Show Us Your Favorite Secret Stairway

show-and-tell
#1

There’s all sorts of beauty and wonder in the mundane. But among the bog standard bits of everyday architecture that can take on an incomparable mystique, you can’t beat the humble stairway. Whether it’s a staircase built into the natural scenery to help navigate a treacherous ascent, a secret municipal stairway tucked into a tight alley, or a grand staircase welcoming visitors to a monument or museum, there’s a simple, haunting appeal to a good staircase. Now we want to hear about your favorite stairways, the steps that you just can’t forget!

(Image: Kirinwizard/Public Domain)

Tell us about your favorite, unforgettable stairway, how you discovered it, and what makes it so special to you. If you have any incredible pictures of your favorite stairway, post those as well, seeing is believing! Your submission may be included in an upcoming roundup article on Atlas Obscura. Let’s take the first step in uncovering the world’s greatest staircases!

11 Likes
#2

The spiral staircase leading to the top of the 125-foot tall 1926 Astoria Column in Astoria, Oregon

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#3

Went to an art exhibition at the Lighthouse, Glasgow. The exhibition was this - one of the tower staircases strung with wires and sound art. Each of the 7 levels had sounds inspired by a Rennie MacKintosh building. There were little beaters scattered about so you could play the wires and a reflecting mirror at bottom.

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#4

This set from a bookstore in Porto, Portugal is one of my all-time favorites.

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#5

A colorful array of spiral staircases in a random back-alley in Singapore.

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#6

Another set from Singapore. Just a random parking garage, but the colors and shapes just POP!

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#7

Inside the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, Qatar.
(RIP to the remarkable designer/architect I.M. Pei who just recently passed)

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#8

A train station in Liege, Belgium. Or the Death Star. I can’t remember which? :wink:

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#9

The arduously long but whimsically decorated walls of the Abessess metro station in the Paris. There are elevators but walking the steps up to the street level is a rite of passage (or hazing, take your pic) into a truly Parisian experience.

abbesses-paintings-2

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#10

Throughout the southwestern US, the Puebloan people build many stairways to get access to canyons and pueblos build into the canyons. Few are as astounding as “Baby Pee” in Canyon de Chelly, especially when you consider that the steps were painstakingly cut into the rocks with other rocks. It rises roughly 300 feet straight up the vertical canyon wall and are barely more than indentations in the rock.

!

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#11

I’ve come across many amazing staircases while exploring derelict places. One of my favorites is this one, found in a castle that was victim to a fire in the nineties. But I have a wide selection on my website following this link https://valsdarkroom.com/portfolio/staircases/

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#12

These steps leading to some kind of underground glacier in Romania.


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#13

These are great. I love your eye, mmml.

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#14

The staircase at the Pozzo Di San Patrizio in Orvieto, Italy. This is a double helix staircase built of brick. The double helix means that people don’t bump into each other as they get water.

This well gave Orvieto a strategic advantage when under siege - by digging this deep well inside the town, they assured a water supply.

I took this in about 1998 - the view is from the bottom, looking up.

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#15

The Perpendicular Trail, Acadia National Park. Unlike much of the park, this is basically one long, very rough-hewn staircase. (Your guide is Guinness, the Labrador.)

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#16

Thanks, I have two! :star_struck:

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#17

Stairway to Heaven in Nyborg, Denmark

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#18

The Lego House in Billund, Denmark


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#19

Here’s a few more from the collection – and then I’ll stop taking up so much room on this thread :grimacing: – there are many more photos from around the world on my website mnml.me or @mnml.me on Instagram.

Croatia

Ukraine

Portugal

Italy

Thailand

Saudi Arabia

Morocco

Germany

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#20

I found myself wandering around Munich’s Neue Rathaus. Lots of cool little mysterious staircases.

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