Historians and archaeologists are scratching their heads over an ancient and mysterious remote city built in the middle of the ocean - nearly 100 years after it was first discovered.
Renewed interest in the island has been sparked by satellite images, which have revealed the full extent of the region, and subject of a new documentary.
The virtually uninhabitable Nan Madol, located just off the main island of Pohnpei in Micronesia in the Pacific, is reportedly thought to have been built in the first or second century.
Nan Madol, which means “the space inbetween”, is 1,600 miles from Australia and 2,500 miles from Los Angeles.
It was described as the Eighth Wonder of the World by early European explorers, with 97 individual geometrically-shaped blocks, separated by narrow channels of water.
No records exist to explain its foundations or structure.
The city was featured on the What on Earth? show on the Science Channel.
"Why would somebody build a city out in the middle of the ocean?" archaeologist Patrick Hunt said on the show. "Why here, so far away, from any other known civilisation?"
Mark McCoy of Texas Southern Methodist University, who led the research team on the island, said the mysterious site was likely where island chiefs were buried, as well as a place for religious rites and political power.
The city has stone walls measuring 25 feet high and 17 feet thick.
It was also compared to the island of Atlantis, which was speculated to have disappeared under the water.
Local people of Pohnpei reportedly will not go near the “haunted” city.
The first traces of the city were discovered in the early 20th century.
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