Underground. The Scariest Mines in the World
Industrial tourism is one of the most uncommon and striking trends of these days. Millions of active tourists don’t look for historical and architectural attractions, they like to explore the abandoned industrial facilities. Curious deserted mines are of particular interest. Walk through underground tunnels shrouded in darkness has become a favorite pastime for many travelers. The challenge to go down at a day and be underground alone makes tourists to leave their country and go to the most remote corners of the planet in search of thrills. An incredible amount of mysterious stories are associated with deserted quarries and mines, and that only adds excitement to fans of this ultramodern activity.
Kamioka mine is situated in the deserted village of the same name. The quarry was founded in the early 19th century on a desert island near Kyushu. Over a hundred years ago scientists have discovered rich deposits of cadmium ore, which was the reason for constructing large-scale mines. Mining was carried out until the 1980s. After the closing of industrial production of ore, Kamioka became a deserted village, and large-scale mines were rendered unnecessary.
A few years after the closing, there was opened a small research laboratory conducting research of neutrino, but most of the underground labyrinths still lay in ruins. For many years, large-scale underground structures have being attracting attention of tourists, as walking all around will certainly bring a lot of experience. Mines are located at a depth of more than kilometer, some of their grounds are flooded.
Dripping water and rusty rails used for transporting ore a few years ago give these places very mysterious and sinister look. Shadows from abandoned locomotives and drilling machines add some fear. Some land mines look quite well-organized, while others are embraced with criss-crossing networks of rusty floors and partially inundated with stones from crumbling walls. In the middle of the last century, mining camp residents began to suffer from diseases unknown to science. As it turned out later, their cause became vapors of cadmium salts, which over the years of production ore have been soaked the earth of the island. Today entrance to the village Kamioka is officially closed, but that doesn’t bother hundreds of curious tourists. Next - Dugin quarry
Dugin quarry, Russia
Quarries, which have been mined a few hundred years ago, represent a particular interest to fearless tourists. One of the oldest industrial mines on the planet is situated in the near suburbs of Moscow. Mining of the Dugin quarry has begun in the 16th century. It was mining of the so-called ‘white stone’, i.e. limestone, which was used extensively in the construction of Moscow. Old quarry strikes with its size, as its total length is more than 5,000 meters. Complete article
Wieliczka Salt Mine, Poland
The Polish town of Velichek can boast one of the most mysterious and interesting mines in the world; local residents have managed to turn it into a work of art. This abandoned salt mine has been converted into a museum dedicated to history and culture of the town. The venue was opened in 1978. Currently, this unique cultural center is a landmark of world importance. The museum traces the history of Velichek and the history of mining. Complete article
Salina Turda, Romania
Transylvania also has salt mines, which have earned worldwide fame and became popular among fans of industrial tourism. Old salt mines are the main attraction of the small town of Turda, which a few years ago has been one of the largest salt manufacturing centers in Romania. Salina Turda would certainly appeal to fans of science fiction films, as amazing landscapes, which open during the descent into the mine, look like the scenery for films about extraterrestrial civilizations. Complete article
Travelers who prefer walking through the deserted dark subterrenes have to go to the German town of Aalen. Here is the deserted iron ore mine, which is currently available for a visit. Production of iron ore in this field has begun in 1635; during hundreds of years the network of underground labyrinths has being risen to enormous scale. Today, its total length is about 6 kilometers. Complete article
Zeche Zollverein, Germany
The city of Essen also has a deserted coal mine that enjoys attention of tourists. The former coal mine is enlisted in the number of valuable industrial sites in the world and is under UNESCO protection; some of its quarries were converted into an interesting museum dedicated to the history of the mining industry. Mining has begun there in 1834; the famous businessman, Johann Franz Haniel, was a founder of the facility. Complete article
Staritsa catacombs, Russia
Among the most affordable mines to visit in Russia, Staritsa catacombs located in the immediate vicinity of Tver are notable. One of the distinguishing features of the mines is their accessibility, as its entrance doesn’t have steep descents and doesn’t require any special training for explorers. The total length of the mines is more than 30 kilometers; their mining has begun in the 13th century. Complete article
The Austrian town of Hallstatt can boast not only one of the most mysterious and frightening mines in the world, but also a unique natural attraction, the largest underground lake in Europe. The lake and the mine wear one name – Zeegrotte. This unique object was created by man and irresistible forces of nature, so it deserves attention of all tourists without exception. Development of mines began in the 19th century, there was an active mining of gypsum. Complete article
In Lapland, in the bowels of Kirunavara mountain there is the mine of the same name, where in the late 19th century iron ore was produced. The scale of the mine is just amazing; total length of tunnels is about 450 kilometers, and some of them go to a depth of 1,270 meters. According to scientists, the first time people began to mine iron in the foothills has been 6,000 years ago, as soon as the glaciers retreated. Large-scale mines, which travelers can visit today, began to develop in the 17th century. Iron mining is being carried out in some parts of the huge mine even these days. Complete article
Medvednica Nature Park in Croatia is in an incredibly beautiful mountainous area featuring an abandoned medieval mine Zrinjski. Back in 1527, the first mine has been laid there; zinc-lead ore has been mined in it. Mine literally turned precious, as that ore was rich in silver. During the tour, visitors would be able to see fragments of rock with veins of precious metal. Complete article
Ratnapura, Sri Lanka
The island of Sri Lanka is precious in the literal and figurative sense of the word. That’s because of Ratnapura mine, whose name can be translated as ‘the precious land.’ Since ancient times, gemstones have being mined there. This is where Blue Belle of Asia that later adorned the crown the Queen of England was found. The exact date of the foundation of Ratnapura mine is unknown, but one fact remains indisputable - for hundreds of years, the process of extraction of stones hasn’t changed here. Complete article