God and Satan, the fight is old but as much as God likes to stay in heaven, the devil resides within the humans and is believed to be residing in abandoned and unholy places on earth which are believed to be gateways to hell. As astonishing and creepy as it sounds, there are around 10 places on earth which are believed to be gateways to hell.
1. Fengdu, China
Nearly 2000-year-old, this city of ghosts is based in Chongqing municipality. The place is believed to be a place where the dead makes a stop before moving into the afterlife. More, the place has numerous Buddhist and Taoist temples and is surrounded by immortal spirits that torment the soul of the dead. It is believed that a freshly dead soul has to cross the bridge of helplessness where it is judged for its virtue and if failed is tormented by the immortal spirits.
2. Stull Cemetery
The Kansas Stull cemetery is a popular haunted graveyard in America. The place is infamous for its earned title “Doorway to Hell” by local legends and people who have visited the place. Legends around the place include stories like demonic presence, witchcraft, satanic rituals, sacrifices and other notorious grave hours events. The place is believed to be a fantastical place of unimaginable evil. The place has gained a strong presence online since past one decade.
3. Mount Hekla
In the rare corner of the world, Iceland developed a reputation for its Mount Hekla after a series of 1104 continuous eruptions in the 12th century. In a poem titled as Voyage of St. Brendan of an Anglo-norman origin claimed that the volcano is the prison of Judas. The reputation later turned into a strong belief after the volcano 1341’s eruption as some claimed that there were birds flying amidst from the fire further signifying as swarming of souls. Adding more to the horror, the place is also believed to be a meeting point for witches and the devil.
4. Cave of the Sibyl
Located in Phlegræan Fields of Naples, Italy- a barren and an ashed place just a walk away from Mount Vesuvius, is the holy site of Tiburtine Sibyl who was also known as the doomsday forecaster. The cave is an underworld guide, also the home of Sybil is believed to be directing the followers to River Styx, which is the main path to Hades (god of the dead). Scientifically the cave is full of sulphur fumes and can easily suffocate or choke anyone who spends awfully longer time inside. It is believed that the cave in a perfect wasteland is a direct roadway to hell.
5. Houska Castle
The 13th-century gothic mansion build over Czech countryside has a bizarre and disturbing reputation. Local legends say that the castle has a bottomless pit beneath its structure which is a direct doorway to hell. People around the place claim that they have experienced strange sightings at night and some fear to go around the castle during grave hours as a local belief of demons walking on road haunts majority of them. Some believe that during 1253 AD the castle was built to keep demons at bay and since then the castle acts as a portal in between humans and demons. The castle has no practical use and people refrain from entering the place even at daytime.
6. Mount Osore
Floating clouds of sulphur over a dormant volcano and a poisonous lake, Mount Osore brilliantly conjures a vision of hell enough to give goosebumps to any onlooker. Located near a sacred Buddhist temple near remote Shimokita Peninsula of Japan, the translation of Mount Osore is Mountain Horror. The popular mythology behind Mount Osore is one plain belief recognized as the gateway to hell. According to Japanese Buddhists, every soul must pass through Mount Osore before entering into the afterlife, hence the title, gateway to hell.
7. St. Patrick’s Purgatory
The gateway to Purgatory is known as the place where souls are punished before being sent to heaven. Legend says that Christ directed Patrick to a cave in station island. During his stay in the cave, Patrick had also received visions of the torments of Hell in order to create justice. With it’s reputation as a place used to curse or punish unworthy souls, the place later became a pilgrimage spot which was then shut down due to increasing untimely incidents.
8. Pluto’s Gate
Pluto’s gate is a recently discovered entry to hell as claimed by a team of archaeologists. The place came into light after reports of several bird deaths surfaced due to its mysterious and consistent emission of poisonous gases. Located in Turkey, gate has an urban legend attached to it. The legend says that in the past many animals and birds were brought to the cave for a sacrifice to God Pluto. If you wish to visit the gate to hell then this one will surely ask for a commitment and adverse sacrifice.
9. Cape Matapan
Known as the first gateway to classical hell, the Cape Matapan caves located in the southernmost tip of Greece is believed to be the entrance to the Hades cave. Another theory of Hercules digging out the caves to enter the underworld is a popular belief amongst the residents of Greece. The God of the dead aka Hades has a major linkage with the beliefs related to Cape Matapan.
Acheron flowing through the northwest part of Greece has a strong mythology attached to it. It is noted in ancient books of Greek mythology that Circe had directed Odysseus to the underworld by telling him that there is a point where the Acheron coincides with the Pyriphlegethon and of a branch of Styx. More, it is believed that there is a ferryman named Charon who is supposed to carry the freshly dead souls through the river into the afterlife. Taking reference from Dante’s poem Inferno it is said that the souls of the uncommitted who chose neither hell or heaven are punished to stay at the banks of Acheron. Considering it only as a piece of Greek mythology, Acheron is believed to be a gateway to hell.