Ghostly encounters on Mexico’s deserted Island of the Dolls

Travelers seeking something original for Halloween might think about signing up for a haunted tour of an island in Mexico. True to its name, the deserted “Island of the Dolls” in Mexico is home to dolls hanging from the trees, many missing heads and limbs.

It’s one of the best places to spend Halloween in, if you’re looking for ghostly adventures.


Shrouded in folklore, the island is believed to be haunted by the ghost of a drowned girl. Local legend states that the dolls whisper to one another, moving their head and even opening their eyes.


But the nine-day adventure through Mexico with Flash Pack comes with a warning; the company’s founder advises that “this part of the tour is not for the faint-hearted”.

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“For many of our customers, an adventure means abseiling down the side of a mountain. For others however, the adrenaline rush of a fright provides the exact same thrill. This one-off tour through Mexico certainly delivers that,” says Flash Pack‘s co-founder, Lee Thompson.

Join a Halloween Haunted Tour to the deserted Island of the Dolls in MexicoThe Legend of the Island of Dolls

Although the deserted island looks terrifying, it actually has a very sad past. It’s situated just south of Mexico City, between the canals of Xochimico.

According to the legend, Don Julian Santana Barrera, the island’s caretaker, found a young girl floating in the canal with a doll nearby. He couldn’t save her, so hung the doll to a tree out of respect.

Join a Halloween Haunted Tour to the deserted Island of the Dolls in Mexico

He then claimed that the girl’s spirit haunted be him. So in an attempt to appease the ghost, he hung more dolls and eventually covered the island with them. This is how the island got its eerie name “Isla de las Muñecas” (Island of the Dolls).

Join a Halloween Haunted Tour to the deserted Island of the Dolls in Mexico

Discovering the culture of Mexico

But it’s not all thrills and ghost stories. For travelers that don’t fancy their chances on the island, there’s plenty more on offer.

The Dia de los Muertos of Mexico

The tour, which departs on October 26, will take 14 solo travelers through central Mexico. The organizers provide a unique take on ancient Mexican tradition called the Dia de los Muertos (Day of The Dead). This tradition is part of the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.


Travelers will also immerse themselves in the city of Puebla, before heading south to the culinary capital of Oaxaca, nestled amid the mountains.

“Mexico attracts travelers from around the world throughout the year with its rich culture. But in October, the country comes alive – most famously exemplified by its Day of the Dead celebrations,” said Thompson.

The Dia de los Muertos of MexicoHe added: “The country has so much more to offer than white sandy beaches, and this one-off tour gives solo travelers the chance to really get under the skin of the country, with a few scares thrown in.”

Visiting Puebla and Oaxaca in MexicoThe one-off adventure runs from October 26 – November 3, 2019 and includes accommodation, local transport, meals and an expert guide. Book this trip here while other trips to Mexico with Flash Pack can be booked here.


About Flash Pack

Flash Pack was founded by Radha Vyas and Lee Thompson. They were frustrated by the lack of travel tour companies for travelers in their 30s and 40s. So now it specializes in small, high-end group adventures and experiences for solo travelers. They target travelers in their 30s and 40s traveling across Africa, Asia, Europe and South America.


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