Table of contents:
- Hashima Island, Japan
- Poveglia Island, Italy
- Holland Island, USA
- Hershel Island, Canada
- Hirt Island, Scotland
Abandoned cities have become so popular lately that sometimes there may be too many tourists there to really feel the desolation and remoteness of the city. A completely different story with the abandoned islands, where there were once settlements, now there is not a living soul left. It is much more difficult to get to the islands, and therefore the feeling of abandonment is felt there in a special way.
Hashima Island, Japan
Abandoned by the population: 1974 year.
Coal was once mined here and this industry fed the entire population of the island. in the 30s of the last century, besides mines, military factories also appeared here. Coal was mined intensively and zealously - the mines were dug to a depth of 600 meters below sea level. The work was very hard, so during the war, the Japanese began to bring here Chinese and Korean prisoners, many of whom died from too difficult working conditions. There were enough people here - there were 30 large residential buildings, 25 shops, a school, swimming pools, hospitals and its own cemetery. By the 70s, the coal industry on Hasim began to decline and in 1974 all the mines on the island were closed.
How to visit: You can get to the island only through special travel agencies and only on the permitted territory of the island, since most of it is in disrepair.
Poveglia Island, Italy
Abandoned by the population: 1968 year
In 1776, a quarantine facility was established on this island for sailors who sailed to Venice. At the beginning of the twentieth century, this island was again used for quarantine, and in 1922 a psychiatric hospital was opened on the island, which, in fact, existed until 1968. Local rumors claim that up to 50% of the soil on the island consists of the remains of people who died on the island. In 2014, Italy announced a tender for the island to be completed for 99 years. It is assumed that the hospital building will be converted into a hotel.
How to visit: In Venice you can find boat owners who will take you around the island for a fee. Some boat owners may be persuaded to let you walk around the island itself - this is not prohibited by law.
Holland Island, USA
Abandoned by the population: 1918 year
Holland Island is located in the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland. It was inhabited by people back in the 1600s, and in 1850 there was a whole community of fishermen and farmers. There were 70 houses here, there were shops, a post office, a school, a church, and the locals gathered oysters and caught crabs. However, alas, it will no longer be possible to see all this: starting in 1914, the island began to gradually collapse and go under water. Buildings one by one began to go under the water, and the last house, which was chosen by the pelicans, attracted tourists for some time, until in 2010 it collapsed.
How to visit: You can freely get here by any private water transport from the shore, however, it makes sense to do this only at low tide, since only a small piece of land with the ruins of a house remains from the island, which is almost completely covered with water at high tide.
Hershel Island, Canada
Abandoned by the population: 1960s
This island was used by whalers for anchorage for a long time until it was discovered by John Franklin during an expedition in 1826 and named after his friend John Herschel, a famous English scientist. There were houses, a whaling center, a police station, and even four cemeteries.All this was gradually abandoned due to the fact that most of the year the water around and the island itself is covered with ice.
How to visit: From July to November, when there is least ice, the island can be reached by boat or kayak. Locals warn those wishing to visit Hershel that abandoned harpoons can be found in the water.
Hirt Island, Scotland
Abandoned by the population: 1930s
Despite the fact that people have lived on this island since prehistoric times, the terrible weather and the lack of opportunities to grow vegetables forced the local population to move to more climate-friendly settlements in the 1930s. The story of the evacuation of the island became the plot for the full-length film "The End of the World" directed by Michael Powell, although this film was filmed on a completely different island.
How to visit: The island can be reached by private boat from the coast of Scotland, there are no restrictions on visits. Moreover, organized excursions to the island can be found in nearby settlements.
The history of the American island is also interesting, on which the language of the deaf was more important than English - this island is called Martha's Vineyard, and you can read about it in our articlededicated to this topic.