Top 5 incredible places and why you’ll never go there

Our planet has some truly beautiful, truly amazing places that one simply must see in one's lifetime. There are places that offer a visual treat, some that enrich the mind with cultural extravaganza while others that provide diverse attractions ranging from amazing flora and fauna to enticing nightlife.

At the other end of the spectrum, there are places that you would never want to put your foot on, even if offered an all-expense paid vacation. Today we look at five such places that may not be anybody’s idea of paradise but are fascinating nevertheless for their own distinctive features. Some may be regarded as dangerous and some as downright weird. Nevertheless, take a look. You just might find a reason to go there. Maybe curiosity alone might compel you to explore these places.

The Alnwick Poison Gardens in England

If the flora of a country fascinates you, you might be attracted to the Alnwick Poison Gardens. But be warned – these plants can kill! Some of the botanical names maybe familiar to you if you are from the UK: belladonna, mandrake, ivy, etc. Some even more common names like tobacco, coca and cannabis also feature among them. But then these are not there for visitors to touch or consume.

Coca and cannabis are grown in special cage-like enclosures and made inaccessible by thick bars. The official records of the place indicate that it was modelled after the famous Botanical Gardens that were created in the 16th century in Padua, Italy. That Italian botanical marvel was the first of its kind and featured huge expanses of poisonous and medicinal plants. The Alnwick Gardens may not be an exact replica of the Italian wonder but is as deadly.

Izu Islands, Japan

If Japan’s Buddhist gardens, sushi and seafood no longer excite you, would you like to consider Izu Islands? You will see the residents of these isles walking around with gas masks and wonder why. Prod a native and you will get the story behind this unusual yet compulsory preventive step. You will discover that you are visiting a place that is highly prone to volcanic activity. Consequently an often unbearable stench of sulphur is ever-present. ‘What does sulphur smell like?’ you might ask.

Well you might look suspiciously at the natives because it smells similar to a fart. But the natives are too few to release such an overwhelming amount of gas. You can safely assume, that the earth had swallowed something indigestible and let out a blast of gas. The last known volcanic eruptions occurred in 1953 and 2000 when the residents were evacuated. The two towns on the islands, forming part of Tokyo are again inhabited with people since 2005.

Ramree Island, Burma

If the saltwater crocodiles don’t get you, the mosquitoes and scorpions will certainly turn you into reptile-food overnight. And what remains of you after the crocs are done will be cleaned up within hours by vultures. This swampy area breeds mosquitoes, crocodiles and poisonous scorpions that can make life tough even for Bear Grylls.

If you’re one for history, you might be interested to know that this hostile place was the site where a 6-week battle was fought out during the II World War. More than 1000 Japanese soldiers had ventured into these swamps. Nature’s elements proved to be the tougher battle for the soldiers – only 20 or so survived. Ramree Island - Would you dare to go there?

Ilha de Queimada Grande, Brazil

Even if you are a toughened explorer hardened by years of living in forests, you might still want to skip the Ilha Queimada Grande – popularly known as Brazil’s Snake Island. It would be no exaggeration to say that the place is snake-infested. According to a conservative estimate, there are, an average of 2.5 poisonous snakes for every square meter! Nearly all the species of snakes on the island are venomous.

Among the ones with the most lethal poison, the golden lance-head (a pit viper) is the deadliest. The venom can melt the flesh around the snake’s bite. So your chances for survival are almost NIL. If you’d like to go there, ask any Brazilian in Sau Paulo, he’ll first offer you directions and then look at you with great pity and finally will look heavenwards as if to say a silent prayer.

Thetford Mines, Canada

Would you believe it? A bus actually offers sight-seeing tours of a place that can make you sick with diseases such as cancer!! The place is known for high concentrations of silicate minerals that are in high demand for their fire resistance and sound absorption properties. All mining activity related to asbestos has been banned across Europe. But some countries continue to plumb the Earth’s depths for this naturally occurring and highly prized combination of minerals. Canada, for instance.

Its Theford Mines are a prime example of how commercial interests take precedence over health concerns. The place can be visited in buses which will take you around sight-seeing to wonder in amazement at the houses of mine workers that are built right beside piles of asbestos waste. Oh BTW, the bus tour is FREE.