When I think of nature, I think of flowers, pretty ponds covered in lily pads, and Bambi. With the increased discussion about environmentalism and human impact on nature, it's easy to imagine that Mother Nature is a passive player on Earth.
However, while slow with its movements, nature has a way of winning back the land after civilization has let it be. These are eerie photos that show nature overcoming the products of civilization after they're abandoned.
This Church That's No Longer In Human Use
Blame it on secularism, but this church hasn't seen any visitors in quite some time. Plants and weeds have since poked through the floor and taken over the small cathedral.
A Mangrove Forest Suffocating A Statue
This mangrove forest is located in Southeast Asia, and has slowly been wrapping its roots around this statue and absorbing it. Mangroves grow in in coastal brackish (salty) water, and are able to release, move locations, and re-root.
An Abandoned French Château
This 13th-century Château is located in France. In 1932, a fire caused devastating damage to the building and its contents. It has since been abandoned and left for nature to takeover, though there have been recent petitions to restore the building.
The Remnants Of A Town In The Desert
These photographs were taken in what used to be Kolmanskop, a village that was once an oasis in the Namibian desert. The village used to house miners, but the dissolution of the oasis drove the inhabitants to relocate.
Ivy Vs. Escalator
The escalator, which was originally called the "Endless Conveyor or Elevator", was invented in 1892 and has been widely implemented worldwide. This escalator, however, was abandoned after pedestrians started taking other routes.
Trees Sprouting From Old Chimneys
These trees are growing through the smoke-stacks of a now-defunct sugar mill. The industrial revolution in the 1800s created enormous increases in manufacturing facilities. Outdated technology has since been abandoned, and the trees have reclaimed the chimneys as their own.
A Tree House, If You Will
This house is located in the Norwegian countryside, though it has long been abandoned by its human inhabitants. Now, only trees live here and I'm glad to see that they conquered their growing pains.
A Train Car In The Middle Of The Forest
This train car was photographed in the middle of the forest in China without any clear indication of how it got there. While pretty intact on the exterior, it's slowly being consumed by the greenery.
Scola Tower, Liguria, Italy
The Scola Tower, also known as the tower of St. John the Baptist, is a former military building off the Northwest coast of Italy. Alongside other coastal towers, it was part of a defensive system built in the 16th/17th centuries but was damaged in a naval battle in 1800.
The Sign Is Screaming "STOP"
Trees are incredibly resilient plants, and they will not let anything get in their way. They will grow around or over any item or building that gets in their way.
Don't Mess With The Ocean
We all know that erosion exists and that the movement of water can break down just about anything, but this photo of an apartment building in the former fishing village of Kirovsky, Russia shows just how powerful water can be.
The Ivy Said, "This Is Mine Now"
This bicycle was photographed in Utrecht, the fourth-largest city in the Netherlands. The Dutch are notorious for their reliance on cycling as a main form of transportation. With bicycles being so ubiquitous there, thefts are pretty uncommon which is how this bike was left long enough to get covered like this.
This Abandoned Asylum Looks Like A Painting
This abandoned asylum is located in the northern Italian countryside, with windows opening up to the surrounding greenery. When it was left behind by its inhabitants, nature started to reclaim it.
Tree Growing From The Hull Of A Sunken Ship
Mangrove trees are back at it again and growing in strange and majestic places. When their roots are released from the ground, they can drive out into open water. This one happened upon this ship and anchored itself to the hull.
A Cottage In The Woods Seemed Like A Good Idea
This looks like the place that princess Aurora lived before she found out about her royal parentage. This stone cottage was photographed in Sneem, Ireland and has not been inhabited for decades.
This Looks Like Something Out Of A Sci-Fi Movie
While this may look like a Hollywood set for a film like Star Wars, this is actually the remaining structure of an abandoned government building in Buzludzha, Bulgaria in the Central Balkan mountains.
I would like to personally thank the person who stuck the googly eyes only the bridge for creating this masterpiece. Trees engulfing man-made items is generally amazing, but the eyes truly make this incredible.
An Island Built From A Boat
Located near the Magnetic Island off the coast of Australia, this former passenger ship has slowly been returning to nature. The boat, named S.S. "The City of Adelaide", was gutted by fire and was abandoned in the water in 1916.
A Ghost-Town In Cyprus
Varosha is an abandoned southern quarter of the city of Farmagusta near the eastern coast of the country Cyprus. Its inhabitants fled during the Turkish invasion of 1974, and has remained empty ever since.
Spot The Covered Up Barn!
This barn located in Tennessee has been entirely engulfed in Kudzu, a family of plants that tends to climb, coil, and trail around all surrounding objects. While native to Southeast Asia, it grows well in many climates.
A Haunting Tower Located In Sintra, Portugal
Located in Portugal's Sintra Mountains not too far from Lisbon, Villa de Sintra is famous for its 19th-century architecture. The area is now a huge tourist destination, with many castles, palaces, estates, and gardens scattered across the area.
Light Streaming Into An Old Theater
While this theater used to be full of excited viewers, it isn't a house of the theatrical arts anymore. While the seating has remained intact, the sun and rain have weathered the ceiling, allowing these rays of light to break through.
A Remnant Of The Roman Empire
Timgad was a Roman city in the Aurès mountains located in northern Algeria. It was founded by Roman Emperor Trajan close to 100 CE, and its ruins are one of the best remaining examples of the Roman grid-plan for cities.
Nature Is Reclaiming The Chernobyl Exclusion Zone
The Chernobyl disaster in 1986 had a long-lasting impact on all of the inhabitants nearby and caused devastating health problems. Now, the exclusion area that was evacuated for citizens' safety has since been reclaimed by nature.
Mushrooms Growing Up Through The Floor
Most of us have heard the biblical warning to not build your house on sand, but you definitely should not build your house over mushrooms. These resilient fungi make sure to get their way with no regard for your hardwood.
An Abandoned, Weathered Castle In New York
Bannerman Castle is located on Pollepel Island in New York's Hudson River. It was previously a fortress for weapons and it's only accessible by private boat. It has been abandoned since the 1950s.
Cactus On A Rain Gutter
Cacti can survive in just about any conditions (I mean, anything that can survive in the desert is a super-plant), and they can thrive anywhere, including the rain gutter of a suburban house.
This Entire Abandoned City
Akarmara, Abkhazia was a bustling coal-mining town in the Soviet era, but wars and economic downturn caused inhabitants to leave. Now only 35 residents remain in the empty town in the country of Georgia.
A Mall In Ohio That Closed In 2008
Rolling Acres Mall was a shopping mall located in Akron, Ohio that opened in 1975. At its peak, the mall hosted over 140 stores, but it started to decline in the late 1990s and it was demolished in stages between 2017 and 2019.
Goodbye Yellow-Stripe Road
Located in Washington state near Kitsap county, this road has all but been erased from existence. Abandoned roads exist all over the Cascade Mountains, which is where at least four of Ted Bundy's victim's bodies were recovered.