Ancient City of Nan Madol | Lost Cities With Albert Lin

[dramatic music playing] MALE SPEAKER: This
is it, Albert. Welcome to the jungle. We are on sacred
grounds right now. You’re just beginning to
see part of the structures. ALBERT LIN: I’ve never
seen anything like this. MALE SPEAKER:
Welcome to Nan Madol. ALBERT LIN: (VOICEOVER)
Only a tiny fragment of the legendary Soudelor
city can still be seen. Mangroves choke
whatever else remains. Now, new technology
can help unlock the secrets of this place. How and why it was built, and
just how big it really is. What is that? It’s incredible, isn’t it? I was born here. But every time I come up
here, I’m always amazed. Always. This is the main ceremonial
center of Nan Madol. [majestic music playing] ALBERT LIN: (VOICEOVER)
It’s a temple to the island’s ancient
rulers, constructed from pillars of basalt rock. 800 years ago, this place
would have been bustling with hundreds of
priests, attendants, and the feared Soudelor kings. Must have been some
super-powered humans to build this, huh? Well, this area was
meant only for the elite. It was the only
time in our history that we were ruled by one
person, almost like a dictator. So he was able to
command all the people on the island to come and assist
in the building of Nan Modal. Look, is that more
rocks over there? Is that even more of them? That’s an outer
wall, built all the way to the edge of the reef. Yeah, you can see the
reef breaking, right there. Exactly. It’s massive. ALBERT LIN: (VOICEOVER)
To get to grips with this “city in the
sea,” we need to work out the full extent of it. And that can only
be done from above. I think we have to
scan this with the drone. And maybe we can start
to really map out all these different features. OK, so this is where
we’re at right now. There are 90-plus
structures, all man-made. From here, all the
way down south. You had your exit–
– All the way to there? Yes. Such a huge area. It is huge. Can’t see anything. It’s all mangrove. Were the mangroves
here 800 years ago? No, I doubt it. It’s been abandoned for a long
time, so mangroves just grew. It would have been easier
to map it then than it is now. Well, that’s why
we have LIDAR, right? We’re gonna delete
the mangroves. Taking off. [drone whirring] ALBERT LIN: (VOICEOVER) My drone
team begin the first of more than 40 planned flights. We’re scanning this whole area,
almost half a square mile– twice the size of
the Vatican City. We want to strip back
the jungle canopy and reveal the rest of the city. [dramatic music playing] I’m going back to explore the
gigantic building that Gus showed me to find out
more about the people who built this place. Why is there so little
known about the people that built this incredible monument? The reason there
is so little known is because there’s not a
written system to express ideas. It’s through oral
tradition, which are– Stories. Exactly. Those are stories handed down,
generation to generation. And no person can tell the
entire story because there’s the belief that, if they
tell the whole story, that they will die. They’re no longer useful. ALBERT LIN: How was
this place built? I can’t imagine how human
effort could actually carry these stones all the way
up to the top of this building. It’s really not clear
to us how it was done– the physics part of it. One legend talks about magic
being used to lift the rocks and bring them over here. So they would fly. Magic flew these rocks here. That’s right. ALBERT LIN: (VOICEOVER)
This whole expedition is something else. I’m a scientist, a technologist. I deal in facts. Finding out how they
actually built this? It’s going to be a challenge.

100 Replies to “Ancient City of Nan Madol | Lost Cities With Albert Lin”

  1. Little is known about the people who built this monument because most ideas were spoken and not written down. What are your thoughts on this fascinating site?

  2. Can y’all try to go down in the lagoon to see what’s down there which all micronesian scared to do…wanna see

  3. Those stones were moved from the other end of the island. I remember all the stories our great grandmother would tell us about the history of Nan Madol and the rule of the Saudelohrs. Alot of superstition and practice of what most will call black magic exists today, probably not as how it used to be. I've seen it with my eyes and it is indeed a breath taking sight to see, although quite far from the US mainland

  4. Just post the whole show National Geographic. You used to only make magazines, now your on T.V. it's time to come into the digital age.

  5. How did they build a tall wall?

    Its called Scaffolding! Its been around since the 5th century….how is this even a question. Lol so obvious.

  6. These ancient buildings are so fascinating. To think there were people like you and me that lived and walked through these places daily almost a thousand years ago… history is so cool

  7. As large as the site is today one has to consider that 800 years ago ocean levels were lower than today. How much of the site is now under water?

  8. People wandering how it was built the answer is actually in the video, they simply used magic to move the rocks reshape them and place them!

  9. I'm sure you'll go there and destroy a bunch of ecosystem just like you do every we're all in the name of science

  10. The city, constructed in a lagoon, consists of a series of small artificial islands linked by a network of canals. The elite centre was a special place of residence for the nobility and of mortuary activities presided over by priests. The site core with its stone walls contains nearly 100 artificial islets—stone and coral fill platforms—bordered by tidal canals. The ruined city is one of today's great archaeological enigmas, also a UNESCO World Heritage site, and is sometimes called "Atlantis", the "eighth wonder of the world", or the "Venice of the Pacific".

  11. Im Micronesian
    Legend has it that the first people of the island were the builders of this ancient city. The second wave of people came & waged war on them driving them out to neighboring islands. Another similar ancient city lies on one neighboring island called Kosrae to the east of Pohnpei. To the west of Pohnpei we have Chuuk whose first people were known to have come from Kosrae but there is also one clan(Soupunupi clan) that claims they are the first people who claim they came frm Pohnpei.

  12. When you stick to earthly topics National Geographic does a great job.

    Really like the magazine, but…

    When it comes to "space" related programs or articles they lose all credibility.

    National Geographic has never gone into "space".

    You can't right articles on hearsay and show Images of "space" if you have not been there.

    Just my opinion.

  13. It is a ancient Tamil civilization…. Because the word nan madol is still using in tamilnadu (india).. . Nan madol means four towers….. The rock structure was similar to the tanjore big temple in tamilnadu ….

  14. Hello national geography channel please visit keeladi,madurai in Tamilnadu district. It's one of the oldest cities in world..

  15. Want to visit! Thinking of doing an autograph tour there. Forgot what the tour is for though…
    I'll Ask nurse…

  16. Madurai city in tamilnadu south of India is also called Nan maadal..pls connect it and do your seems like the construction engg of Tamil people..

  17. I'm from Pohnpei (Sarawi) and you guys will never find the truth about the island. Yall don't believe in magic cuz yall never witness it and it's okay to us, whether it's magic or not truth will never be told to foreigners…I'm sorry we where raised by this and could not give it away it's sacred😔 u guys might wanna try again hundred yrs from now

  18. Awesome! Thank you very much Nat Geo and Albert Lin & Team. Pohnpei is humbled and honored, and will forever be grateful for this. Nan Madol literally means Spaces In Between. The area where Nan Madol is located was originally named Sounahleng, literally means On The Reef Of Heaven – thus, SPACES IN BETWEEN ON THE REEF OF HEAVEN, which has a more in-depth representation of its mysteries. Legend also has it that there's an under water city located just off the shore, but only the worthy can find it and enter its breathable zone. Maybe to better understand the place, we need to first answer the question – where was/is the source of the 250 million tons of basalt rocks? Some say the closest possible source is in Melaysia.

  19. I was a volunteer teacher down the road from this Nan Madol. I taught at a boys trade school and the students said the basalt logs were flown from the other side of the island where they are found in this log shape. No other explanation is known, this is the beginning of the research. Living in Micronesia made a huge impact on my life and I am writing a book about it now. The place is beautiful, I hope this attention doesn't ruin it.

  20. This was on In Search Of with Leonard Nimoy like 35 or 40 years ago. Oh yeah in case you didn't know this guy's only got one leg.

  21. Hah. He thinks magic like this is silly. More then half the kids I went to high school with thought some dude could walk on water and come back from the dead. Now that’s silly

  22. Old knowledge has it as fact. Magic created that and the proof is rite there in front of u to touch n examine. Another legend says that powerful magical wizard/warlock/Dr.Frankenstein dude controlled demons, evil gargoyle type creature's that he had them build it. Ooohhhh spooky. Hey! It's there, aint it?😈😈

  23. Every ancient structures has a "woowoo" magical origin story, just like this one. Sounds nonsensical, but I wonder if some of them are actually true.

  24. Drones have really changed the game of surveying land. Before you'd need to pay countless amounts of money to get time on a satellite or get access to a plane and do a ton of flyovers.

  25. Thanks to tecnology now archeologits prove civilization history its way larger and complicated and maybe way older than we thougt, they have found giant lost cities in México, Guatemala, Brasil, caribean islands and in many coasts around the world. Its time to open our minds and appreciate how awesome and beautifull creatures we are, and not give all the credit to aliens for everything we can't explain how was build.

  26. This place was ruled by a king named Dik head he was a tyrant and ruled with a iron fist or rock fist because they didn't have iron back then in these islands.

  27. I love it when they say they don't know how it was built like it's some big mystery. Those rocks are volcanic, not as dense as regular stone, I'll bet that 6-8 guys could easily lift one and carry it across the island. Still amazing, but not a mystery. Same as the Pyramids, just ropes and logs and a whole lotta elbow grease.

  28. Hello Nat-Geo family, i want to announce you to another lost city in Mardin/Turkey. Researchers claimed that it belongs to about 10.000-15.000 years before.İt found 1 month before you can search it 😏

  29. She is telling that magic was used to fly away rocks ….
    Then more Powerful magic was used to build pyramid's in Egypt….
    They must be god then.

  30. They should have visited Gunung Padang as well, an identically built site 3,500 miles away on a mountain top. They missed an opportunity!

  31. A great Documentary about a group of people with fantastic knowledge of Engineering! Not to mention the rough terrain . Such a hard trip for those of us without a disability. Fine job Albert! You’re my hero!

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