The Scariest Places to Visit on Earth
The world is full of incredible travel destinations, with some places receiving millions of tourists every year. But if you are looking for a completely different experience, and are feeling brave, there are some really terrifying places to go.
From nuclear disaster sites, to VooDoo markets, these places will chill you to the bones.
Check out our list of the most terrifying and spookiest travel destinations in the world.
1. Pripyat, Ukraine
You might be wondering where is Pripyat and why is it on our list? Pripyat is a ghost city in northern Ukraine located close to the border with Belarus. The city was established in 1970 and was build to provide housing to workers art the nearby Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. At its peak, 50,000 people were living in Pripyat but it was evacuated after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
Ukraine's government recently announced that Pripyat will become an official tourist attraction because in recent years thousands of tourists every year have started flocking here especially due to the popularity of HBO's television show, Chernobyl.
If you are interested in a Chernobyl Tour, and are not afraid of the levels of radiation, Pripyat is the place to go. The city has remained uninhabited but you can see how Pripyat looked when it was abandoned, there are decaying books, cribs, dolls, houses and play parks. This is one of the most eerie and spookiest places to visit in the world.
2. Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, West Virginia, USA
The Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum first opened in 1864 and built to help 250 alcoholics, drug addicts, epileptics and non-educable mental defectives. By the 1950's over 2,000 people were housed here in overcrowded conditions.
In 1949, The Charleston Gazette did an investigation and found some horrible findings including people being tortured, locked in cages and having to endure lobotomies, cold-water baths, and shock therapy.
By 1994 Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum closed down and is rumored ghosts have haunted the premises ever since.
This is now one of the most haunted places to visit in the United States and every October, you can book ghost tours and also attend the annual Asylum Ball, if you feel brave enough.
3. Nagoro, Japan
Nagoro or Nagoru, is a small town in the Iya Valley of Japan known as Nagoro Doll Village. But what makes this town scary? Well, it is home to 30 people and over 400 dolls! One local resident, Tsukimi Ayano, makes dolls in memory of residents who have died. The dolls resemble the deceased people and even use their clothes. The dolls are also located all around the town including schools, on streets and at bus stops.
4. Killing Fields, Cambodia
Cambodia is a really beautiful small country located in south-east Asia. This country is one of the most popular places to visit in Asia due to the incredible temples of Angkor Wat in Siem Riep but there is also a dark side to the country.
Located close to Phnom Penh, is The Killing Fields, a place where more than a million people were killed and buried by the Khmer Rouge regime during its rule of the country from 1975 to 1979.
The Killing Fields are open to tourists and it really is a shocking experience, to walk around fields filled with bones and human body parts. This is one of the most unnerving destinations on our list, and a stark reminder of brutal human history.
- Multiple Destinations
- 3 weeks - 4 weeks / From: £ 2500
- 1 week - 2 weeks / From: £ 750
- 2 weeks - 3 weeks / From: £ 3000+
5. Death Road, Bolivia
North Yungas Road is a cycle route about 60 km long which connects the city of La Paz and the Yungas region of Bolivia.
North Yungas Road is also known as 'Death Road', due to due to its notoriously high death rate. The road was built in the 1930s by Paraguayan prisoners during the Chaco War and has become a popular tourist destination with thousands of people joining bike tours here every year.
Many local and international travel operators offer Bolivia tours including downhill mountain biking trips on Death Road. This is really only for experienced riders and those with a taste for adventure. Be sure to buy travel insurance before embarking on this trip!
6. Darvaza Gas Crater, Turkmenistan
If you fancy going off the beaten track, Turkmenistan, located in Central Asia, has one of the most unusual scary locations on our list. Found deep in the desert, you can find a crater that attracts thousands of visitors each year. What makes this scary is, the crater has been burning non-stop since the early 1970's! Be sure to take pictures from a distance.
7. St. Louis Cemetery Number 1, New Orleans, USA
St. Louis Cemetery Number 1 is one of the most haunted cemeteries in the United States and is home to around 100,000 dead past residents. This cemetery is known as “Cities of the Dead” and looks more like a horror movie set with its huge above-ground graves and candles, flowers, beads, trinkets, Voodoo dolls, and food that curious tourists and visitors leave.
One of the most popular graves is that of Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau, who was a Creole hairdresser and priestess who died in 1881. If you feel brave, you can mark three X's on her grave and hope she grants you a wish.
Guided tours can be arranged here.
8. Island of the Dolls, Xochimilco, Mexico
The Unesco World Heritage Site, Island of the Dolls, also known as, Isla de las Munecas, is a small hidden away island located south of Mexico City in the Xochimilco channels.
This island is home to hundreds of dolls and doll parts and feels very creepy. The dolls were placed around the island by a now-deceased resident named Julian Santa Barrera, who got haunted when he found the body of a dead girl in a nearby canal.
He decided to start collecting toys and dolls and displaying them here with a view to keep away evil spirits. Some people have said the dolls eyes move due to being possessed by the spirit of the dead girl.
You can hire your own boat, pay a local driver to take you to see this spooky island or book a tour of Mexico with this region in the itinerary.
- Multiple Destinations
- 3 weeks - 4 weeks / From: £ 1750
- United States
- 1 week - 1 week / From: £ 1500
- Multiple Destinations
- 2 months - 2 months / From: £ 1250
9. El Caminito del Rey, Málaga, Spain
Got a fear of heights? Look away now. El Caminito del Rey was built in the early 1900s for workers travelling through Andalucia and is a route with huge steep drops 100m above cliff drops and rivers.
For decades El Caminito del Rey was falling into disrepair and literally crumbling making walking here almost impossible. But in 2015, it re-opened to the public with safer new walkways and paths
This route is known as Spain's most dangerous path, and isn't for the feint hearted. The drops alone are frightening and the average trip here takes 3 hours.
10. Snake Island, São Paulo, Brazil
Ilha de Queimada Grande (also known as Snake Island) is one of the deadliest places on earth, located about 90 miles off the coast of São Paulo.
This tiny island is home to over 4000 Golden Lancehead Vipers, one of the deadliest snakes in the world. There are an estimated one to five snakes per square meter and their venom is estimated to be five times stronger than snakes on the mainland of South America.
Humans are banned from visiting Snake Island unless given special clearance, it's best to stay away!
11. The Great Blue Hole, Belize
The Great Blue Hole is probably like nowhere you have ever seen before, it looks very scary! Located off the coast of the tiny country of Belize, there is a 1,000 foot wide coral reef is stunning with colourful coral and deep turquoise waters, but in the middle there is a huge vertical drop that's estimated to be more than 400 feet deep. Thousands of tour boats and divers flock to this destination every year, some free divers even attempt to dive straight down the Great Blue Hole.
12. Aokigahara Forest, Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan
Mount Fuji is one of the most popular places to go in Japan, and the scenery around it is breathtaking. But the forest surrounding Mount Fuji hides a very sad history and is known locally as “Suicide Forest”. This is the second most popular place for suicides in the world with sometimes hundreds of people attempting to commit suicide here every year.
There is no specific reason why so many people choose this destination to take their own lives, some believe Japanese mythology whilst others consider the landscape makes it easy for people to get lost. Just walking here are seeing random pieces of clothing, and the fear of actually seeing a dead body can be chilling.
- Multiple Destinations
- 6 months - 1 year / From: £ 3000+
- 2 weeks - 2 weeks / From: £ 3000+
- Multiple Destinations
- 2 months - 3 months / From: £ 1250
13. Catacombs, Paris, France
The Catacombs of Paris are underground ossuaries which will chill you to your bones. There are said to be the remains of over six million people in a small part of a tunnel network built to consolidate Paris' ancient stone quarries. This really is an experience if you are looking for non-touristy things to do in Paris.
Other catacombs to consider checking out in Europe include in Salzburg and Capuchin in Palermo, Italy.
14. Sedlec Ossuary, Kutná Hora, Czech Republic
Sedlec Ossuary is a spooky church made of human bones located in Czech Republic. There are around 50,000 human skeletons in this monastery, which dates back to the 1870's. The bones and bodies are carefully displayed all around the building - it is very eerie.
15. Akodessewa Fetish Market, Lomé, Togo
Togo is country steeping in voodoo beliefs and Akodessewa Fetish Market is the largest voodoo market in the world. Do not visit here is you are easily spooked. There are lots of bones from animals here (and possibly humans), which locals believe help cure illness and disease. This is probably unlike any other market you have visited in the world.
Do you think you are brave enough to visit these places? Or do you have any recommendations for places we have missed off our list? Let us know in the comments section below.