Claustrophobia is a phobia of enclosed places. Many people have this phobia and don't even realize it. If you have ever been somewhere that is a bit smaller than usual and you feel like the walls are closing in around you, or you feel like you are having trouble breathing in the small area because of the number of people around you, then you may have claustrophobia. There are definitely places in the world that claustrophobia is more prominent in the general public. Take the Paris Catacombs for example. The Paris Catacombs is a large array of tunnel systems located under Paris. Aside from its creepy backstory, the catacombs are small and enclosed with many pathways being small one person hallways.
Anyone visiting the Paris Catacombs may feel a bit uneasy just by how small they are. This is called feeling claustrophobic and this can happen in many other places. The Paris Catacombs are just an example of the many places in the world where someone can feel claustrophobic. Claustrophobia can strike anywhere whether it is underground or it could even be in a large populated area with many people around. Whatever it is it isn't fun to experience claustrophobia and it is best to stay away from these places if you have claustrophobia.
20 Underground Ancient City, Turkey
This ancient underground city located in Turkey was said to hold upwards of 20,000 people in its prime. This doesn't exactly sound like somewhere that would be particularly claustrophobic. However, considering the whole city is underground it probably is pretty claustrophobic to some. Similar to what makes the Paris Catacombs claustrophobic is what makes this ancient city underneath Turkey so claustrophobic. There are many tunnels and connecting areas with large rooms but you will never shake the feeling that you are underneath the Earth. It is a wonder that over 20,000 people once lived here for years not seeing the light of day.
19 Shinjuku Station, Japan
Rush hour can be one of the worst things to get stuck in. Many cities have a rush hour where people know to avoid it if they can. However, some parts of the world are worse than others when it comes to rush hour. Take Shinjuku Station in Japan for example. Shinjuku Station is known as the busiest train station in the world and serves over three million people every day. The station is made up of 10 different train lines and helps millions of people get to and from work every day. If you don't like large crowds and tiny spaces you may want to find a different time to travel in Japan.
18 Spooky Gulch Passageway, Utah
Utah is known to have some of the best places to hike in the world. The mountainous areas around Utah make for great hiking spots and explorations. However, when you get deep into the smaller areas of Utah you find places like Spooky Gulch Passageway. The Spooky Gulch Passageway lives up to its name as there is about a mile you have to travel in a small canyon that has tight passageways. If you are a hiker and you are afraid of tight spaces you may want to avoid this hike. However, if you want to go on an adventure and see just how tight a fit you can squeeze through then maybe Spooky Gulch is the right place for you!
17 Ancient Underground Tunnels, Jerusalem
Jerusalem has a lot of history behind its walls. Some of this history even goes beyond its walls and into the ground. There is a large ancient underground tunnel system found underneath the city of Jerusalem. The tunnel system is very similar to the Paris Catacombs in that the hallways are tight and unpredictable. The tunnels even go into unmarked areas where there are less light and more mystery. If you are a historian this place may seem like a gold mine but be wary you will have to climb through some very narrow hallways to experience it all.
16 Rising Star Cave, South Africa
The Rising Star Cave located in the Malmani dolomites in South Africa is one of the most claustrophobic cave systems in the world. There is a lot to still be discovered in the Rising Star Cave system which is why it is considered claustrophobic and dangerous. The cave systems feature small walkways and the secret areas require explorers to squeeze through narrow rocks. A few explorers back in 2013 found a secret chamber now known as Dinaledi Chamber and it featured strange fossils within the cave. To get there they had to crawl through a small hole for about a mile to reach it.
15 Pod Hotels, Japan
Japan has already shown that it can be one of the most claustrophobic places on Earth by the sight of its rush hour. However, take a look at a hotel in Japan that makes use of small space for a larger number of residents. These hotels are known as pod hotels and they feature small morgue like holes in the wall that act as small rooms. The room is no bigger than a bed and the main use for the rooms are sleeping. The pods are mostly used by hard working business people who are up late working and need a quick sleep for the night. If you have claustrophobia you may find it a bit hard to sleep in one of these coffin-like beds.
14 Rio Secreto Underground River Tour, Mexico
We have already seen examples of a few cave systems, however, we haven't explored an underground river. The Rio Secreto Underground River Tour in Mexico can be one of the most claustrophobic tours you can take in the world. The destination is quite amazing with large open rooms with beautiful water on the floor and stalactites littering the ceiling. However, as a wise man once said it isn't about the destination it is about the journey. To get to this beautiful room you have to travel through a dark narrow pathway by boat. Many see it as worth it but getting there to know if it is worth it will be difficult.
13 Mecca, Saudi Arabia
The city of Mecca is a large religious center in Saudi Arabia. The trip to Mecca is one that many people who are religious in Saudi Arabia must make at least once in their life. Therefore there is a large number of people traveling to Mecca from all over Saudi Arabia every year. The number continually grows every year to the point where pictures like the one above are becoming worse and worse. There have even been security measures put into place due to the large crowds traveling to Mecca. It was recorded in 2012 that over three million people visited Mecca making it one of the most claustrophobic cities in the world.
12 Bali, Indonesia
Indonesia is one of the most crowded countries in the world making Bali one of the most crowded cities in the world. So many people inhabit the city of Bali as it is a popular place to vacation because of its beautiful beaches. This doesn't help the fact that the overall population of Indonesia is around 260 million people. One of the worst parts of this claustrophobia is the traffic and is one of the main places that you will feel like you are trapped. If you don't like large crowds or spending time with strangers all around you, you may want to pick a different destination than Bali for your next vacation.
11 Seoul, South Korea
Similar to Japan, South Korea suffers from the same crowd problems Japan does. Most of South Korea's problem is the fact that there are so many people being crammed into such a small area of land. You can see this when you look at the city of Seoul. If you think Tokyo is overcrowded then one look at Seoul will shock you. There are around 50 million people in South Korea and most of those people are located in Seoul. Combine this with a city that never sleeps and you have yourself a fever dream for anyone that doesn't like large crowds.
10 Taipei, Taiwan
Sure Japan and South Korea are pretty much the worst offenders when it comes to overcrowding, except when it comes to Taiwan. Specifically, the city of Taipei where most of the 90 million people that live in Taiwan stay. The day to day life in Taipei is almost unlivable due to how many people are simply out on the streets. The traffic is just as bad and it is almost impossible to get anywhere in a decent time frame. If you think LA traffic is bad at rush hour try having it be a rush hour every minute of the day. This is a small glimpse of just how claustrophobic Taipei is in Taiwan.
9 Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
Brazil seems like the type of place that wouldn't suffer from claustrophobia. How could it? It has the Amazon rainforest which is a large sprawling forest with a lot of space to explore. The problem comes in when you factor in Rio De Janeiro. Rio De Janeiro is a large tourist spot as it has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. However, how can you enjoy the beaches of Rio De Janeiro is they start looking like they do in the picture above? Large crowds converge in cities like Rio De Janeiro not only because it is a popular tourist hub but because most other places in Brazil are uninhabitable.
8 The Country Of Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka is a very poor country and part of that is due to its immense population. The country itself is unique in its culture and defines itself in interesting ways. Most of the population of Sri Lanka can be found along the coast as it is hard to inhabit the large mountainous areas that the interior of the island provides. There probably isn't much reason many would want to visit Sri Lanka due to its overpopulation and its economic status but if you do find yourself there it will be hard to find space to be alone let alone breathe your own air.
7 New York City, USA
How can you have a list about claustrophobic places and not put one of the most notoriously claustrophobic places in the world on the list? Since a 2017 record, there are over 8 million people living in New York City alone with another 10 million living in the state of New York. New York City is one of the most popular tourist spots in America just adding to this number. There are a lot of landmarks and things to do in New York City so everyone around the world will likely visit it at least once. That is a lot of people coming in and out of the city.
6 The Country Of India
India is the second most populated country in the world and taking a look at a few pictures it isn't hard to see why. There are people all over India, whether it be in the cities like New Dehli or in the valleys. You can find some peace in quiet in the less urban places of India but they do present much more issues as there is dangerous wildlife that roams those parts. The cities are your best bet but that isn't saying much. Good luck trying to even walk much less use a vehicle on the streets of any city in India. If you are looking for a place to relax you may want to look past India.
5 The Country Of Haiti
Haiti is similar to India and other small locations with a lot of people inhabiting it. The small island of Haiti has a massive population and the area is constantly struck with natural disasters making the country as a whole tragic. The earthquake that hit the country in 2010 devastated the country for good and it is still recovering from it. There isn't much structure in the country which is causing the massive population to grow even more. The country is small and there is nowhere to escape from the large crowds of people.
4 The Country Of Monaco
Taking a step in the opposite direction from Haiti, Monaco is known as one of the richest countries in the world. The country is a place for rich celebrities to vacation and spends their money. However, even though the country seems like an exclusive club the population is well in the hundreds of thousands. There are around 73,000 people per square mile in the country of Monaco. Unless you are a rich celebrity looking to get away, it is likely that you won't be visiting Monaco and you won't want to if you even have a shred of claustrophobia.
3 Barcelona, Spain
The European city of Barcelona is considered to be one of the most claustrophobic cities in Europe. This is because Barcelona is a large area for tourism and many people flock to the area during certain times of the year. The city also suffers from a large pickpocketing problem due to its overpopulation. The amount people that can steal from other people in the city is ridiculous and can only be blamed on the large crowds that roam the streets. If you want to visit Spain there are definitely better cities to visit that will let you breathe a bit and won't flare your claustrophobia.
2 Warsaw, Poland
Warsaw in Poland is one of the most historical places in Europe and has one of the richest histories at that. The city also features beautiful architecture. However, there is an increasingly large population problem. Whether it is locals or tourists, it is becoming harder and harder to walk down the street without seeing a bunch of people. This claustrophobic nature can also be blamed on the fact that large mobs of people will gather often and protest the government in place in Poland. These protests have become very frequent and it is hard to miss if you are visiting Warsaw.
1 Bucharest, Romania
Bucharest may not seem like the type of place that is on top of many people's radars when it comes to vacation spots. However, the city located in Romania has seen its fair share of overpopulation problems. Mainly due to a large number of protests that occur in Bucharest, the city rarely sees a chance to breathe and take in the charming scenery. Possibly one of the worst things to try and do in Bucharest is finding a parking spot. It is like trying to find a parking spot at the mall on Black Friday but every day.