The European city with eerie catacombs inhabited by a hidden network of people

French daredevils explore the catacombs under Paris

Paris: it is the city of love, the city of wine, the city of good food, the place where literary greats were born, and the site of one of Western Europe’s bloodiest revolutions.

For all of the city’s beauty, however, there is in equal measure a more sinister side, a dark underbelly which quite literally sits beneath the surface.

The Catacombs of Paris were built in the late 18th century to overcome the city’s overflowing cemeteries.

Today, the catacombs are home to the remains of more than six million people in a space that some estimates put as spanning 200 miles.

While official guided tours are available, many have picked the seriously dangerous and illegal route, which reports say even French police refuse to enter to save anyone lost given just how treacherous they can be.

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The Paris Catacombs open to the public is just one small portion of the entire system.

This public part is safe and the walls and surrounding area are completely reinforced meaning there is little to no chance of the interior collapsing.

The same can’t be said for the rest of the network, but this doesn’t stop so-called ‘cataphiles’ from risking it all and exploring the vast underground tunnels.

Amanda Rollins, an American living in Paris who documents her life on social media, shared with her followers the unsettling story told by her former Parisian boyfriend.

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Chillingly, she said that there are people who live within the mostly unexplored catacomb system.

In a video posted to TikTok, she explained: “They live there full-time, a community of people who live in the catacombs.

“They don’t want tourists going in there, whether that’s Americans and French people, they don’t want people going in there period.

“What he told me was, there are people down there when you go in with your map to figure out where you’re going […] who live down there and what they will do when they see you with a map and flashlight, they’ll run up to you, grab your flashlight and grab your map, and then run away.”

The catacombs have a long history of people using them for reasons other than a mass graveyard.

Back in World War 2, when members of the French Resistance operated and led an insurrection from.

The Nazis similarly established a bunker in a stretch of the catacombs.

In 2004, French police found a fully equipped cinema in an area of the network beneath Trocadéro, finished with a giant cinema screen, seats, projection equipment, film reels, a fully stocked bar, and a restaurant with tables and chairs.

Of course, Ms Rollins’s story cannot be confirmed, but there are countless videos on platforms like YouTube which recount people being stolen from while in the catacombs, abandoned, and getting lost.

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