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10 Most Amazing Sinkholes in the World

6. Dos Oja’s, Mexico

Yucatan, Mexico a peninsula famous for sinkholes, is a natural paradise for all the swimming lovers and geologists and has its own natural uniqueness that provides deep down explorations of Mother Earth.

Dos Oja’s
Dos Oja’s also known as Cenote. Image credit: Shutterstock

Nature is a cool dude; it always makes us wonder about its natural exquisiteness. Dos Oja’s pit in the Yucatan Peninsula opens up a two-eyed sinkhole within easy reach is one of the most popular vacation spots in Mexico.

This sinkhole is popularised by the name “ Cenote,” which holds an ancient meaning of supplying underground waters. The sinkhole was formed when the limestone bedrock suddenly collapsed exposing the underground water.

Cenote
Image credit: Luis Miguel Bugallo Sánchez via Wikimedia

The cenote, an open water pool that is around ten meters in diameter and contains very clear water, attracts divers all around the world.

Since the water gets collected from rainwater, it is naturally filtered by the rocks giving it a crystal blue color. Efforts are going on to explore the deep sides of such holes in order to map the underground water system. (source)

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7. Covão dos Conchos, Serra da Estrela

This pit hole in the middle of an isolated lake along the mountainside looks like a dimension portal to some other space and time dimensions.

Serra da Estrela
Covão dos Conchos, Serra da Estrela. Image credit: Shutterstock

This sinkhole located in Lagao da Serra Da, Portugal is not an actual portal to another dimension but rather is an engineered funnel leading to a long tunnel. This tunnel is popularized by the name “Bell-mouth Spillway,” which was constructed in 1955. The motive behind this man-made construction was to divert the flow of water from the river Riberia das Neves.

It was not until 2016 when the pictures of this prominent sinkhole went viral that it gained attraction worldwide.  The growth of moss and floral species at the mouth of the hole has added an alluring value to it. It is an important source of hydroelectricity and freshwater for the towns nearby and hence is regarded as a wonder of engineering. (1, 2)

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8. Monstrous Sinkhole, Siberia, Russia

A 164-foot sinkhole in Yamal Penninsula, Russia opened up due to a massive explosion of methane gas resulting from a rise in temperature of the region. It is nothing less than an impressive, yet dangerous, sinkhole.

Monstrous
Monstrous. Image credit: popularmechanics

Yes, you heard me right! since past years sinkholes have been appearing in many areas of Siberia, Russia. Near the Yana river, a crater was formed, and there is a dramatic increase in the size of the sinkhole. This 164-foot hole was created due to the warming and thawing of the soil beneath, and hence the scientists named it “Hydroccolith” when they discovered it in 2014.

Summers in Siberia are usually hot, recording a temperature up to 100.4 Fahrenheit. This temperature is enough for the meltdown of pipelines and infrastructures underground, favoring the conditions for the formation of sinkholes or so-called “land collapses.”

However, the scientists explain this ghostly image as a cause of poor underground maintenance of pipes carrying fluids, and it is considered as a unique sinkhole in the world as others are formed due to the collapse of the land, but this one was a result of the eruption.

(1, 2

9. Red Lake, Croatia 

A Canadian Shield which is exposed for more than 2,000 years, is a sinkhole formed by the erosion of land and still continues to attract spectators from across the globe.

Red Lake, Croatia
Image credit: Shutterstock

Archeological evidence suggests that the water of the sinkhole has traces of species found over 2,000 years ago. Therefore, it is estimated that the age of this sinkhole is more than 2,000 years, so it holds historical importance.

It is a sinkhole famous for Karst Lake and is situated near Imostski, Croatia. What attracts our attention is the mining activities carried in the region of this sinkhole.

The sinkhole is famous to miners as its soil contains rich deposits of gold and iron. Gold is a major industry in many such places, so along with historical importance, it has also gained economical importance. 

Mechanization of industries such as satellite imaging and awareness for such ecological sites has provided insight to explore this sinkhole. However, Red Lake has extensively promoted nature-based tourism worldwide. (1, 2)

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10. Winter Park Sinkhole, Florida

This is a massive sinkhole that opened up in 1981 and got its name from the company it swallowed.

Winter park
An aerial view of Winter Park. Image credit: OrlandoSentinel

Winter Park Company, Florida is a real estate company dealing with lands and properties. On May 8, 1981, a giant cavity opened up in Winter Park, Florida.

There are several geological factors responsible for its formation such as soil erosion and land shifting, however, the sinkhole did not actually bankrupt the company, but brought a drastic loss in terms of the economy as the company had to sell the land surrounding the sinkhole at very cheap prices. Therefore, economists considered the company to be virtually “swallowed by the sinkhole.” 

The state tried to raise its economy by attracting tourists’ attention and organizing carnivals that promoted research studies about the sinkholes.

So, this natural calamity, even though it caused massive destruction, has now become a major source of income, raising the state’s economy exponentially. Many engineering efforts were taken to repair this sinkhole, but all failed, exposing the site to tourists and visitors from various parts of the Earth. (1, 2)

Also read: 10 Unusual Places From Around the World

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