The Scariest Sea Monsters From Legends Around The World

Voting Rules
Vote up the creepiest legends about super-scary sea monsters from all over the world.

Legends about sea monsters have haunted communities across the globe for centuries. Mythical sea creatures have been characterized as spirits, enormous brutes, and eerie human-like creatures. Centuries of exploration of unchartered waters have resulted in legends describing frightening mythical sea creatures who feast on human flesh and terrorize those who live to tell the tale.

What are the world’s scariest sea monsters? Some of these mythological beasts might exist in real life. Whether or not you believe the creepy sea monster stories below, with less than 5% of the Earth's seas explored, who knows what's out there?! Vote up the stories about sea monsters, real or not, that you find most frightening.

  • Inuit: Qalupalik
    Video: YouTube
    2,121 VOTES

    Inuit: Qalupalik


    Even though this mythical evil mermaid has some human-like qualities, her green skin and long, grotesque fingernails distinguish her from mere mortals. The Qalupalik likes to snatch children playing near the shore, using a humming voice to lure them to the edge of the water.

    Some say she feasts on the young; others say she feeds off their youthful energy to preserve her beauty. Either way, it's a fateful ending.


    2,121 votes
  • Japan: Umibozu
    Photo: Utagawa Kuniyoshi / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain
    1,657 VOTES

    Japan: Umibozu

    It’s frightening when the sea is stormy, but for Japanese sailors, it’s even more nerve-wracking to sail in calm, tranquil waters, because that’s when this enormous black phantom rises from the deep. 

    Just the sight of this ghostly figure, with pitch-black skin and two large eyes, will make you shiver - until it decides to hurl you overboard and drown you in the sea.


    1,657 votes
  • Judaism: Leviathan
    Photo: Gustave Doré / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain
    1,829 VOTES

    Judaism: Leviathan

    In a case of fire-meets-water, the Leviathan combines two of Earth's natural elements to take the lives of innocent sailors. This fire-breathing sea monster boils the surrounding water to a skin-melting temperature, resulting in turmoil and traumatic loss of life.

    Its sinister nature and ferocious behavior are detailed in the Bible, which depicts the creature as a savage primordial sea serpent.


    1,829 votes
  • Japan: Ningen
    Photo: Carnby / Wikimedia Commons / CC0 1.0
    2,036 VOTES

    Japan: Ningen

    With arms, legs, and five-fingered hands, the Ningen's most horrifying feature is that it looks sort of like a human being. In fact, Ningen means "human" in Japanese. But when you catch a glimpse of its noseless face, fins, and tail, there's no mistaking this thing as a cold-blooded slayer.

    The Ningen lives to spook shipmates by putting its spine-tingling physique on display above the surface.

    2,036 votes
  • Scandinavia: Kraken
    Photo: Pierre Denys de Montfort / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain
    1,393 VOTES

    Scandinavia: Kraken

    You probably remember this massive beast from the film Clash of the Titans. The Kraken has taken on many different shapes over the years, from a gargantuan octopus to a squid and even a crab. Whatever its form, it's one of the largest monsters ever dreamt up in human nightmares, growing to more than a mile in width.

    The Kraken has no problem devouring an entire ship and all its crew in one fatal blow.


    1,393 votes
  • 6
    1,465 VOTES

    Greece: Hydra

    This beast will give you hell in all kinds of ways. Believed to be the guardian of the underworld, this massive monster knows the perfect way to use its razor-sharp teeth and poisonous breath to slaughter virtuous sailors. 

    It’s also equipped with an additional special power: If one of its multiple heads is cut off, two will grow back in its place.

    1,465 votes