Max Cortesi's User Profile - Atlas Obscura
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Bergamo, Italy

Doors of the Dead

It's believed that the dead were once taken out of houses through these now walled-up doors.
Lainate, Italy

Area di Servizio Villoresi Est

This Volcano-like rest area was designed by architect Giulio Ceppi built according to energy efficiency and ecological footprint standards.
Romano di Lombardia, Italy

Church of San Rocco

Hundreds of plague victims were buried beneath this small, rural church.
London, England

National Gallery Mosaics

A quartet of tiled art pieces adorn the floors of this prestigious art museum.
Weligama, Sri Lanka

Kushtarajagala Statue

Does this 10-foot-tall statue carved into a rock face depict a king afflicted by a skin condition or a Buddhist figure?
Taino, Italy

Taino Gunpowder Mill

The ghostly remains of a gunpowder mill lost in 70 hectares of thick woods.
Mauritania

Ben Amera Monolith

The second largest monolith in the world was once betrayed by its lover, Ben Aicha.
Banaman, Iraq

Khanzad Castle

The legendary fortress of a female Kurdish warrior leader.
Mantua, Italy

Crypt of San Sebastiano's Church

Wander through a maze of empty tombs to find the poles used to hang revolutionary patriots.
Brusaporto, Italy

Sator Square

Acrosticism and palindromes on this randomly placed stone.
Incheon, South Korea

Gentle Monster

A pair of oily black spiders lurk inside South Korea's largest airport.
Mantua, Italy

National Gallery Of Historical Firemen

An expansive collection of vehicles and other paraphernalia marking the history of firefighting.
San Pellegrino Terme, Italy

Casino of San Pellegrino Terme

This lavish 20th-century casino adorns labels for San Pellegrino water.
Bagolino, Italy

Cima Ora Fort

The haunting remains of a World War I fort perched atop a mountain.
Lovere, Italy

Vicolo dei Libri (Book Alley)

Exchange a book at the entrance of this medieval Lovere alley.
Vaduz, Liechtenstein

Schloss Vaduz

Liechtenstein's royal family calls this medieval alpine castle home.
Leggiuno, Italy

Santa Caterina del Sasso

This monastery built into a cliff hides a perfectly preserved hermit in a glass coffin.
Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Thailand

Buddha Head in Tree Roots

One of Ayutthaya’s most iconic locations is a mysterious, hauntingly surreal miracle.
Bergamo, Italy

Ex-Chiesa di San Michele all’Arco

Angels and demons watch over newspapers in this deconsecrated church.
Skopje, North Macedonia

The Statues of Skopje

These abundant, over-the-top monuments are so widely scattered that they define the entire compact capital cityscape, often leading to jokes about whether there are more statues than residents.
Bagolino, Italy

Bagolino Old Cemetery

An ancient cemetery hides behind a line of disparate chapels.
Bergamo, Italy

Visconti-Sforza Tarot Cards

Beautifully decorated tarot cards from the Middle Ages.
Solferino, Italy

The Ossuary at San Pietro

The bones of some 7,000 soldiers killed in the historic Battle of Solferino are stored here.
Mantua, Italy

Casa di Rigoletto

A small villa said to have inspired the design of the court jester at the heart of Giuseppe Verdi's 1851 opera.