Legends of the Deep: 10 Intriguing Watery Mysteries From Around The World

by | Feb 12, 2022 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

Why Are We Drawn To The Water?

Water has always been the focus of human nature. From ancient people to the modern day man, everyone feels attracted to water. 

Most swimmers agree that there’s something magical, healing and unpredictable about water which keeps them diving back in!

70% of the Earth surface is underwater and yet 95% remains unexplored by humans… the mystery of what lies beneath has captured our imaginations for millennia.

Here are some of the all time favourite watery folktales from around the world to inspire, spook and entertain you!

So let’s start by taking a deep dive to find the creatures that hide in the vast darkness of the sea!

Creatures of the Deep:

Kraken, Makara, Nessie, Yacumama, Umibozu… almost every culture in the world has a name for the sea monsters believed to inhabit the depths of our planet. Sailors have blamed them for attacks on ships and the vanishing of islands. Mermaids (half-human, half-fish) also come up in folklore worldwide.

One of our favourite myths about this is from Sicily: Nicola was the son of a fisherman with a knack for diving who everyone called “Colapesce” (“Nick the Fish”) for his extraordinary ability to hold his breath underwater.

The king of Sicily asked Colapesce to dive as deep as he could to find out what holds the island of Sicily up. Colapesce went to explore and, upon his return, informed the king that Sicily was held up by three columns, but that one was damaged, and it looked like the island would soon be submerged.

Legend has it that Colapesce then returned to live underwater as a fish, helping to hold up the third column with all his strength… and when he moves to adjust himself, Sicilians feel the earth move under their feet!

Magic or Optical Illusion?

What do Lake Windermere and Lough Gur have in common? They’re not just lakes in the British Isles… they’re also the sites of strange visions!

Several people have spotted the ghostly white horse that traverses Lake Windermere to warn of a storm, or have stared into the depths of Lough Gur to see the living souls that inhabit a parallel world at the bottom of it.

In the USA, the waters of Lower Yellowstone Falls in Wyoming are said to run red on occasion after a group of Native Americans were swept over and drowned in 1870… or is it a trick of the light?

If you don’t catch a glimpse of the mystical phenomena in lakes or waterfalls, then maybe you’ll spot one of the many ghost ships out on the ocean.

The Caleuche sails around Chile’s Chiloé Island at night, said to be a beautiful white ship, always full of lights and the sounds of a party on board, but which disappears as quickly as it appears, leaving no trace.

The Lady Lovibond, wrecked off the coast of England in 1748, is said to reappear there every fifty years: legend has it that the ship’s captain was sailing to Portugal to take his new bride on honeymoon, but that the first mate (a jealous love rival for the captain’s young wife) seized the wheel in a rage and steered the ship onto the treacherous Goodwin Sands, killing all those on board…

You might need to swap your goggles for binoculars to see this!

Water meeting sky

Sacred and Cursed pools

If you’re feeling brave, why not actually swim in an enchanted body of water? On the Philippine island of Mindanao, tourists can bathe in the translucent jade waters of the Hinatuan Enchanted River, which is protected by engkantos (supernatural beings).

Fishermen have long been puzzled by its magical waters, in which they swear to have seen various fish but couldn’t catch any no matter how they tried.

The Haunted Pool:

Now if you’re feeling really brave, why not go for a swim in a haunted pool?

According to legend, Devil’s Pool in Australia is inhabited by the spirit of an Aboriginal woman, Oolana, who had a love affair with Dyga, a handsome warrior from another tribe. They eloped, but the elders found them and dragged Dyga away, leaving Oolana to drown herself in the pool in despair.

Locals believe that her spirit is still searching for her love today and that she pulls young men into the pool to their untimely deaths. Seventeen young men have died there in the last 50 years…

If you do go in for a swim, make sure to keep to the designated safe zones!

There’s a similar spooky legend from Hong Kong, where several people report seeing a woman dressed in a red cheongsam (traditional wedding dress) by a natural pool called The Bride’s Pool… so-named because a bride fell into the water and drowned on the way to her wedding!

The Bermuda Triangle:

And of course, no discussion of haunted water would be complete without mentioning the Bermuda Triangle, a 500,000 square-mile patch of sea between Bermuda, Miami, and Puerto Rico where innumerable ships have disappeared forever in perfect conditions… May Be best to avoid going for a dip here on your next Caribbean holiday!

The Bermuda Triangle, also known as the Devil’s Triangle, has long been a source of fascination and mystery. Spanning an area between the points of Miami, Bermuda, and Puerto Rico, this region has been purportedly linked to an unusually high number of ships and airplanes disappearing under mysterious circumstances. 

The tales of compasses going haywire, sudden storms, and even time warps have turned the Bermuda Triangle into a hotbed for speculation, supernatural theories, and scientific investigation.

10 Watery Mysteries From Around The World

Historical Enigmas and Disappearances

One of the most famous incidents is the disappearance of Flight 19 in 1945, a training flight of five TBM Avenger torpedo bombers that vanished without a trace. The flight’s leader was reportedly heard over the radio saying, “We are entering white water, nothing seems right. We don’t know where we are, the water is green, no white.”

An extensive search operation found no wreckage, and the mystery deepened when a search and rescue aircraft sent to find them also disappeared.

Theories and Scientific Explanations about The Bermuda Triangle:

Numerous theories have attempted to explain the mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle, ranging from paranormal activity and alien abductions to more scientific explanations. One popular theory suggests that methane hydrates on the ocean floor could erupt, reducing the density of water and causing ships to sink instantly. Others suggest magnetic anomalies that confuse compasses and spatial disorientations leading to navigational errors.

However, many scientists argue that the mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle are not so mysterious after all. They point out that the area is one of the most heavily trafficked for ships and airplanes, which naturally increases the likelihood of accidents. 

The region is also known for its unpredictable weather, strong ocean currents, and the Gulf Stream’s swift and treacherous nature, all of which can contribute to navigational challenges and disasters.

Modern Perspective and Legacy

Despite the logical explanations offered by science, the Bermuda Triangle continues to capture the imagination of the public and remains a popular topic for books, movies, and documentaries. It serves as a testament to the human fascination with the unexplained and the mysteries that the sea holds. 

As technology advances and we delve deeper into the ocean’s depths, perhaps new discoveries will someday provide definitive explanations for the disappearances that have puzzled the world for decades.

In the meantime, the Bermuda Triangle remains a symbol of the mysteries that still lie beyond our current understanding, a reminder of the vast, uncharted, and enigmatic nature of the ocean that continues to challenge and intrigue humanity.

10 Watery Mysteries From Around The World

The Whispering Waves of Atlantis

The legend of Atlantis, a sophisticated island civilization mentioned by Plato, has intrigued scholars and adventurers alike for centuries. Plato described it as a naval power lying “in front of the Pillars of Hercules” that sank into the ocean “in a single day and night of misfortune.” 

This tale has fueled countless expeditions to find the mythical city, believed to be lost beneath the sea. Modern satellite imagery and underwater archaeology have yet to uncover concrete evidence of Atlantis, but the legend lives on, inspiring dreams of discovering a lost world beneath the waves.

The Ghost Fleet of Chuuk Lagoon

In the cerulean depths of Chuuk Lagoon, also known as Truk Lagoon, lies a ghostly armada from World War II. This sunken fleet of over 60 ships and 250 airplanes is a haunting reminder of the past, perfectly preserved in the depths of the Pacific. Divers from around the world are drawn to its mysterious allure, exploring the rusting remains that now serve as a vivid underwater museum. 

The lagoon encapsulates the eerie beauty of destruction, with nature reclaiming the remnants of human conflict as colorful corals and schools of fish make their home among the wrecks.

10 Watery Mysteries From Around The World

The Sirens’ Call of Lake Baikal

Siberia’s Lake Baikal, the deepest and oldest freshwater lake in the world, is shrouded in legends. Among these is the tale of the Baikal seal, or “nerpa,” which some local legends suggest were originally humans transformed by a shaman’s curse. 

The lake is also said to be home to a mysterious creature, much like the Loch Ness Monster, known as the “Usan-Lobson monster.” Sightings of this elusive creature continue to intrigue scientists and tourists alike. Moreover, Lake Baikal is known for its “singing sands” – a phenomenon where the wind creates ethereal music as it passes over the dunes, adding a mystical aura to its already enigmatic beauty.

The Enigmatic Depths of the Mariana Trench

The Mariana Trench, the deepest part of the world’s oceans, remains one of the last unexplored frontiers on Earth. Its darkest recesses are home to bizarre, bioluminescent creatures that defy our understanding of life in extreme environments. The trench also fuels modern myths of giant sea monsters lurking in its uncharted depths, perhaps guarding ancient secrets or undiscovered species that science has yet to reveal. 

The pressure at the bottom is crushing, and only a handful of manned and unmanned missions have ventured into this abyss, each time uncovering new wonders that challenge our perception of the deep sea.

The Vanishing Island of Hy-Brasil

The legend of Hy-Brasil is one of the most intriguing maritime mysteries. Said to be located in the Atlantic Ocean west of Ireland, this phantom island was noted on maps as early as 1325, only to disappear from later charts and explorations. 

Described as a cloaked isle that only becomes visible every seven years, Hy-Brasil has captivated the imaginations of sailors and adventurers for centuries. Despite numerous expeditions, the island remains elusive, fueling speculation about dimensional portals and advanced lost civilizations.

10 Watery Mysteries From Around The World

Tales of the Sunken City of Dwarka

Off the coast of modern-day Gujarat, India, underwater explorations have unveiled evidence of a vast submerged city. Believed to be the Dwarka, the ancient kingdom of Lord Krishna, these ruins suggest an advanced civilization that could date back to 1500 BCE or earlier. 

Artifacts, pottery, and the layout of the city suggest a highly sophisticated culture that parallels descriptions found in ancient Hindu scriptures. This discovery blurs the lines between myth and history, suggesting that some of the world’s oldest tales might have been grounded in real cities swallowed by the sea.

Modern mysteries

These watery legends are not just baseless old stories: new ones come up all the time! In 2011, ocean explorers found an oval-shaped object with strange markings on the bottom of the Baltic Sea. An artistic impression of the grainy sonar image quickly went viral on the Internet, with many people saying it looked like an alien spaceship on the seafloor… 

Scientists think this “Baltic Sea anomaly” is actually some kind of glacial deposit, but its origins are still uncertain. Maybe the story of this aqua-UFO will stick around for generations!

Have you got any watery folktales to share? Any personal encounters with sea gods? Found any sunken treasure?

Let us know in the comments and visit our Facebook Page and Website.

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