Ireland is hands-down one of the most beautiful places in the world.

Keem Bay, off the coast of Achill Island, is just one example of that astounding greenery and clear water. It looks like it’s straight out of a fairytale, but it also has a dark secret that no one has been able to figure out.

This is what Keem Bay looks like today. Achill Island is one of the most remote islands in Ireland, and a thriving village was established there in 1838.

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There were once more than 40 houses on Achill Island, but all that’s left is mounds of dirt and foundation structures.

Other people on the island don’t have records of the settlement, and travel writers only recorded its beauty with a few mentions of “primitive” and “backward” locals.

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What happened to the village at Keem Bay? Students at the Achill Archaeological Field School want to find out.

They have found houses made of stone and mud, but there is some evidence that they were intentionally destroyed. Whether that destruction was by the townspeople themselves or an outside force remains to be seen.

The town vanishing may also have had to do with a famine in Ireland around the same time period, but that doesn’t explain the ruins.

(via Mysterious Universe)

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The Achill Archaeological Field School plans to go back to Keem Bay in 2017 to continue excavation and study of the town’s remains. Share this story and your theories on what happened in this vanishing village.

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