Deep inside the Arctic circle, on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, the Global Seed vault is hidden deep inside a mountain. It is sometimes called ‘The Doomsday Vault”, because even in the worst scenario of a disaster to mankind it would preserve the diversity of the world’s food crops and restore the plant kingdom. It was built to last around 200 years and withstand earthquakes and explosions. It was placed on the side of a mountain so even if all the ice on earth melts, it will still be above sea level. The vault contains 100 million seeds, a complete ‘backup’ of Earth’s food-crop seed at the present time.
The policy is invalid here – even North Korea has frozen its seeds there. The first withdrawal from the vault was recently made by Syria in order to recreate an International Research Centre in Aleppo which was lost to war. It was used to store the genetic material of crops. Today these lost stores have become of vital importance in war-torn and drought-affected Syria.
#2 North Sentinel Island, India
North Sentinel Island is a home to the Sentinelese, which is one of a few tribes in the world that have zero contact with modern civilization. It is believed that the tribe survives by hunting, fishing, and collecting wild plants, but there are no signs of agriculture or fire. The first successful expedition was in 1967, lead by T.N. Pandit. Despite that, to this day the tribe refuses to have any contact with the modern world, as they violently drive away anyone who tries to enter their premises. In 2006 the tribe killed two fishermen who accidentally entered their territory but no attempt was made by the Indian government to prosecute the murders. Now, it is strictly forbidden to enter this island, and entering it may result in death.
#3 Ploutonion At Hierapolis Or Pluto’s Gate, Turkey
Located in the ancient city of Hierapolis (Turkey), it was once a site dedicated to the Roman god of death, Pluto. Ancient historian Strabo visited the place and said that “Any animal that passes inside meets instant death. I threw in sparrows and they immediately breathed their last and fell”. After discovery in 1965, Pluto’s Gate’s dangers were proven to be more than just a myth. Scientists measured the CO2 concentration and discovered that while during the day the sun dissipates the gas, at night, when the temperature drops and CO2 becomes heavier than air, it pools at the bottom forming a deadly “lake”. At dawn, the CO2 concentration 40 centimeters above the arena floor reaches 35%, which is enough to kill animals and even people within minutes. Luckily, the concentration drops significantly with height, so standing by the “gates” would only pose a threat to smaller animals.
#4 The Catacombs, Paris
One of the best known mysterious and scary places from all around the world are the Catacombs of Paris. What was first built as a tunnel network to consolidate Paris’ stone mines became a storage for 6 million dead bodies at the end of XVIIIth century. Even though a very small part of these tunnels is open to the public, where you can see thousands of bones and skulls stacked together, 99% of the 170-mile long maze is forbidden to enter because getting lost there is almost a guarantee. Yet that does not stop people and mysterious secret society members from finding their ways into these places and making trouble for the special Catacomb Police Force, the Cataflics.
Make sure to check our article to learn more about the Catacombs.
#5 Poveglia Island, Italy
Poveglia is an island known as one of the most mysterious and creepy places in the world. It all started during the Roman Empire when the island was used to home victims of the plague. Later, during the medieval era, when the plague returned, the island once again became a home to thousands of deadly sick people. A terrible amount of people were dumped into the ground, buried in the same graves and even burned. People say that the land became so affected by the burned and rotten human corpses, its soil is now 50% composed of human ash. Then, back in 1922, they opened a mental hospital here. It is safe to say that it did not affect the patients in a positive way, since the island already had a truly creepy vibe to it. Now, you can still find washed up human bones on the island’s shore due to the horrific amount of humans killed there. With many people saying this place is haunted, no wonder this island is illegal to visit, and we’re not sure anyone would want to go there.
#6 Area 51, USA
Area 51 is a U.S. military installation that is located 100 miles north of Las Vegas. It is considered to be one of the most mysterious places in the world since the U.S. government denied its existence until just 2013. Now, it is mostly known for its many UFO conspiracy theories. The area is mainly used by CIA and the U.S. Air Force as a testing territory because of its remote location. Despite it being a military installation, many people believe that it might be the place where scientists research a crashed alien spacecraft. Many conspiracy theory enthusiasts visit the nearby territory to Area 51, yet entrance is completely prohibited.
#7 Ilha Da Queimada Grande (Snake Island), Atlantic Ocean
Ilha da Queimada Grande island is located off the coast of Brazil in the Atlantic Ocean. It is the only home to now critically endangered venomous golden lancehead pit viper. The island is closed to the public in order to protect this snake population as well as protect the visitors, as by some estimates there is one snake to every square meter of the island.
#8 Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, Ukraine
1986 is the year of the tragic nuclear accident now known as the Chernobyl disaster. Due to high radiation levels, every local was ordered to immediately leave the premises and the territory quickly became abandoned. Now, you can still find abandoned shoes, toys and other possessions left behind because of the rapid evacuation. Even though there are excursions that allow you to check some parts of the town, there is a 19-mile zone, also known as Chernobyl Exclusion Zone or The Zone. This territory is strictly forbidden for any access as it will result in radioactive contamination.
#9 Mausoleum Of The First Qin Emperor, Qin Shi Huang, China
Located in Lintong District, Xi’an, Shaanxi (China), Qin Shi Huang’s tomb is a place where entry is forbidden. Even though discovered when the Terracotta army was unearthed in 1974, the tomb hasn’t been excavated yet. Opponents of excavation believe that current technology couldn’t preserve anything that the tomb holds, therefore access to it is forbidden.
#10 The Lascaux Caves
The Lascaux Caves is a complex of caves near the village of Montignac. The ceilings and walls of this cave are covered with parietal wall paintings, representing primarily large animals. It is believed that the age of the paintings is estimated at around 17,000 years. Back in 1940, the caves were discovered by 18-year-old Marcel Ravidat, leaving many people wondering about their origin and meaning. Anthropologists believe that these paintings might symbolize past hunting success or a mystical ritual in order to improve hunting in the future. Opening the caves during WWII changed the cave environment. The 1,200 visitors per day, changes in air circulation, and the presence of light caused irreparable damage to the paintings, resulting in a closure of these caves in 1963.