Inside China’s eerie abandoned knock-off Disneyland with half finished castle & rusting rides in park that NEVER opened | The Sun

AN abandoned knock-off Disneyland in China filled with half-finished castles and rusting rides was left to rot for more than 15 years.

Built in 1998, the tourist attraction, once known as Wonderland, turned into a post-apocalyptic maze of overgrown pathways and abandoned castle-like buildings on the outskirts of Beijing.

The outer walls of the Bavarian-style Cinderella castle still remain intact, but once inside, the unfinished theme park now plays host to squatters, waste, and farmers' crops.

Photos taken at the site show graffiti on the walls, empty buildings and a site left to ruins.

From its inception, Wonderland was planned to bring in £80 million annually by attracting more than three million visitors a year.

It was meant to be the largest amusement park in Asia, but from the beginning, the project continued to face insurmountable hurdles.

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The land was developed in Chenzhuang Village, about 20 miles northwest of the capital.

Towards the end of 1998, construction stopped after a corruption scandal and disagreements between local government and farmers.

Developers tried to restart construction in 2005 to capitalise on China hosting the Olympics in 2008, but the plans were allegedly thwarted by a proposal to build a new city in the same area.

The project stalled from there on and eventually it was left to be torn down and the land reclaimed by the locals.

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Photographer David Gray, who visited the ghost park in 2011, said: "Pulling off the express-way and into the car park, I expected to be stopped by the usual confrontational security guards.

"But there was absolutely no one to be seen. I walked through one of the few entrances not boarded up, and instantly started coughing.

"In front of me were large empty rooms and discarded furniture, all covered in a thick layer of dust, along with an eerie silence that gave the place a haunted feeling – an emotion not normally associated with a children’s playground."

Wonderland remains in the hearts of some, with fringe travellers still visiting the abandoned attraction today.

The theme park is far from the only extravagant Chinese project to be abandoned in recent years.

A deserted Greek-style venue – with columns and an amphitheatre – sits just down the road from the site.

While Thames Town, a site based on an English town, has hardly any residents – despite being located close to Shanghai.

The New South China Mall, in Guangdong, is also little more than an empty shell.

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