5. North Sentinel Island
Located in the Bay of Bengal, the North Sentinel Island is part of the Andaman Islands and is inhabited by a small, indigenous tribe known as the Sentinelese who have kept themselves aloof from the outside world. Attempts to establish contact from outsiders have been met with arrows and stones and in one instance in 2006, two fishermen were killed by the Sentinelese after their boat drifted too close to the island. It is estimated that around 50 to 400 Sentinelese populate the island. It is far too dangerous for outsiders to approach the tribe due to their hostility and as a result, the Indian government have set a three-mile exclusion zone thus making it illegal to approach the island.
Dubbed as one of the most haunted places in the world, Poveglia is a small island located between Venice and The Lido in the Venetian Lagoon in northern Italy. The island has a dark history serving as a quarantine station for Bubonic plague victims and more recently became a home to a psychiatric hospital for the mentally ill. If this is not disturbing enough, rumour has it that a doctor, who ran the mental hospital, tortured and performed crude lobotomies on his patients before taking his own life after claiming that he had been driven mad by ghosts. The hospital closed in 1968 and the island was completely abandoned. All that is left now are dilapidated buildings, charred bones and plague pits with the souls of more than 100,000 people that perished on the island over the centuries.
3. Lascaux Caves
The Lascaux Caves is a complex of caves located in the south-western region of France and contains Paleolithic cave paintings which are thought to be 17,300 years old. The ancient artwork depicts mostly images of large animals that lived in the area at the time. The caves were opened to the public in 1948, however, over the years, lichen started to appear on the walls of the cave due to carbon dioxide and heat produced by visitors which damaged the artwork. As a result, the cave was permanently closed to the public in 1963 in order to preserve the art and as of 2008 following a fungal outbreak only one person is allowed to enter the cave for 20 minutes a week to monitor climatic conditions.
2. Snake Island
If you suffer from Ophidiophobia or a fear of snakes, then you may want to look away. Located several miles off the coast of São Paulo in Brazil lies Snake Island. Snake Island is home to more than 4000 snakes including the critically endangered, golden lancehead pit viper that feeds on birds and has venom that is capable of melting human flesh. It is estimated that there is one snake per square metre of the island. The Brazilian government has prohibited any visitors who wish to visit the island with the exception of research teams but I don’t know about you but who in their right mind would wish to venture off into Snake Island. I certainly wouldn’t!
1. Area 51
When you think of places that are forbidden to the public, Area 51 is one that springs to mind. Located in Southern Nevada in the United States of America, Area 51 is a secret U.S. facility, believed to be a testing facility for experimental aircraft and weapon systems, however, the primary purpose is unknown. The intense secrecy of Area 51 has made it subject to many conspiracy theories including the popular theory that the facility examines crashed alien space crafts as well as aliens themselves. Deadly force is authorised against trespassers and it is rumoured that the base is protected with anti-aircraft weaponry and fighter jets.