The Most Famous Ghost Towns in The World You Won’t Believe Still Exist Today
All around the world, there are abandoned ghost towns that were abandoned for some reason or the other. While some are popular haunts for tourists who dare visit them, others are creepy and desolate where even local authorities do not allow visitors after dark. What makes such places popular? Perhaps it is the adventurous and creepy element that is appealing to some people, others love the history while some just simply get a kick. Without further ado, here are 17 ghost towns around the world that are worth visiting if you dare.
1 Humberstone and Santa Laura, Atacama Desert, Chile
These two company towns in Northern Chile were abandoned in 1958. There were several saltpeter mines in the area which housed elegant buildings. Today they have been abandoned and are entirely ghost towns with buildings that have been well preserved complete with swimming pool, chairs, houses and grocery shops bit no people. You can reach there from the town of Pozo Almonte.
2Bhangarh, Rajasthan, India
Bhangarh is a fortress town in Rajasthan in Northwest India. It is extremely famous and popular among ghost hunters, where visiting the area after dark is prohibited. It is widely regarded as one of India’s most haunted locations. The town was deserted after the Indian famine of 1783 and since then is said to be heavily haunted. However, the area is historically rich with crumbling forts, temples, and even a bazaar. You can get to Bhangarh from Jaipur.
3Belchite, Zaragoza province, Spain
Belchite was the site of a famous battle during the height of the Spanish Civil War. Attacked by the republican army, the siege of the town destroyed it completely and today, its ruins stand as a ghostly memory to the violent event.
Bodie in California is also considered a haunted ghost town that was once a bustling gold mining town in 1879 with 8,500 residents. By 1889 depletion of the mines and violence led to the population slowly abandoning Bodie. Today around 150 buildings still remain there.
5Kayaköy, Anatolia, Turkey
After the war between Greece and Turkey ended in 1923, almost a million Greeks were made to leave. Kayako in Anatolia, Turkey was home to 2000 people which were ultimately abandoned. The ruins of the village still stand today along with two well preserved Greek Orthodox churches.
6St. Elmo, Colorado
St Elmo was a thriving mining town like Bodie in California. It was also a trading post but when the railroad shut down in 1922, St Elmo was abandoned. Its buildings, houses, and even a church were left intact and some even had the belongings of its residents.
This ghost town that once existed on a hillside was established in the 8th century. Due to natural disasters, it was ultimately abandoned. By 1963, most of its inhabitants evacuated after a severe landslide. Flood in 1972 further deteriorated the conditions of the town while an earthquake in 1980 cemented its fate. The only thing that was unscathed was the statue of the Virgin Mary. Although the area is a time bomb, still people hold religious festivals there. The town also served as a set for Mel Gibson’s Passion of Christ.
Priyapat in Northern Ukraine is the world’s most famous ghost town as it was the site that suffered the onslaught of the Chernobyl disaster in 1986. 50,000 people were made to evacuate the city when the Nuclear Station exploded. The radiation levels have dropped considerably and people can visit there for a tour.
This was also one of California’s famous mining towns that existed in 1881.The town was home to 500 silver mines and 3000 residents. After the depletion of the mines, the town was still inhabited till 1986. People somehow abandoned it leaving hotels, stores, bars and restaurants still intact. It has since then been purchased by Walter Knott and restored to a historic landmark. Considered a haunted town, Calico takes on an eerie hue after dark.
10Hashima Island, Japan
Hashima Island was at one time a bustling huge coal mining city that was established in 1881. The island was home to 5000 residents but in 1974 it was abandoned once the mines ran dry. Today it is totally abandoned and just a tourist spot.
Garnet in Montana was a mining town that existed in the early 19th century and was home to about 1000 people. It is Montana’s most famous ghost town that is well preserved and can be explored for a fee.
Kennecott in Alaska was a thriving mill town that produced a huge amount of copper in the early twenties and thirties amounting to millions of dollars. Ultimate the supply reduced and people started leaving in masses. BY 1950 it was totally deserted and is now a historic landmark.
13Ross Island, India
Ross Island has some incredible old building and monuments but is now totally covered in vegetation. It was once a governing center of British India set up in 1857 where the town was hosted to the finest ballrooms, bakeries, pools and gardens. It was referred to as the Paris of the east. An earthquake and the Japanese invasion led to it becoming a deserted city. It is now an Indian naval base.
Among Ghost towns, Fordlandia in Brazil was once known as Henry Ford’s village but it is now his wasteland. The town was once home to 10,000 residents and was an area that produced cultivated rubber for the Ford Industry. The area was leased to the Ford Company by the Brazilian government. However, unhappy workers and the fact that the town was returned to the government resulted in many abandoning it. Only 90 people lived in the town till 2000. Several houses were given to workers and since 2017; the population has increased to 2000 people.
Agdam Azerbaijan was once home to 40,000 people. But, since the war with Armenia, the entire population fled overnight and the city was abandoned. What destroyed it further were vandals and looters who left the city in total ruins.
This was a thriving town in France until the Second World War. June 10th 1944 was a black day for the town when the Panzer Divison of the Waffen SS bombarded the entire village destroying it totally. The attack was in revenge against the killing of a SS officer by the French resistance. 642 villagers died that day. Today the village is among the ghost towns of France.
17Virginia City, Montana, U.S.
This was also one of America’s famous mining towns that began in 1863. It had a whopping 10,000 residents but now is totally deserted for obvious reasons. The town still has well-preserved buildings, opera houses and stores. Today it is one of the nation’s landmarks.
Among ghost towns of the world, Kolmanskop in Namibia is quite famous. It was a German mining settlement in the Namibian Desert. It was ultimately abandoned to the elements where houses and buildings stand deserted and full of sand. It is still a popular tourist site and even has a museum established in 1980.
19Villa Epecuén — Buenos Aires Province, Argentina
Villa Epecuen was a famous tourist village in Buenos Aires, Argentina which was badly flooded in 1985. It was subsequently abandoned and is now in ruins. Once waters receded, ruins were visible on the eastern shore of the Laguna Epecuen which is about 7 km from the city of Carhue.
Goldfield in Arizona was swarming with miners in late 1800. The god dried up by 1898 and the area was son abandoned. In 1921 it was renamed Youngesberg but was again abandoned in 1926. Today, Goldfield remains one of the many spooky ghost towns of America.