Aokigahara, better known as Suicide Forest, is a knotted mass of trees spread out over 35 square kilometres at the base of Mount Fuji. It is said that, on average, 100 people wander into the dense forest to commit suicide every year. So many even, that the Japanese Government has placed a sign at the entrance to the main trail reminding people to think about their families.

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Japanese spiritualists believe that the suicides committed in the forest have permeated the trees, generating paranormal activity that prevents those who enter from leaving again. It has also been reported that compasses rarely work within the dense forest, this incompetence aided by rich deposits of magnetic iron in the areas volcanic soil.

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Due to the sheer vastness of the area, those heading into the forest for their final walk are unlikely to bump into hikers, walkers or tourists likely to deter them from their mission. Because of this, Japanese police have nailed signs to trees all around the forest which say, “Your life is a precious gift from your parents!”

Forest workers have the awful job of collecting any bodies they find and carrying them to the local station, where the bodies are put in a special room specifically for suicide corpses. The forest workers then play rock-paper-scissors – jan-ken-pon – to see who has to sleep with the bodies at night. It is believed that if the bodies are left alone, it is very bad luck with the ghost.

The bodies are said to scream throughout the night and move on their own.

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Well, that’s me officially freaked out. Thank God I only have to look at a Halloween destination once a year, eh? *shudders*

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