Home Hiking boots This road trip will take you to the best hidden ghost towns in the dirty south

This road trip will take you to the best hidden ghost towns in the dirty south


When looking for your next road trip destination, the best hidden gems are found off the beaten path.

From forgotten houses on stilts amid turquoise waters to overgrown mining towns used for the filming of some of Hollywood’s most popular movie franchises, this road trip map will take you to some of the quirkiest ghost towns located in the South. .

So fuel up your car, grab a good pair of hiking boots, and get ready to plan an unforgettable trek across multiple states to these long-forgotten sites waiting to be rediscovered.

Buffalo City, North Carolina

Address: Buffalo City, North Carolina

Why you need to go: During Prohibition, this former mill town was once the “Moonshine Capital of the World,” but once alcohol was legalized again, the economy crashed.

Today, the Forgotten City is home to crumbling buildings and overgrown signs and structures.

Henry River Mill Village, North Carolina

Address: Henry River, North Carolina

Why you need to go: This former North Carolina mining town has long been in bad shape. Now you can find and explore the old mill and decaying buildings.

If the sites seem familiar to you, it is because the vestiges of the village have even been presented in the hunger games series as a backdrop for District 12.

No business, TN

Address: No Company, Tennessee

Why you need to go: This abandoned former mining and logging town is home to a beautiful cove and old bridges. Located on the Kentucky-Tennessee border, you can find old log cabins, as well as remote and rugged mountain ridges.

Old Cahawba, AL

Address: 9518 Cahaba Rd, Orrville, AL

Why you need to go: Old Cahawba is Alabama’s most famous ghost town and historic archaeological site. Here you can explore ancient structures, stones and artifacts from the past, as well as a historic cemetery.

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church is one of the city’s highlights. Built in the 1850s, it still stands today and is ready to be explored.

Stiltsville, Florida

Address: Key Biscayne, Florida

Why you need to go: Stiltsville is one of the most unique “ghost towns” in the United States. Located in the middle of Biscayne Bay in Miami and accessible only by boat, this collection of wooden houses on stilts once housed tales of gangsters, illegal gambling and lots of booze.

Eventually most of the homes were devastated by Hurricane Andrew in 1992, however, seven of the structures still stand and are a must-see when visiting the crystal clear waters of Miami.

Special mention to Fredericksburg, Virginia

Address: This site is now on private property and very dangerous, as it is on the territory of a hunting club. Visitors are not welcome at this time.

What was once a bustling Renaissance fair in the woods of Virginia has since been abandoned. What remains are the remnants of a once jovial tourist attraction, fading with time. Highlights of the lot are an abandoned pirate ship and several Renaissance-style castles and towers.

Before you go, check out our responsible travel guide to be informed, be safe, be smart, and above all, be respectful on your adventure.

The left cover image of this article was used for illustrative purposes only.