each new, terrifying fact pulls people into the story deeper and deeper. Quickly you’ll catch on to the different researchers in this podcast and recognize them throughout episodes. One of our favorite elements of the Magnus Archives is how fearlessly and boldly they face each new storyline. The show, its researchers, and presenters have a fascinating and eerie way of pulling you into each story. Have fun submerging yourself in the Archives.
1. Alice Isn’t Dead
We are shameless fans of Alice Isn’t Dead, and we honestly cannot recommend it to you enough. The story focuses on a female truck driver who finds herself searching for her wife, who is presumed dead. This woman explores unexpected places in her efforts to turn over every rock to find her wife. It’s hard to say which element of the show is our favorite; the production, the stunning score, and the captivating actress who voices the series all keep pulling us back for more. It’s a podcast that will keep you on your toes and continually tuning in. Trust us and take a listen to just one episode. You’ll be hooked and wanting answers just like the rest of us. 

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The best haunted house films and TV shows

There’s nothing more frightening than an intruder in your home – especially when the unwanted visitors aren’t even human. It’s an unsettling invasion of privacy in the place where you’re supposed to feel the safest, and oftentimes you’ll come to realize that your house has a much more disturbing history than you ever could have imagined. It’s these feelings of fear, discomfort, and dread that make the haunted house tale one of the most beloved in the history of horror.

Admit it, you’ve watched a haunted house flick at home and slept with the lights on for a few days afterward, or seen ghostly apparitions that don’t exist. The best horror films get a rise out of you that you never even knew you needed… because life’s no fun without a good scare, right? Below are 8 of what we think are the best haunted house horror movies and TV shows that will make you question every door creak or light flickering for years to come.
American Horror Story: Murder House (2011)
Rotten Tomatoes: 73%

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7 terrifying movies featuring the Necronomicon — the book of the dead
The Evil Dead

What is the Necronomicon, you may ask? It’s an ancient tome that sprung from the nightmarish imagination of H.P. Lovecraft, which he encouraged his peers to use in their literature as well–subsequently, it has become a book that symbolizes evil in horror culture. It continues on now, as an icon of what can come from the supernatural and occult influences of, what could be, an unknown origin of our universe.

So now we get to enjoy a plethora of movies that all have something to do with the Necronomicon–to be clear, this isn’t an exhaustive list of where the Necronomicon appears within pop-culture, but these are some of the most memorable!
The Dunwich Horror (1970)

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