These places can easily make your blood run cold not only at Halloween but also at any other night of the year. But if you’re an adventurous traveler, head on!
Apart from the gorgeous architecture, Niasvizh Castle is known for its ghost, the mysterious Czornaja Panna (Black Lady). Legend says it is the spirit of Barbara Radziwill, the young wife of King Sigismund II Augustus, who was poisoned by her insidious mother-in-law Bona Sforza and returned to the castle after death.
Modern researchers stick to the version of cancer being the reason for the Queen’s death. Whether it is true or not, but Czornaja Panna has been linked with the place for a long time. They say, the ghost was scaring the life out of German soldiers, who were based in the former Radziwills residence during WWII. The last time she was seen was shortly before the fire, that broke out in the castle in 2002.
Guides say that Mir is full of ghosts!
Local guides say that the Mir Castle is full of ghosts! For example, they tell stories about two skeletons in combat ammunition, that were found in one of the cellars of the castle during the reconstruction in 1926. Although their remains were buried, but from time to time the dead soldiers return to the place where they died to rattle their armor and swords.
One more ghost disturbing local residents and tourists is the spirit of the daughter of the castle’s owner, Nikolai Svyatopolk-Mirsky. 12-year-old Sofia drowned in the pond in the garden, and soon after her father followed the girl. People believe it was not by accident – the pond was allegedly cursed by a witch, who lost her son during the building of the pond.
Glorified in the novel “The Black Castle” by a notable Belarusian writer Vladimir Korotkevich, this place is famous for the Black Monk, the ghost of an unnamed young man, who was immured in the wall of the castle by a local ruler for the love the guy had for the man’s daughter.
Since then the restless spirit roams cellars and galleries of the building and scares its visitors.
At present even the walls of the castle evoke horror because of the way the look – open to all winds, abandoned and decaying more and more every year.
It is not only in the faraways castles that ghosts live – some can be found in the heart of Minsk.
The ghost of a young woman Jadwiga Luban is believed to live in Losycki park. History tells that the wife of the owner of the local mansion was so tired of loneliness next to a busy husband that started dating Minsk governor Musin-Pushkin literally behind her spouse’s back.
The two did not hide their affair and the governor was sending love letters directly to the mansion. Jadwiga’s husband was mad about it.
Once, after a quarrel with her husband, the woman ran out of the mansion into the park. She never came back. Next morning her body was found in the river nearby. The grief-stricken husband forgot all his business and left Minsk forever having planted a tree next to where his wife died.
According to the legend, Jadwiga’s ghost appears in the park when the tree is in blossom.
House where no one would dare to spend the night
If you start thinking that ghost stories are limited solely to the bored nobles, here’s one from simple people.
In village Gorodki in Valozhyn district (Minsk region) there’s an abandoned house where only the bravest might dare to spend the night.
The building was never completed, because, according to a local legend, the hosts were stricken by numerous troubles even before they started living there. All of a sudden men of the family who lived in the house began dying tragically one after another.
So the house remained empty.
Locals say the house is built on the graves of Polish soldiers killed there during the Polish-Soviet War in the early 1920s. In Soviet times authorities destroyed the cemetery and gave land out for building. People believe that the spirits of the dead will not allow anyone to spend a night in the empty house without driving an uninvited guest mad.
An abandoned children’s hospital in Minsk
In Belarus there are a lot of abandoned buildings that evoke horror even without mystical past.
One of such places is an abandoned children’s hospital in Minsk. The building, constructed in the late 1930s, was left empty in 2004. Wards with peeling walls, rusty medical instruments, rotten furniture are scattered all over the place…
One interesting past of the hospital is a round amphitheater room, destroyed by a fire. This room resembles an autopsy hall, where in older days professors would dissect human bodies in front of medical students.
Ideal for filming a horror movie!
One more abandoned site is located not far from Bialowieza Forest in Hrodna region.
It is an uncompleted command post of the United armed forces of the Warsaw Pact. The construction of “Object 1161” started in 1985 but builders failed to complete the huge underground complex before the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The entrance to the deepest bunker in Belarus has been blocked a while ago but curios diggers still manage to find loopholes. People joke that those, who went down to the lowest levels of the bunker, heard voices of the spirit of…. communism.
Moreover, one can be terrified by how much money was “buried” in the ground here.
WWI battle fields
In the beginning of March of 1916 the banks the largest Belarusian lake, Lake Naroch, became a place of ne of of the fiercest WWI battles at the Eastern Front.
Frost, artillery, guns, bayonets, and chemical weapons took away lives of about 50 thousand soldiers. Forests around Naroch are still dotted with half-buried trench and thousands of unmarked graves.
And locals know many bad stories about these woods.
The Dead Lake
Sometimes it is not man, but nature that creates horrific places. The Dead Lake belongs to a water reserve Blue Lakes located in Myadzel district in Minsk region.
The lake got its depressing name reservoir because there is practically no life in its waters. The surrounding forests are also known for almost oppressive emptiness, animals are very rare guests here.
While locals attribute this strange phenomenon with centuries-old curses and legends about drowned towns, scientists prefer a more fact-based approach. The lake’s lifelessness is explained by a big concentration of hydrogen sulfide in the water and almost complete absence of water circulation in the depth. Hence, there’s no food for animals who prefer other, more abundant places.
It’s not a secret that ghosts like cemeteries. Not many people feel comfortable if they happen to walk past such places after dark.
Residents of Uzda, a town in Minsk region, have one more reason to be cautious about local cemetery – a tall stone pyramid tomb towering over it.
It was built in 1800 by a general who was fond of Egyptian style, quite popular at the time. Though not directly linked to any scary stories, the tomb is anyway associated with ancient gods and bloody rituals.