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Tuesday, October 17, 2017


(Mark Rose-Christie - Owner/Creator and host of the tours)

Mystery Ghost Bus will run its final tour in Durban on November 4 as owner/creator Mark Rose-Christie is wishing to retire.

This final tour will form part of the annual Halloween tours around the country during the fourteen (14) day Halloween period.

It’s that time of year again when the veil thins between this and the other world for the seven nights leading up to Halloween, including the 31st itself, which is Halloween proper, and the seven nights thereafter - the number ‘7’ being a spiritual number worldwide, dating way back to the time of the philosopher & mystic, Pythagoras of ancient Greece, and even before that. All Souls Day, on November 1, is perhaps one of the more well-known Halloween days after the 31st, whilst ‘The Day of the Dead’ is held on November 2 or sometimes a few days later, in South American cultures.

Halloween apparently began with the Celts as part of their harvest festivals, one of which is the well-known ‘Samhain’ festival. Later on, Halloween was adopted by the Christian Church as well. The entire idea arose so that the spirits would act kindly during this time, so that the crops would not be damaged in any way by evil spirits, sudden floods or other disasters. Today we know that disasters like floods etc. are due to natural causes, but people didn’t know that way back then.

It was also believed that evil spirits could negatively affect people, where one of the ancient Roman rituals practised during the entire Halloween period, saw the head of the household paint a black ‘X’ mark on the front door of his house, remove his shoes and then walk barefoot throughout the house, throwing sugar beans over his shoulder as a ‘treat’, so that the evil spirits would consume them and not play their evil ‘tricks’ on the family. This was one of the reasons that the ‘trick or treat’ idea arose.

Another way to ward off evil spirits was and still is, to carve turnips into scary faces, and place a burning coal inside, which is left outside the house, and known as a ‘Jack o’ Lantern’. When the tradition gained popularity in America, with pumpkins being plentiful, they replaced turnips, and candles were placed inside, so that one didn’t have to keep replacing the coal when it burnt out.

One of the reasons that these eerie-lit lanterns were called Jack o’ Lanterns comes from an old Irish folktale about a stingy blacksmith called Jack, who tricked the devil to climb up a tree, and then quickly carved a cross in the bark of the tree, so that the devil was trapped and could not climb down. The devil and Jack then struck a bargain, where the devil agreed never to take Jack’s soul if he let the devil down from the tree.

When Jack died, and after leading a rather sinful life, he could not go to heaven, but of course he also could not go to hell due to the bargain he made with the devil. This left Jack with nowhere to go. So, Jack asked the devil how he would be able to see where he could go, as he had no light. The devil then tossed a burning coal from hell out to him, which Jack placed into a carved out turnip to keep the light going. Forevermore Jack began to endlessly wander the earth looking for a resting place, but never finding one to this day. Ever afterwards, he was known as ‘Jack of the Lantern’ or ‘Jack o' Lantern’.

Halloween, or a similar form of it like ‘The Day of the Dead’ mentioned earlier, is celebrated in many cultures. However, just as Christmas became modernised and commercialised over time, so did Halloween, where people began attending horror movies, holding Halloween costume parties, going out ‘trick or treating’, telling scary stories, and amongst other activities also attending ghost tours.

The tour includes Pub & Grub stops, poltergeists, EVP recordings, dowsing rods, castles/forts, a dark haunted room, graveyards & much more. The tour runs from 19h00 to 12 midnight (at the cemetery, of course). Dressing up in costume is encouraged.

Tickets R369 pp booked at

Visit the website which also provides all details of where to meet, what to bring, how to book etc.