Did you know that there are many underwater cities of great beauty and history that are hiding deep beneath the waters of the ocean?
Most people are unaware of what lies beneath the waters of the earth. Underneath the ocean and the seas lies mysteries of the past. Sunken ships, treasures and artifacts are only a handful of the bounty found by archeologists and divers. But that’s not all.
There are much larger beauties found beneath the waves. In fact, entire underwater cities have been found in areas such as China, India and off the coast of the South American Islands -not to mention Atlantis, the fabled city that may or may not exist. Let’s hope it does because that would be out-of-this-world.
So what of Atlantis?
There may be a few people who’ve never heard of Atlantis. Although I wish to talk about the most amazing underwater cities, found and proven, and this one may not be real, I still want to mention it just in case, just to get you in the mood.
Greek philosopher, Plato, started the myth about Atlantis. Plato wrote a book in 360 B.C. detailing a city that existed 9000 years before his time. Atlantis, he said, was as big as Asia. Can you imagine! The idea that an entire city, of this size, could disappear. That’s hard to fathom. But remember, it could be true.
Here are a few other great cities located under the deep blue. These underwater cities, unlike Atlantis, have been proven to be real:
1. Thonis or Heracleion
Called Heracleion by the Greek and Thonis, by the Egyptians, this underwater city, submerged for 1,200 years, continues to share its secrets. Once the official port of Egypt between 664 and 332 B.C, Thonis-Heracleion is now found 6.4 meters off the northern coast of Egypt. Around 60 shipwrecks were found in Heracleion and temples still hold votives and offerings intact. The most common reason for the sinking port involves earthquake damage during its prime.
2. The Underwater city of Shicheng, China (The Lion City)
The city of Shicheng, China was not erected all at one time. The basic foundations of the city were built around 1,300 years ago, but continued in construction for 300 years. The architecture suggests that the city has been around since the Ming and Qing dynasties (1368). The city has not been underwater for long, however, sinking in the year 1959 -on purpose in favor of the construction of a hydroelectric plant and dam. Residents evacuated the city, giving up their ancestral home -of which all residents could trace their ancestry back to shicheng. The city is still well preserved, retaining walls that date back to the 16th century. The Chinese government has also re-mapped the cities for appreciation of art and history.
3. Cleopatra’s Palace, Alexandria, Egypt
While it’s not an entire city, Cleopatra’s Palace and portions of the city of Alexandria deserve a mention. It was an earthquake, striking between the 4th and 8th century, that pulled structures into the sea. Barracks, private structures and military outposts were lost, along with Cleopatra and Mark Anthony’s home, the home where she committed suicide to avoid capture. Other notable structures, found within the lost city, were Mark Anthony’s sanctuary, Timomium (never completed) and the Temple of Isis. In 1994, archeologists uncovered jewelry, pottery and statues. One of the last discoveries was one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Lighthouse of Alexandria. There are plans to open an underwater museum so the rest of us can enjoy the splendor of this glorious sunken city.
4. Port Royal, Jamaica
One of the most notorious cities in the New World met its demise in 1692. In Port Royal, prostitutes and pirates were only a few shady characters keeping the city alive. Some believe the city sunk because of the rampant sin, while others believe it was simply coincidence, and that an earthquake wiped out 2,000 of Port Royal’s citizens. Over the centuries, Port Royal has continued to sink and now lies 40 ft. below the surface of the ocean.
There are many other ancient cities lying at the bottom of oceans and seas. Other cities like Dwarka in India and Atlit Yam, Israel have been beneath the waves for so long that there is little left to see. Regardless, cataloging these findings and learning the historical facts behind these beautiful cities help to reveal the secrets of the mysteries. Maybe even Atlantis will arise from the murky depths of the sea, taking its place among the proven historic underwater cities.