Epecuen – The City Under The Water

Amazing places
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This city was cover with water for 30 years. This is how it looks now.

Villa Epecuen is located southwest of Buenos Aires, the capital city of Argentina. Great location near the lake  of the Laguna Epecuen guaranteed, that this city was very lively and the population used to be almost 5 000 people. 30 years ago, floods from the lake destroyed this city. The water is getting back to normal only now and what it reveals it’s truly remarkable.

The city Epecuen started its history in 1920 as a tourist village. Every year, around 20 000 people visited the region because of the biggest attraction – the lake. The water inside the lake is 10 times saltier than the water in the ocean. Local legend says, that this lake was created when an Indian woman called Tripantu cried, because her loved one fell for another woman. It is also believed, that the water can cure depression, different types of skin problems, diabetes and also anemia.  The city and the lake were very popular, especially with the Jewish community because of its resemblance to the Dead Sea. You could easily find 300 pubs, luxury hotels, shops with different souvenirs and also cottages. 

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Aerial picture of the ruins of Villa Epecuen.

In the 1985 everything changed. Where the floods hit the city, the water broke the barriers, that were holding it back and started to pour on the streets. People managed to run away only with what they had with them. Within a couple of hours, everything was covered with water. In some places, the water reached depth up to 10 meters.

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Layout of the city is still visible.

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The outlines of Villa Epecuen still partially flooded.

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The former slaughterhouse of Epecuen.

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One of the people who survived the disaster was Norma Berg said, that she still remember the time, when it all started. She said: “I had a couple of cats and dogs. All of them ran away hours before it all happened. They probably sensed that something is approaching.”

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Norma Berg gestures next to the ruins of her family house.

With the years water started to slowly go back to normal and what it revealed looks like a scene from a post-apocalyptic movie. Debris is covering every square meter. Most of the people are now living in the nearest city Carhue, from which they build new Epecuen. However, some of the people still live in the city.

There is only one person who stayed. Pablo Novak. This 85-year-old man is something like a guardian of the city. He escorts visitors around town. He says: “Whoever wants to visit the town cannot pass my house without noticing it. Most of the day, I ride a bicycle and  point at the houses of my former neighbors. I don’t want to live anywhere else. This is my home.”  

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Lone inhabitant of Villa Epecuen, 85-year-old Pablo Novak.

Also, check out this video from Epecuen.

Image source: Juan Mabromata/AFP/Getty Images

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Michaela Miklusak

Michaela Miklusak is deputy editor of TechandFacts.com and big technology enthusiast. Michaela now lives in Singapore, where she studies System Engineering and Informatics. michaelam@techandfacts.com

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