Remember in History, we have learnt about lost civilisations. Civilisations were hidden underground and miraculously discovered by Archaeologists and Historians. But have you ever thought there are lost civilisations underwater too? I was amazed and astonished when I came to know about them. These underwater ruins speak immensely about lost cities, the people, their habitat, culture and interests. The more I read about them, I drift into those ancient eras when people set up their livelihood in the cities with the hope of permanent settlement. Yet fate proved to be something else. The cities were buried underwater due to either some natural phenomena or some man-made artificial errors. Excavating the underwater ruins are tough and challenging since you need expert divers to inspect the area and capture the artefacts cautiously.
Pavlopetri in Greece
Pavlopetri in Greece is one of the oldest underwater ruins. The name is not the original one, it’s essentially given after its discovery since no one is aware of it. The city was sunk almost 5000 years ago, expected to be existing approximately during 2800 BC. Dr Jon Henderson, an underwater archaeologist, received official access to the site after seeking permission from the Greek government. The ruins of buildings, streets, tombs, courtyards and graves were studied and analyzed. It is believed that Pavlopetri was once a place for flourishing trade and thriving merchandise operations. The city is said to belong to the Minoan dynasty, though there is no concrete evidence for it. It was ultimately destroyed by an earthquake.
Cleopatra’s Palace in Egypt
History says Queen Cleopatra was the last ruler of Egypt. It is believed that her royal palace was submerged more than 1600 years ago near the shores of the city of Alexandria. Franck Goddio, a French archaeologist, led the project for the excavation of the ancient city. During the study, he discovered the submerged palace. Tidal waves and earthquakes were termed as the reason for their submersion. The other artefacts discovered from the site was that of images representing Cleopatra’s father, a priest and spiritual guardians of the temples. It’s one of the fascinating underwater ruins, located exactly below the Antirhodus island in the city. Many ancient pillars and potteries were discovered at the place.
Dwarka Port in India
Dwarka is a holy and divine place in India. It’s the residence and hometown of the Hindu God, Lord Krishna. He had his kingdom in Dwarka. The underwater ruins in Dwarka are one of the most exciting and thrilling discoveries by Indian archaeologists. The excavations at this place were initiated in the year 1983. The archaeologists were eager to decipher the mystery hidden underwater of the modern-day Dwarka. And truly they were successful. The city had been submerged in water almost 6 times due to the natural erosions caused by the Arabian sea. Among the several findings at the site, the key ones were the bastions, pillars, walls, stone structures, objects made of terracotta, bronze, copper and iron, pottery and most significantly seals and inscriptions belonging to 1500 BC.
Yonaguni in Japan
Yonaguni is a group of islands in Japan, about 68 miles beyond the east coast of Taiwan. It is a well-known tourist spot especially because of its phenomenal landscape. But the key attraction of the place is its underwater ruins about 8000 to 10,000 years old. Several debates and discussions have since been undergone regarding the reason behind the submersion and the civilizations to which the ruins belonged. Some archaeologists attribute the ruins to a Continent of Mu that went missing, some argue it to be a geological process, some say the ruins belonged to the Inca civilization or the legendary Jomon civilization of Japan. Due to the rough ocean currents, it had been quite tough to study the ruins in details and hence lots of speculations on its origin.
Port Royal in Jamaica
Port Royal in Jamaica was a notorious place for hosting pirates. A massive earthquake in 1692 had submerged parts of the city along with its houses, buildings and streets. It’s one of the underwater ruins which is still accessible if you know diving. The excavations at the site started in 1981 which lead to discoveries of several organic and perishable artefacts. The artefacts were intact and well preserved underwater. The total area of the underwater ruins in Port Royal is now approximately 13 acres.
Fuxian Lake in China
Fuxian Lake in China is one of the most alluring underwater ruins in the world. There is no firm conclusion on the lost civilisation at the lake. Based on the pyramid like structures and objects made of stones, archaeologists claim that the artefacts belong to the Dian Kingdom. The history of the Dian dynasty dates to more than 2000 years old. The site needs further research and analysis to determine its year of origin and the reason behind its submersion.
A travel enthusiast craving to explore the exotic destinations in the world, deciphering the mysteries and the thrill concealed in them.