Turkmenistan’S Door To Hell: Awe-Inspiring Crater Burning Fire For Over 40 Years

- 4 years ago by

Do you consider yourself a true adventure travel enthusiast? If the answer is 'yes' then you must enjoy visiting unusual even terrifying places that take your breath away, make you think of your sins and pray for redemption.

If that description fits to what you're looking for recently, then you should see the flaming crater in the Karakum Desert of Darweze, Turkmenistan which local people call 'Door to Hell'.

Door to Hell is one of the most amazing places on earth, a huge burning hole in the ground that has been spitting out angry flames for over 40 years. What's more, there is quite an interesting story behind it.

Door to Hell is a 230-foot-wide crater located in the heart of the Karakum desert close to Deweze, a village of about 350 residents. In 1971, looking for natural gas reserves, a group of Soviet geologists set up a drilling platform near Derweze for the reason that the area was rich in gas resources. Unfortunately, the operation went wrong. The ground collapsed under the weight and pressure of the drilling. As a result, a large gas crater opened up releasing dangerous amount of gas in the air.

To prevent from spreading poisonous methane gas into the environment the researchers, forced to take immediate action, set the crater on fire hoping it will burn out. The gas firing used to be a common practice and presumably less-expensive, easier and quicker solution for containing gaseous outbreaks from large-sized craters just like this. However, things didn't go according to plan again, as it appears that the crater still burns fire today. That, for sure, wasn’t what the Soviet geologists expected to happen back in 1972. The good thing is that over the years the site turned into a tourist attraction drawing hundreds of tourists into the place.

In 2010, the President of Turkmen announced that time has come time inferno pit to be filled up and isolated in some way. Later, in 2014, local authorities found another solution for better use the burning crater making it open to people from around the world. Door to Hell turned into a pleasant attraction enticing not only tourists but also ecologists, researchers, photographers and adventure travelers. Today, the inferno pit is regarded as a well-known landmark of Turkmenistan.

Annually, Turkmenistan welcomes just about 12,000-15,000 visitors from more than 50 countries.

Opened by mistake four decades ago, Door to Hell gave so much life to the local tourism. People living in the village of Deweze say that the burning crater attracts more and more interest every year. Indeed, foreign tourists pay deep respect to this awe-inspiring wonder of nature. Locals also believe that the inferno pit could become a key place for adventure travelers as well as ambitious photographers in the near future.

The crater is located about 260-270 kilometers from Ashgabat , the capital of  Turkmen. Getting there is the easy part of your journey. Those who seek for high-level trilling experience need to hire a guide who will take them right to the place.

Believe it if you want but Turkmen’s Door to Hell is not the only one man-made pit burning fire for decades. In fact, it scarcely breaks a record. For example, there is a coalmine in Pennsylvania, USA you may or may not have heard of. It has been blazing since May 1962. The burning pit has caused the evacuation of whole towns nearby. For this reason, the regions in close location to the mine are deserted. Attempts were made to contain the blaze to the underground but, unfortunately, they ended without success.

Before planning to visit such striking eye-catching place, you might want to do a little research for yourself. Luckily, you can find lots of videos on YouTube as well as pictures and information on social media and various websites. Google ‘Door to Hell’ and see what happens.