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November 11, 2014

As our time here in Sydney winds down, I have been trying to jam in as many awesome activities and memories as possible. This led to my friend Jenn and I discovering GHOST TOURS! Sydney actually has a wide variety of ghost tours to choose from but based on reviews and pictures we decided on the Quarantine Station Ghost Tour. Located near Manly Beach, this ghost tour had the best reviews of scary and excitement with enough historical and cultural significance to interest those who don’t believe in ghosts and/or are not receptive to ghosts.

PSA: a ghost tour is NOT the same thing as a haunted house. At a haunted house, the area is decorated to purposely scare those who go in. This includes having people dressed up to jump out at you etcetera. At a ghost tour, you are taken to an area where a lot of traumatic events have occurred and where the souls of people who may have died there are rumored to roam. Thus the scariness is left to ghosts and spirits. Reviews included people hearing screaming or seeing figures that no one else saw. Others who were not as receptive experienced changes in temperature and smell such as intense coldness or cigarette smell in non smoking areas.

After taking the ferry over to Manly Beach from Circular Quay, we took a cab to Quarantine Station which was creepy enough without having even started the tour. A bus picked us up and took us to the actual site. The site where the ghost tour took place was a 150 year old are used to hold people said to have extremely contagious, infectious, and/or deadly diseases. Most of the “patients” were soldiers from war and the diseases ranged from the bubonic plague to typhoid fever. It’s quailed Quarantine Station because it’s important to remember this was not a proper hospital. “Patients” that entered the facilities soon found overcrowded hospital beds, terrible food, and lack of personal attention.

Throughout the tour we were taken to hospitals, bedroom areas, and gas chambers where patients, nurses and doctors are reported to still roam as a result of death without closure. Examples are a young 15-year old candy striper of sorts who died without receiving her last words by a Catholic priest and thus roams hospital beds seeking atonement.

I was a skeptic before going and remain so. Our tour experienced no intense or mind-blowing encounters with ghosts. With that said, the tour was still REALLY amazing. I’m a history junkie so hearing the history of Quarantine Station and the stories of specific patients, nurses, doctors, teachers, etc was really cool for me. Moreover, the guide told us some experiences of other visitors to the Quarantine Station which was really interesting to hear. Apparently, children are more receptive to the spirits as they have minds untainted by logic I guess you could say. Moreover, individuals who come from cultures with an emphasis on ancestors and spirits are more receptive as well such as Aboriginals, Native Americans, and South east Asian cultures. Overall the experience was really cool and I would strongly suggest it.

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