Whether you believe in otherworldly beings, or not, it’s always fun to get a little thrill out of ghost stories. These supernatural experiences were shared with us by ten Malaysians who live to tell the tales of their ghostly encounters.
So, what are you waiting for? Gather ‘round and get your popcorn out! We’re taking you on a journey into another realm. –
1. 'Tap, tap, tap'
"I was at a religious retreat. We stayed at some 2- or 3-star hotel in Sepang – so, you can imagine how dingy it was. One night, a few of us gathered at a friend’s room, after the day’s activities were over. As people typically do at camps, we started telling ghost stories. I’ve never believed in ghosts prior to this incident, so I was laughing at how ridiculous the stories were.
At around 2am, we decided to head back to our own rooms. Inside the lift, I felt as if there was someone behind me, and my plastic bag rustled (I was carrying a plastic bag with snacks inside). Being someone who didn’t believe in the supernatural, I just thought it was the wind, or something that was surely explainable. However, when I came out of the lift, I still felt as if there was someone behind me. I was brave enough to turn around and check if there actually was someone – there was no one.
So, I proceeded into my room, changed and washed up. When I got into bed, I suddenly felt really cold so I covered my blanket all the way to the top, over my head. I had just closed my eyes – not even asleep yet – when I felt something tapping on my head. It was like my blanket was pressing down on my face. Obviously, I freaked out! But then, it stopped. Before I could feel relieved, I started to sense something walking around my room. I was too afraid to remove my blanket and check, but I just knew there was something roaming around my room. Then the tapping started again.
I thought to myself, ‘this is it la
’, and prayed like never before. This time, when the tapping stopped, I quickly reached my hand out to the side table and grabbed my phone. I called my friend who was in another room. At the first ring of the bell, I removed the blanket from over my head, and I rushed to the door. My friends came to see what happened, and when I told them, I found out I wasn’t the only one – there were others, part of the retreat group, who had also felt weird the moment they entered the hotel." – Steph, Subang Jaya
2. Japanese Boy
"This incident happened many, many years ago. I was 16; my youngest brother was six. We stayed in a small town in the North of the country, at the edge of a forest, which was said to be used as a hiding place during World War II. We’d sometimes hear whistling or singing at odd hours of the night, coming from the forest, but we were taught as kids to ignore it, and not point it out.
One evening, when my siblings and I were playing, my youngest brother abruptly burst into tears and started screaming (funnily, in Hokkien): "I am Japanese! My dad drank himself to death! He died because he drank too much!" As you can imagine, we all got very scared! It happened so suddenly, and so eerily: one moment we were all happily playing and in the next, our brother suddenly blurted out something so absurd. Until this day, we don’t know what caused that, and he doesn’t remember. But supernatural or not, it’s quite creepy for a six-year-old to know about the Japanese occupation, and that over-drinking can kill." – Theresa, Perak
3. Late-Night Karaoke
"Okay, so this was at a camp in Port Dickson, about two years ago. We had activities till a little past midnight. After it all, my friends and I were a little hungry, so we went to the canteen area to make ourselves hot Milo and munch on some cookies. We talked and gossiped until about 2 plus – typical post-camp activity la
, right? Amidst our talking and laughing, the dogs (there were quite a few dogs staying in the camp compound) started barking. They were barking like crazy.
At this point, I recalled being told that animals, dogs especially, can sense ‘other beings’, and when they start barking in the wee hours, it means they’re barking at a certain ‘something’. I never really believed in that, but I had a bad feeling about the situation, and decided to head to bed. The barking stopped; we were finally able to go to sleep.
My roommates had already fallen asleep, but just as I was about to dose off, probably around 4 am, I heard a woman singing old-style Chinese songs. It was quite loud, and had so much echo – like how a karaoke machine would sound. So there I was thinking, who on Earth is having a karaoke session at this hour!? Mad or what
. I tried to ignore it, and somehow managed to fall asleep.
The next day, I didn’t bring it up to anyone; although it was weird, I didn’t feel like it was a big deal. Then, one of the camp facilitators, an older lady whom I was close to, asked me if I heard the karaoke last night because a few others had heard it, as well. I said yes and we both laughed at how silly it was that someone was singing so loudly at that hour, and concluded that it was probably from one of the houses in the neighbouring area.
Later, we found out that it was no laughing matter – there was no karaoke. The camp caretakers told us that the singing came from the camp’s shared toilets and would quite frequently be heard late at night or early in the morning. Nobody knows who she is, but what they do know is that she most likely isn’t human." – N, Klang
4. Highway To Hell
"I’ve always heard stories about the Karak highway, and how it’s supposedly really haunted – but I never believed any of them. So, this one time, I had just gone to the East Coast (Kuala Terengganu) and was driving back to KL. It was pretty late, around 1 AM. While I was driving, I suddenly felt really uneasy – I could almost feel the hair on the back of my neck stand on end. I pushed away whatever thoughts I had, and just continued driving. It was then, that I passed someone. Or something
I looked in the rearview mirror but there was no one there. As I continued to drive, my car started jerking and I, well, started panicking. Thankfully, my car didn’t break down, and I managed to drive away as quickly as I could. And once again, I passed something on the side of the road. This time, I could see what it was: a lady in red, standing by the highway. Again, I looked into my rearview mirror to check, but there wasn’t anything there. I got home safe, but had nightmares for days." – Reuben, Shah Alam
5. Tall, Dark and Scary
"I was a child when this happened at my old house in Setapak. I was walking to the kitchen to get something to drink, when something suddenly popped up in front of me. I could barely see what it was – just a tall, black figure – and I couldn’t seem to move! In just a short moment, it seemed as if it didn’t happen at all, and the figure was gone. Brushing it off as something of my imagination, I proceeded to get my drink.
That night, I wasn’t able to sleep properly. Whatever that thing was, it couldn’t seem to leave my thoughts. The next morning, at school, it happened again. I was walking alone towards the field, when something suddenly popped up in front of me: the same tall, black figure. I started shouting and crying, and, as before, it was gone. Long story short, I later learned that someone had burned to death in the house we were living at. I don’t know why it happened at the time it did, but we eventually moved. I was the first to be moved out, and was sent to live with my grandmother." – ZY Puah, Setapak
6. Mysterious Interference
"I work in an old building in Bukit Tunku; that place has always given me the creeps. One night, I was working late and was the last one left at the office. It was about 11pm, and I still had some work to finish up. Because of the nature of my job, we have quite a number of walkie-talkies at the office. So while I was sitting at my desk, finishing up something on my laptop, I heard a buzzing sound, like static. Of course, I jumped at the sound because there was no one around but me, so I wasn’t expecting to hear anything coming from within the office.
I then realized I was just scaring myself. I recognized what the sound was: interference on the walkie-talkies. And it was probably caused by signals being picked up from the guard’s (who usually sits downstairs) walkie-talkie. So I went into the room where the walkie-talkies were kept (and where the sound was coming from) to see which one was left on, and was picking up the signal. When I got to where the walkie-talkies were all lined up on the charging docks, I found that all
of them were off. It didn’t help that the room was full of props, including some creepy-looking mannequins! I immediately packed up and left."
- Jerome, Shah Alam
"So, this happened when I was staying in a rented room in the apartments opposite my university. I woke up at around six, because the wind outside was suddenly super strong. So I got up, looked out the window to see what was going on, and went back to sleep. Just as I was falling asleep, my room door burst open with a loud bang! It was locked, as with all other doors and windows at home, at that time, so there was no way – no way at all – any drafts or wind could’ve pushed my locked
door open. And if it were wind from my window that caused my door to open, it would’ve opened in the other direction.
It just didn’t make any sense to me. So, I gathered enough courage to get up, shut the door, lock it and this time, I put on the chain lock too. I got back to bed, said a prayer and BAM!
the door opened again! At that instant, I screamed as loud as I could, until my housemates were woken up. They came to calm me down. Apparently, I was the only one who had noticed the strong winds; they told me there were no winds at all. I moved out that very week, and was so traumatized by doors in the period following." –Jacqueline, Subang Jaya
8. War Head
"When I was around seven years old, we moved into a new housing unit by a cross-junction, right beside a jungle. Since it was a new place, there were a lot of rumours of it being a bad spot of feng shui
, due to the fact that the jungle was used as a hideout back in World War II. My grandparents were saying how there were a lot of killings in that area, but I was young back then, so I didn’t exactly know. Added to that, being in front of a T-junction meant bad feng shui
So, one night, while I was about to sleep (I slept on a mattress in my parents room), I rolled over to the other side and froze: there was a floating head by the door. It was as if that ‘thing’ knew I was looking, it turned and looked at me and started coming closer. I couldn’t find my voice to scream, so I pulled my blanket over my head. And started praying whatever little prayer I could manage. Because I was just a kid, nobody believed me. Until one day, a Chinese feng shui
priest came over, and knew what I had seen. He told us it was most likely something from the war, as it was decapitated. And that’s how they realized it wasn’t just something I made up." – Brandon, Ipoh
9. Forest Faces
"A few years ago, I was at a school camp in a forest reserve. We stayed in chalets, run by the local people there. The guy who ran the place had his arms covered in tattoos. So, naturally, my friends and I asked him what the tattoos meant. I don’t quite remember what all of them meant, but I remember he said that those on his knuckles were to chase evil spirits away. Being Chinese, my mom had warned me of all the don’ts
when it came to being in the forest: ‘don’t call out anyone’s name’, ‘don’t pick anything from the forest’, ‘don’t acknowledge if you suddenly get a fragrant whiff of air’, etc. So, when he mentioned evil spirits, my pantang
senses went off tingling. The thought of spirits lurking around the forest haunted me.
That night, my friends and I found it hard to sleep. When we finally did, it was probably around 3 or 4 in the morning. But our sleep was cut short when we were woken up a few hours later by the loud, shrill scream of a woman. We were absolutely, unbelievably horrified and wanted to go home! We tried telling our teachers, but nobody believed us; ‘Just your imagination, la
,’ we were told. The whole morning, we were overcome with a weird, heavy feeling. But guess what? Later in the afternoon, we found out that one of the camp staff had a sound clip of a lady screaming on his phone to wake camp participants up! What a mean move, especially since we were just kids!
After finding that out, I thought to myself: Okay, there’s probably no such thing ‘forest spirits’. He was just trying to scare us. My mom, too, was just trying to scare us.
But I spoke too soon. When I got back, after three days, I loaded all the pictures I took onto my computer. While looking through, I came across a picture I took of my friend: she, sitting on a rock near a waterfall, and above (and beside) her, was a pale overlay of what looked like three faces. It could’ve been the sunlight, or water, or whatever – but they unmistakably looked like faces. So while that scream was just a scare, it probably is true that we weren’t the only beings there." – Jess, Petaling Jaya
10. Cool Toy From Singapore
"This happened when I was around five. Today, I still remember it as vividly as one would, if it happened just yesterday. So, one day, my mom’s friend from Singapore visited us. After saying hi and whatnot, I went to my toy room. While I was playing, a little ‘thing’ ran past me. Being the playful kid I was, and thinking it was a cool toy my mom’s friend had brought from Singapore, I chased after it, out into the living room – but it was gone.
Realizing that it had simply vanished, I went to ask my mom’s friend where that ‘cool toy from Singapore’ went! And as you’d expect, I was told there had not been a cool toy, and was brushed off. Kids and their wild imagination
. Many years later, I learned that what I had seen was something called a toyol
.The tiny human-like creature, with a big head and brown face (much like a gingerbread man’s!) that was in my toy room was, in fact, a creature used in black magic. Many people associate the toyol
with old village tales and myths. But I remember what I saw, and a five-year-old couldn’t have imagined that up." – Dan, Ampang
Looks like camps, forests and World War II hiding spots are some of the most haunted places here – be careful where you go. Happy Halloween!
Got a personal supernatural experience to share? Tell us in the comments below!
*Some names have been changed for privacy. Responses edited for length and clarity.