Most people go on holiday to find the nicer things in life. They hit up the beaches of Thailand, the slopes of Everest, that kind of thing. Other people, on the other hand, prefer their trips to come with a little slice of the creepy. There are places all over the world that can work with your imagination to make your skin crawl. If you’re one of those folks then we have a treat in store for you – the 18 creepiest places on earth for your delectation. Enjoy planning your trip and try to hold on to your heart rate.
#18 “Doorway To Hell” – Turkmenistan
The “Doorway to Hell” is in the ex-Soviet republic of Turkmenistan; it’s not an easy place to get to. It consists of a natural gas field that’s been burning for more than 40 years and there’s no sign of it stopping anytime soon. It’s the closest you can get to hell on earth.
#17 Pripyat, Ukraine
If you can’t go to Pripyat you can always play the computer game in the Stalker series which offers a guided tour of the creepy environs. It’s the town that was evacuated when the Chernobyl nuclear plant went into meltdown; so don’t stay too long or the visit might be fatal.
#16 Capela Dos Ossos, Portugal
In Evora, Portugal you can see the “Capela dos Ossos” or “the Chapel of Bones”. When the local graveyard ran out of space, so the story goes, the monk in charge of the place decided to use the old bones of monks as decoration. There are also two whole bodies dangling from the ceiling to add a little extra yuck to the occasion.
#15 The Catacombs Of Paris
A long way below the Eifel tower are the catacombs of Paris. A network of tunnels which is over 200 miles long and which contains umm… 6 million corpses. Parts of it are open as an official grisly museum but most of it is off limits. Though it doesn’t stop people from breaking the law and going anyway.
#14 The Forest Of Suicides, Japan
The Aokigahara Forest in Japan is quite a beautiful place but there’s a good reason to find it creepy. In the last 6 decades, more than 100 people have killed themselves in the forest – each year. That’s more than 6,000 suicides. Nobody knows why it’s such a popular place for self-inflicted death and nobody knows how to make it stop.
#13 Ilha De Queimada Grande, Brazil
Ilha de Queimada Grande is better known in English as “snake island”. It is home to the Brazilian snake “the Golden Lancehead Viper” and more than 4,000 of them can be found on the island. It takes serious courage to visit the tiny body of land and it’s only scientists that usually do.
#12 House Of The Bulgarian Communist Party
When the wall came down; the monuments of the communist era were swiftly deserted. The house of the Bulgarian Communist Party is found in the Balkan Mountains and it’s wonderfully eerie. It resembles what you might think a crashed UFO would be like. The graffiti adorning the outside is less impressive, though.
#11 Alnwick Garden, England
Much of Alnwick Garden is beautiful and a great place to share with all the family. But tucked away in a small section of the garden lays “the Poison Garden” where every plant is capable of killing you. It’s an education and research center but the poison garden is open to the public.
#10 Cambridge Military Hospital, England
Cambridge Military Hospital was where the soldiers and civilians of the United Kingdom were treated for nearly 100 years until the asbestos in the walls caused its closure. Today it is unused and in a state of disrepair with the souls of the dead said to haunt the corridors within.
#9 Jacob’s Well, Texas
What could be nicer than a natural spring where you can have a quick dip and perhaps explore the cave network beneath? Unfortunately, that’s not the only story to Jacob’s Well which has dragged at least 8 people to their deaths while dipping beneath the cold, dark surface.
#8 Kryzi Kalnas, Lithuania
Lithuanians are Catholic and when a soul passes on they plant a cross on the “Hill of Crosses” to remember them by. Sadly, when they were under Soviet rule they had a lot of crosses to plant and there are now over 100,000 crosses on the site – truly creepy.
#7 Akodessewa Market, Togo
The first African entry on our list is there because of the peculiar requirements of the local religion. They use monkey heads in their rituals, lots of monkey heads. The local market serves this need and you’ll never see more decapitations anywhere else on earth; animal lovers should skip this one.
#6 Plague Island, Italy
The island of Poveglia was used for the unhappy purpose of quarantining victims of the Black Death during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. There are mass graves all over the island. It was also home to a mental hospital in which the doctors carried out ugly experiments on the mentally ill.
#5 Sanctuary Of Tophet, Tunisia
The Sanctuary of Tophet may be one of the evilest places in history. In the days of yore when the Tunisian people fell on hard times; they would offer sacrifices to the ancient gods. Child sacrifices that is. Thousands of children met their grisly ends at Tophet’s “sanctuary.” If you thought this was creepy, just wait until you see this nightmare found in Pennsylvania…
#4 Centralia, Pennsylvania
You won’t be visiting Centralia because the whole place is under quarantine. In the early 1980s, a fire broke out in the underground mine beneath the town. It released toxic gasses which are still spewing forth today; bizarrely 10 of the town’s inhabitants elected to stay and be put under permanent quarantine.
#3 West Virginia State Penitentiary
The United States is one of the few countries on earth to still employ the death penalty; it is in the august company of nations like Iran, Saudi Arabia, and China in doing so. More than 100 executions were carried out at the West Virginia State Penitentiary before it was closed down. Who wouldn’t want to visit now?
#2 San Zhi Resort, Taiwan
The San Zhi Resort was intended to be a beautiful, calm place of relaxation and escape from the cities of Taiwan. Instead, during the construction, there was an endless series of suicides and bad accidents. The workers refused to carry on with the project and its abandoned and discomforting today.
#1 Sagada, The Philippines
While the majority of Filipinos are Catholic, there are ethnic minorities in the Philippines with rather more unusual religious practices. Near Sagada, tradition has it that the coffins of the dead are mounted on the face of the cliffs in order to bring their souls closer to heaven. It’s a truly disturbing sight.
There you have it. The creepiest places on earth. There are, of course, other places which could be part of this list such as the genocide museums of Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland and Tuol Sleng and the Killing Fields of Cambodia but that wouldn’t be respectful; those places are for ensuring that we never forget that mankind is capable of far worse than it seems when taken at face value.
These places, on the other hand, are curiosities that speak to the morbid fascinations that lurk within so many men and women. You’re free to visit nearly all of them; we’re just not sure that you’ll want to.