We may live in a big, beautiful world, but it has its fair share of creepy places.
Click start to play today’s Spell It, where we journey to ‘eerie’ destinations around the world.
Here are a few to know, and probably avoid on your next vacation:
1. Veijo Rönkkönen Sculpture Garden, Finland
As one of the most renowned contemporary folk artists in Finland in his lifetime, Rönkkönen was known to be a recluse, who often refused to showcase his art in public. Instead, he built an entire collection of concrete figures in his backyard – about 500 of them – and effectively turned it into a sculpture garden. The biggest display is a group of 200 statues (all supposedly self-portraits) in various yoga poses – a decidedly unsettling feature. But scattered around the garden are a few more bizarre, creepy additions: a woman with a habit or veil, lurking behind some bushes, a cloaked man with long, outstretched arms, and others with sunken eyes and malevolent grins.
2. Aokigahara Forest, Japan
At first glance, it’s a serene woodland at the foot of Mount Fuji. But Aokigahara Forest, also known as ‘Suicide Forest’, has a reputation for its tormented history. In 2010, around 247 people attempted to take their own lives in the forest, and 54 of them were successful. Some think troubled individuals are drawn to the area because of its association with demons in Japanese mythology. Others say the forest, which is dense with trees, easily muffles sound and causes people to get lost and lose their minds when trying to find their way back. There are also clothing and letters scattered around the forest, giving it an extremely chilling vibe.
3. The Great Blue Hole, Belize
The Lighthouse Reef, off the coast of Belize, is known for its beautiful coral and shallow turquoise waters. But go a little further and you’ll find a vertical drop that’s more than 400 feet deep. This is the Great Blue Hole, a circular sinkhole in the middle of the atoll that’s about 1,000-feet wide. The Hole features unique geology, including enormous stalactites and stalagmites that formed during the last glacial period. The further down divers go, the clearer the rock formations become. But rest assured, it’s not for the faint-hearted. After the surrounding limestone shelf disappears at about 40 feet into the vertical cave, it’s a straight dive into the unknown.
4. Capuchin Catacombs, Italy
Forget the catacombs of Salzburg or Paris. Sicily’s Catacombe dei Cappucini have them beat for pure macabre history. The space was created in the late 16th century when the Capuchin monastery ran out of space. Although its exclusive residents were initially supposed to be religious men, once others learned about the natural mummification process that occurred in the space, it became a status symbol for residents to earn a final resting spot there. Today, the subterranean tombs contain around 8,000 bodies, with corpses that are dressed in their finest, and displayed like museum exhibits, in disturbing, lifelike poses.
What do you think of these eerie places around the world? Play today’s Spell It and tell us at email@example.com.