IrelandCnoc An Iuir, an empty and unsold housing development, is pictured in the village of Drumshanbo, County Leitrim Jan. 28, 2012. During the economic boom, Irish developers attempted to cash in, building tens of thousands of houses. However, poor planning decisions and the global recession have resulted in a large number of estates being abandoned, unoccupied or unfinished.
Okuma, FukushimaAn empty street is seen in the abandoned town of Okuma during the temporary return visit of evacuees, inside the 20-km (12-mile) radius around the tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima prefecture Feb. 12, 2012. All the 11,000 residents of Okuma town have been evacuated since last year's tsunami and earthquake which hit the nuclear power plant.
Tomioka, FukushimaAn empty shopping street is seen in Tomioka town, inside the exclusion zone of a 20km radius around the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, Fukushima prefecture, Jan. 15, 2012.
ChinaResidential homes line a deserted street in the Kangbashi district of the town of Ordos in China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region May 11, 2011. About 30 km (19 miles) north of Dongsheng is the Kangbashi district of Ordos, which means "palaces" in the Mongolian language, an area filled with thousands of residential apartments and duplex-style homes, built to house mainly workers for the nearby coal mines just outside the town. However, the estimated one million people that were expected to move into or visit the district's now decaying buildings, have yet to appear.
Detroit, MichiganThe abandoned and decaying manufacturing plant of Packard Motor Car is seen in Detroit, Michigan April 2, 2011. The city is a part of America's Midwestern "Rust Belt", the heartland of the country and home to big unionized manufacturers like the auto and steel industries. The plant, built in 1907 and designed by Albert Kahn, is located near downtown.
Ukraine's Abandoned City of PripyatGeneral view of Ukraine's ghost town of Pripyat, April 13, 2006, in the 30 km (19 miles) exclusion zone around the closed Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Around 50,000 Pripyat residents were evacuated after the 1986 nuclear catastrophes. 25 years later, the site was officially opened to tourists in 2011, though the city won't be inhabited ever.
Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, UkraineA general view of the sarcophagus covering the damaged fourth reactor at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine. Chernobyl, an abandoned city in the north of Ukraine, witnessed one of the world’s most disastrous nuclear catastrophes on April 26, 1986, when reactor No. 4 exploded, contaminating a large part of the Northern Europe, including Belarus and Russia, with harmful radiation. It is considered as the world's worst civil nuclear accident.
Every region or country has its share of abandoned houses, deserted streets and uninhabited human settlements.
There are different reasons why some places get abandoned and haunted by history's unwelcome memories. While people had to leave some of these places following a disaster or war, others lie abandoned as an aftermath of a downturn. There could be social, religious and other reasons too.
Check out the slideshow to know about such places around the world and why they remain uninhabited.