Google Maps has highlighted an island in Venice, Italy called Poveglia – and it’s been called one of the most haunted islands in the world. Poveglia was once home to a mental asylum and was used as a plague quarantine station. The remains of over 100,000 bodies are said to be hidden on the 18-acre island. Plague sufferers were confined there in 1793 when two ships which entered the region were found to be carrying infected passengers.
Some of those suffering were forced to go to the island to die while the dead bodies of those who had died from the plague were shipped over to be burnt and buried in pits on Poveglia.
The Venice island’s creepy past did not stop there, however – over a hundred years later, in 1922, a mental asylum was established on Poveglia.
Lobotomies were allegedly carried out in the hospital.
According to local legend, one doctor tortured and butchered multiple patients to death.
He is then said to have died by falling off – or possible by being thrown off – the asylum’s bell tower.
The hospital was closed in 1968 but the crumbling ruins of the place can still be seen, overgrown with greenery.
Access to Poveglia is now completely forbidden and it is illegal to visit the Venice island.
Some say ghosts haunt the spot and moaning can be heard there – local fishermen steer clear of Poveglia for fear of its perturbing past.
Unsettling photos of the island – taken by those bold enough to visit – show ivy creeping over the ruined walls, paint peeling and roofs caved in.
Rusting bare bed frames stand side by side in otherwise empty decaying rooms – a sinister reminder of those once kept there.
Poveglia is far from the only island in the world with a chilling history.
Nazino Island, in Siberia, was once the location of a labour camp under the brutal dictatorship of Joseph Stalin in 1933.
In 1933 Stalin decided on mass deportation of the political undesirables and banished millions of people to deepest darkest Siberia.
Around 6,000 of the deportees ended up at Nazino Island, an uninhabited swamp with no buildings 500 miles north of Tomsk – 27 people died en route.
Unsurprisingly, 300 of the ‘settlers’ did not make it through the first frozen night.
When faced with starvation many of them resorted to eating the flour mixed with dirty river water. This proved poisonous and led to dysentery and eventual death.
It was reported that those left on the island resorted to cannibalism, just three days after arriving.
However, after one month they decided to remove anyone left who was strong enough to walk. Two-thirds of those who had been shipped to the island had perished during the short-lived yet gruesome period of history.
Meanwhile, an island in Brazil called Ilha da Queimada Grande is absolutely swarming in huge and venomous vipers. A single bite from the golden lancehead vipers on the island could kill you in an hour, according to the Smithsonian.