Top 10 most incredible caves, dungeons and dungeons in the world
Discover a bizarre underground world you didn’t even know existed. Surprise your friends, family and yourself: take a trip to one of these places – caves, dungeons, dungeons – and it will shake you to your core. It’s better to see once than hear a hundred times. So watch…
1. The Catacombs of Paris, France
At the end of the 18th century, the medieval cemeteries in the center of Paris were so overcrowded that the city authorities were forced to create an underground cemetery for mass reburials. For 18 months, beginning in 1785, the bones and rotting bodies of six million people were transported at night to their new resting place. The place where the remains of the dead are stacked is known as the “Kingdom of Death” and is a network of underground galleries 322 kilometers long. Millions of bones are stored here, and even the small part of the cemetery accessible to visitors is capable of shocking surroundings.
The human bones, including countless skulls, form many configurations: crosses, faces, ornaments, or simply piled up in a pile. It is not for the faint of heart!
2. Coober Pedy, South Australia
Kuber Pedi is one of the most unusual places in the world. It’s a city where 80% of the population lives and works underground because of the very high temperatures. Coober Pedy is also a mining town (opal is mined here) and since the discovery of deposits in 1915, many miners flooded the city in search of a living. Pits and tunnels are everywhere, and opal mining continues to this day. All of the underground institutions operate much like their above-ground counterparts. Among them are a church, stores, a pottery, an art gallery, and others. The most unusual must be the golf course without a single blade of grass. Farway is completely devoid of vegetation and only sprinkled with sand.
3. Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
To get to the entrance of the enormous Batu Caves, you have to climb 270 steps carved right into the rock, and that takes a lot of effort in this heat. But despite all these difficulties, more than a million enthusiasts make the trek in January each year to see the spectacular Hindu festival of Thaipusam.
It is a colorful celebration in honor of Subramaniam, the Hindu god of youth, strength and chastity, as well as a real test of the nervous system. From the outside, adults whose bodies are riddled with steel hooks hooked right into their skin look strange and even frightening. But this is just one of the ways in which penitent sinners demonstrate their worship of the god Subramaniam. It is generally believed that when they are in a trance state they feel no pain. Well, let us believe it, for millions of people cannot be mistaken.
4. Radon Health Mine, Montana, USA
Originally, since 1924, the radon mine had been used to mine silver and lead ore. In 1949, radiation was discovered in the abandoned mine, but an investment company representative who visited the mine was suddenly cured of a long-standing illness. Word spread, and soon the mine opened a radon therapy center. Low-dose radiation therapy helps cure a large number of illnesses, not only in people, but even in animals. You can bring a pillow and blanket, in case you want to take a nap.
5. Wieliczka Salt Mine, Krakow, Poland
The Wieliczka Salt Mine is a World Heritage Site and a famous landmark. It is truly an amazing sight, as there is no counterpart in the world. Mining began in the Middle Ages and for hundreds of years miners have created exquisite underground halls and intricate sculptures of salt deposits from the Miocene era. Here you can see a huge underground cathedral carved entirely out of salt, including the floor, walls, and all the decorations. Even the lamps are made of salt crystals.
The Wieliczka Salt Mine has always been popular since the 14th century, when only the select few could visit. Nowadays, millions of tourists flock here every year to see the labyrinth of underground halls and galleries made of salt.
6. Capuchin Catacombs, Sicily, Italy
There are many places in the world where you can see mummified bodies, if you wanted to. But the Capuchin Catacombs are, without a doubt, the scariest of them all. The Catacombs are often called (and not unreasonably) the Museum of Death, as more than 8,000 mummies, whose graves stretch along the walls, have been buried there since the 16th century. It’s creepy, gloomy, and dreary. The strangest thing about the mummies is that they no longer exude any odor. From most of the dead, many of them dressed in decayed, elegant costumes, only skeletons remain. Though some still have flesh, hair, and even eyes.
In 1881, the Italian government issued a law prohibiting the embalming of bodies. However, in 1920, special permission was granted to bury the mummified body of a two-year-old girl, Rosalia Lombargo, known as “Sleeping Beauty.” Her sister and other family members are said to have visited her often after her death. Rosalia’s body is beautifully preserved to this day and is displayed as an exhibit in a glass case.
7. The Milk Grotto, Bethlehem, Israel
Many legends have been made about the Milk Grotto. It is the place where the holy family took refuge from the beating of the infants by order of King Herod. According to legend, when the Virgin Mary was breastfeeding Jesus, a drop of milk fell to the floor and caused the stone to crumble. And because it was the milk that the Son of God was fed, a whole pilgrimage cult was formed on the basis of the legend.
Mothers from all over the world, both Christian and Muslim, come here to buy a package of pulverized white stone, which improves lactation if consumed by adding it to drinking water. Since the chalky stone is the color of milk, this hypothesis sounds true enough. But in reality, all the magical properties of the stone are due to its high calcium content. Some women take away pieces of the stone to put it under their bed. Wouldn’t it be easier to order a couple of liters of milk from the milkman?
8. Ithaa Underwater Restaurant, Rangali Island Hotel, Maldives
The Ithaa Underwater Restaurant is the first restaurant of its kind in the world. Its special feature is that its walls and roof are made of 12-cm-thick arc-shaped acrylic arches. There are five arches in all, tightly adhering to each other and the overall structure, the seams of which are treated with a special silicone sealant. The construction was made in Singapore and delivered to the island on a barge equipped with a big crane, which was used to lower the restaurant to the seabed. The entire structure weighs 175 tons, but another 85 tons of sand had to be added to make the restaurant “sink.”
The project cost $5 million, which means that the restaurant’s menu must contain a huge variety of dishes to choose from with impressive prices to recoup the investors’ costs. Located about five meters below sea level, the restaurant offers visitors stunning underwater views of the Indian Ocean.
9. Waitomo Caves, Otorohanga, New Zealand
The breathtaking boat tour of the Vaitomo Gloworm Grotto at Vaitomo Gloworm Cave is a trip unlike any you’ve taken before. The Waitomo Limestone Cave Network attracts more than a million visitors a year. Here, a specially trained guide will take you through some 250 meters of stunning underground scenery. The acoustic effects of the Cathedral Cave are known around the world. Other interesting cave formations include the Organ, the Catacombs and Tomo, a deep limestone mine.
The Glouworm Grotto is illuminated thanks to a natural phenomenon called bioluminescence: light is emitted by worms, male Luminosa Arachnocampa species, to attract females. Without this unusual illumination, the cave would be in total darkness. Waitomo Gloworm has been known to the population of Majori for centuries, but Europeans did not discover this cave until the late 19th century, and it was not until 1911 that the first tourists began to arrive there.
10. London Dungeon, England
London Dungeon is one of the most sinister sights in Europe and is located just right, under the grim arches of London Bridge. The museum is definitely not for the jittery, as visitors encounter pictures of execution, torture, and immerse themselves in a general atmosphere of medieval cruelty. The Dungeon is one of Europe’s leading themed museums, offering guests a macabre journey through the darkest period of history. It features such multi-million dollar interactive attractions as: The Great Fire, Boat Journey to Hell, and The Maze of the Lost, not to mention the regular exhibitions and living paintings, where actors create an exhilarating atmosphere of real horror.
The museum is full of various hideous torture devices, the use of which speaks to the unprecedented cruelty of medieval executioners. The dangerous streets of Whitechapel, a district in Victorian London, were the hiding place of notorious murderer Jack the Ripper, one of the most dangerous serial maniacs of all time. In the London Dungeon you will meet him… Are you ready?
The Weakest Underground: The World’s Scariest Dungeons
What else is not called these places: and troupeentaria, and the underground kingdom of Hades, and the mysterious crypts of Hell, and burial grounds. Yes, yes, that’s all about the catacombs, that’s what we will talk about today. There always reeks of the bleak cold, chilling to the bone, and the blood runs cold in your veins. And inside – skeletons dressed up in medieval clothes, mountains of bones, stacked and previously served as altars, skulls, coffins with mummies in niches…
Do you want to tickle your nerves? Then we’re off to the scary dungeons, a virtual tour of the catacombs. Well, you decide for yourself: to visit them in real life or not.
Catacombs of the Capuchins, Palermo, Italy
This tomb has been in Sicily since the 16th century when the Capuchin monastery was founded. In those early days, the monks decided to conduct their own burials directly under their temple, in the crypt.
Over the years, and as it turned out later corpses in this dungeon (Catacombe dei Cappuccini) did not decompose, thanks to a strange air in the crypt. They decided to bury the local nobility here, dressing the corpses up and drying them beforehand. Burial in these catacombs continued until the end of the nineteenth century. This is how the cemetery came to be, with 8,000 Sicilians buried there.
In the catacombs on either side you can see stiffened corpses hanging on hooks, sitting, lying, which are more than six centuries old.
- Address: Italy, Palermo, Piazza Cappuccini, 1. Tel: +39-091-212117
- Every day from 9.00 until 12.00 and from 15.00 until 17.00 (in summer until 19.00).
- Entrance fee: 1,5 €.
Catacombs of Saint Solomonas, Paphos, Cyprus
If you’re in Paphos you can easily find the Agia Solomoni Catacombs. Firstly, a signpost leads to them, and secondly, next to them there is a pistachio tree, completely decorated with colorful ribbons, shawls and beads, which are left by those who want to be cured of their ailments (it is said that the spring that springs from the underground, has curative properties and cures all ailments).
These catacombs were originally the city tomb, then – a shelter for the first Christians. But it did not save Solomon from death, nor her children – seven sons who were killed before their mother’s eyes. Here they were all buried.
Today, the ancient church is preserved in the labyrinths of these catacombs. Its walls are painted with frescos.
- Address: Cyprus, Paphos, Leoforos Agiou Pavlou
- Visiting hours: open all year round
- Cost of admission: free admission
St. Paul’s Catacombs, Mdina, Malta
The St Paul’s Catacombs are very modest and do not display the tragedy that you find in, for example, Palermo or Paris. Here are buried the ancient Romans.
But the experience of visiting them will be more than enough. In ancient times, here were held memorial meals, Christians served masses.
According to legend, the Apostle Paul lived and prayed for three months in these catacombs when his ship was wrecked off the Maltese coast.
- Address: Malta, Mdina, Bajjada Triq Sant Agata, Rabat RBT
- Visiting hours: Mon-Sat – 9.00-17.00, access to the catacombs closes at 16.30.
- Entrance fee: 4€
Qom el-Shugafa Catacombs, Alexandria, Egypt
This necropolis is one of the most beautiful monuments in Egypt since the beginning of our era. Kom el-Shoqafa Catacombs (Kom el-Shoqafa) is the largest Roman cemetery in the city. It is decorated in three styles: Roman, Greek and ancient Egyptian.
This is a whole labyrinth, which goes under the ground at 35 meters. It’s a pity that the first and half of the second floors are flooded. But going down the spiral staircase, you will get into the halls of the tombs. All the tombs are unique, decorated with columns, statues and bas-reliefs. The refectory hall, where relatives held a ceremony of farewell to their deceased relatives, is impressive.
And the most eerie is the hall of Caracalla. Here are buried hundreds of people and animals killed on the orders of the Roman emperor. The walls of these catacombs are painted with funerary paintings, the entrance is guarded by statues of Anubis and Sobek.
- Address: Egypt, Alexandria, Caramous, al-Nasseriya st.
- Visiting hours: Mon – Sat: 9.00 – 17.00
- Cost of the entrance ticket: 35 Egyptian pounds.
The Catacombs of Paris, Paris, France
These Paris catacombs (Les Catacombes) appeared on the outskirts of Paris at the time when houses and palaces were built in the city, churches were erected and the stone was needed for their construction (it was brought from those places).
Only since the middle of the XVIII century they became the city’s necropolis, when millions of skeletons were brought from the nearby cemetery of the Innocents and lowered into the ground. The above-mentioned cemetery became a hotbed of infection, so it was moved.
The reburial was conducted by a priest, who prayed for the souls of the deceased. Skeletons and bones were placed separately from each other. For example, you can see a stacked mountain of tibia bones. There are signs everywhere in these catacombs, as they are large and you can get lost there.
- Address: France, Paris, 1, avenue du Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy (place Denfert-Rochereau).
- Visiting hours: Tue-Sat 10:00-17:00, ticket office closes at 16:00.
- Ticket price: 8€.
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