Graveyard Shift

The Most Dangerous Bodies Of Water In The World  

Crystal Brackett
1.1k votes 224 voters 5.1k views 12 items

List Rules Vote up the most terrifying aqueous places.

While brilliant lakes and rivers are scattered across the world, the naturally flowing feats of nature that criss-cross the planet Earth are known for being deceiving. Masked behind their scenic landscapes, otherwise beautiful waterways and wells can be the most dangerous bodies of water in the world. On the outside, these lakes can look like natural wonders, but one can never really know what's lurking within their depths.

Invisible dangers like toxic gas, pits of deadly bacteria, and radioactive waste are all too common ways to perish in strange bodies of water. Sometimes, a water's dangers are more visible as tourists and locals can see their intensely turbulent waves and currents that will flip, drown, and crush anything that dives in. Mother nature can be both awesome and absolutely terrifying to behold.

Lake Kivu, West Rwanda: A Lake That Could Explode At Any Moment
Lake Kivu is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Dangerous Bodies Of Water In The World
Photo:  MONUSCO / Myriam Asmani/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 2.0

The luscious, green, fertile lands that surround Lake Kivu on the western cusp of Rwanda, Africa, could explode at any moment. When it does, it won't just be an explosion of water and debris, it will contain heavy pockets of carbon dioxide and methane.

The volcanic springs located on the outskirts pump these gasses into the water, where they linger below the surface. The bacteria that linger on the lake bottom also generate extreme amounts of methane to accompany the bacteria. While both locals and travelers can enjoy the flora and fauna that trail the lakeside, any disturbance could set off an explosion of gas, which would quickly engulf the area and suffocate everyone around it with noxious fumes.

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Lake Karachay, Russia: A Lake So Polluted Spending An Hour Near It Will End You
Lake Karachay is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Dangerous Bodies Of Water In The World
Photo: Лихачева Галина Вячеславовна/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 4.0

Eastern Russia is home to Lake Karachay. The mountains and waters of the lake might make for a scenic view, but the lake is so intensely polluted with radiation that spending time in it will literally cause a swimmer to perish

Located in the southern part of the Ural Mountains and home to an abandoned 1940 Russian nuclear testing facility, the lake has funneled the blunt of that radioactivity into its waters. While the area is absolutely beautiful, it's no place for visitors looking for a relaxing evening with nature. It takes less than an hour in Lake Karachay to pummel visitors with over 600 roentgens of radiation. 

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Boiling Lake, Dominica: A Lake Containing A Direct Line To The Earth's Molten Core
Boiling Lake is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Dangerous Bodies Of Water In The World
Photo: Bayukjdr/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 4.0

Morne Trois Pitons National Park holds the waters of Dominica's Boiling Lake. They are always rumbling, furiously boiling and giving off extreme amounts of steam

While the lake is seemingly normal and is actually quite beautiful - covered in cascading plants and water - there's one spot that raises concern. The top of Watt Mountain holds a basin that will result in serious burns - possibly fatal burns - if someone attempts to touch the boiling waters within. Its heat comes from its fiery depths that penetrate far below the crust of the Earth, trailing all the way down into its molten core.

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Great Blue Hole, Belize: A Sinkhole Filled With Toxic Sulfide
Great Blue Hole is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Dangerous Bodies Of Water In The World
Photo:  U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

The gigantic sinkhole that lingers in the waters of Belize was named the Great Blue Hole because of its topological makeup. While the hole seems like it would be a hotspot for divers, it's best that its venturers don't explore too deeply. Below the surface, past the sharks and coral, lies a layer of toxic hydrogen sulfide. Past the fatal layer, debris and bodies of divers rest in their watery grave. 

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