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UNESCO'S Ancient Mysteries

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Ancient cities that are far more technologically advanced than they should be. Unexplained vestiges of disappeared cultures. Impossible feats of engineering pulled off for unfathomable reasons. We stand baffled before these ancient riddles, all protected UNESCO Heritage Sites, because they are proof, not only of the power and capabilities of bygone cultures, but that the more we learn about these ancient people, the more mysteries we find to uncover.
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Nanwei, Pohnpei Island, Federated States of Micronesia
Searching for the legendary lost continent of Mu, or Lemuria? We could only find the mirror image of the sunken city at Nan Madol, whose walls were built of giant basalt pillars, which break naturally into huge, log-like hexagonal columns. The...
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Newgrange, Donore, Co. Meath, Ireland
Older than both Stonehenge and the pyramids of Egypt, the monument at Newgrange was built around 3,200 B.C.E. Its use is a mystery, although it was most likely a place of worship, and there are legends that it was used as a burial chamber. The...
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Amesbury, Salisbury SP4 7DE, UK
One of the world’s most iconic, and mysterious, prehistoric monuments sits in the English countryside about a 90-minute drive from Portland. Walk among the standing stones that were arranged here some 2,000 to 3,000 years B.C.E., around the same...
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I think this is the most mysterious place I have ever been. It is just crazy that no one truly knows who built these or why. Having been to Peru, I could definitely see the Inca influence on the base under the Moai. But I have also been to...
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The Nazca Lines are massive geometric and zoomorphic designs laid out in the middle of the coastal desert of the Ica region. These 2500 year old sand etchings are so big that you can only see them from the air. Their origin is a mystery....
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Mesa Verde, CO, USA
For anyone who believes that truly historic architecture doesn’t exist in the states, Mesa Verde National Park will make you think again. Still standing in the park are cliff dwellings built in AD 600 by the ancestral Pueblo people who once...
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Riding through the countryside of Laos’ remote Xieng Khouang province, we spied verdant rolling hills, villagers of all ages escorting livestock on the dusty roadside, and giant craters disfiguring the landscape. For an instant, these cavities in...
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Dağeteği Mahallesi, 63290 Haliliye/Şanlıurfa, Turkey
The archaeological site of Göbekli Tepe is a vast complex of stone pillars and rooms that were erected in the Neolithic era. The pillars are up to 20 feet tall and fitted into holes carved out of bedrock. The stone at different parts of the site...
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Costa Rica's newest UNESCO Heritage site is the stone balls, or Diquís Spheres. There are over 300 of these mysterious, near-perfect, carved spheres that range in height from a few centimeters to over 6 feet tall. No one really knows, but they are...