The 4 Best Sites to Find Abandoned Places and Old Ghost Towns
Many people love to hunt for treasure. Some meet their needs through the practice of geocaching, while others like to visit abandoned buildings; there’s something poignant about remembering the things that have been lost to time and neglect.
However, some of us can’t visit these locations in person. This is either due to the fact that these locations are too far away, or because we just don’t know where to look. Fortunately, there’s a whole online subculture devoted to documenting derelict areas. Here’s a list of great websites on how to find abandoned places, wherever you might be.
First, let’s start off with a really old website that’s been documenting abandoned places for ages. When we say this website is old, we mean ancient. It hasn’t been updated since the early 2010s, so if you’re looking for a digital trip down memory lane, check out abandoned-places.com.
While the Abandoned Places website is old and not exactly user-friendly, it’s pretty simple to use once you figure out the main navigation wheel. Essentially, the whole website was designed to look like a mechanical contraption. You can click on different gears within the central wheel in order to learn about a new building.
The website also features locations from around the world, with each post including historical information and photos for those locations when possible. One area, called The Graffiti Place, includes a description on the size of the ghost town, along with its location along the river Scheldt. The photographs documenting it are detailed and definitely worth a look.
If you’re searching for other weird, wonderful, sometimes-very-old websites, then check out this list of the most bizarre websites you haven’t seen .
Looking for a more modern website with a distinct focus? Then you need to check out Abandoned America, a website put together by documentarian Matthew Christopher.
Over the years, Christopher has made it his mission to record the American dream in decay. On his about page, he states that he’s been fascinated with abandoned places since he was a child.
Additionally, he wants to share the stories behind these abandoned places, and bring light to the lives that were upended through historical atrocities. One such atrocity was America’s use of insane asylums in the 20th century, with ruins now scattered across the country from coast to coast.
The website also makes it very clear that some location information has been withheld, due to the fact that these abandoned buildings are on private property.
Even with that factor in play, however, this website is still one of the most comprehensive resources on this list. The attention to detail can help you satisfy that urge to “find abandoned places near me,” without having to go there in person.
Looking for a website that combines the topic of urban exploring with the history of abandoned buildings? Then you need to check out Urbex Playground.
For each place that this website explores, the team photographs and records the history behind those buildings. They also talk about how these buildings have come to be abandoned in the present day. As such, this website is an excellent source of inspiration and knowledge for writers working on a variety of different topics.
Although Urbex admits that its documentation process sometimes involves trespassing (an activity we do not recommend), its meticulous documentation practices and its attention to detail have to be commended.
Looking for a website that is a little more “daring” with the ways that it photographs abandoned places? Then you need to check out Freaktography, a website run by an urban explorer.
Starting in the early 2010s, Freaktography began to record abandoned buildings and old ghost towns, and post those pictures online. The explorer who runs this website has amassed a giant collection of images on the subject.
He also talks about his exploits on the Freaktography YouTube channel.
Like the other sites on this list, Freaktography strongly urges readers to not follow the photographer’s example. If you plan to document any abandoned places or retrace the photographer’s steps either through a website or an abandoned places app, then you need to avoid trespassing on private property.
Other Abandoned Places to Check Out
While we’ve been going over websites that you can use to learn about abandoned places, there are also a variety of individual blog posts that cover the topic, too. We’ve rounded up a list of the most relevant.
- Daddu has a post called The Poetry of Forgotten Places, featuring a photo gallery.
- Web Urbanist has a blog post on 100+ Abandoned Buildings, Places, and Property. It details a series of derelict areas and old ghost towns.
- On English Russia, you can read a picture-heavy post called Abandoned Trains of the Soviet Era. It’s perfect for anyone who wants to research old objects that are not buildings.
- Kathmandu & Beyond has a roundup of abandoned places that they’ve explored.
- Urban75 also a section with lots of old photos detailing old trains and train stations.
Once again, all these links are really interesting to check out.
Find Abandoned Places From Your Own Home
Now that you know about this collection of websites devoted to the subject of exploring abandoned places, you can start to check out some of these websites yourself. Maybe you can even use the idea of urban exploration as a jumping point for a new project that you plan to research.
If you want to explore other places around the world, abandoned or not, then we recommend our list of Google Earth virtual torus that you’ll want to check out . It’ll allow you to venture into areas you’ve never even heard of, all from the comfort of your own home.
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