This is one of the few lists that really has a ton of originality compared to other lists I’ve come across. Things you’ve never imagine are on this list, rather than all haunted houses or something, and the one picture is more erie than the next.
From former Nazi bases that you’d never know were Nazi bases, to statutes performing in the oddest of places, to what is frozen just below the surface in Antarctica, this list is sure to keep your imagination going, as well as your sense of humor!
Abandoned places have an undeniably eerie, yet fascinating, appeal. They can take us back to a long forgotten past, or they can offer a creepy insight into what an apocalyptic future might be like.
Take a look at what happens when prison cells, train stations and even whole cities are left to crumble in the face of time. From a long-lost underwater metropolis to a theme park where the fun has long since gone, these are some of the spookiest abandoned places in the world.
20. Gulliver’s Travels Park, Kawaguchi, Japan
In hindsight, an amusement park built beside a notorious “suicide forest” – Aokigahara – was probably never going to pull in the crowds. And the park’s centerpiece didn’t help, either. Japan’s Gulliver’s Travels theme park opened in 1997 but flopped and closed in 2001. Its surreal attractions – including a prostrate 147-foot Gulliver – lay abandoned for six years before being torn down.
19. Communist Party Headquarters, Buzludzha, Bulgaria
There’s something uncannily extraterrestrial about the giant spherical structure that sits atop Bulgaria’s Mount Buzludzha. Having opened its doors in 1981, the building played host to the Bulgarian Communist Party for just eight years until the government’s collapse. And today, while much of the roof has been laid bare, Marx and Lenin still stare down from huge wall mosaics, the crumbling faces of a fallen ideology.
18. Michigan Central Station, Detroit, Michigan
Trains no longer stop at Michigan Central Station. Once the thriving hub of Detroit’s transportation system, the depot closed in 1988, a crumbling monument to the city’s economic decay. Now, punctuated by over a thousand shattered windows, barricaded by barbed wire and defaced by graffiti, the once-stately structure is a haunting relic from a bygone era.
17. Valley of the Mills, Sorrento, Italy
Production has long since ceased at Italy’s abandoned Valley of the Mills. Saw and flour plants operated here for centuries until the 1860s, when the valley’s increasing isolation and oppressive, muggy weather finally drove out the last of the workers. Tourists are still drawn to the area today, though, and in 2011 one explorer plunged to his death while trying to get in.
16. Balaklava Submarine Base, Sevastopol, Ukraine
In 1957 Soviet leader Josef Stalin had a top-secret submarine base carved into a mountainside in the Ukrainian town of Balaklava near Sevastopol, with the work taking several years to finish. The facility was heavily concealed as well as steel-reinforced to withstand a nuclear attack. And while the submarine pens and nuclear chambers now lie empty, in the depths of this silent former Soviet base it is easy to imagine that the Cold War rumbles on.
15. Maunsell Forts, Thames Estuary, U.K.
The Maunsell Forts served as part of the U.K.’s offshore defense against the Nazis, downing 22 enemy aircraft during the Second World War. What’s more, the weather-beaten relics are still standing on their concrete legs today, jutting out as they do of the Thames Estuary. The structures were demilitarized in 1956, were briefly taken over by pirate radio stations in the 1960s and have been abandoned to the elements ever since.
14. Eastern State Penitentiary, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Today Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary hosts what is among America’s creepiest Halloween attractions, but from 1829 until 1971 it was a real-life house of horrors for many. The huge institution championed the idea of penitence through solitary confinement and drove many prisoners crazy. What’s more, it’s said that some of the inmates – who suffered cruel punishments – still haunt the building today.
13. Salto Hotel, Tequendama Falls, Colombia
It wouldn’t look out of place in The Twilight Zone, but when Colombia’s Salto Hotel opened its doors in 1928, affluent guests flocked to its jaw-dropping location overlooking the Tequendama Falls. Heavy pollution of the Bogota River forced the hotel’s closure in the 1990s, but rumors persisted that several guests – possibly including suicides who threw themselves off the nearby precipices – never really checked out.
12. City Hall Subway Stop, New York City, New York
New York’s famous ghost station was once the city’s most spectacular subway stop. When City Hall opened in 1905, its elaborately adorned arches immediately impressed. But the stop’s curved platform ultimately proved too short for the metro system’s newer trains, and it was shut down in 1945. Today the 6 train is the only one that passes through, but even it never stops.
11. Holland Island, Chesapeake Bay, Maryland
By 1914 it had become obvious that the 300-year-old fishing community on Maryland’s Holland Island had built their homes on sinking ground. By 1922 not a single islander remained. The island’s deserted buildings were then ravished by storm and sea until only a single house was standing. In 2010 this lone structure fell to the ocean as well, and eventually Holland Island itself completely disappeared.
10. Orpheum Theatre, New Bedford, Massachusetts
As the Titanic went down on April 15, 1912, the first curtain went up at the new Orpheum Theatre. The venue became hugely popular in downtown New Bedford, Massachusetts, standing proud as a place where revelers could watch movies, dance and shop. But when the theater was sold in 1962, the party moved on and the once-magnificent Orpheum was forgotten.
9. Christ of the Abyss, San Fruttuoso, Italy
This sunken statue, Christ of the Abyss, marks the spot where the famous Italian diver Dario Gonzatti died, just off the shores of San Fruttuoso, Italy. Sculpted from bronze, the underwater tribute was planted in the Mediterranean seabed in 1947, and there it still stands in solitude today, its hands frozen in a timeless grasp in the direction of the water’s surface.
8. Domino Sugar Factory, New York City, New York
The Domino Sugar Factory has been standing abandoned on the Brooklyn skyline for more than a decade. The original 1856 refinery was once the biggest in the world, but when production ceased in 2004, one of America’s sweetest factories began to decay. A syrupy-smelling rot spread inside, and
7. Pripyat, Ukraine
In 1986 Pripyat’s 50,000 inhabitants were evacuated following the catastrophic explosion at the close-by Chernobyl nuclear power plant. For almost 30 years the Ukrainian city has undergone a slow, quiet decay. Treasured belongings left behind in the panic have been consumed by rot, while the crumbling classrooms and houses have been invaded by overgrown vegetation.
6. Six Flags, New Orleans, Louisiana
After Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans in 2005, the rides at the city’s Six Flags theme park came to a grinding halt, never to run again. The park lay engulfed by water for a month, and since operator Six Flags disowned the attraction, it has remained eerily vacant, even with the floodwaters having long since receded.
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