Usually, the cities on most people’s bucket lists are fancy tourist destinations with white sandy beaches, lush mountains, or state-of-the-art infrastructure. However, there are a few towns and cities out there that are unique for being bizarre. From underground towns to abnormally freezing conditions, here is a list of the world’s top 10 strangest cities and towns.

1. Longyearbyen in Norway

Longyearbyen, Norway, is an extraordinary city with many bizarre occurrences. To begin with, the sun sets on October 25th and rises on March 8th, leaving the area’s residents in darkness for four months. As if that’s not strange enough, you can’t really die in Longyearbyen.

Because of the extremely low temperatures, the bodies of the deceased become mummified. Therefore, the dead have to be buried on the mainland so that the bodies can decompose. Also, there isn’t a single cat in Longyearbyen because the authorities banned them.

2. Hallstatt in China

While the Chinese have often been accused of making unoriginal products, they took it to a new level in 2012 when they built a village like another one in Austria. The Chinese cloned the whole of Austria’s Hallstatt village to the tiniest detail. The only difference between the two Hallstatts is that the one in China is more expensive. China’s Hallstatt has since grown into a tourist attraction, especially for people from Austria.

3. Whittier in Alaska

The most fascinating thing about Whittier, Alaska, is that the entire town has only one 14-storey building housing the majority of the area’s residents. Renamed Begich Towers, the building was completed in 1957 and has about 150 two- and three-bedroom apartments. It also houses a church, a police station, and a gas station. There is only one way into Whittier, a tunnel that is opened once every thirty minutes. During summer, the residents of Whittier have to endure up to 22 hours of sunlight.

4. Matmata in Tunisia

Matmata is a small town in Africa’s Tunisia. It is unique because most residents still live in traditional underground (cave-like) structures. Residents build their homes by digging a large pit in the ground and creating small artificial caves around the pi’s perimeters that serve as their rooms.

5. Nagoro Doll Village in Japan

Nagoro doll village is a region in Japan with 400 dolls and about 30 human beings. What makes the village strange is that there are no children there. According to the New York Times, the last time a child was born in that city was more than 18 years ago. This is quite ironic, considering the village is associated with dolls, while dolls are often considered children’s products. The elementary school in Nagoro has since been closed.

6. Coober Pedy in Australia

Coober Pedy is a small town in Australia that is often considered the world’s opal capital. Ever since a teenager discovered opal in Coober Pedy, numerous mines have been built here. More interestingly, about 1500 people in the region live underground because of the extremely high temperatures. Churches, hotels, houses, and entertainment joints are all built underground.

7. Setenil de Las Bodegas in Spain

In Spanish, Setenil de Las Bodegas translates to Rock City. As the name suggests, most houses are built beneath, beside, and even on huge rocks. Setenil de Las Bodegas is a popular tourism destination thanks to its unique landscape.

8. Giethoorn in Netherlands

Giethoorn is a small village in the Netherlands. It is unique because sailing is the only means of transportation. Everyone, even the delivery people, uses a canoe to move around. That, coupled with the fact that the area is so peaceful, makes it a popular tourist destination. The locals say it’s so quiet that you can hear a duck quaking from miles away.

9. Santa Cruz del Islote in Colombia

Santa Cruz del Islote is a 2-acre artificial island in Colombia with about 1200 residents. Besides being one of the most densely populated islands in the world, Santa Cruz del Istote has a lot of strange things. Everyone on the Island is related; they share six surnames. There are no cars, motorcycles, or police officers. As odd as it may sound, there are no crime-related incidents in Santa Cruz del Islote.

10. Hell in USA

Hell is an incorporated community found in Michigan, USA. The region’s mysteriousness lies in its name, which many find strange. If anything, the real estate itself has nothing to do with the religious Hell; it is similar to what you’d find in other parts of the country.

Several theories revolve around the origin of the region’s name. One of them is that, in the past, there was a distillery in there. So, when men were sent shopping, they would stay there “forever” while drinking. Therefore, their wives alluded that their men had gone to Hell. On a lighter note, one of the perks of living here is that you can send letters to your loved ones from Hell.

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Last Update: April 30, 2024