Grey nomad ghost hunters seek out spooky Big Lap

Published: October 9, 2021

While travelling grey nomads are known for seeking out everything from gold and gemstones to barramundi and birdlife, a growing number are also turning into ghost hunters.

And it seems there are no shortage of spooky spots to visit. The Outback is, of course littered with ghost towns and a look at Australian history quickly tells a story of violence, cruelty, and murder.

And that’s how ghost stories get started. Classic destinations with a haunted reputation include Hanging Rock in Victoria, WA’s Fremantle Prison, and Tassie’s Port Arthur, where more than 2,000 apparitions have supposedly been reported over the past two decades.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Even friendly-seeming destinations can send a shiver down a grey nomad spine.

Legend has it that there have been multiple sightings of a ghost who wanders the corridors and stairways of Queensland’s Cracow Hotel at night.

And then there is the iconic Marree Hotel in South Australia where many people have claimed to witness and feel strange, unexplainable phenomena. Staff have even said glasses have moved around by themselves and been thrown from the countertops in the bar area.

Legend has it that there have been a number of deaths in the hotel including a man who hanged himself in a room upstairs, and another man who was poisoned while spending the night. Yikes! This growing fascination with Australia’s haunted history has sparked a mini-industry for ghost tours. So, what’s behind the fascination?

A recent survey of Australians commissioned by the Centre for Public Christianity and undertaken by McCrindle, found nearly half of all respondents said they believed in ghosts. The authors concluded that the results suggested that Australians were surprisingly open to spiritual realities – in particular, the soul, meaning, and life after death.

Kylie Sturgess, who has a master’s degree in the measurement of paranormal beliefs, was more circumspect.

“Everybody has something about them which is not completely rational,” she said. “Cultures share stories and we see common messages and common themes no matter where we are … folklore and all kinds of things open up an understanding of the environment and people’s behaviour.”

Dr David Waldron, a lecturer in history and anthropology at Federation University, said ghost stories really told us a profound truth.

“They tell us about experiences and traumas people have had in their community, they tell us about the risks of certain types of behaviour, and about injustice,” he said. “Until we grapple with the past, these stories will continue to emerge and force people to come to terms with the traumas.”

  • Are you a grey nomad ghost hunter? Where is the spookiest place you have visited on your travels? Comment below.
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4 Comments
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Lyn
10 months ago

New Norcia in WA is fascinating but the old school there has some sad and miserable vibes going on.

Ray
10 months ago
Reply to  Lyn

Not just sad & miserable vibes at that place. It has a horrid history of treatment of children. Non of which could be referred to as “fascinating”.

Terri- Lee Campion
10 months ago

I’m a keen paranormal investigator who travels full time with all my equipment . You just never know where a spooky might be lurking .
Monte Cristo in Junee NSW is reported to be the most haunted house in Oz and certainly is creepy .Armadale and Heard gaol at Ararat Vic are also great places if you are looking for a ghost

Donna
10 months ago

Are there any reported “sightings” in any establishment or area that doesn’t gain financially from this sort of thing? Just saying.

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