These drowned churches have a way of re-emerging, though, often as a result of nature's rather than man's doing. In 2010, El Niño – an abnormal warming of ocean surfaces – caused a drought, and the church in Potosi appeared. The facade was the only thing left intact.
6. St. Nicholas Church, FyromThe church of St. Nicholas in Mavrovo, Fyrom was built in 1850 and stood for a 153 years until it was decided an artificial lake was needed in the village. At one point the church was fully submerged, but it keeps rising again, especially in summer with the droughts of the 21st century. Is nature or fate trying to tell us something with these reappearances? The churches might appear to be rising as if by God's hand, refusing to stay put in their watery graves.
5. Church of the Holy Rosary, IndiaA surreal and beautiful sight, the Church of the Holy Rosary in Karnataka, India emerges and sinks beneath the waters every year. This is a story that intertwines a church built in the 1860s, near Hassan, with a dam built in the 1960s. The church was left behind when the village was moved to make room for the Hemavathy Reservoir, but it appears after the monsoons. During the rainy season, it then slowly sinks back to wait until it is time to rise again and show its charm and grace – not to mention its excellent masonry!
4. Church of Old Petrolandia, BrazilPetrolandia is a town in Brazil near the river of Sao Francisco, which was moved – or at least part of it was – when a dam was built. The only thing left standing is the church, which is a crazy but beautiful sight, like a predatory fish opening its maw to eat.
3. Church of Krokhino, RussiaThe Church of Krokhino, in the former village of Vologda Oblast, Russia, was built between the border of the Sheksna River and Lake Onega, according to photographer, Sharon. It is very old, having been built in the 15th century, but was flooded in the 1980s when the Soviets constructed a hydroelectric plant nearby. It is still standing, though, after all these years, with enough left for us to imagine what it would have looked like new.
2. Church of Lake Reschen, ItalyThe Reschensee is an artificial lake near the Austrian border that completely submerged the village of Graun and its church in 1950, except for the 14th-century bell tower. The lake is 72-feet deep, and the church was mostly demolished the week before the area was flooded, yet the tower still stood and still stands today, peeking out above the surface of the water. Legend has it that you can still hear the church bells ringing during winter when the lake freezes over.
1. Kalyazin Bell Tower, Russia
The Kalyazin bell tower is all that's left of the monastery of St. Nicholas, built between 1796 and 1800. According to Wikipedia: "It is considered a symbol of old Russia which disappeared after the revolution." In 1939, Stalin decided to flood the town to make a reservoir in the Volga River. The abbey itself was dismantled. However, when tourists became interested in seeing this unlikely sight, the government shored up the bell tower and made a little islet for it where boats can dock. It is a beautiful and imposing site, especially when thinking of all those who toiled on its construction, only for it to be drowned due to the will of other men.