Everything About Urban Exploration...
What is urban exploration?
Urban exploration. It goes by many names such as UE, UrbEx, Infiltration, and Reality Hacking. It is all about going into places you are “not supposed" to go. Urban exploration has 2 different meanings for me:
The first one is related to the city we live in. We are enclosed, almost entrapped, in this urban environment. We follow the streets guided by the paths that are drawn, no chance to escape our average everyday existence. Urban exploration is the research, documentation, escape, exploration, and mapping of these forbidden spaces that include maintenance or service areas, utility tunnels, abandoned buildings, such as mental institutions, and basically any place where the everyday public are not supposed to be. Open a door, cross a fence, or sneak into a hole and you visit the world of Urban Exploration. You have left the normal world, you are exploring.
The second meaning is related to the abandoned places or utility tunnels themselves. Sometimes these hulking structures lay rotting in the middle of the city and sometimes they are in the quiet suburbs abandoned and waiting in silence. These are places isolated from the “normal” world, places most people will never venture into or see. This what drives you to these forbidden places and changes everything in your reality with your first step forward. With that step you are in, you are exploring.
A much broader definition, written down by Ninjalicious, spiritual "father" of urban exploration, can be found on www.infiltration.org (the zine about places you're not supposed to go). See also Access All Areas: A User's Guide to the Art of Urban Exploration , a book written by the same author.
Paris catacombs, May 2001
Hospital Le Valdor: such an easy entry point...
How to do urban exploration?
- No breaking and entering. This does not mean that every urban exploration trip is legal, but we never break anything to enter a site, locks included.
We try to sneak in without any damage, much like a stealthy ninja.
We also ask permission to visit places via their owners as often as possible and we are usually accommodated and allowed to enter.
- Respect the places you visit. No tags, no vandalism, no senseless destruction, no theft. Do not forget that people will visit the place after you do, so let them experience it just as you did! We always try to leave the place untouched and use the motto: "take only pictures, leave only footprints..."
A 1881-plate completely tagged and scratched - Paris catacombs Feb.2005.
- Safety: urban exploration can be a very dangerous hobby. Whether you are climbing a crane, walking on a rotten and fragile floor, or wandering near barrels of toxic waste the risks are everywhere. Good knowledge of the environment you are in is absolutely necessary and specialized equipment adapted to the conditions is often required, such as: helmets, climbing gear, respirator, gloves, lights, ..ect. We strongly recommend not practicing urban exploration unless you are trained by a professional.
Further Reading- Tchorski
- Silent UK
- Souterrains & industries
- Lost Ground
- Hours of Darkness
- Tomboy Urbex
- Les mirroirs de l'ombre
- Schwarze Katze
- Focale Alternative
- Still Alive
- 28 days later
i randomly found and got into urban exploration and i agree with you. why do people have to go destroy the places others may love to see i for one love to find the hidden and unknown so please people leave it as you found it
I agree!! BUT now people just want to see what they can destroy!!!!!! NOT WHAT THESE PLACES ONCE WERE!!! What ever happened to JUST TAKE PICS AND LEAVE FOOTPRINTS?? I still go by it!! It is so sad to see places so old get messed up so quick!!! IT KINDA SHOWS ME THAT MOST OF THESE BAD PLACES JUST GOT WORSE OUTSIDE THE WALLS..
The term "Urban Explorer" brings such a bad connotation these days. Trouble some teens and disrespectful people just looking for a place without rules and consequences have damaged not only history but the ability for someone else to see the beauty in the discarded. Thank you for posting this message up. A true explorer only documents. They do not damage.