Fans map the spooky real-life locations of Stephen King's novels

The author's Maine settings deciphered by fans

Ever wanted to take a trip to New England with a spooky angle? Give the Stephen King road trip a shot.

King is the author of over 50 novels, and other written works. Most of his works are set in his native Maine, yet King often sets his novels in fictional locations. However, this hasn’t stopped avid fans from trying to decipher where his fictional locations would, in reality, be located.



The first stop for any King fan looking for a Maine vacation is Bangor. King calls Bangor (and Naples, Florida) home.

Travelers can view his home from the sidewalk as well as taking “Stephen King” tours, in which fans can see where King drew inspiration for his bloodcurdling novels. The area around Bangor also carries fictional significance. For those familiar with the town of Haven—featured in the 1988 novel "The Tommyknockers"—Bangor is the closest approximation of this fictional town.

Next, King fans should make their way to Dexter, Maine. Dexter most resembles the fictional Derry, the central location in King's 1986 novel "It," as well as a score of the author's other novels. Travelers should take a stroll down Main Street, avoiding, of course, storm drains and standpipes as well as any inconspicuous residents wearing clown costumes.

After Dexter, travelers should make their way north to Flagstaff Lake. That body of water is the closest approximation of the fictional Dark Score Lake, which fans will recognize as the setting of the novel and TV series, "Bag of Bones."

Though Flagstaff Lake doesn’t make an explicit appearance, the rich, natural landscape is sure to evoke, for many readers, the experiences of Trisha McFarland in "The Girl who Loved Tom Gordon." Hopefully you don’t have any confrontations with the God of the Lost or find yourself embroiled in a custody suit, but be sure to appreciate the serene, natural beauty of the lake.

After taking a swim, travelers should go south to Rumford, Maine. Rumford is a close approximation of the fictional town of Chester’s Mill. Chester’s Mill is the setting of both the novel, and popular TV series, "Under the Dome."

Finally, make your way over to Woodstock, Maine. Woodstock closely resembles the fictional town of Castle Rock.

Castle Rock, like Derry, plays a huge role in a number of King's novels--perhaps most notably "Cujo," "The Dead Zone," and "Needful Things." Though we hope you check out the very real giant crank telephone sculpture, we hope that a sudden auto breakdown doesn’t lead to a showdown between you and an execrable St. Bernard!

Consult this map of the entire trip:


Stephen King's Maine | My new trip on!

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