Derelict Places: 20 Eerie Modern Ruins of the World

Exploring the derelict places of the world

Urban Ghosts has documented the history of numerous derelict places on these pages, from all corners and continents of the world. In this article, we’ve created a round-up of compelling locations from our Abandoned & Urbex archive, which you can work your way through here. For more information about each of these modern ruins, simply click on the link at the end of each entry.

Abandoned Red Cross Children’s Hospital, Unknown


Abandoned hospitals often have an unsettling atmosphere about them, but never more so than when their patients were sick children – like this deserted treatment facility established by the Red Cross. Of the derelict places shown here, Though we know little about it, this located is arguably one of the more eerie derelict places documented here. (Read more.)

The Derelict Hachijo Royal Hotel, Japan

(Images: Ridgeline Images)

The Hachijo Royal Hotel was once the jewel in the crown of a small volcanic island, Hachijo-jima, which was once known as the “Hawaii of Japan”. Yet the grand destination now stands derelict as tourists flocked to new and exotic resorts overseas. (Read more.)

Beautiful Derelict Chapel in France

(Images: Jérémy RONDAN)

Ornate, decorative and bathed in an ethereal light, this hauntingly beautiful abandoned chapel in France is one of the grandest we’ve ever seen. Yet like other derelict places, it’s future seems bleak, especially given the large chunks of carved masonry that lie amid the foliage that covers the floor. (Read more.)

Patapsco Valley State Park’s Derelict Hell House, USA

(Images: Forsaken Fotos)

In the woods of Patapsco Valley State Park, Maryland, stands an eerie ruin known to urban explorers as the Hell House. The derelict gazebo and its altar are among the most substantial remains of a religious school known as St. Mary’s College. (Read more.)

West Norwood Cemetery’s Decaying Catacombs, UK

(Images: Konstantin Binder/website)

Imagine knowing that deep beneath your feet lay an unexplored, twilight world. A twisting, turning place of oily shadows, Gothic statues, and the endless silence of the dead. The decaying catacombs of West Norwood Cemetery could be just the place. (Read more.)

Silent North Wilkesboro Speedway, USA

(Images: Dominic Mann)

It was showcased on the popular BBC television show Top Gear and lent its track to a range of NASCAR-related video games. Not long after, North Wilkesboro Speedway in North Carolina was abandoned, and soon fell derelict. (Read more.)

The Forgotten Crystal Palace Subway, UK

(Images: Tim NW)

In 1865, a glorious arched subway terminus had been constructed near London’s Crystal Palace, connecting the Victorian exhibition space to a new High Level railway station. When the grand glass pavillion burned to the ground one fateful night, the Crystal Palace subway was far enough away to escape the blaze. Its elegant brick-built subway survives to this day. (Read more.)

Derelict Crematorium in Germany

(Image: AndreasS)

Cremation has been practiced for at least 20,000 years, though it’s become more popular in many societies as a clean and economical means of disposing of the dead at a time when burial plots are becoming ever more scarce. Despite this, some crematoria stand eerily derelict. (Read more.)

Derelict St Joseph’s Orphanage, UK

(Images: True British Metal)

On Theatre Street in Preston, Lancashire, stands the foreboding red-brick form of an abandoned Victorian orphanage. Derelict places like St Joseph’s Orphanage have often been documented in pictures by urban explorers, as these images reveal. (Read more.)

Derelict Railway Structures at Paranapiacaba, Brazil

(Images: Diego Torres Silvestre)

Nestled in a mountainous region of Santo André roughly 38 miles outside from São Paulo, the once abandoned village of Paranapiacaba is today something of a railway ghost town, its elegant British-style buildings seemingly frozen in time. (Read more.)

Forgotten Fishing Boats, Thailand

(Image: Oleg)

It’s been some time since these traditional fishing boats have ventured out into the crystal clear waters off the coast of Thailand. (Read more.)

Derelict Places: Macassar Beach Pavilion, South Africa

(All images by Adrian Bischoff)

Atlas Obscura writes: “Water slides are cracked open and filled with sand, and the once-bright paint has faded into pastel hues against the dunes. The Macassar Beach Pavilion in Cape Town has been abandoned to let nature reclaim the water park.” We couldn’t have put it better ourselves… (Read more.)

Abandoned Pet Cemetery at Carmichael House, Scotland

(Images: The Doofers)

We all love our pets, and there’s something particularly poignant about a pet cemetery. On the grounds of the derelict Carmichael House in Thankerton, five beloved animals all rest in peace, their headstones overgrown and their etched names slowly obscured by erosion. (Read more.)

An Elegantly Derelict Greenhouse, Unknown

(Image: Grégoire Cachemaillewebsite)

With its windows smashed, glass panes collapsed from the roof and interior completely reclaimed by nature, this abandoned greenhouse is an utter wreck. But there’s no denying that it’s somehow managed to retain its grandeur throughout. (Read more.)

Derelict Gulliver’s Kingdom Theme Park, Japan

(Image: Mandiaswebsite)

It lay not too far from Japan’s notorious Suicide Forest, and perhaps the heavy atmosphere of that sinister place had some bearing on this eerie abandoned amusement park’s failure. One of the stranger derelict places featured here, Gulliver’s Kingdom has now been demolished, leaving just photos of the giant recumbent statue. (Read more.)

The Derelict Busts of Presidents Park, USA

(Images: Patrick

In 2004, sculptor David Adickes partnered with a Virginia landowner named Everette “Haley” Newman to create what they hoped would be a national landmark. Fast-forward more than a decade and Presidents Park lies derelict. (Read more.)

Abandoned Subterranean Stables: Camden Catacombs, UK

(Images: Gordon King)

Subterranean London is an intricate network of tunnels that span the centuries. From medieval catacombs and passageways to Victorian sewers and underground railway lines, the space beneath England’s capital is an eerily preserved reflection of the great city’s tumultuous past. Among these subterranean derelict places are the intriguing Camden Catacombs. (Read more.)

Derelict Places: Easington Colliery Primary School, UK

(Images: Behind Closed Doors via Flickr)

The imposing red brick structures that make up the abandoned Easington Colliery Primary School on Seaside Lane are both handsome and foreboding, relics of the days when this small County Durham community was a booming coal mining town. Inside, their abandoned classrooms are eerily intact. (Read more.)

Duga-3: Derelict Cold War Radar, Ukraine

(Images: Erik Meijerink)

It’s one of the most iconic technological marvels of the Cold War-era Soviet Union to still grace the skyline: a vast, imposing metal net stretching into the Ukrainian sky. (Read more.)

Miami’s Derelict Marine Stadium, USA

(Images: Brett LevinInes Hegedus-Garcia)

When the massive Miami Marine Stadium opened in December 1963, on the city’s Virginia Key, it became the first purpose-built power boat racing arena in the USA. But for more than 20 years, it’s stood abandoned, a vast hulking grandstand looking out over the water. (Read more.)


About the author: Tom





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