The five most impressive junkyards in the world

Published on 04 September 2020

Where the Netherlands' largest car dismantling company covers some five hectares, in other parts of the world - and particularly in the United States - junkyards spanning over 25 hectares are no exception. We've selected five of the world’s most iconic junkyards.


Text Rosalie van den Akker

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Treasure trove of classics

That the deserts of Arizona are the holy grail of junkyards is not news. It's here that you'll find Desert Valley Auto Parts (DVAP), known from the popular Discovery Channel TV programme Desert Car Kings. DVAP has been around since 1993 and is a legendary treasure trove of classic cars and parts from the 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s. They have so many car parts that it's impossible to include the full range on their website. The 40-hectare company is promising for someone who is looking for a complete classic car or specific parts. If you can't find it here, you can't find it anywhere.

Old Car City

This junkyard, aptly named Old Car City, is located in the town of White in the United States. The cemetery spans over no less than 34 hectares. Packards, Hudsons, AMCs, Studebakers and other classic cars stand here completely camouflaged by branches, leaves and moss and at times seem to become one with nature. The combination of old cars in such a beautiful place not only appeals to car enthusiasts, but also to photographers and nature lovers throughout the country. Wherever you look, trees sprout up through the hoods of cars and bushes literally grow through the floors of old station wagons. You’ll also find the homes of many a resourceful animal in the old-school classics. Old Car City was founded in 1931 and now boasts more than 4,000 cars. Each of these vehicles is older than 1975, which makes it the largest known junkyard of classic cars in the world.

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Surreal scene

A bit closer to home, you'll find Bloms Bilskrot in the Swedish village of Söråker, some 400 km north of Stockholm. Bloms Bilskrot is an active yard, where primarily end-of-life vehicles are dismantled until only scrap metal remains for the metal market. The junkyard, with its impressive surface area, reaches into the forest in various directions. It would take days to explore this place thoroughly. The cool and wet Swedish climate, especially in winter, leaves its mark on the wrecks: trees grow in abundance and moss coats the vehicles in a soft, green uniform. Together this creates a surreal and exceptionally photogenic scene.

Another one bites the dust

In Sharjah, a city in the United Arab Emirates, hundreds of luxury cars have literally bitten the dust throughout the years. Most of the cars were abandoned by expats, presumably as they were in debt. Although a large portion of the vehicles are in poor condition due to desert sand, there are also many gems to be found among them, complete with Ferrari, Rolls Royce and Lamborghini models. This may well be the largest junkyard in the United Arab Emirates. While most of the vehicles are ready for the crusher, according to a well-known local YouTuber, people from all over the world venture to the site to score cheap car parts.

Subterranean junkyard

A few years ago, researchers discovered a mysterious junkyard in an abandoned mine in the English county of Wales at a depth of 60 metres. According to British media, some 100 old cars in varying states were lying at the bottom of one of the mine shafts. These rusty vehicles stemmed from various decades, but particularly from the 60s and 70s. Presumably, this was an illegal dumping ground for scrap cars. The mine in the coastal town of Ceredigion was closed in 1960, and the roads above it are known to be extremely dangerous. "It was probably too expensive for car owners to take their broken-down vehicles to a regular junkyard. They resorted to pushing the cars into the mine shaft,'' explains one of the researchers. The junkyard will remain as-is and will not be cleared.

 

 

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