People Have Been Forbidden From Entering This Place For 100 Years For A Chilling Reason

When you picture France, you probably think of a lush countryside or the romantic "City of Lights" (Paris). However, France didn't always seem that way, and during the horrors of World War I, it had a much bleaker landscape.

That's because, deep within its borders, there lies a 460-square-mile section known as Zone Rouge ("Red Zone"), which has been forbidden from public use for nearly a century.

When you see what's hiding within this dangerous place, you may never look at France the same way again.

In World War I, near the French town of Verdun, 460 square miles of forest became the site of one of the bloodiest battles in recorded history. The Battle of Verdun lasted for 303 days and killed 70,000 soldiers per month.

Today, the area is considered extremely dangerous because of all the unexploded munitions in the ground. Experts say that it would take 300 to 700 years to clean the area, though it may even be impossible, due to the amount of toxins absorbed by the soil.
In 2004, German researchers found that the soil contained 17% arsenic, which is tens of thousands of times higher than typical levels. The government determined that it was necessary to completely relocate everyone living there. Whole towns were evacuated and wiped off the map after being deemed "casualties of war."
This sign translates to "Here stood the church." Unfortunately, no person would be able to safety practice their faith on these grounds—though, before the arsenic levels were discovered, unsuspecting residents still made use of the area.