Looking at photos like these scares and fascinates me in equal doses. The sheer scale of these holes reminds you of just how tiny you are. Mirny Diamond Mine, Siberia. I'm pretty sure most people have seen this one. It's an absolute beast and holds the title of largest open diamond mine in the world, at 525 metres deep with a top diameter of 1200 metres there's even a no-fly zone above the hole due to a few helicopters being sucked in.
1 Kimberley Big Hole, South Africa
Kimberly Big Hole, located in South Africa, was a diamond mine over 1,097 meters deep. The mine was closed in 1914 but was later reopened as a tourist attraction. The site is now a major tourist attraction, featuring a bar, small hotel, shops, and eateries – all in the same area that these things would have been located while the mine was active. Workers will be dressed in period garb and visitors will have the opportunity to participate in a simulation complete with dynamite blasts and dusty explosions ? all designed to give visitors a feel for what it was like living in mine town.
2 Glory Hole ? Monticello Dam, California
The Glory Hole at Monticello Dam is a man made hole designed to help drain water from the reservoir. The sheer size of the hole allows it to drain over 14,440 cubic feet of water every second ? yes, that?s every second! Water that is drained through the hole is shot out at the bottom of the dam. Rumors claim that a woman jumped down the hole thinking she would come out the other end but never lived to tell the tale ? I?ve seen no proof, so take that story or leave it.
3 Bingham Canyon Mine, Utah
Bingham Canyon Mine, located in Utah, is still an active mine and is considered to be one of the world?s most productive. The canyon was originally discovered in 1850 and mining began in 1863, at which point it became apparent how valuable the site actually is. The mine produces millions of ounces s of valuable metals, including copper, gold, silver, and molybdenum each year. The Rio Tinto, the owner, is currently committed to a project that will ensure the mine stays open until at least 2013.
4 Great Blue Hole, Belize
The Great Blue Hole in Belize is located in the center of Lighthouse Reef. The hole itself is a limestone sinkhole. It measures 300 feet across and is well over 400 feet deep. The depth of the water in the hole is why the ?blue hole? appears such a dark color when seen from above. The Great Blue Hole is a very popular tourist attraction for divers who want to explore the stalactites and limestone structures that begin to form around the insides of the hole at approximately 110 feet deep. Don?t forget ? this 400 foot hole used to be above the surface of the ocean!
5 Mirny Diamond Mine, Serbia
The Mirny Diamond Mine is located in Eastern Serbia near a small town known as Mirna. The mine itself is over 525 meters deep and more than 125 kilometers in diameter. The hole is so wide and so deep it is believed to cause a suction effect, which has caused several aircraft accidents in the area. The Mirny Diamond Mine is now considered a no fly zone!
6 Diavik Mine, Canada
The Diavik Diamond Mine in Canada is one of the most amazing diamond mines in the world. It is believed that within the mind are over 90 million carats worth of rough diamonds. They?re contained within three main kimberlite pipes, otherwise known as ore deposits. While the pipes at this mine are considered small, the quality of the diamonds contained within the pipes is above average. The mine is so large, in fact, the owners have built their own private airport at the site. Mining began at the site in 2003 and is expected to continue for at least 15-20 years, if not longer.
7 Sinkhole in Guatamela
In February of 2007, a sinkhole in Guatamela collapsed, killing two children as their home, and dozens of others, were swallowed into the pit. The blame for this astoundingly large hole was placed on a ruptured sewer pipe.
The earth is capable of producing plenty of wonderful and natural anomalies. Take a look around and, if you?re in the area, stop by to see one of these incredible sites.