Pavlopetri – The oldest sunken city in the world is revealed!

Pavlopetri is the oldest submerged city in the world and only in 2011 became known to the world when BBC visited this place and using specialist laser scanning techniques on location accurately recreated three-dimensional models of artefacts!

Pavlopetri, the sunken city

In 1904 the geologist Fokion Negri reported an ancient city in the seabed between the island Elafonisos and beach Punta in southern Laconia.

Later, in 1967, oceanographer Dr Nicholas Flemming, University of Southampton, visited the underwater city and found the existence of an ancient submerged city in a depth of 3 – 4 meters!

In 1968 Dr Nicholas Flemming returned to Pavlopetri with a group of young archaeologists from the University of Cambridge and in collaboration with professor Angelos Delivorias, they mapped and dated the sunken city.

They discovered a rare prehistoric residential town with many buildings, streets and even squares! Based on the findings, the team of the University of Cambridge announced that the Pavlopetri firstly inhabited in 2800 BC, while the buildings and streets dating from the Mycenaean period (1680-1180 BC)!!!

Scientists believe that the city was submerged perhaps by an earthquake of 8 magnitudes (!), around 1,000 BC while others date the earthquake around 375 AD!

In 2007, Dr Jon Henderson and Dr Chryssanthi Frenchman from the University of Nottingham visited Pavlopetri and in collaboration with the Director of the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities Ilias Spondilis undertook a research program for further archaeological investigations Pavlopetri.

The project had a duration of five years (2009-2013), and it aimed to shed light on research questions concerning the dating and character of the submerged village in Elafonisos and the role of the town in the control of the Laconian Gulf.

So far, 15 buildings with at least 12 rooms each have been identified, as well as a complex water management system with canals and water pipes!

So, if you are interested in underwater archaeology, this is the ideal place, as the architectural remains of this sunken city are visible at a depth of about three meters!

Pavlopetri is in Lakonia, in Peloponnese, which is 4 hours drive from Athens or 2.5 hours from Kalamata International Airport.

Pavlopetri is a fantastic finding, and there is a beautiful documentary by BBC, which will reveal you a spectacular view of an unknown world and civilisation 5000 years ago! (Featured photo © BBC/Jon Henderson).

Check below the interesting documentary!

Now that you read where is the oldest submerged town in the world, do you know which is the largest ancient city in Greece?

If you have any question, please leave us a comment below!

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