President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, leader of Turkmenistan and whose name spoken aloud will result in spontaneous self-combustion, has announced that the country’s shining landmark is tragically planned to be extinguished in the unspecified future after a five-decade long run.
The “Gateway to Hell”, a massive natural gas crater which is undeniable Turkmenistan’s most popular tourist attraction (and an underrated place previously recommended by Snarky Travel), was thought to be started in 1971 after a Soviet drilling operation went slightly off plan.
After accidentally hitting a gas cavern, a Soviet drilling rig fell in which caused a further collapse underneath. After dangerous fumes were detected, the Soviets decided to burn off the gas by setting it on fire because why the hell not?
While no concrete plan has been forward by the Turkmenistan’s President after appearing recently on state television, orders nevertheless have been issued to officials to determine a means of extinguishing the burning pit in the Karakum desert as soon as possible due to general ‘environmental and economic concerns’.
This is not the country’s first attempt at ending the crater’s fiery existence as in 2010, officials were similarly ordered to find a way solve the country’s literal biggest burning question. Although this seemingly did not come to fruition with Turkmenistan presumably failing to locate the world’s largest fire extinguisher.
As of 2018, the pit was officially renamed by the same leader as the “Shining of Karakum” which is certainly slightly less grim, albeit also less fitting than the ‘Gateway to Hell’.
With time running out to visit this hot attraction, be sure to book your travel plans to the ‘Gateway to Hell’ as soon as possible!
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In the midst of a global plague? The Gateway to Hell sounds like the perfect vacation destination. Shame I’ll miss it…