The Island of the Dolls – Canals of Xochimico, Mexico City, Mexico – The sadness that lingers in these canals owes its merit to the soul of a young girl who met her demise much before her time, and under strange circumstances. This small island south of Mexico City, Isla de las Munecas, was never meant to be a traveler’s destination.
While this region of Mexico is populated with thousands of individuals, this island itself has no inhabitants except for the hundreds of dolls found hanging in its trees. Some dolls’ limbs have been severed, some are headless, and the majority have no eyes; whether this is due to time and weathering, or if they were like this when they were put on display remains debatable. Even in the light of the noonday sun, the dolls look frightening; however, their appearance by night is much more macabre.
The legend states that a small young girl was found, face down in the waters of the canals that surround the island. The legend states that the dolls possess her spirit. Locals say that these dolls can turn their heads and move their arms, and that some have even opened and closed their eyes. People who have visited have reported they could hear the dolls whispering among themselves, and still others claim that the dolls themselves lured then to the island.
But the real question is how did these dolls really end up on this island? According to history, a man named Don Julian Barrera was the island’s caretaker. Mr. Barrera found a girl who had drowned under shadowy circumstances, and he was unable to revive her. A little while later, he viewed a doll floating on the water and realized it must have belonged to this little girl. He salvaged the doll and hung her from a nearby tree in a show of respect for the spirit of the young girl.
Whether these folks are exaggerating or this is the way the island truly makes them feel, one thing is for certain: The Island of the Dolls is a creepy place, indeed, and will leave its mark on any who visit.