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Winchester Mystery House, San Jose

Categories: Historic Sites, Mysterious Sites, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
3.5/5 based on 1,700+ reviews on the web
The attraction to Winchester Mystery House lies in its architecture and lack of any master building plan, as much as for its ghost stories. The widow of William Wirt Winchester, who built the house, began construction only after her husband died and left her a huge fortune. A medium told her this fortune should be used to build a house for the ghosts of the people who were killed by her husband's famous rifles. The architectural curiosities were added continuously from 1884 to 1922. Take a guided tour to learn all the quirky stories of the haunted rooms. Make a reservation online. To visit Winchester Mystery House on your trip to San Jose, use our San Jose family vacation planner.
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  • We visited the Winchester Mystery House during our trip to Northern California. I had heard about this house and was excited about going. The house is enormous with lots of rooms ( I don't remember ho...  read more »
  • My girlfriend and I visited San Jose recently were looking for things to do. When we stumbled upon the Winchester Mystery House, we knew we had to book one of the interior house tours. It lived up to ...  read more »
  • Interesting. Overpriced tour. Nice people took a hour to go through. Good story and background. I love history so found it interesting. 
  • If you like learning about local history with a bit of strange thrown in then this is perfect for you. The place is huge with a selection of 3 tours. We took the mansion tour which lasted just over an hour and took us through 110 of the 160 rooms. Or guide was great and was very knowledgeable and regularly took questions without flinching. We learned a lot about the history of the home and we're pointed out several of the houses weird and mysterious quirks. Overall I'd say it's worth the ticket fee and had an enjoyable experience.
  • I have been wanting to see this house for a long time. I recently visited during my trip to the Bay Area. I'm glad that I stopped by and took the tour. It was about what I had expected from all the stories that I've heard. The outside grounds and Visitor Center/gift shop felt very "touristy" almost like an amusement park visit. The ticket price for the tour seems a bit expensive although there are some two-for-one deals or other coupons that you can download online. I was glad to hear some of the history from our tour guide. I was a bit disappointed that we couldn't take any photos inside, but I guess that's how they preserve the mystery.
  • !!! AVOID !!! Don't waste your money and time. Insanely overpriced ($44/person) and nothing really interesting to see. A big disappointment especially compared to our visit of the Hearst Castle (compare to $25/person). There is nothing really mysterious or cool there. The guide Daisy tried hard to give us the spooky feeling, but failed. "There are goose bumps on my arms, because I am telling you the truth and somebody's hugging me". She repeated the above phrase more than 10 times. The poor Sarah Winchester was mourning all her life and didn't know how to spend the wealth. She was the largest local employer at the time, paid good wages and taxes, but honestly could spend the money with much greater purpose. !!! AVOID !!!
  • The gardens are beautiful. I wonder if one can get married in the garden. Yes it's that beautiful The staff is nice. I did both regular n back stage tour. It's both beautiful n creepy Don't forget to visit the winchester museum. Free
  • I have now been twice, some time apart, and have loved each visit. It is an incredible house with a rich and crazy history. To have seen the house, plantations and orchards in it's day would have been really something and the guided tours bring some of that to life. The guides and staff are friendly, very funny and each have their own favourite parts of the house and stories to tell, which makes repeat fresh and interesting. They also have a small museum dedicated to the Winchester firearms without which this house would never have been built and adds extra flavour and context to the tour. At the time I visited they also did pepperoni pizza pretzels, from a little stand in the courtyard, which were amazing. It truly is well worth visiting, I can't recommend it enough.
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