Mysterious Structures From the Past

Mysterious places are all over the world. Centuries-old buildings whose origin is unknown, constructions so fascinating that we still wonder how they came to be and why. We propos a trip to the most mysterious structures in the world in a few words. Which one have you already visited?

Stonehenge, United Kingdom

One of the most fascinating places in the world is, of course, the stone circle at Stonehenge. Since the Middle Ages, the best brains in the world have tried to unravel the mystery behind this impressive structure. By all accounts, its construction dates back to 2500 BC. But who built it? What was it? How was it built? Nothing is clear. The lack of sources of information and evidence has led to all sorts of crazy stories about the origin of Stonehenge. Perhaps in part, not knowing is a big part of the appeal of this structure.

The Nazca Lines, Peru

From the sky, flying over the Nazca Desert in Peru, you can see giant drawings. These designs on the ground were created by the indigenous people who lived there and are surprisingly well preserved despite being dated between 200 BC and 700 AD. The particularity of these drawings is their enormous size, with lines more than 180 meters long. The dimensions of the Nazca lines give them an incredibly mysterious charge and scientists still wonder what sense they would make.

Porta Magica, Rome, Italy

In Piazza Vittorio, in the centre of Rome, are the ruins of the house of a Roman marquis. It is rumored that in the 17th century Massimiliano Palombara got the formula to turn metal into gold thanks to an alchemist. But unfortunately the marquis did not know and could not decipher the recipe, which is carved on the lintel of the main door of his home. This door has reached us to this day… but the truth is that no one has managed to decipher the enigma.

The Moais of Rapa Nui, Easter Island, Chile

The Rapa Nui Moais are better known as the statues of Easter Island. These moles of giant heads that reach up to 9 meters high and can weigh up to 70 tons are supposed to have been built between the years 1,250 and 1,500 by the first inhabitants of this remote place. There are supposed to be about 900 of them, of which 394 are almost intact. The biggest mystery surrounding the Moais is how they were carved. If you find the answer, let us know.

Newgrange, Ireland

This huge tomb was built around 3100 BC and is now considered one of the most important prehistoric sites in Ireland. Even today, this spectacular funerary monument with a long corridor leading to a central chamber still stands up to the elements and is a place of pilgrimage every year during the winter solstice when the sunlight illuminates its interior in a special way. However, we don’t know who built it, or for whom… or why its peculiar alignment.

Rubjerg Knude Lighthouse, Hjorring, Denmark

Rubjerg’s lighthouse in Hjorring is really strange. It was built in 1900 but soon after its commissioning the dunes and the sea started a slow reconquest of the land. The sand gradually covered the land and buried the buildings while the waves came closer and closer. In 1986 the tower was abandoned to its fate and every day that passes is closer and closer to disappearing.

Sacsayhuaman, Peru

Not far from the famous Inca city of Machu Picchu, Sacsayhuaman is relatively outside Cuzco. This site is a strange spectacle of limestone walls and rocks. In addition to its enormous zigzag walls, Sacsayhuaman also houses numerous catacombs. Both the construction and the purpose of the curious elements that shape this unique city are a mystery. How the Incas were able to erect and fit these huge stones so masterfully is a great unknown.

Skara Brae, Orkney, Scotland

This Celtic settlement was founded in 3200 BC, making it an even older settlement than the pyramids of Egypt. The houses were buried for centuries under a hill next to the beach in the village of Skerrabra, on Orkney. Part of the mystery was uncovered in 1850 when the first homes came to light after a storm blew away some of the sand covering them. Shortly afterwards, the entire human settlement was uncovered. Because it has been preserved virtually intact, Skara Brae has revealed many things to us about how our Neolithic ancestors lived.

Yaxchilán, Chiapas, Mexico

If we had to include all the fascinating Mayan ruins in one list we would not be able to cope. The Mayas left behind special and wonderful buildings in present-day Mexico, among which the mysterious site of Yaxchilán stands out. It was one of the most outstanding Mayan cities and now the invasive plants have taken it, integrating it into the jungle. One of the most interesting elements of this site are the ruins of its 183-meter high and 100-meter long suspension bridge that has the scientific community intrigued. Yaxchilan reached its peak between 681 and 800. How were the Mayans able to build the largest suspension bridge in the world until the 15th century? It’s an unsolved mystery.