Monday, October 6, 2014

Paranormal Road Trip: Destination San Diego with S.J. Harper

Come on boys and ghouls!  It's time to hop on Route 666 for a spooktacular Paranormal Road Trip.  This week's stop is San Diego and our special guide is S.J. Harper author of the Fallen Siren series.

The Fallen Siren series is set in San Diego, California so it seems fitting that our guide for this week's Paranormal Road Trip be the amazing S.J. Harper.  Let's see what terrifying places S.J. has planned for our tour.

San Diego's Top Five Spooky Places

1. The Star of India, Harbor Drive, San Diego

This mysterious ship made of iron in 1863, is said to be haunted by many who died on board. There have been reports of passengers being touched by the ghost of a young boy who stowed away in 1884 and fell from rigging to his death. Others have reported hearing giggling and feeling cold spots around the base of the mast that held the rigging. Cold spots have also been reported in the chain locker where a Chinese crewmember was slowly crushed to death. The First Mate's cabin is said to hold a "dark presence" and passengers have reported having sheets ripped off them in the night. Others have reported the smell of fresh baked bread coming from the ships galley. Perhaps the ghost of a kind cook is in there preparing bread for all of the other mischief-makers!

2. Whaley House, San Diego Avenue, San Diego

Now a museum and historical landmark, this was the home of Thomas Whaley and his family. Later it served as the County Courthouse and was the site of a number of hangings. James Robinson (AKA Yankee Jim) who was hanged off the gallows in 1852 is said to oft be heard tromping about the house. If you miss him during your visit, perhaps you’ll come across the specters of either Thomas Whaley himself or his lovely wife Anna, who Regis Philbin encountered during a visit to the Whaley House in 1964.

3. The Hotel Del Coronado, Orange Avenue, Coronado

If you’re in the mood for a ghostly encounter while staying in the lap of luxury, try booking room 3312 at the Hotel Del Coronado. This beachfront Victorian era hotel is featured in book one of the Fallen Siren Series, CURSED. The hotel’s resident ghost, Kate Morgan, reportedly occupies her former room and wanders the grounds. Her apparition has been sited walking along the beach, in the gardens, and in the hallways. Within the room itself there have been reports of cold spots, electrical equipment spontaneously turning on and off, and objects being moved about the room by unseen hands. Poor Kate died of a gunshot wound to the head. Her body was found on the steps leading to the beach. Initially, her death was thought to be a suicide. But there’s since been some evidence that it was foul play. You can read more about the mystery in the book Beautiful Stranger: The Ghost of Kate Morgan and the Hotel del Coronado.

4. Presidio Hill, Taylor Street, San Diego

Presidio Hill, located between Old Town and Mission Hills was where Father Serra dedicated the first mission in California on July 16, 1769. There’s a "storage shed" in the parking lot adjacent to the mission that locals call Witches Tower. A huge pentagram was built into cobblestones atop of this shed that was erected some time between 1928 and 1940 on what Is believed to be the same spot as a former jail house. Visitors have described seeing cloaked apparitions and strange darting figures. There have also been reports of possession on the site. Yikes!

5. Point Loma National Cemetery, Cabrillo Memorial Drive, San Diego

This cemetery located just north of the city of San Diego is the final resting place for thousands of marines killed in action during World War II. Built atop one thousand foot cliffs, the site offers visitors who have come to pay tribute to the heroes buried there an amazing panoramic view of the skyline. But that’s not all. Many have reported witnessing these souls rising from their graves at midnight and walking, as if on patrol, along the edge of the cliff.

Thank you S.J. for giving us such a haunting tour of San Diego!  

To learn more about S.J. Harper and her books, please visit her website and don't miss our Q+A with S.J. Harper (the writing team of Samantha Sommersby and Jeanne C. Stein) here at From the Shadows.  You can add the Fallen Siren series here on Goodreads.

Readers, was this your first visit to San Diego?  Have you experienced anything supernatural in and around San Diego?

What did you think of S.J. Harper's picks for spooky places?

Last week on Paranormal Road Trip we visited Jacksonville, Florida with Rinda Elliott.  Next week we'll be traveling to Austin, Texas with Gerry Bartlett.

Join us for another spine-tingling Paranormal Road Trip...
if you dare!


  1. You skipped the Horton Grand Hotel...they have haunted rooms there too ;)

    1. More spooky places to add to my list! I can't wait to someday do a ghost tour of San Diego. :)

  2. I have never been to San Diego, but I hope to one day.

    1. I haven't been in years, but I'd love to return and do a ghost tour now that I know of all of the best spooky spots! :)

  3. Mysterious sounding ship

  4. This makes me want to go back there. I visited San Diego one day during an internship...but that was for the zoo. I think it's probably got a ton of cool architectural points of interest in the area, with all the missions and stuff. I'm kind of surprised that locals didn't see the pentagram at Presidio Hill and band together to get rid of it. The US has a long way to go with religious tolerance, and it was worse back then. Point Loma sounds wonderful. What a great final resting place, looking out over the cliffs to the ocean? The sound of waves crashing always relaxed me, and maybe it gave all the families of those buried there a little bit of comfort.

    1. I haven't been in awhile, and I didn't have the freedom to tour the sights when I was there, so I too would love to return and check out these spots and the gorgeous old missions.

  5. I think ships are a great site for haunting, I've love to go

    1. So true! I live on the coast, near many shipwrecks...even notorious pirate shipwrecks, and have always loved the concept of haunted vessels.

  6. The Star of India sounds utterly terrifying!!