What Lies Beneath: Top 10 World Underground Attractions

Yes yes, we’ve all seen lists of the World’s top destinations, wonders of the world etc., but if you dig a little deeper to see what lies beneath, there are some fascinating underground attractions. This list includes a mix of  intriguing, creepy and slightly magical subterranean spaces.  

Read on to discover mines, caves, tunnels and graves with a dash of retail therapy thrown in for good measure.

Underground Living and War Time Tunnels

Wieliczka Salt Mine, Poland

side view of a bottle with salt

Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com

Deep under ground, hewn from the salt rock are a chapel, a cathedral and a football pitch. There is also a sanatorium and a post office! This is a fascinating place to visit.

Cappadocia Caves, Turkey

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Kaymakli and Derinkuyu are extensive underground cities, said to have been able to shelter thousands of people in their day. Moreover, the cities include subterrena stables, churches, kitchens and wineries. You can read more about them here.

Cu-Chi Tunnels,Vietnam

woman wearing a hat

Photo by Vo Thuy Tien on Pexels.com

This intriguing network of claustrophobic tunnels, was built by the Viet Cong evading the Americans.  You will need to crouch down to traverse the tunnels, they are low and narrow. The tunnels boast booby traps, air vents and exits into the river.

Outside there is a shooting range and bullet-riddled chopper. Many of the original guides were former Viet Cong, but Find out more about visiting the tunnels here

Secret Tunnels at Dover Castle, UK

beach calm cliffs coast line

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

As well as being home to the impressive Dover Castle, the soft chalk made possible a series of tunnels that were used during World War II. Even older than the wartime tunnels, there are spooky medieval tunnels.Supernatural Underground Attractions

Mysterious Underground Attractions

Basilica Cisterns, Turkey

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In Turkish they are called Yerebatan Sarayi, meaning Sunken Palace, Beneath the heart of ancient Istanbul, forgotten in the mists of time, this underground water cistern is in the heart of ancient Istanbul. It’s an atmospheric place, with spectral fish and a spooky upside down medusa head.

If it looks familiar, that could be because it was used as a film location in the 1963 From Russia with Love Bond Film and also Inferno, the adaption of the Dan Brown book starring Tom Hanks.

Mother Shipton’s Cave, UK

Once upon a time a baby was born in this ancient cave. She became the  prophetess Mother Shipton who foretold many things and was thought to be a witch. There is also a petrifying well which turns everyday objects to stone. 

Glittering Grottos

London Silvervaults, UK

assorted silver colored pocket watch lot selective focus photo

Photo by Giallo on Pexels.com

Perhaps you’ve read about or seen Gringotts in the Harry Potter books or films?  Could the London Silver Vaults be the inspiration behind it? Originally opened as actual vaults, it’s now also a subterranean shopping experience offering all manner of new and antique silver goods.  

Access is downward via a multitude of steps, intimidatingly sturdy vault doors and plenty of security cameras. This place is truly a hidden gem. 

Cullinan Diamond Mine, South Africa

Road sign by dusty road with a diamondTake an underground mine tour at the famous Cullinan mine near Pretoria in South Africa.  Click here and here to read about the surface tour at Cullinan.

Creepy Crypts

Catacombs, Paris

pile of human skulls

Photo by Felipe Hueb on Pexels.com

When Paris cemeteries overflowed, an underground ossuary was built to store the bones of the masses. These catacombs have drawn in tourists from far and wide for many many years. Find out more here.  

Underground Animal Encounters

Mhondoro Safari Lodge, South Africa

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Mhondoro safari lodge has built an underground tunnel enabling guests to view their onsite watering hole at eye-level. It’s kind of like a bird hide, but so much cooler. You could come eyeball to eyeball with a bull elephant or a family of ugly-beautiful warthogs.

 

Which underground, subterranean or underworld attractions and tourist spots would you add to this list?

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