Paveglia Island, Italy

pav1Paveglia Island is reported to be one of the most haunted locations in Italy. It’s a small island in the Venetian Lagoon located between Venice and Lido in Nothern Italy. There is a small canal that divided the island into 2 parts.

This island has a long history, first being mentioned in chronicles from 421. People from Padua and Este moved there to escape the barbarian invasions and in the 9th century, the population started to grow. Venice came under attack from the Genoan fleet in 1379 and the people were moved off of the island, when it became uninhabited. In 1527, it was offered to the Camaldolese Monks, but they refused the offer. Beginning in 1645, the Venetian government built 5 octagonal forts to protect and control the entrances into the lagoon. Today, the Pavelgia octagon is only 1 of 4 that continues to survive. Starting in 1776, it became a check point for any people and all goods going into or coming out of Venice by ship.

During the Roman era, people that fell victim to the plague were sent to the island and then during the reign of Napoleon Bonaparte when there was an outbreak of the “Black Death”, it was used for the same purpose. The people that died on the island were buried in a mass grave and their bodies were burned. The horror of these diseases also came in another form. If a person showed the slightest sign of being ill, they were sent to the island and burned alive.

In 1922, the existing buildings on the island were turned into a retirement home and insane asylum. Patients frequently reported to the doctors and nurses that they could hear the shrieks and tortured cries from the long dead victims of the plague.

pav2It has been reported that the head doctor experimented on the mental patients. It is said the he used cruel instruments, including drills to perform very crude lobotomies on the patients. He later either threw himself off of or fell from the hospital tower. He claimed that he was being driven mad by ghosts. According to the story, the actual fall didn’t kill him, but rather a strange mist rose up from the ground and strangled him to death. The hospital was finally closed in 1968.

There are reports that a family bought the island in order to turn it into a vacation home. However, they abandoned the property after only staying 1 night on the island. They reported that some unseen force split the face of one of their daughters that required 14 stitches to close it.

Even the local fishermen refuse to go into the waters of the island. They are frightened of pulling up human bones in their fishing nets, as it has been told that approximately 160,000 people have died on Pavelgia Island.

The island remains closed to visitors with very strict access restricted by the Italian government. Even today, the few people that the government does allow to go onto the island usually leave it terrified. They report that there is a heavy and evil feeling and they all agree that it was a place of much human suffering. Pavelgia Island seems to be especially tough on anyone with psychic abilities. However, even those without this gift report hearing tortured moans and seeing spirits.

One man that was granted permission to spend one night on the island alone, reported that when we entered one of the buildings, he heard a loud voice telling him to “leave immediately and do not return”. Most people that know the history of this island, tend to believe that this is sound advice.

Although I could not find an official website dedicated to Pavelgia Island, you can find much information and many photos just by typing the name into your favorite search engine.

Deb Daniel Jansons

Deb Daniel Jansons

Assistant Director / Haunted Locations at National Paranormal Society
I am Deb Daniel Jansons. I was born and raised in the Huntsville, Al area, but lived in Ontario, Canada for 12 years, before coming back home to be with my grandson. I have had an interest in the paranormal since I was a small child and had my first experience. I love going out to places that are known to have strange things happen, but I always look for an explanation of anything that might happen when I am there and take nothing at face value. I also love to read anything that I can get my hands on concerning the paranormal and other people’s experiences. One of my hopes is that the day will come, during my lifetime that we will have absolute proof that there are spirits, aliens, etc out there. Until then, all we can do is investigate and hope.
Deb Daniel Jansons

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