Whether it's restless ghosts or vagabond killers, these freaky tales will have you locking the doors and sleeping with a nightlight. Below is a list of urban legends by city (or urban legends by state) that will help you mark off places to skip on your next vacation. (Unsettlingly, some of the stories have no location at all, which means they could happen anywhere...)
Venezuelan Whistler Preys on Drunks and Cheaters
There's an urban legend in Venezuela surrounding "El Silbón" (The Whistler), a figure known in the wetland plains and prairies regions called "Llanos."
The Whistler is usually described as a very emaciated man dressed in cowboy's rags, with a wide brim hat that hides his skeletal face. He roams the countryside and patches of bush at night, his shoulders drooping, his gaze cast downward. He carries a heavy bag full of bones and half-decomposed remains over his back.
True to his name, the entity continuously whistles a high chord progression (C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C) that goes higher in tune with every note. He is also unnaturally tall and strong, with some accounts describing him as towering over six meters (almost 20 feet) in height.
His origin is not clear, with some tales casting him as an accursed parricide. He's rumored to prey on lone travelers, especially drunk or unfaithful men. Legend has it, his ominous whistle is suddenly heard very loud and close, yet the source cannot be pinpointed. Contrary to logic, when the sound lowers and appears more distant, the Whistler is very near.
He kills either by strangling or by blunt-force trauma, devouring his victims and throwing the bones in his bag. He can be seen occasionally wading over the high walls of haciendas. Prayer is said to keep him away.
Okinawa Children Want Dead Playmates
In Okinawa there was a house near the Kadena Air Force Base that was abandoned. A man killed himself and his family in it.
The house was said to be haunted. It was even part of the ghost tours they gave on base. There were reports that the outside lights would turn on by themselves. One story was that a woman could be seen washing her hair in the sink in the kitchen through a window.
The creepiest thing by far was that this house shared a chainlink fence with the daycare building. My friend's mom worked at the day care. Children between four and five years old would constantly throw toys over the fence. When asked why, they said they wanted to play with the children on the other side. All of the kids saw these other children, but the adults could not. It throughly freaked out anyone who worked there.
Child Ghosts save Texans from Repeat Train Wrecks
In San Antonio, there was a school bus which broke down on a set of train tracks. Before the bus could be moved or evacuated, a train barreled down the tracks and tragically killed all on board. It was such a tragedy, that the local government eventually named all of the nearby streets after these children.
So, as you drive past a mental institution, on roads named after dead children, you come to a hill. On this hill is where the road meets the train tracks. You park on the tracks and put your car into neutral. For an added effect, you can put white powder on your bumper. Then, you wait.
After a little bit, your car randomly starts moving by itself off of the tracks. It's even more odd, because your car doesnt go down the hill, but instead it goes up the hill. If you put white powder on your bumper, you find tiny fingerprints. Supposedly, those prints are proof that the ghosts of the children who died in the wreck all those years ago pushed you off of the tracks - to save your car, and your life, from being hit by a train like they were.
Stick People Steal Babies
I'm Native American, and the story of the Stick People always gave me the heebie jeebies at dusk, or if I was alone in the woods. The story goes that there are these Stick People who live in the hills, and they lure children in who don't pay attention to their parents, children who wandered into their territory, children who are out past their bedtime, or even babes out of their baskets when their mothers have their backs turned to put up laundry on the line.
The Stick People, as told to me, were abnormally small in size, and skeletal. They were were mischievous and wicked. In addition to kids, they would also steal things like the extra sock from your dryer, your car keys etc.
As I lived in a very rural area on a reservation, I'd assumed these Stick People lived up in the hills, so every time I'm in the hills now I'm always looking around, and very alert, and not because there are bears and cougars in the area, but because of the Stick People.