The earth is full of eerie and mysterious locations. One of these is not the Mexican Island of Dolls. The history of the island, including who built it and why, is extremely well documented, despite the fact that it is extremely unsettling.
It remains terrifying despite being aware of the past. Even during the day, visiting this island is probably not something you want to do if you’re already a little scared out by dolls. Fortunately, you can learn about the history without having to brave the island. Discover the island’s history and the real tale here.
Where Is the Island of Dolls?
Mexico is home to the Island of Dolls, sometimes referred to as Isla de las Munecas locally. In particular, it’s close to Mexico City’s centre. The island is connected to the canals of Xochimilco.
These canals are listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The canals were built by the Aztec people from a network of rivers and islets. There are stores and lots of greenery on the floating islands. People can rent a boat or hire a tour guide to take them around in a boat to visit all the islands, making the area a popular tourist destination.
The History of the Island of Dolls
The Island of Dolls is substantially more modern, even though the small islets have a long history. A hermit settled in the area in the 1950s. Don Julian Santana Barrera was his name.
The man claimed to have discovered a young child drowning in the canals. He suspected that after she had played on the edge of the floating islands, she had fallen in. Don Julian sprang into action quickly to save her. Sadly, he was unable to arrive in time, and the young child drowned.
A doll drifted past the same way a few days after her corpse. He hung up the doll, trying to calm the little girl’s soul.
Unfortunately for him, his scheme was foiled. Don Julian claimed that her soul was not placated by hanging the doll. He then hung up and filled the island with dolls for the rest of his life.
He believed that by hanging up these broken and discarded toys, he would drive away the spirit or spirits who were haunting him. Had he strung up possessed toys, on the other hand, it might have had the opposite effect.
The Dolls Spread
Most of the island, including his house and every tree, is covered in dolls. That’s what he did for about fifty years, until his death in 2001. It’s eerie that even his demise is connected to that young child. According to his nephew, he discovered Don Julian drowning in the exact location where the man had always claimed to be the girl.
Many people think that Don Julian brought home a lot of dolls that were cursed or haunted as well. It has been reported that at night the dolls move and that eerie laughter can be heard all over the island.
Some even think that Don Julian passed away and joined the other spirits on the island.
How Much is True?
A lot of people don’t believe Don Julian’s story. Some others question if the young girl was real at all. There have been no further reports of the young girl drowning.
It is true, nevertheless, that he filled the island with dolls for the majority of his life. Many of the residents who know the man still claim that he would exchange everything, even food, for a doll. How well-kept the doll was also of no concern to him.
These days, a lot of the dolls are deteriorating due to weathering. It creates a rather spooky scene at night. Compared to other nearby islands, it feels a little spooky even during the day.
There is a belief that Don Julian may not have been entirely mentally competent. It’s possible that he imagined the girl, and that’s why he lived the rest of his life experiencing that imagined past. If the girl had been real, he might have developed a doll obsession as a result of the mental stress of not being able to save her.
Whatever the reason for Don Julian’s creation of the Island of Dolls, his legacy endures. A lot of individuals go to Mexico merely to visit the island. While some bring their own dolls, others bring extra clothing so they can clean and freshen up some of the dolls on the island.
The island is currently a highly sought-after travel destination. It has even been mentioned in a number of TV shows, podcasts, and publications like this one.