1. Mythical Moa birds
Moa birds were native to the habitat island of New Zealand. History can tell us that there were probably twelve species in all, and although they did not fly, they were a formidable force as they weighed about 200 kilograms and could be up to three metres tall. Not much factual information is readily available about these great birds as they existed long before humans came to live on the island. It’s said the Maori tribes were largely responsible for their eventual extinction as they preyed on them as good food sources. Thanks to scientific research, an expedition uncovered this Moa bird claw which survived in tact.
2. The Temple Complex of Saksaywaman
The temple complex of Saksaywaman is located 2 km north of Cusco, in Peru. This archaeological hotspot is home to thousands of returning tourists, and it’s easy to see why. Dubbed as one of the‘new’ seven wonders of the world, this enormous construction has baffled the minds of many, as the walls appear seamless. Each piece of brick was inserted without any mortar giving the stones a circular structure and effortless polished finish. The temple consists of walls, rooms, towers and a maze of canals and underground chambers.
It was primarily built as a place of worship and even now, thousands turn out to venerate when thefestival of the sun is celebrated on June 24th. It’s probably why the Inca’s aptly titled it ‘The house of the sun.’
3. Gate of the Sun
The gate of the Sun is an ancient structure situated in Bolivia and it’s said the surrounding ruins were built 12,000 BC. Also known as ‘The Calender Gate’, this monolithic mystery was built in honour of the sun and as some kind of method which documented time. The calendar year at the time bears no resemblance to the one we’re familiar with so it remains a bit of an enigma. The surrounding ruins have sadly not stood the test of time, mainly through looting and amateur expeditions from those looking for hidden treasures.
4. The Longyou Caves
The Longyou Caves were only discovered in Shiyan Beicun in Zhejiang, China, in the 90’s. This archaic and elaborate cave system seems to have been hand-carved, although archaeologists are still at a loss as to how any human could haver managed such a feat. There are thirty-six chambers inside the labyrinth of sandstone rock formation and are said to be about 2,000 years old.
5. The Unfinished Obelisk
The Unfinished Obelisk is an enormous granite stone monument located in Egypt. It bears testament to the fine workmanship of quarrymen and their polished handiwork. It’s called the ‘unfinished’ Obelisk because it appears work was abandoned when cracks began to appear in the rock surface. Considering it would have weighed 1150 tons and stood a massive 120 feet high, if the job had been finished, one can understand why the builders of such a gigantic project had cause for concern. Thetowering structure still lies flat on the ground with it’s underbelly still attached to the earth.
Visitors to the site can clearly see with the naked eye, markings on the ruin that pertain to stonework techniques employed at the time it was being created. Archaeologists have been able to determine that the tools workers used for carving were made from a tougher stone called Dolerite.
6. The Underwater City of Yonaguni
In 1986, The Underwater City of Yonaguni in Japan, was accidentally uncovered by scuba diving instructor Kihachiro Aratake. As he reached six meters in depth he stumbled upon a myriad of tunnels, walls, stairs and upright pillars which appeared to be carved out of the side of a mountain beneath the surface waves. To this day many expeditions have been led to the site but very little factual historical evidence can explain how the underworld city came to be.
Some suspect the city of stone might have been built about 10,000 years ago when the land stood above the sea level. Others speculated that it was the result of an earthquake. However, as the city was further explored and stone monuments, pyramids and archways were unearthed, it became clear that they had to be man-made. It still remains a mystery who those men were.
7. Mohenjo-daro – The Mound of the Dead
Mohenjo-daro (The Mound of the Dead), is situated in the Larkana area of Sindh, in Pakistan. It is purported to be an ancient Indus Valley civilisation that has perplexed geologists the world over. It was first stumbled upon in 1921, where excavations were carried out to reveal two cities. Mohenjo-daro is just one of them. Experts agree that the meandering remains that look like a maze of streets, are probably about 4,500 years old. It’s called the city of mounds as the ancient peoples are said to have kept building new homes, and the mounds developed naturally beneath them.
The area kept growing until it was 250 acres wide. Artefacts retrieved from the site include a bronze statuette. Some experts think that the River Indus nearby, responsible for trade, may have changed course which marked the end of the civilisation. However, nobody knows for sure.
8. L’Anse aux Meadows
L’Anse aux Meadows, is an historic site in Canada, and was discovered in 1968 by archaeologists Helge and Anne Stine Ingstad. It is now a preserved world heritage site and it’s said it was the primary location for the exploring Norse men; the Vikings. The rugged landscape is home to Viking trade tracks. The site has reproduced and restored many Norse tools and a guided tour of the place allows visitors to steep themselves in the Viking lifestyle.
Norsetead is about 2 kilometres from the site where tourists can participate in traditional Norse games or have a look at a recreated replica of a Viking boat that would have sailed there roughly one thousand years ago. While there’s plenty of evidence that the site is of Viking origin, much of the folklore and legend surrounding the Norse people is still hard to set in stone.
9. Stone-Age Tunnels
The Stone-Age tunnels are a network of underground systems that run right across Europe. It’s reported that the tunnels are 12,000 years old. This archaic motorway system is so vast and intricate that it has baffled archaeologists for decades. It’s said the elaborate tunnel networks which are tucked under ancient settlement sites, provided safety from wars and/or bad weather. This man-made underworld probably evolved as a means of safe transport. While the tunnels stretch for miles, they are quite narrow, just enough room for one person to travel through. Often there are churches at entrance points, probably to protect those who ventured inside, and it’s believed they may have been used as escape exists. Inside, small spaces have been discovered.
It’s thought these little nooks and crannies were carved out as rest rooms. There are also little tables to eat from, and spaces that were probably meant for storage purposes. In other excavation expeditions, writings were found which referred to the stone-age tunnels that suggest it is a hidden entrance to a secret underworld.
10. The giant stone spheres
The mysterious giant stone spheres of Costa Rica where first located in the Diquis Delta. Reports of findings of the strange stone balls first started to appear in the 1930’s.
These spherical wonders come in a wide range of size and weight; a couple of centimetres up to a massive two meters in width. Some are quite large tipping the 16 ton mark and there’s said to be about three hundred of them in all. These hand-built spheroids are thought to be made from a substance called granodiorite, which was probably sourced from the Costa Rican quarry nearby.