What do you imagine when thinking of Italy? Is it welcoming sun-drenched resorts of Liguria or world-known historical monuments of Rome? Maybe the luxury stores in Milan are the first things that come to your mind?
Indeed, Italy for tourists is a wonderful country with various beautiful landscapes and activities for every taste and budget. But as almost each country it has its own haunted places attracting special contingent of people, who like to feel fear or just want to experience unusual feelings. Do you belong to such type of people? Than this article will be interesting for you!
1. Poveglia Island
Without any doubt Poveglia Island is the most famous haunted place in Italy! The island shrouded in dense fog of horrifying stories is located under very nose of tourists visiting Venice. Only 15 km separate one of the world’s most romantic city and the scariest place in the whole Italy.
Why is Poveglia considered an evil place? The answer to this question must be sought in the history of the island…
The horror began when Europe was covered by the epidemic of bubonic plague that killed millions of people. It was then when imperceptible little island of Poveglia turned into a real insulator of death and became the last resting place of people infected with the plague, who have no chance to survive. People were buried in one large mass grave. According to some beliefs, there were too many bodies to bury and most of them were simply burned. So, today the ground here on half consists of ashes of those men, children and women who died here in agony.
But it was only one part of the nightmare happened on the island. In 1922, a mental hospital was founded in Poveglia. Soon, patients began to suffer from nightmares and headaches. They said the hospital is literally full of ghosts of plague victims. Patients heard strange whispers or wild cries and moans, but no one believed them. Even the hospital stuff sometimes saw strange figures that emerged out of nowhere and in a moment burned down into ashes. Moreover, some residents of Venice were sure a chief doctor himself is mad and regularly conduct experiments on patients using the latest methods of healing, which looked more like a medieval tortures.
According to the local legend, when the chief doctor began to see and hear the ghosts of Poveglia he threw himself from the tower in fit of madness. And nowadays he is among the souls that haven’t found peace and are doomed to endlessly roam through the empty halls of the abandoned hospital.
2. Catacombs of the Capuchins
The catacombs in Palermo are actually a very touristic place usually crowded by visitors, so it’s hard to get really scared here. However, the dungeon literally full of mummies isn’t a good place for especially impressionable people. You’ll find catacombs not far from the city center under an unremarkable building of Capuchin monastery. The entrance fee is 3 EUR. It’s not much for an opportunity to see the real underground kingdom of Hades with countless corridors with about two thousand of mummies in different poses.
The oldest mummy belongs to monk Silvestro Subba, who died in 1599 and is buried in the traditional monastic clothes. The youngest one is the mummy of two-year-girl Rosalina, who died of bronchial infection in 1920. Despite the fact that more than 90 years has passed from the day of her death, the girl looks like she recently fell asleep. When you are looking at her, a strange thought comes to your mind that any moment the girl can open her eyes.
All mummies in the catacombs are divided into different groups by status they had in life, gender, professional and other features. So, here you will find separate hall for virgins, children, couples etc. There are especially scary legends related to this place, but the catacombs itself are scary enough to pull some extra adrenaline into your veins.
3. Abandoned psychiatric hospital in Parma
Such places by themselves cause unpleasant feelings, but thanks to efforts of Brazilian artist Herbert Baglione, it became really creepy. He painted black shadows of different forms and sizes that sprout from old wheelchairs look into the rooms and make you feel loneliness and emptiness. These shadows represent souls of poor people who once lived within the walls of mental hospital in Parma.
Valley of the Mills is both beautiful and creepy. Here you have a chance to admire quite unique landscape represented with deep ravine and ancient half-destroyed mill on its bottom. The valley of the mills has turned into a closed ecosystem with more humid than usual microclimate. Plants have grown into the real jungle, and mountain streams have made a swamp from the canyon.
It’s not possible to go down to the mills, unless you are rock climber with all necessary equipment. However, you can enjoy fanatic views and make awesome pictures from the Piazza Tasso overlooking the valley.
In conclusion it should be said you can find some scary places even in the most touristic cities of Italy such as Rome and Milan. Those are Santa Maria della Concezionedei Cappuccini in Rome and San Bernardino alle Ossa in Milan. Crypts of both churches are decorated with the countless human bones and skulls. You should agree that bare skulls are not quite what you expect to see in the church.
When traveling in search of haunted places you should have a car to be able to quickly escape in case you awaken the souls of the dead. If you spare to take your own car, a rental vehicle would be a good choice. Just don’t tell what places you are going to drive to. You can book a car at Malpensa Airport from a leading supplier online and save some money and time.
Author Bio: Lily Berns is a travel writer and she likes to share with interesting info of different places through her publications.
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