Researching then writing about 10 of the scariest places in the world is not something I’d recommend for an evening activity. I’ve had my fair share of scares for the season, and I don’t plan on visiting a single haunted house or Halloween event!
Scary locations, spooky houses, and historical sites seem to be everywhere, but there are a handful that stand out more than others. All of the stories behind each one of the places I’ve highlighted here are haunting, chilling, and, sometimes, downright terrifying. They are not myths, nor are they the result of legends. Each one has a true story, some of which are almost unbelievable. I’ve included a basic synopsis of each spooky destination, but be sure to click on the links for more information as many of them go further in depth.
I would love to hear if any of you have ever visited these spooky spots, and if you did, what your experience was like! I’m not sure I’d have the nerve …
Scariest Places In The World 1 of 10
Click through for 10 of the spookiest and most terrifying locations in the world and visit them — if you dare!
The Island Of Dolls a.k.a. "La Isla De La Menucas" 2 of 10
If you visit Xochimico, just south of Mexico City, you'll find Isla de las Munecas a.k.a. "The Island of the Dolls." Don Julian Santana Barrera once found a little girl in the river who had drowned, and awhile after her death he found a floating doll in the river. To honor her, he hung the doll in the tree, and over the years he found more dolls, convincing him that each one held the spirit of a dead little girl.
Hundreds of headless, tattered and torn dolls now hang in the trees, and Julian has since passed on. He was found dead in the same spot that he once found that little girl long ago.
The Sedlec Ossuary 3 of 10
I've never heard of or seen anything quite like this. The Sedlec Ossuary, also known as the Church of the Bones, holds the bones of more than 40,000 human skeletons, and they've all been artistically placed inside this small chapel. It's haunting, gruesome, and just plain odd.
It all started back in 1278 when the abbot of the church brought back a container of "Holy Soil" from Jerusalem and scattered it around the church. People wanted to be buried near this soil and brought their dead family members to be buried. The basement was used as an ossuary until 1870, when a woodcarver decided to organize them artistically inside the church.
Catacombs of Paris 4 of 10
While we're on the topic of bones, I couldn't leave out the Catacombs in Paris, an underground ossuary in Paris that holds the remains of about 7 million people. Part of the city's efforts to store human remains from its overcrowded cemeteries, the tunnels run for more than 150 miles below ground, but only 1 mile is open to the public.
Photo credit: Djtox
Abandoned Takakanonuma Amusement Park 5 of 10
The spookiest thing about Takakanonuma Greenland is the sheer mystery that surrounds it. Built in 1973, this park was only open for two years, closed and then reopened in 1986 to only close again in 1999. Instead of dissembling everything, they abandoned the grounds, which have since been covered with vegetation. It's eerie and ghostly to see an amusement park just abandoned like that. Rumor has it there were several deaths during its first run, so perhaps the ghosts still linger in the park.
Image: Kotarou Shibakoen
Pripyat, Ukraine 6 of 10
Pripyat is a result of my worst nightmare. This used to be a cute little town of 49,000 that was destroyed after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster hit in 1986. The residents abandoned everything in terror, and now it has become a spooky ghost town where you'll find decaying vehicles, go-karts, weathered dolls, and everything in between. Imagine a town where everyone disappeared without bringing anything with them, never to return. *Shudder*
Photo credit: thedakotakid
Body Farm in Knoxville, Tennessee 7 of 10
Located behind the University of Tennessee is what they call the "Body Farm." This is where decomposing human remains are studied for forensic science and other purposes. More than 100 bodies are donated to the facility every year, and then they are left there to rot and decompose. The really scary part? 1,300 people pre-register themselves before they die!
Photo credit: Anil1956
Aokigahara Suicide Forest 8 of 10
This forest is filled with signs that display uplifting and encouraging messages in Japanese saying things like "Life is a precious thing! Please reconsider!" Why? Some people think the reason for all the deaths are due to the 1960 novel by Seicho Matsumoto where he describes the forest as the "perfect place to die." In the book, a couple commits suicide in this forest.
Over 500 people have committed suicide in this forest since 1950. This is the place people go to kill themselves.
Photo credit: ajari
Tuol Sleng, Cambodia 9 of 10
The famous Security Prison 21 (S-21), turned museum is located in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. Plenty of torture went on in this building with 20,000 killed. The classrooms were converted into torture chambers and tiny prison cells, while all of the windows were covered in barbed wire and iron bars to prevent prisoners from escaping.
I will spare you the gruesome details about this place because frankly, it's just too much and too horrible to repeat. If you're interested in the history and want to learn more, you can visit the Documentation Center of Cambodia and this documentation about the state violence in democratic Kampuchea.
If you visit today, the museum's walls are lined with photos of some of the victims, cabinets are filled with human skulls and photos of some of the tortured prisoners are also available to the public. Some people believe that the spirits of the victims now haunt Tuol Sleng.
Photo credit: Christian Haugen/Flickr
Stanley Hotel, Colorado, USA 10 of 10
Stephen King stayed at The Stanley Hotel when he wrote The Shining. He most likely chose the hotel as it has been haunted for years. Parts of the movie The Shining were filmed here, and the TV show Ghost Hunters investigated the hotel and all sorts of uncanny incidents occurred during the taping.
Check out their rates, read up on their history, and stay if you dare!
Photo credit: lojjic/Flickr
Find more of Nadia’s writing on her site Child Mode. You can also find her on Disney Baby and Hip Baby. Love social media? So does she! Follow her daily on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest.
MORE ON BABBLE
25 biggest (and most expensive) houses in the world
40 amazing natural wonder of the world you MUST see
25 wild and wacky hotel rooms you have to see to believe
The 25 most awkward travel photos…EVER
The 20 most incredible water slides in the world