Parnitha is a mountain located on the north of Athens, with a total area of about 300 square kilometers. In 1914 the Holy Monastery Asomaton-Petrakis offers this area to the Euaggelismos hospital to create a nursing asylum for tuberculosis patients. The area was quite remote from the urban center and the mountain climate is considered ideal for those patients. The sanatorium, worked for over 30 years hospitalizing hundreds of patients. Many of them never managed to leave the institution alive.


The Sanatorium hosted many Athenian tuberculosis patients and dozens of people from cities of Greece with many of them arriving and camping outside the premises of the building for not being able to pay the hospitalization that was 300-480 drachmas per month (today is approximately 0.88-1.41 euros). In the years 1929-1938, it is estimated that in Greece almost 100.000 people died from tuberculosis. Hunger and hardship that came with the war with Turkey and the WWII that followed, caused the spread of the disease. Although the information on medical statistics of the era are not so many, there are reports that between 1941 and 1943, 18.000 tuberculosis patients, only from Athens and Piraeus, lose the battle with the disease.


The sanatorium declined after 1950 with the discovery of penicillin and in 1965 the sanatorium facilities passed to the property of EOT (National Organization of Tourism) for 6.500.000 drachmas (approximately 20.000 euros). The building was converted into a hotel under the name “XENIA” but the layout wasn’t appropriate for a hotel so in 1967 it was converted to a school for jobs in tourism and continue operate until 1985, when it was abandoned. Since then have been born tens of urban legends for the Sanatorium of Parnitha while the building remains a landmark for lovers of the paranormal. One of those myths is the girl with the white clothes or the Kyra’s girl, it is saying that she was an inmate of the sanatorium and that because of the disease she wasn’t able to even drink a drop of water, she asked to go to a source nearby to just see it. And that is what they did, they went with her to the Kyra, but reaching there the girl died. Since then, many people reported seeing a little girl in a white nightgown, sometimes asking them for water or running up and down the halls with tears.

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Today, if you enter the place, you will see ruined walls, torn carpeting, dissolved wooden floors, graffiti and a few scattered chairs composing the scene of abandonment. Furthermore, the lack of artificial light makes the light of day the only good time to walk inside the building without find yourself fall in a trap in one of the many holes that the floor has. However, if you let your mind travel and imagine what happened here several decades ago, it is likely that you will be scared!


It’s not easy after all to walk in places in which thousands of people have suffered and died…



It was not so long ago that the whole world was on the edge of their seats watching the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl unfold right before their eyes. The live news footage from Ōkuma in Fukushima seemed like a scenario straight from the apocalypse, as viewers across the globe witnessed Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant go up in flames after being battered by a devastating scale 9.0 earthquake and massive tsunamis. A total of three meltdowns took place within the plant due to the failure of cooling systems and ineffective crisis management on part of the local authorities.

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A couple years after the events in 11 March 2011, the town still remains uninhabited and ongoing efforts to clean up the aftermath of the catastrophe are far from finished. So far the fear of residual radioactivity has kept people away from Ōkuma, which has ensured that the town has been left mostly untouched. This is what makes Fukushima a truly unique location on the face of the Earth, because unlike Chernobyl, where locals and tourists have left their mark over the years, it has preserved its “pristine” condition. The pictures taken by various daring photographers and reporters capture the eerie beauty of the abandoned ghost town.

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Fukushima seems like a place that one day all of a sudden stopped dead in its tracks – homes and workplaces abandoned, cars deserted in the middle of the street, things left untouched in the precise spot where they were struck by the disaster. Numerous clocks and calendars hauntingly reflect the exact moment time stopped running in Fukushima.

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Horror fiction writers and filmmakers have played around with the idea of what it would be like if everybody would suddenly just disappear. Fukushima actually lets you see what it would be like.

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Currently, even six years after the disaster the tragedy is ongoing, as tens of thousands of evacuees have been denied access to their homes and possessions. Debates continue among scientists and government officials about the actual level of danger in Fukushima and whether inhabitants will eventually be allowed to return. In the meanwhile, Fukushima is slowly becoming a famous destination for “dark tourism”.

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Despite the potential risks, local inhabitants have lately begun organizing guided tours in small groups through the ruined town in order to help preserve the memory of the tragedy and send a warning about the dangers of nuclear power. While Fukushima most likely will never be an official tourist spot, the local government has acknowledged and started permitting short visits to safer areas of the prefecture with adequate safety gear. Locals claim the tours are all part of a larger long-term plan of rebuilding Fukushima in the future. For now, though, it remains a ghost town frozen in time on that faithful day of 11 March 2011.