No Words Necessary: Defining Thalassophobia Through Intriguing Images

By Aakash M

Many people might know the meaning of this word, but for those who don’t, thalassophobia might seem like a long and complicated word. But, it has a really simple meaning: thalassophobia means fear of the ocean. That’s it; it’s not something rare. There are so many people who have thalassophobia, and it’s understandable. Let us tell you an alarming fact about the oceans: more than 80% of our oceans aren’t mapped, observed, and explored. So, we can’t even imagine how many strange and unexplainable things or creatures might be lurking beneath the waters. Even the nothingness of the ocean is terrifying because of how vast it is. On that note, here are some horrifying images that would let you know if you have a fear of the ocean as well. Beware because some of the pictures are so scary that they might instill fear in you even if you don’t have it!

Instant realization

We know that boats and ships are enormous, but we aren’t always thinking about it. So, most of us fail to realize how huge they are, and it suddenly hits us when we come face to face or when we see an image like this one.

Image courtesy of MegaPythonVSGatoroid/Reddit

This image shows us how tiny we are compared to the things we build. That’s not a model. That is a full-grown man sitting on the propeller. If we humans can make such enormous things, Mother Nature has indeed a lot in store for us.

Underwater discovery

Did you know that when our astronauts return to Earth, they always land in the seas? It’s evident since it’s the safest place for them to land. But have you ever really wondered what happens to their spacecraft? Here’s the answer:

Image courtesy of ThatRacerGuy/Reddit

This, on the seabed, is a part of the Liberty Bell 7 spacecraft that touched down on Earth back in 1961. It was recovered from a depth of 16,000 ft. below the tides. Although the astronaut was fount almost immediately, it took 35 years to recover his craft!

Fake but scary

Although the thing in this picture is a fake dinosaur, imagine seeing something like this in the water. Even knowing it’s fake, it’s still terrifying! And it’s not like this animal never existed. There was actually a time when a creature like this swam in the oceans. 

Image courtesy of Squeakachu_15/Reddit

We are grateful that we didn’t exist during those times because we’re not sure what we would have done if we came across this animal in our real lives. Well, we don’t need to worry since they aren’t coming back, and this one is just a prank. 

The Titanic

By looking at this scary picture, we can say that it’s easy to understand how scared the passengers on the Titanic must have been feeling when it started to sink. Don’t worry, because this picture isn’t from the original ship.

Image courtesy of Paramount Pictures (20th Century Fox)

This image is from the iconic 1997 Leonardo DiCaprio film Titanic. Our hearts go out to every person on the ship at that time and also to their families. Seeing the water fill up and the ship sink slowly must have been nightmarish and terrifying.


Here is some more proof of how thrill-seeking some people are. Seeing a massive hole under the surface of the seafloor is a gigantic no-no for most tourists who are diving and even for most professional divers. But, there are some daredevils…

Image courtesy of Guillaume Nery/YouTube

An average person’s first thought upon seeing this hole would be to swim away from it and not into it. But, it must have been the opposite for this person. We’d never recommend trying something like that because you never know what’s down there!

Black and white

If you only look at the upper part of this image, it looks like a gorgeous snap, and there’s literally no way that the rocks below the water mirror the ones above it. It’s just stunning. Now, go on and take a look under the surface.

Image courtesy of AristonD/Reddit

The blackness of the ocean underneath is just beautiful and scary as well. A person who’d be daring enough to dive across this wonder must be really brave because we, for one, can’t imagine what would be there in the darkness.


After looking at the images above, many of you might have already started thinking that relaxing on the beach would be a better option, right? Because you’re on the shore, so, what could hurt you on dry land? Well, you are wrong.

Image courtesy of BeardedGlass/Reddit

Hiding right at the edge of the sea are these enormously long and scary arms that can’t wait to snatch you in with them. Well, relax. It’s just seaweed that looks really creepy. It isn’t something scary and evil, although it seems like that. But, what if…

Death wish

Going out on a boat during the day can be quite a fantastic experience, especially on a warm sunny day. But, going out on a boat at night? That could be horrifying, and we can vouch for that even without looking at this image. But, let’s take a look.

Image courtesy of Deleted User/Reddit

There are so many animals lurking in the waters, including giant sharks. They could be out hunting at night. We are really surprised about the fact that this person dared to capture this moment because it must have been terrifying in real life.

Giant fish

Most fish are small and harmless. If you research a bit, you’ll find that even piranhas aren’t so evil. It’s terrible that they have such a reputation. These fishes won’t be a cause for concern, but this one definitely would be!

Image courtesy of Iamnotburgerking/Reddit

Just look at the size of that thing! Also, what fish is that? We certainly don’t know, so if you do, let us know! But, no matter what it is, it’s certainly huge, and it has a massive set of teeth that look perfect for munching on other animals and even us!

A lot of them

Even spotting one shark in the waters is enough to send the chills down the spines of people. Imagine coming across a whole school of sharks. Don’t imagine; it’s too scary. Although this picture is really frightening, it’s equally beautiful.

Image courtesy of Chocolatecows88/Reddit

We seriously can’t understand how people muster the guts to go diving so that they get to witness something like what you see in this image! They must be having some kind of death wish because it’s just too scary!

I see everything

Here’s what’s scary about diving underwater. There are scary things that we could see underwater, but there are many dangerous things that could see you as well. We aren’t only talking about living things. Take a look at this image.

Image courtesy of 4acodimetyltryptamin/Reddit

We have no idea what this huge eye is doing underwater, but it can surely freak anybody out. The way that thing stares out at you directly is just so unsettling! Looking at the size of this eye, it is most certainly a part of a colossal statue.

Waiting for prey

There are many deadly animals that are hiding in the ocean, and there are many that we won’t even be aware of. But, let’s not forget the rivers as well. As peaceful as they are, there is something terrifying about the calmness as well. Here’s what we mean.

Image courtesy of the_dark_knight_ftw/Reddit

So, the next time any of you think of going for a swim or a paddle, think about this picture. We are simply amazed that the person who clicked this image was brave enough to come so close to the croc. Also, excellent camouflage skills! We’re talking about the croc.

Squid or octopus?

Let us tell you that this one is simply weird because any creature with more than two or four arms is downright scary. Now, imagine a creature with eight of those. We get that you might have thought about spiders, and it might have spooked some of you out, but you’re wrong!

Image courtesy of HO/National Science Museum

It’s a squid! Well, or maybe it’s an octopus. No matter what it is, it is scary! If we saw something like that, we’d be getting out of there immediately. Encountering creatures like these is one of the many reasons why we should stay on the land.

In the shadows

We’ve had a look at many creatures that look really scary, right? Now, what about those creatures that we can’t even see while swimming? Let us tell you that there is nothing more frightening than seeing the shadow of a huge creature, let alone the creature itself.

Image courtesy of PointsBeforeKarma/Reddit

That whale is enormous, and we really hope that this image is fake, although the chances are that it isn’t because many people dive to swim with whales. They’re gentle creatures, but we still think that it’s best to keep your distance.

Time for a good photo

Some people will risk everything they have just to get a good picture. We mean it when we say everything. People risk their lives and limbs for it, and this person must have a steel heart for posing for a picture like this one. Have a look.

Image courtesy of TheGreatPlanet/Instagram

First of all, there’s no oxygen, and that’s enough to freak out a lot of people. Next, just look at the edge of that pit! You won’t be able to see what’s on the other side even if you’re sitting as close as this guy is! Well, he looks pretty calm.

Stay away

Whenever you see a warning sign, we strongly urge you to follow what it says. It also includes those boards that you see underwater, like this one. You should take the advice and steer clear of this area if you ever come across it!

Image courtesy of World Adventure Diver

First of all, it looks like a very narrow area. So, diving there could be possibly dangerous. Next, it’s pretty clear that something terrible might have happened beyond these rocks. So, staying away from it can be your best bet.

The calm before the storm

As mentioned, we saw many scary creatures underwater, and we even saw their shadows, which, by the way, are enough to freak anyone out. But do you know what’s scarier than that? It’s seeing nothing underwater. That moment of silence is terrifying because you never know what happens next!

Image courtesy of HollieMariee/Reddit

This supposedly quiet and calm environment looks ideal for a vast sea monster or any other apex predator to hide in. That’s why, in these cases, not seeing an animal feels worse than seeing one. The emptiness sends chills down the spine.

Colossal squid

For a considerably long time, scientists thought that giant squids didn’t exist, and instead, they were a result of the exaggerated imaginations of sailors. But, one day, when they searched the seas for them, they realized that these creatures actually exist.

Image courtesy of Guitamnandakumar/Reddit

For those who don’t know how giant these animals are, this picture is more than enough. They exist, and they aren’t afraid of us. Images like this only make us wonder what other mysteries must be hidden under the waves.


Seeing something human so far away from our surroundings seems simply shocking. And you are about to see something like that in this image. Also, there is something really heartbreaking about a boat lying on the ocean floor because once upon a time, it was full of life.

Image courtesy of WashedUpNothingness/Reddit

As you can see, there is a diver in the corner of this image who is probably swimming around the wreck. We can only wonder how the person must be feeling while exploring this lost area. But there must be so many things over here that you could find which would freak you out.

A big oops

The person who uploaded this picture said that they had been staying in an Airbnb on this island, and they had decided to go for a quick paddling session. The person thought it would be quick, but this image says otherwise.

Image courtesy of MrMalta/Reddit

It seems like they have paddled really far from the island, and it’s evident that they could be feeling nervous, just because of the distance of the boat from the shoreline! Well, it’s good that the person at least has a boat.

There’s always light

In other images, the darkness was scary, but in this image, the light is terrifying. The light is of no use as well because you can pretty much see how dark it is despite how strong the flashlight is. That’s really scary.

Image courtesy of WashedUpNothingness/Reddit

We are actually surprised that there are people in this world who are willing to go this deep under the water, with only a flashlight for company, and that too is of no use! We, for one, wouldn’t dare do anything like that.

Underwater statue

There’s a new trend in art where people create sculptures in weird locations that nobody ever imagined. It includes doing the same thing underwater as well! You can find these statues on the seafloor in Cancun, Mexico. Have a look. 

Image courtesy of Grenever88/Reddit

First of all, we really want to know how these things were built, and secondly, we want to know how these statues even got there in the first place! Irrespective of all that, encountering a statue like that while diving would either pique your curiosity or spook you.

Simply terrifying

After coming so far, if we have learned one thing from these images, it is that there are a lot of big and dark holes in the ocean floor. Another thing that we have learned is that wherever there is such a hole, people will get in it to explore. We can’t understand why, though.

Image courtesy of Player82222/Reddit

One more thing we learned is that these divers are indeed braver than we would ever be because we can’t really figure out what goes in their minds when they see such holes. Do they go like, “Oh! Let me go deep down and explore what’s in the hole.” We’ll never know.

Not the tip of the iceberg

Watching an iceberg float in water is a lovely sight to behold. It’s just majestic. But it doesn’t look so glorious when you have a bottom view of it. Then, it becomes rather spine-chilling. Have a look at this image.

Image courtsy of Mooseborgoer/Reddit

That’s actually what an iceberg looks like from under the water. The black spot near the bottom of the iceberg is a rover that scientists sent to investigate what’s going on over there. Well, we hope they got what they were looking for under the iceberg.

Cute little mermaid

Although this little girl might be around eight years of age, her courage knows no limits. We are highly fascinated by the fact that the young lady decided to take a dive in her mermaid costume. Much less in such a dark place.

Image courtesy of Madcat207/Reddit

She must be a pro. But it’s really jarring seeing something so bright near something so dark. Or is it just us? Well, if you want to visit this place by yourself, go on. You’ll find this cave in Ginnie Springs, Florida.

Leap of faith

If you ignore what’s happening underwater, it looks like a beautiful sunny day with a picturesque view, right? But, we can’t ignore what’s happening underwater. Seeing sharks leap out of the water is a fantastic sight, but only if you are at a safe distance.

Image courtesy NMDA_GABA/Reddit

From here, it looks rather magnificent. The shark is so giant, its jaws are wide open, and it’s almost like it’s about to take a huge leap and catch whatever animal comes between those gigantic jaws. Sharks are such majestic creatures.


This image, ladies and gents, is proof of how scary words can be in certain situations. We have a whole list of questions about what objects would be submerged underwater. That’s why this one seems so dangerous. Well, following the advice could be our best bet.

Image courtesy of OllieJolly93/Reddit

It could be anything, from debris that could injure divers to sharp rocks that could impale a person. But, it actually could be pointing to the fact that there must have been an accident here, thus, the sign that asks us to stay out.

Too Many Legs

When we think of sea creatures with a lot of legs, our mind jumps to octopi. Sure, there are plenty of other animals with more than two legs, but they don’t freak us out because they’re usually small, like the shrimp at the top of the picture.

Image courtesy of NOAA Photo Library/flickr

This spiny crab and its long legs give us the creeps. Knowing that those legs are stiff somehow makes it extra chilling. Sure, people eat crabs, but we’re not sure we’d be comfortable with a catch like this sitting on our plate.

Straight out of a horror movie

This picture is as gorgeous as it is horrifying because there’s always something mysterious about how trees seem to grow out of nowhere in the water. At one time, there’s nothing. After a few months, there are roots hanging in the waves.

Image courtesy of Josiahwg/Instagram

It’s also really bizarre seeing how tiny we are in comparison to these giant trees. The diver in this image looks a tad bit larger than the trunk of one of these trees. No matter how scary the image is, it is a piece of art.


We aren’t sure about the reason behind the attraction of divers to old ship parts. If we’d take a guess, we’d say that it must be because these old parts are so huge. You can see in this image how enormous the boat is!

Image courtesy of Pastafarnianism/Reddit

That’s not a toy on the blades of the ship’s turbine. That is a human diver balancing on the turbine of the ship’s blade. We don’t know what this ship is doing there, but we don’t think it’s for any good reason.

What is that?

We often consider whales to be peaceful creatures, and that is true. They often sing in the ocean (the sound is loud, beautiful, and terrifying at the same time), and they are pretty harmless to us. But, that doesn’t mean that they can’t wreak havoc.

Image courtesy of MintyBobas/Reddit

Most of you might think that this could be some kind of dinosaur bone, or perhaps simply a prop from Jurassic Park. Well, think again. That’s not it. It is actually the backbone of a whale! This image was clicked in Norway.

Underwater plane

We have seen many sunken boats and ships till now, and we find them all terrifying. If there’s something worse than that, it’s seeing a plane underneath the waves. Take a look at a rather startling image of this underwater wreckage.

Image courtesy of maevenable/Twitter

There is something really scary about this picture. The way the cockpit seems to be in the water, it looks like a huge animal that’s about to pounce on you. Well, we aren’t really sure which one is scarier in this situation.

Darkness all across

If seeing pitch darkness under the water isn’t enough for you, what do you think about seeing complete greenness in the water? Both of them are really discomforting, but we can’t decide what’s worse here. Being trapped in such a situation must be spine-chilling.

Image courtesy of zootia/Reddit

The water over here is cloudy and thick, which is why we can’t really see anything apart from the sheer greenness. We really hope that the diver who clicked this image made a run for it by swimming out of this sea of green.

Preserving sharks

Can you guys guess what the worst part of this rather scary image is? It is that all of this was created by a person. We can’t imagine why a person would want to make something as terrifying as this. You guys are looking at a real, preserved shark. It is not fake!

Image courtesy of OnTheOctopusRide/Reddit

This image was clicked at the Crystal World Exhibition Centre in Victoria, Australia. The name of this shark is Rosie, and she passed away back in 1998. Later, an artist preserved the body of the shark. We can’t think of a reason why the artist would do so.

A shark in the pool

Before we even take a look at this image, we would want to confirm the fact that this image is entirely photoshopped, and you won’t see any sharks swimming in the pool with people. Even with that being said, this image represents a real fear.

Image courtesy of Felhammr/Reddit

Although it sounds like a silly fear, it’s real nonetheless, and even we have been afraid of something like this happening in real life. Well, there’s literally nothing else that one can do in this situation other than screaming and swimming away.

Friendly monster

Sharks and squids are terrifying, and it has been proven by now that we need to be scared of them. Well, what about seals? They look really cute on land. But no matter how cute they are, they’re monsters under the water.

Image courtesy of Deleted User/Reddit

This seal, in particular, and thanks to the image, looks really scary. The stare is just spine-chilling. It’s almost like it’s taking a look into our souls. It’s good that humans are too huge to be a seal’s prey…we hope.


We don’t know what’s wrong with people. Why would they even think about making something so terrifying like this and then just leaving it under the water? Aren’t real sharks scary enough? What’s the need for pranking people with fake ones?

Image courtesy of 1091drawde/Reddit

It actually seems like this one belongs in the Jaws movies rather than being so many feet under the water. It has black eyes, which are almost invisible, and that makes things scarier. Divers would’ve been really scared upon seeing something like this unexpectedly.

The horror

If that fake shark above wasn’t enough to scare you, here is a real one. Look at those teeth. They look ready to tear anything that comes between them into pieces. After looking at this image, there’s no wonder people have galeophobia.

Image courtesy of Morc-Glork/Reddit

The fact that this image is in black-and-white makes things all the more spooky. We are thankful that we humans aren’t shark’s food, and they steer away from us when they know we are humans. Sharks usually bite people accidentally since they mistake them for seals. Sharks love seals.

Chomp chomp

This image is the perfect reminder for us. Not only should we be afraid of the things hiding under the water, but we should also fear the creatures that live near the surface of the water, just like this terrifying water snake that is chomping on a catfish.

Image courtesy of ingreenlight/Reddit

We had no idea that such giant animals lived in the ocean, let alone in the rivers. Well, we hope that humans are off the menu for this water snake. It looks like the snake caught quite a good meal for itself with the fish.

A long chain

We, for one, really don’t have the slightest clue about the length of the chain in this picture. All we can say is the chain must be insanely long. That also makes this image all the scarier because it just hits you out of nowhere that the ocean is just so deep!

Image courtesy of Detonator212/Reddit

Here’s a fun fact for you guys: we know more about the planets and outer space than we know about what’s there deep in the oceans. Looking at images like these, it’s not hard to see why we don’t know so much about oceans.

Hunting time

For a moment, this image made us forget about thalassophobia. Instead, this image gave us galeophobia! Sorry for being technical. Galeophobia refers to a fear of sharks. Sharks are probably the scariest beings in the oceans. Even if they’re not attacking humans, it doesn’t stop our innate fear of something so huge with big teeth.

Image courtesy of alwaysthecat/Reddit

Do you know what’s worse than one shark around you? That would be a whole bunch of sharks around you. It’s really hard to describe how freaked out we’d be if we were in such a situation. Well, it’s bad; that’s all we can say.

Risky much?

Although the person in this image might not have gone for a dive in the water, the person did risk many things by putting their toes in the pool. You never know which animal emerges from the darkness to chomp on those toes.

Image courtesy of sashajuiard/Instagram

That’s also not the most dangerous thing about this image. What’s scary is that the rocks are slippery. So, the guy could easily fall into the water and, in the process, even get themselves cut on the edge. It’s best to keep a safe distance.

Time for a picture

To end things, here is another image of a person with a death wish. Either that’s the case, or this person is really brave. Well, we really hope that posing like a daredevil for a picture on the edge of the rock was worth the experience.

Image courtesy of deepfreediving/Instagram

There is no way on Earth we’d ever think of doing anything even remotely similar to that! We’ve said it so many times, but we never know what’s hiding in the shadows, waiting for us. The photo is beautiful, but it takes a lot of guts.