This next creature is a good one to know about before you take a swim in one of the many deep lakes or ponds scattered throughout the woods of Eastern Europe.
Vodianoi is a male water spirit who lives in deep pools of water. This sinister creature takes delight in drowning swimmers. Some who have seen him claim that he appears as a naked old man who is hairy, bloated and covered in slime. Others claim he has scales. Some even claim that he is an old peasant man in a red shirt who is capable of transforming into a fish.
Vodianoi commonly swims in waters near mills. In fact, this evil water spirit is actually said to have a fondness for millers and fishermen. Both are typically immune to his sinister actions. Vodianoi will even gather fish into nets for some favored fishermen.
There is certainly no shortage of things that go bump in the night when it comes to Eastern European folklore. This next creature really takes the cake when it comes to terrorizing kids.
Baubas is a Lithuanian creature with dark red eyes, long arms and bony fingers who kidnaps misbehaving children. This red-eyed demon is especially sinister because of the fact that he enjoys hiding inside homes. You can think of him as the monster under your bed. In fact, he enjoys hiding under beds, carpets and more.
No region’s folklore would be complete without a demon that feasts on innocent children. Külmking is the being that fulfills that role in Eastern Europe’s long catalog of scary and creepy creatures.
Külmking is a creature from Estonian mythology who lives in the forest and eats children. He also likes to taunt and terrorize grownups who happen to cross paths with him while walking in the dark forests of Europe. While he appears as a large beast, he is actually the restless spirit of the unholy dead. Anyone who enters the woods in Eastern Europe wonders if Külmking could be lurking nearby.
This beast even has the ability to go through the body of a person and turn that person evil. That means that Külmking can create a nice little army of evildoers if he turns enough people at once. Are you sure you can really trust your hiking companions? Nobody can be too sure of anything while walking through the forests of Eastern Europe as long as Külmking is lurking nearby.
You probably would have been told you had a domovoi in your home if you lived in Eastern Europe a long time ago.
These household spirits often played pranks on families and assisted with household chores. They could also tell the fortunes of the families they lived with using comb bristles, candles and other household objects. Domovoi are typically described as being small and bearded. They closely resemble the hobgoblins that are popular in Western European folklore.
The Vila are Eastern Europe’s nymphs or mountain fairies. They are found living in hills and mountains. Some versions of folklore actually claim that the Vila live up in the clouds. However, they are almost always spotted in the wilderness in all versions of folklore.
These mysterious creatures are believed to have power over the wind. In fact, they are credited with causing wind storms. Those who claim to have seen the Vila say that they appear as ghosts wrapped in long, whimsical cloaks or rich blue robes. They sometimes appear as beautiful women who sparkle in dresses made of leaves and flowers.
Unlike many of the creepy creatures who haunt the forests and homes of Eastern Europe, the Vila are beautiful and feminine. They also tend to be helpful instead of destructive. Many claim that they are able to heal humans of ailments. They have been known to tempt men to dance with them.
You will know that you are in the territory of the Vila if you see deep rings in the grass. This is a sign that the Vila have danced in a spot. It is said that treading on the rings will bring bad luck. The Vila are incredibly strong and powerful. They have been known to end the lives of men who defy them or break promises.
It is not uncommon for people in Eastern Europe to leave offerings for the Vila. Things like ribbons, fruit, cakes, flowers and vegetables are often left on hills where lightning is known to strike. The Vila are probably the creatures of Eastern Europe that you would most prefer to stumble upon while walking through the woods once you consider all of the other options.
So there’s our look at the creepiest creatures from European folklore. Have you heard of any of these strange beasts? Let us know in the comments below or on any of our socials!