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Who doesn’t love a good adventure story? And who doesn’t love Indiana Jones Movies, right? And wouldn’t’ it be awesome to find Atlantis one day?
Despite the fact that Atlantis may be one of the most well-known ‘lost’ ancient cities, there are many other places as mysterious and stunning as Atlantis.
In this article, I invite to join me as we explore five of lost legendary ancient cities that have eluded experts for centuries.
The Lost City of Z
In April of 1925 when Percy Fawcett, a British explorer, and archaeologist, was introduced to an adventure in the Brazilian jungle from which he would never return.
Fawcett set out to find a lost city, which he named Z, somewhere in Mato Grosso, Brazil.
Fawcett never returned from the trip, and nothing was heard from him or his companions who from Cuiabá went to Alto Xingu, a southeastern tributary of the Amazon River.
The source on which he built the dream of finding a legendary city in the Brazilian jungle, a kind of El Dorado, was Manuscript 512 housed at the National Library of Rio de Janeiro.
Manuscript 512 was a document written by a Portuguese explorer in 1753 in which he had discovered a walled city in the confines of the Mato Grosso region reminiscent of design to cities of Ancient Greece.
It was not the first time that Fawcett embarked on an expedition to find the Lost City of Z but this was his definitive one.
To date, just as Atlantis, the Legendary Lost City of Z remains a profound mystery, and many experts argue it only exists in legend.
More than just a lost city, Shambala is to be a powerful kingdom.
Sometimes called Shangri-La, Shambala holds an important place in both Hindu and Tibetan Buddhist Traditions.
The kingdom is said to be laid out in precisely the same form as an eight-petalled lotus blossom enclosed by a series of snow mountains. At the center lies the palace of the King of Shambala who governed from the city called Kalapa. Shambhala is also often-called Shangri-La in some texts.
Hindu texts such as the Vishnu Purana (4.24) mention the village Shambhala as the birthplace of Kalki, the final incarnation of Vishnu, who will usher in a new Golden Age (Satya Yuga).
The legendary home place of one of the most prominent ancient civilizations from the American Continent, the Aztecs, has never been found.
Aztlan is like an American Atlantis, and some authors have even ventured out and said it might be the Atlantis we are looking for.
Aztlan was the homeland of the Aztecs, from where they left to build their mighty empire with capital in what is now Mexico City.
According to different theories, this lost city is located somewhere in North America, with some authors claiming that Aztlan existed in modern-day Utah.
Aztlan, whose name means “the land to the North” or ‘the place of whiteness,’ has never been found. But the Annals of Tlatelolco place the migration of the Aztecs from Aztlan to Tenochtitlan on May 24, 1064, the first year of the Aztec solar calendar.
The Lost City of El Dorado
After Atlantis, I think the legend of El Dorado is one of the best known today.
In fact, the search for the lost city of gold was what motivated many Conquistadores to travel thousands of kilometers through inhospitable terrains in South America, searching for a city that according to accounts, was made entirely of Gold.
The myth of El Dorado was associated with a ruler who bathed in gold every morning and washed at night in a sacred lake, the lake of Guatavita, in which all wealth was deposited.
Although in reality the myth was actually a ceremony of the Colombian Muisca people, carried out since ancient times.
In 1541 Francisco de Orellana was the first European conqueror to cross the Amazon River, flogged by the search for El Dorado.
Later, Sir Walter Raleigh, in 1594, left for the first time in his search and in two of his trips he failed.
No one has found the legendary city, and, just as Atlantis and Aztlan, many believe it is nothing more than a Myth.
Camelot is the name of the fortress and kingdom of the legendary King Arthur, from where he fought many of the battles that marked his life.
Just as with other famous cities and places, the exact location of Camelot remains a mystery, and many scholars have argued that Camelot is entirely a work of fiction, and not real.
The stories locate it somewhere in Great Britain and sometimes associate it with real cities, although its exact location is not revealed.
The city was introduced for the first time in French romances of the twelfth century. Arthur’s court at Camelot is mentioned for the first time in Chrétien’s poem Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart, dating to the 1170s, though it does not appear in all the manuscripts.
Camelot eventually came to be described as the fantastic capital of Arthur’s realm and a symbol of the Arthurian world.
Since the location of Camelot remains a mystery, the truth about it, if it existed, remains an enigma.
Featured image credit: Leon Tukker. Posted with Permission.