Abandoned cities, islands, towns, you name it - have always interested me. I've always loved to watch Ghost Adventures where the hosts of the show visit deserted and supposedly "haunted" places to try to catch something on TV. What I love more than the actual abandoned places though, is what happened for them to become abandoned.
You may have heard of these abandoned places, but do you know the stories behind them?
On April 26, 1986, disaster struck in Pripyat in what was then the Soviet Union. The Chernobyl nuclear plant station's number 4 reactor exploded after a series of mistakes made by the engineers who were experimenting on the reactor at the time. I had always thought that it was a freak accident, until I dug a little deeper and found that the engineers continued on with the experiment they were conducting, even after seeing the reactor becoming unstable, then panicked and tried to plug all of the control rods back in - causing a massive explosion. Because of both the explosion and the fire, tons and tons of radioactive chemicals were released into the air of Pripyat with an insane amount of radiation levels in the surrounding area. 32 people died that day, and 5,000 people died in the following years from cancer and other sicknesses that came from the radiation-exposure. Chernobyl was officially closed down in the year 2000 and is not suitable for any people or animals to live the area because of the radiation levels. However, there are now tours available to those interested in visiting the abandoned
In the early 1970's, the small town of Saint-Jean-Vianney (in Quebec, Canada) completely crumbled. You may be thinking, how can an entire town crumble in the span of 5 minutes?! Well, mix heavy downpours of rain and Leda Clay, an extremely soft clay, and that will surely happen. The ground fell through and created a hole that was 30 meters high and took the lives of 31 people. The rest of the residents left the town, obviously because it was unsuitable for living and was essentially a massive hole in the ground.
3. Varosha, Cyprus
Varosha, Cyprus was a beach city where many tourists would come to visit and lounge on the beaches. Even celebrities would frequent here because it was such a popular, pretty and fun place to vacation. However, the vacation paradise was soon turned into a "forbidden zone" after Turkey invaded in 1974. Beach umbrellas, hotels, and just about every other building look eerily intact, as the city hasn't been touched since the invasion. The once frequented vacation destination is now off-limits to public, and has a barbed wire fence and armed guards surround the city.
4. Poveglia Island
Poveglia Island, located in Italy, is island not frequented by many - unless you're a thrill seeker of course. You can only access this island by boat, which is more than likely going to cost you a lot of money to find someone to take you there. When the bubonic plague was raging, those with the plague were separated from those who hadn't gotten it yet. Bubonic plague victims were sent to Poveglia Island to be isolated from the rest of the population. Once they had passed away, some of the healthy were sent to burn all of the bodies in mass graves. Then in the 1920's, the island was turned into a massive mental asylum before it was abandoned for good.
5. Centralia, Pennsylvania
When hear about abandoned places or "ghost towns" in the United States, most people jump to the conclusion that it used to be an old mining town that was left due to lack of resources (as most of them are in the U.S.); however, Centralia is an exception. Centralia was a thriving mining town in Pennsylvania that was abandoned because of an underground mine that caught on fire in 1962 and is still burning underground today! The fire is predicted to continue burning for another couple hundred years! The town is mostly abandoned, with the exception of 5 residents who still live in the burning, lonely town.
If you're a scare seeker and want to explore abandoned places, you could start with 3 out of these 5 places that allow for tourists to visit them!