Ghost stories, especially those that are based on true stories, are one of my favorite things to hear. Having grown up on the East Coast, I was constantly surrounded by the legends and stories that encased the rich history of Boston and Salem, MA. Having now been living in California, I’ve come to learn that there are many places within this grand state that have their own urban legends and terrifying ghost stories, one of those places being The Queen Mary, located in Long Beach, CA. Last week I had the chance to revisit the infamous ship for the revival of their GHOST AND LEGENDStour and let me tell you, it was definitely an experience I won’t soon forget.
GHOST AND LEGENDS gives guests the chance to come aboard The Queen Mary for a tour unlike anything else they have experienced. The tour, which runs year-round, can accommodate up to 30 guests and runs every 30 minutes. During the experience, guests will be given flashlights and taken to areas of the famous ship that have never been open to the public before. Along with this, there will be innovative interactive technology and special effects as well as water effects, fog projects, CGI, ghost tracking, and much, much more. Whatever you think you are about to experience is nothing compared to finding yourself in the underbelly of the ship, with restless spirits around you, and the uncontrollable urge to escape.
As I’m sure you gathered from the beginning of this review, I love ghost stories but I absolutely LOVE anything related to ghost tours. It’s been quite some time since I had the chance to go on a tour of this type so I extremely excited to experience this. Upon our arrival, we had the opportunity to meet with the Captain of the Queen Mary and hear about what the GHOST AND LEGENDStour was like in years past as well as some of the more ghastly stories of those who have perished on the ship and have allegedly not passed over. After the Captain finished his speech, those of us attending the event were broken off into four groups where we prepared ourselves for the upcoming tour.
When our group was finally called, we met with our tour guide who informed us that this was her first time doing this tour and that she scared really easily. I will say a part of me almost actually believed her and for the rest of the duration of the experience, she acted the part of a scared, but in charge leader. Throughout the 30 minutes we were in her care, we got to experience “The Museum of the Macabre” which housed artifacts with terrifying backstories from guests of the past, a ghostly apparition trapped in an ancient contraption, and a chance to explore the bowels of the ship (also known as the boiler room), which to me, was one of the scariest things that I have ever done.
Though I do wish there were more ghost stories that centered around people’s experiences with the paranormal, that didn’t deter me from the theatrics of the event. I was highly impressed with the use of CGI and special effects as it elevated the overall experience. My only real critique is that I wish there was more use of live actors throughout, though I can understand why they didn’t go that route. Even though the tour is short, it doesn’t seem that way when you are going through it, especially once down in the boiler room. For me, this was definitely the most terrifying aspect as we were about 36 feet beneath the water line and the thought of water rushing in made my skin go cold. I never expected that there would be a moment in which water would start rushing in around where we were standing. To say I started panicking would be an understatement, but I just had to remind myself this was only a show and I was not going to be the next restless spirit aboard The Queen Mary.
Overall, GHOST AND LEGENDS is a fantastic experience for those of you looking for something different to do during the upcoming holidays. With tickets starting as low as $12, this tour is an affordable option for those who are looking to get a group together. Though I wanted more ghost stories and live actors, it didn’t deter me from the overall experience and it was nice to actually feel a bit of fear when I went down into the boiler room. GHOST AND LEGENDS is definitely going to be a tour that I recommend to anyone that’s looking for something fun to do and I can’t wait for the opportunity to go back and experience it again!
For more information on GHOST AND LEGENDS visit www.queenmary.com/tickets/.