If the internet has taught us anything, it’s that people love reading about the weird and unexplained, real-life horror and the supernatural. But even though we love reading about them, there are a few places on Earth that hit all our “NOPE” buttons, places only the bravest - or craziest - of us would visit.
I’m one of those people :3
Here are five of the freakiest places on Earth.
1.) Isla de las Muñecas - Xochimilco, Mexico City, Mexico
There’s a district of Mexico City, Xochimilco, that’s full of canals, lakes, and islands. One of those islands is very, very creepy - the Island of the Dolls.Did I say “very, very creepy?” I meant, “never going to sleep again creepy.” The island full of nightmare was created by landowner Julian Santana Barrera. But why in the world would he do such a thing? According to the story, Barrera found the body of a dead girl floating in the canal near the island, which is creepy enough. But Barrera decided to ward off evil spirits and bad luck by out-creeping them.
He started collecting dolls and random doll parts and hanging them from the trees in an attempt to scare off ghosts and evil creatures, and, apparently, every single other living thing that might have once visited the island.
After he died in 2001, the island was abandoned, but the dolls remained, slowly decaying and becoming even more terrifying than they were before they started rotting and falling apart.
2.) Aokigahara Forest - Japan
All you need to know about Aokigahara Forest, near the base of Mt. Fuji, is that it’s also known as “Suicide Forest.”
This isn’t a random nickname either - Aokigahara is the second most popular place in the entire world for people to commit suicide (the first being the Golden Gate Bridge). In fact, the suicide rate is so high that officials have placed signs in both Japanese and English urging visitors to reconsider their actions if they are feeling suicidal, and squads sweep the forest once a year to search for bodies.
And while that’s horrifying enough, the truly creepy part is the forest itself, which is eerily silent thanks to the density of the trees and strange absence of wildlife. Hikers have been often known to get lost, even when marking their route with tape.On top of that, many blame the suicides and lost hikers on demons, which locals say haunt the forest, along with the angry spirits of those who were left to die by the ancient and barbaric practice of ubasute, which was practiced in Aokigahara as recently as the 19th century.
3.) Willard Asylum - Willard, New York
So many of its inmates died within its walls that it became a running joke that the only way you left Willard was in a wooden box. And since the inmates were deemed too “insane” to be allowed into society (though sadly, many of their “incurable” mental illnesses were probably things like PTSD and post-partum depression), a great number of them were abandoned by their families, their bodies unceremoniously buried in an unmarked cemetery on the property. According to local legends, many of those inmates never left Willard, even in death, and their insane, restless spirits still haunt the halls - including the overcrowded morgue - today.
4.) The Borley Rectory - Borley, Essex, England
In England, a country full of haunted places, unsettling folklore, and bloody history, one place is known as “the most haunted house in England,” and that’s the Borley Rectory.
The history of the rectory itself is fairly recent, being built in 1892 by Reverend Henry Dawson Ellis Bull, the new rector of the parish. However, the land upon which it was built had a much older, violent history: The rectory was built atop the site of 14th-century Benedictine monastery.The legend goes that one of the monks fell in love with a nun from the nearby convent. When the elders discovered their plans to elope, the monk was executed and the nun walled up alive in the convent, and their spirits have haunted the area ever since.Over the years, the rectory has experienced various paranormal events, such as unexplained fires, multiple accounts of ghost sightings (including a carriage drawn by a headless horseman), lights turning on and off, ghostly footsteps, poltergeist-like phenomena, and more.
5.) Hoia Baciu Forest - Transylvania, Romania
Along with asylums, what writing this list is teaching me is that forests are also full of “HELL no.” If you thought Aokigahara up above was bad, the stories that surround Transylvania’s Hoia Baciu Forest make it look normal by comparison - but what else would you expect of a forest that has Vlad Dracula’s history stamped all over it?
Because Hoia Baciu doesn’t just have a few kinds of creepy, unexplained supernatural phenomena attached to it - it has all of the supernatural phenomena.
People who enter the forest regularly complain of severe headaches, anxiety, sudden nausea, and, in some cases, mysterious burns and scratches appearing on their bodies.
The forest itself is just as strange and unexplained, with sections where trees grow in strange, unnatural shapes, and other areas where the forest is dead and nothing grows or moves at all.But that’s not where the terrifying weirdness stops: Along with the already strange physical reactions and strange trees, the forest is rife is reported UFO sightings, with people often claiming they see lights floating through the trees.
Reports have also been made of visitors to the forest experiencing that hair-on-the-back-of-your-neck-standing-up feeling of being watched by unseen eyes, along with mysterious giggling and crying. But when hikers trace the sound to their location, they find…nothing. Oh, and people regularly vanish, never to be found again.
Scientists claim there’s a logical, scientific explanation for the phenomena, but locals steer clear of the forest, claiming it as an evil, cursed place.