An Enchanting New Tour Explores LA's Charming ‘Witch Houses'

FORT:LA has lined up some of the most ensorcelled abodes around, including, yes, the world-famous Witch House of Beverly Hills.


What to Know

  • The self-guided "Witch Houses 3 Trail: Something Wicked This Way Comes" is presented by the Friends of Residential Tours: Los Angeles
  • Amber Benson, the novelist and "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" star, has curated the lively line-up of haunting houses
  • Free on the FORT:LA site

There are haunted houses, those structures said to be rife with wraiths, and moaning monsters, and the sorts of eternal residents that may be prone to going bump in the night, if they are so inclined.

But the haunted house is rather different from the haunting house.

We're talking about the sort of domicile that may be fully free of phantoms and yet? Seeing one can haunt a person, in the best sense, for many years to come, thanks to the structure's ethereal aura and storybook-like appearance.

We can't confirm which houses around Southern California boast their own cavalcade of bump-in-the-night spirits, but there are a notable number of haunting residences that delightfully dot our region.

Friends of Residential Treasures: Los Angeles, an architecture-trumpeting troupe that's become well-known for championing some of our city's most charming and important structures, has a soft spot for the Witch House, a uniquely LA kind of casa.

Surely there are other cities known for ensorcelled abodes, but quirky Los Angeles, with its robust entertainment industry, has become synonymous with fantasy structures, with Witch Houses at the fanciful forefront.

And to celebrate these spellbinding dwellings?

FORT:LA just shared a free self-guided tour, with novelist and "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" star Amber Benson performing the curating duties (and sharing Ray Bradbury-penned tales to up the Octoberiness of your urban adventure).

"From a stunning castle completely covered in magical mosaics by the hand of a single artisan, to
an enchanting structure that originally served as an office at an early silent film studio, our third
annual Witch Houses Trail features five truly spooky structures with fascinating histories," said
Russell Brown, FORT: LA Founder and Board Chair.

These houses are meant to be viewed from the street or sidewalk — interior tours are not included — and respecting that people live inside of these storybook structures is part of the tour's mission.

And good memory if you're recalling that you've seen other self-guided tours of a witchtastic nature: There have been two previous Witch House Trails created by the FORT:LA team, which just goes to show how wonderfully witchy the architecture scene is in our sometimes surreal city.

You can find those earlier eerie explorations on the organization's site.

And if you'd like to go deeper into this whimsical realm? A magical Los Feliz house, with a certain "Hansel & Gretel"-style flair, will be the scene of a FORT:LA fundraiser on Saturday, Oct. 22. Tickets and information to the event, which will weave together music, art, and Halloween vibes, are available on the FORT:LA site.

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