The world can be a scary place. As Halloween is just around the corner, how about I remind you of the most terrifying and the creepiest places that our planet has to offer?
When you think of tiny villages, you would probably like to think that it would feel pretty homey and comfortable. Not in the Japanese village of Nagoro. Most of its population consists of life-sized dolls that heavily outweigh the population of human citizens. These dolls are the work of Tsukimi Ayano. She began making replicas of neighbors when they moved or passed away. They can be spotted in various positions across town: fishing, students filling the classrooms, and elderly couples sitting on benches or seats outside of the buildings. The youngest human resident is over the age of 50. There are about 27 humans compared to 350 doll doppelgangers that reside here.
Hill of Crosses in Lithuania
There lies a hill in northern Lithuania where people have placed countless crosses since the 14th century. In the medieval period, the crosses placed would represent the want and desire for Lithuanian independence. But after an uprising in 1831 by the peasants, the hill represented remembrance for the dead-those who rebelled. The Soviets bulldozed the hill three times between 1944 and 1991 but it would keep being rebuilt by the locals. With more than a hundred thousand crosses on the hill, it might be a place that’s quite peaceful, for it is mostly silent. But as the crosses sway and crash against each other in the wind, others may think of it as being something rather eerie as it almost resembles a crowded cemetery of sorts…
What now seems like a decaying ghost town was once a booming mining town from the 1800s to the 1960s. But in 1962, a mine somehow caught fire and spread below the town via the connecting tunnels. The citizens weren’t that concerned at first, until years later when the owner of a gas station reported unusually high gas temperatures in his underground tanks and a young boy nearly fell into a sinkhole (150 feet deep) that appeared in his backyard. It was then that the residents began to see just how dire the situation was and could become as they migrated away from the town. Now only seven residents remain in the entire town as of 2014. If you ever find yourself upon Centralia, you’ll encounter crumbling buildings and sidewalks as well as smoke that pours from cracks in the earth, for the fire is still raging and is estimated to remain for another 250 years…at least.
This is likely the most creepy abandoned place in the world, for after the infamous Chernobyl disaster, it is exactly as its former residents left it. It was established in 1970 and had a population of over 50,000 until the event in 1986. It’s remained vacant and uninhabited since, and will likely remain that way for years to come. Books are withered in the classrooms, dolls are decaying in abandoned cribs, and pictures remain in their frames. The most chilling reminder that there was, in fact, a prosperous town is the Ferris wheel – empty and rusted. For more information on the Chernobyl disaster, tap HERE.
The Hanging Coffins – Sagada, Phillippines
When you think of a cemetery or a graveyard, you’ll likely picture something that you can approach with your feet and is on the ground. But in this case, to visit the deceased, you look up. You’ll see coffins that look anything but similar: those who reside in these coffins once made their coffins themselves before their deaths. This tradition goes back thousands of years: you make your coffin, die, then get lifted up on a cliff to rest near your ancestors. Many of these coffins are hundreds of years old, each designed to be special and unique.
Capuchin Catacombs in Palermo, Italy
The word catacombs is already enough to send a chill down my spine. But of all of the different catacombs in the world, this one is by far the most unnerving. It was created in the 16th century when the cemetery at the Capuchin monastery became crowded. Religious men were the only ones originally to be accepted to rest here but it became a status symbol for citizens when they learned of the mummification process that occurred there, so many tried to reserve a spot (wearing their best outfit). The underground resting place now contains around eight thousand bodies, divided into different areas: one for the religious, one for children, one for professional men, and one for those who died a virgin. They stand upright like posts, heads bowing. Want to go on a trip now?
The Island of the Dolls
Xochimilco in Mexico is most primarily known to be home of the terrifying island of the dolls. Hundreds of dolls (and doll parts) are scattered along the island. It used to be the home of late Julian Satana Barrera, who found a young girl’s body in the nearby canal. After he became haunted by her, he started hanging dolls around the area to appease her spirit as well as ward off evil spirits. More legend and lore surround the island and the current hauntings, read about it all HERE.
The Door to Hell
We were once lead to believe that the entryway to hell was in Sunnydale, California but in actuality, it’s thought to be a fiery crater in Derweze, Turkmenistan, named the “Door to Hell” by locals. It’s 230-feet-wide and will not stop flaming and burning. This is because, in 1971, Soviet scientists began drilling for oil and struck a methane reserve on accident, releasing dangerous gas into the air and forming a crater in the ground. It’s has burned ever since for the past 40-plus years and will likely continue for years to come.
Sedlec Ossuary in the Czech Republic
Below the Cemetery Church of All Saints in the Czech Republic, resides a small chapel called the Sedlec Ossuary. When holy soil from Jerusalem was scattered along the church’s cemetery in the early 1300s, it was deemed a sacred place that everyone wished to be buried at. But when overcrowding became an issue, older human remains were dug up to make way for the newly deceased, albeit they wanted to put the older bones to unique use. A local woodcarver was given the task to arrange a collection of over 40,000 human remains in a visually appealing way. He delivered on his mission with structures including a family crest and made several bones into streamers that hang from the ceiling. The most admired piece of work is the chandelier made from every bone in the human body that hangs from the ceiling as well. If you’re into the macabre, consider checking this place out!
Haw Par Villa in Singapore
When you think of a theme park, then places like Disneyland might cross your mind. But in Singapore, resides an 82-year-old theme park that is sure to creep you out in some way, whether it’s the assortment of over a thousand odd statues (like a human head on a crab’s body) or whether it’s the main feature – the Ten Courts of Hell. It’s intended to teach young children about punishments and mortality that coincide with certain sins. For example, you’ll find a diorama of people getting cut in half with a giant saw for the crime of misusing books, and one about dismemberment that awaits when you cheat on exams.
Aokigahara in Japan
At the bottom of Mount Fuji in Japan, lies a forest that’s infamous for something dark-the suicides as it’s often referred to as Suicide Forest. 247 people had attempted it here, 54 succeeding in 2010 alone. Many blame this phenomenon on the association the forest has with demons in Japanese mythology. Others say it occurs because of how easy it is to find yourself lost in the forest, due to the density of the trees. Those who hike and venture in the forest often use tape or some time of way to mark their trail to prevent such things from happening. Because of the dark history and reported paranormal activity (which you can read about HERE), it’s no wonder as to why it may send a chill down your spine.
Have you ever been or wish to travel to these locations? Let me know! Also, if you enjoyed this spooky post, SUBSCRIBE to keep up with weekly paranormal posts every Monday!
Disclaimer: The information above is a combination of prior knowledge and research. No works were plagiarized, only referenced as a source of information. While anyone is welcome to comment, I attempt to make this a positive and friendly community where we can share our experiences. Any derogatory or negative comment(s) will be deleted. As always, reader discretion is advised.