Scarier than Fiction: Popular Ghostly Legends in the Philippines

Boys and girls of every age, would you like to hear something strange?

Everyone loves a good scare and Halloween is definitely the season when we’re all a-buzz with frightening ghostly accounts based on “true stories”, horror specials on television, and scary articles on every spooky subject imaginable. The reason why urban legends are so popular is because you can never really tell whether or not they’re true. Regardless of their authenticity, it’s still rather exciting to talk about these urban myths.

Gather around the fire for a few popular Philippine horror stories and get to know the ghostly legends that figure prominently in them.

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Davao Taxi

The Legend of Taxi #45

The horror stories that we know which involve cabs are usually about modus operandi. But that is not the case for this urban legend.

Once, on a late night in Davao City where this ghost story was said to originate from, a woman was hailing a cab to go home. When she rode the taxi, she suddenly felt uneasy. Her intuition was telling her that something was off, but she just dismissed it. In an effort to soothe her anxiety, she tried to engage in small talk with the driver who just remained silent and seemingly unmoving.

As she neared her destination, she reached into her bag to get her wallet. Turning to the driver, she was horrified to discover that his face was bloody. She immediately ran out of the vehicle in fright. When she turned around, the cab was gone.

According to Christopher Maynard in his book “Ghosts”, if a death involves powerful emotions or violent causes, a “Replay Ghost” is created and they linger on in the place where they died. Such is the case for Taxi #45. No one really knows the real identity of the cab driver; only that he probably has some serious unfinished business.

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The White Lady in Foggy Loakan Road

Loakan Road is said to be one of the centers of paranormal activity in Baguio. This creepy thoroughfare–with thick fog and dense woods on either side–serves as the perfect setting for a horror movie.

One of the most well-known stories about this long stretch of road is the white lady that some drivers have claimed to see on the side of the road. In some stories, the white lady flags down cabs and after some time, when drivers look at their rearview mirror, she’s gone.

Other accounts tell the opposite story. There are some who have seen her ghostly figure in the middle of the road, trying to hitch a ride. People who know of her story drive on by for fear of encountering her ghost but they look at their rear view mirror, and there is she is in the backseat.

Fact or fiction, third eye or none, the ghostly figure that some have claimed to see along Loakan Road may just well be the Baguio fog playing tricks with your head. Still, this doesn’t make the story any less creepy.

ghost story - elevatorPhoto: “Rawr” by Cali4beach via Creative Commons 2.0

Up or down?

Every old building has one elevator ghost story. One tale tells of the ghost that haunts the elevators in a popular high-rise in Makati.

There was a man who clocked out of his 9th floor office at 3 a.m. He took the elevator going down which then stopped at the 7th floor. The elevator doors opened and a young woman’s face peered into the man’s view. She asks him if he’s going up and he responds, “No, going down.” The elevator closes.

As the man heads to the building lobby, he asks the guard about the woman in the 7th floor and why she’s working so late. The guard, unsurprised, says that there are no offices in the 7th floor, which is entirely vacant. He says that the man probably saw the daughter of the building’s owner who jumped from the 12th floor. When she hit the 7th floor, she got decapitated, which is why only her head is seen when she peers into the elevator.

You’ve probably heard about other similar stories of elevator doors that won’t shut, and open and close a few times. Apparently, the arms of a ghost blocks the doors from closing and once they’re shut, they’re inside the elevator with you. Or you know, probably just a glitch in the system.

Wawa DamPhoto by: Renante Mina Adventures | Adventures of Manong Unyol

Dark Waters: Pandora Haunts Wawa Dam

The Wawa Dam, built in 1909 during the American colonial era, is a gravity dam constructed over the Marikina River. Before the construction of Angat Dam, the Wawa Dam was the main source of water for Manila. According local accounts, an engkanto (fairy) named Pandora has claimed the lives of 40 people swimming in the dam.

Some believe that she was a fairy, others claim she was just a mortal girl. One version of her origin claims that her heart was broken by an unfaithful lover and her ghost remains to seek revenge. Another story says was a rape victim who was brought to the nearest cave where she was molested and killed. Her vengeful ghost has since claimed the lives of every man swimming in the dam.

Some people who swim in Wawa Dam claim that in some parts of the water, they felt something pulling them down. Force of nature, or of a vengeful spirit?

More horror stories on the next page! 


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