Podcasts can be a great way to pass the time, set the mood, or learn about new, fascinating topics.
For some, the best type to listen to is scary podcasts.
I love adding the thrill of spooky content into my day, and there are so many podcasts to hear.
Whether you’re looking for true scary podcasts, scary horror podcasts, or generally scary and spooky podcasts, here’s a list of some of the best out there.
What Is a Scary Podcast?
A scary podcast is one of the many different types of podcasts, almost like a genre.
Generally, scary podcasts have the goal of shocking or thrilling the listener.
This reaction comes by discussing darker themes, telling horror stories, or covering eerie incidents.
Scary podcasts can be among the best podcasts because they often engage the listener with chilling tales.
What Does a Scary Podcaster Talk About?
Scary podcasters are the people who run the show, and they can choose to talk about a variety of topics.
These topics create subgenres that can help you know what to expect.
First, there are true scary podcasts.
Podcasters in this field discuss the details of real stories or interview people who have had frightening experiences.
Next, scary horror podcasts might rely more on fiction.
You’ll hear chilling tales and myths, like sitting around a campfire.
Finally, generally scary and spooky podcasters cover any content that will get your heart beating. It can range from psychologically twisted content to discussing gory detail.
Ultimately, what a podcaster talks about is personal choice and preference.
What Is Included On a Scary Podcast?
Scary podcasts can all be quite different, but you can usually expect some of the same elements.
While these elements can be standard, not every podcast has all of them.
- Narrator: A scary podcast can feature one main narrator, multiple, or change every episode. The narrator is responsible for telling the story, whether it’s fictional or not. Occasionally narrators may be professional voice actors.
- Disturbing Themes: A scary podcast usually must include some unsettling content to be freaky. The content can range from ghost encounters to serial killers. Some podcasts post comprehensive content warnings for each episode.
- Sound Effects: Not all scary podcasts include sound effects, but some feature theatrical sounds to add ambiance. It can range from monster noises to suspenseful music under narration.
- Transcriptions: Transcriptions can be handy if you enjoy reading along to your scary podcast. Again, not every podcast may have a transcription.
Types of Scary Podcasts
As mentioned, there are also different types of scary podcasts.
These types can help you sort out content you enjoy from stories that might be too graphic for you or even not gory enough.
You can find the varying types and listen to podcasts on different platforms to determine the best option for you.
- True Scary Podcasts: True podcasts are what they sound like, focusing on facts. You might hear true crime stories or people’s paranormal encounters. These podcasters put time into researching topics or interviewing engaging individuals.
- Scary Horror Podcasts: Scary horror podcasts usually dip into the world of fiction. The new episodes feature either famous or indie horror stories.
- Scary and Spooky Podcasts: Scary and spooky podcasts are a general category that covers any other podcast with unsettling content.
Best Scary Podcasts: 15 Examples
Now, let’s finally discuss some of the best scary podcasts.
Below is a comprehensive list with options for each type to help you find your ideal podcast.
You can find these shows on many platforms, no matter your preference of how to listen to a podcast.
How Many Scary Podcasts Are There?
These 15 podcasts are a small selection of all the scary podcasts available.
While it’s hard to say the exact number of scary podcasts, there are at least more than 130.
There are likely many more, as individuals can readily produce small shows.
This figure is bound to grow as true crime and horror gain popularity with American audiences.
Best True Scary Podcasts
First, let’s take a look at some of the best true scary podcasts.
These shows will thrill you with true horrors.
Of all the scary podcasts, these are some of the most popular.
If you do choose to listen, prepare for potentially graphic descriptions.
True Scary Story
True Scary Story is a podcast that collects private recitals of creepy encounters.
Real people record their memories of unexplained phenomena, focusing on the paranormal.
This format is unique, letting you hear directly from the source.
And That’s Why We Drink
If you’re interested in true crime and the paranormal, And That’s Why We Drink might be a perfect choice.
The two co-hosts take turns during the episode to tell one story of each category.
The dynamic duo manages to keep the mood lighthearted.
Even though the factual stories have horrific elements, the banter is always comedic.
Let’s Not Meet: A True Horror Podcast
The paranormal isn’t the only source of frightening stories.
The Let’s Not Meet podcast understands this, where the host narrates submissions from listeners.
Each episode features a collection of short stories that cover real-life horrors like encounters with stalking or cults.
Disturbed: True Horror Stories
Next, the Disturbed podcast is another option that combines both true crime and the paranormal.
Each episode covers a variety of stories from a mix of historical and personal sources.
You might hear about kidnappings or ghosts, but all are authentic experiences.
Jim Harold’s Campfire
Finally, a long-running scary podcast is Jim Harold’s Campfire.
This show aims to give the listener that nostalgic feeling of hearing scary stories in the dark by the light of a fire.
Each episode has a theme, and the host narrates multiple short stories.
Similar to others, you might hear a range of topics from true crime, to paranormal, to UFO encounters.
Best Scary Horror Podcasts
Check out these scary horror podcasts if true stories are a bit too freaky or just not your style.
Horror podcasts can be chilling experiences and offer extensive collections of fiction readings you might not find elsewhere.
The NoSleep Podcast
First, The NoSleep Podcast is a collection of original horror short stories.
Each episode has an extensive cast of voice actors, making it like the original radio dramas.
The eerie tales also have sound effects and mood music.
These techniques all create a tense atmosphere that might leave you on the edge of your seat.
Alice Isn’t Dead
Alice Isn’t Dead is a podcast that follows one long story, updating every episode.
The podcast is similar to an audiobook, as there is a novel you can read along.
This chilling story focuses on a truck driver’s search for her lost wife and finding horrors along the way.
Next is another series that collects original horror stories.
Authors craft stories that you can read with the PseudoPod podcast.
These stories often cover blunt topics, and only mature audiences should listen.
You might encounter themes like death, sexual violence, and more.
The Wrong Station
The Wrong Station is a Canadian production that hopes to bring back the feeling of tuning into old radio.
Each episode features a sole narrator telling a fictional story of an odd experience.
Its simplistic approach is one of the drawing features.
Listening to this podcast might feel like you’re having a personal conversation, and it can bring you into the narrative.
The Other Stories
Finally, The Other Stories is another scary podcast collection of stories.
The primary narration has some special effects accompanying it.
It originally began as a simple goal of four stories a month from four friends but has grown to include various authors and narrators.
Best Scary and Spooky Podcasts
Last but not least are general scary and spooky podcasts.
These scary podcasts can be just as disturbing as the others.
Unlike horror and true scary podcasts, it’s hard to define this category in generalities.
Each podcast can be slightly different, but all focus on unsettling the listener.
Lore is a different type of scary podcast that focuses on a historical perspective.
They choose to show how spooky legends and folklore can be.
Each episode centers around real concepts that can be chilling to discover.
Welcome to Night Vale
One popular scary podcast, Welcome to Night Vale, is an intriguing dive into a fictional world.
This podcast isn’t frightening horrifically but spooky in an unsettling manner.
Each episode sounds like a news radio show for a fictitious neighborhood.
The mundane subject matter can be spooky to listen to as the unexpected occurs in Night Vale.
The Last Podcast on the Left
The Last Podcast on the Left is a spooky and scary podcast that covers everything.
The show’s hosts cover topics like UFO encounters, cryptids, ghosts, and serial killers.
It’s a catch-all podcast for anyone interested in dark stories.
The hosts also try to keep their perspective level, as one regularly adds skepticism to the mix.
Ghosts in The Burbs
This spooky podcast is a unique collection of true ghost stories.
Ghosts in The Burbs is a personal project that features interviews of Massachusetts residents.
These locals came together to tell their ghost stories, which can create a very intimate feeling when listening.
Some episodes have the original interview recording, while others have a retelling to protect privacy.
The Magnus Archives
Finally, The Magnus Archives is a podcast that follows a fictional story over multiple episodes.
The episodes play as if a paranormal researcher is exploring the archives of an old institution.
Throughout the series, the mystery of the archives will unfold. It’s an unsettling story with a dedicated voice-acting cast.
Similar Podcasts Types to Check Out
Scary podcasts aren’t the only ones you can listen to if you want darker content.
There are plenty of other types that might catch your interest.
- True Crime Podcasts: True crime podcasts tell the real stories of horrific crimes, like serial killers or kidnappings. These tales can be frightening, and often true scary podcasts can mix into the true crime genre.
- Mystery Podcasts: Mystery podcasts explore unsolved crime cases or mysterious encounters with unexplainable entities like cryptids or UFOs. These podcasts can be ideal if you enjoy weirder subjects but might not want to be scared by the unknown.
- Murder Podcasts: Murder podcasts focus solely on revealing details about murders and murderers. The subject is dark and similar to the scary podcast realm with graphic and chilling facts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Listening to scary podcasts can be a worthwhile experience, but getting into the genre can seem confusing.
Here are a few frequently asked questions to help you decide.
What is the best scary podcast to listen to?
Ultimately, the best scary podcast to listen to relies on your preferences.
Some people might enjoy hearing about the gritty details of real murders, while others could prefer the theatrical tellings of fictional ghost stories.
What is the top-rated scary podcast on Spotify?
Scary Story Podcast is one of the top-rated scary podcasts on Spotify, among others you can find on this list.
This podcast is a collection of original short stories narrated by the author.
Listening to scary podcasts can be a thrilling experience.
There are so many different chilling podcasts out there that you’re almost guaranteed to find one you enjoy.
So next time you’re looking for a true scary story, a horror tale, or a generally spooky experience, consider listening to one of these podcasts.