The Sentinel
Sept 24, 2023
The temples of Tikal, Guatemala
Tikal, nestled within Tikal National Park, stands as Guatemala's most prized treasure. Among the Mayan city-states, this ancient lost city reigns supreme, with its grand six temples still commanding the landscape, much as they did a millennium ago.
Ctesiphon, Iraq — the ancient Persian capital city
Ctesiphon, once the thriving capital of the ancient Persian Empire, can be found along the banks of the Tigris River, not too distant from present-day Baghdad. Its main attraction is an immense vaulted hall, presided over by what remains the world's largest arch constructed entirely of bricks.
The abandoned trading city of Great Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
Constructed by the Gokomere people in the 11th century, this forgotten city graces a plateau roughly 150 kilometers away from contemporary Harare. At the heart of Great Zimbabwe, a palace stood enclosed by a formidable granite wall, soaring to a height of approximately five meters.
The lost city of Mohenjo-Daro, Pakistan
The Indus Valley civilization, which established Mohenjo-Daro around 2600 BC, existed as a rival to the more famous Greek and Egyptian counterparts. While much remains unknown about its inhabitants, this region was once inhabited by early pioneers in the fields of urban planning and civil engineering.
The many mosques of Mosque City of Bagerhat, Bangladesh
On the meeting point of the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers, a Turkish general from the fifteenth century oversaw the construction of a town. He envisioned a city adorned with palaces, mosques, and tombs, including his own. This historic town boasted a remarkable total of 360 mosques and served as an outpost of the Islamic world. However, it gradually fell into decline soon after the demise of its founder.
The canyon walls of Mesa Verde, Colorado, USA
Mesa Verde National Park preserves the remains of an ancient urban settlement that was once home to the Anasazi people, dwelling here from the 7th to the 14th centuries AD. Within its boundaries lie more than 600 cliff dwellings primarily constructed using sandstone, wood, and mortar, ingeniously nestled beneath the sheltering overhangs of ridges.
The shrines of Vijayanagar, India
You may not be familiar with it, but by the year 1500 AD, Vijayanagar boasted a population double that of Paris and reigned as the epicenter of the most magnificent empire in southern India. This fabled city was constructed around a collection of sacred sites, among which the awe-inspiring Virupaksha Temple took center stage.
One of the great lost cities — Ani, Turkey
Ani, the splendid capital of a 10th-century Armenian kingdom, earned the title of 'The City of 1001 Churches.' Remarkably, numerous of these churches still stand today, appearing enchantingly incongruous amidst the lush green fields enveloping them. It's truly challenging to fathom that these evocative, yet often overlooked, ruins were once integral to a city-state that rivaled the grandeur of Damascus or Constantinople.