Worldwide icon-chevron-right Asia icon-chevron-right Singapore icon-chevron-right The creepiest haunted places in Singapore

The creepiest haunted places in Singapore

Gather the gang and head out to these creepy haunts for some paranormal activity spotting. By Ben Lim

bukit brown cemetery
Jnzl/Flickr
By Time Out Singapore editors |
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In a land-scarce city that hardly sleeps, even the dead can’t always find a proper resting place. We wander across the island in search of the most haunted places. Take note, while some are free and easy for you to explore, some of these spots are located on state land or private property so we wouldn't recommend checking it out – lest you get caught by something scarier than the ghouls: law enforcement. Happy hantu-hunting. 

RECOMMENDED: 10 local myths and superstitions that every Singaporean should know and the creepiest local ghost stories to tell this Halloween

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Camera

Every Singapore school

Haunted by Spirits of girls who committed suicide in toilets, shadowy figures (especially in the Design and Technology block), Pontianaks with a penchant for education. 

The story behind it There really is no science behind it but every school in Singapore seems to have its own spooky stories. Just ask your friends about their own school horror stories and you'll notice there will be some parallels. 

Accessibility You won't walk into someone else's workplace so don't be dropping by other people's schools. 

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Old bus stop
Photo: Dickson Phua/Fickr

Old Tampines Road

Haunted by Pontianaks (yup, more than one apparently!), the vengeful spirits of women who have died during their pregnancy or childbirth that continue to linger in the area.

The story behind it While there is no official recorded history – as with most ghost stories – many riders and cyclists have said to feel 'extra weight' when passing through the long and quiet stretch late at night. On top of that, there is always a sweet, floral scent lingering in the air during these incidents. 

Accessibility Cruise through at 2am if you dare.

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National Museum of Singapore
Things to do

National Museum of Singapore

icon-location-pin City Hall

Haunted by The wandering spirit of former museum director, British doctor and naturalist Carl Alexander Gibson-Hill whose death was regarded as suicide. 

The story behind it We don't know the exact tale but many have claimed to have seen and felt unnatural forces at the notorious Victorian-style spiral staircase which has a reputation for being the most haunted spot in the century-old museum. 

Accessibility Visit the museum all you want but the staircase are closed off to visitors. We wonder why.

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Bedok Reservoir
Photo: Allan Jarina
Things to do

Bedok Reservoir

Haunted by The restless souls that took their lives at this infamous reservoir.

The story behind it Considered a suicide destination, Bedok Reservoir has met six suicides between 2011 to 2012 where the sixth body was found on the morning of an inter-religious blessing ceremony. The blessing ceremony was organised to rid the evil that surrounds the area.

Accessibility Still a popular jogging spot, with a bunch of suicides to its name.

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siglap
Photo: National Heritage Board

Kubur Kassim

Haunted by The 'Orang Bunian' – a supernatural human-like creature from Malay folklore. It's also said that a Pontianak resides here and was the inspiration behind the Malay classic film Pontianak.

The story behind it If the name doesn't strike you as uncanny, get this: 'Siglap' literally means 'the dark one'. Aptly named after an incident that involves a solar eclipse in 1821, the quaint neighbourhood has a dark, creepy past and is home to Kubur Kassim, a 90-year old Malay cemetery. And if you look hard enough, you'll be able to spot grave plots dedicated to the 'Orang Bunian'.

Accessibility We recommend sticking to visiting hours.

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Palawan Beach
Things to do

Sentosa Island

icon-location-pin Sentosa

Haunted by The ghostly soldiers that are seen at quieter spots on the island.

The story behind it Sentosa was formerly known as Pulau Belakang Mati which translates to 'Back Island of Death'. Many executions took places on the island's pristine beaches during World War II when Singapore was under the Japanese Occupation which explains the sightings.

Accessibility It's the State of Fun, how can we resist.

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woodneuk house
Photo: sunriseOdyssey/Flickr

Woodneuk House

Haunted by Creepy sightings that include random shadows, spirits, poltergeists and even phantom scents.

The story behind it Previously known as Istana Woodneuk, this now-abandoned house is located in the deep woods of the Holland Road and Tyersall Road area. It was once occupied by a Sultan of Johor, but now remains empty and covered in vegetation and decay. What's creepier is the fact that the spot is not charted on the map of Singapore and is, therefore, out of bounds. Unless you've got stellar hunting skills, of course.

Accessibility Don't do it, the house is state property and you can (and will!) be caught for trespassing.

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Changi Hospital

Old Changi Hospital

Haunted by The restless souls of those who were tortured to death or executed by the Japanese during World War II, as well as a security guard who used to work there.

The story behind it Used by the Kempeitai (Japanese military police) to hold more than 50,000 Allied prisoners-of-war and as a torture chamber during the Japanese Occupation, it was vacated in 1997, four decades after it was first built, when the new Changi General Hospital was opened. The abandoned building still stands and occasional ghost tours are held there, which has added to its reputation of being one of the spookiest places in Singapore.

Accessibility Don't get caught for trespassing! But you can still observe from afar or from Raintr33 Hotel (which used to be part of the hospital). 

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Amber Beacon @ East Coast Park

Amber Beacon at East Coast Park

Haunted by The restless spirit of a young woman who was supposedly raped and murdered there still lingers on the steps of the spiral staircase.

The story behind it A local couple was stabbed by two unknown assailants while chatting on the steps of the tower in 1992. The woman, then only 21, died before the police arrived, although there was no evidence to suggest that she was raped. The murder remains unsolved to this day. 

Accessibility The tower is still there if you want to check it out.

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Bukit Brown Cemetery
Things to do

Bukit Brown Cemetery

Haunted by Pontianaks, Singapore's favourite female spirit.

The story behind it Bukit Brown Cemetery, otherwise known as Kopi Sua, is one of the oldest Chinese cemeteries in Singapore and is home to over 100,000 tombs. So it makes sense that this place will give you the heebie-jeebies. 

Accessibility Overgrown and hidden, it's not easy to get to most parts of Bukit Brown. If you're game, download the self-guided trail from Singapore Heritage Society and get exploring. 

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Neo Tiew Estate

Neo Tiew Estate

Haunted by A pontianak (a spirit of a banana tree – one of the scarier supernatural beings in Malay folklore) who has been trapped there since a gambler refused to remove the seven pins placed in the tree to coerce it into helping him win the lottery.

The story behind it Named after the businessman who helped develop the Lim Chu Kang area in the early 20th century, the abandoned estate – comprising a trio of three-storey blocks, a wet market and a playground – was built in 1979 and is currently used for urban warfare training by the Singapore Armed Forces after being sold en bloc in 2002.

Accessibility The area is now restricted but you can still look at it from afar. Still creepy, we admit.

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Macritchie
Photo: Kodomut

Syonan Jinja

Haunted by The spirits of the Japanese soldiers who committed mass ritual suicide via seppuku (literally ‘bellycutting’) to preserve the shrine’s sanctity.

The story behind it Built in 1942 by British prisoners-of-war and Japanese soldiers, the shrine was dedicated to the Shinto sun goddess Amaterasu and used to commemorate fallen Japanese soldiers. It was demolished following the Japanese Imperial Army’s surrender but legends persist that a massive treasure – most popularly believed to be the fabled Yamashita’s gold plundered during the South-East Asian campaign – remains hidden there.

Accessibility This area is also closed off to the public now.

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SMRT

Bishan MRT

Haunted by Phantom passengers who do not cast any reflections on the windows and, according to construction workers who built the station, a funeral procession on the train tracks with a headless ghost.

The story behind it The station and the surrounding housing estates were built on the site of the former Kwong Wai Siew Peck San Theng, one of the largest Chinese cemeteries in Singapore before it was exhumed in 1982.

Accessibility Some of us go through the station every day.

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Haw Par Villa
Things to do

Haw Par Villa

icon-location-pin Kent Ridge

Haunted by As if they weren't scary enough during the day, the wax statues depicting condemned souls are said to come to life at night, filling the infamous Ten Courts of Hell exhibit with tortured screams.

The story behind it The Burmese Aw brothers, who made their fortune selling the Tiger Balm heat rub, lent their first names Haw (‘tiger’) and Paw (‘leopard’) to the theme park, where children could learn about traditional Chinese myths through the vivid wax dioramas. It’s truly one of the more bizarre corners of the island – no wonder people think it’s haunted.

Accessibility It's still a popular and interesting place to visit if you like exploring offbeat Singapore.

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The Devil’s Bend @ Old Upper Thomson Road

The Devil’s Bend @ Old Upper Thomson Road

Haunted by The spirits of drivers who were killed while trying to navigate this tricky hairpin bend.

The story behind it Part of the race route of the original Singapore Grand Prix – which was held from 1961 to 1974 until it was discontinued due to its high fatality rate – the poorly-lit stretch is still a favourite haunt for illegal street racers and thrill-seekers. The most recent accident claimed the lives of two passengers when the car they were travelling in plunged into a ditch in 2008. 

Accessibility Sure you can drive through the area but please be alert and careful.

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MRT train

Novena MRT

Haunted by Numerous sightings of headless apparitions have been reported at the underpass linking it to the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore building.

The story behind it Another MRT station built on the grounds of a former cemetery. In this case, its history is tied to its name, which originated with the weekly Catholic novena prayer sessions held at the nearby Church of St Alphonsus (also known as the Novena Church). It was used as a Jewish cemetery until its exhumation in 1985. 

Accessibility Ride all you want through this station. 

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Changi Beach Park
Things to do

Changi Beach

icon-location-pin Changi 

Haunted by The screams and cries for help of the civilians executed by Japanese soldiers during World War II.

The story behind it In one of the first massacres carried out during the infamous Sook Ching operation (literally ‘cleansing purge’ in Mandarin), 66 Chinese men were executed by firing squad at the water’s edge on February 20 1942. 

Accessibility A popular spot for families, the picnic crowds and just to chill out. There are several beach areas to hit and parking lots if you're driving.

More paranormal activities

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