The Mysteries Of The “Lost City” Of Nan Madol

Marcus Lowth
Published Date
May 12, 2020
Last Updated
September 26, 2021
Estimated Reading Time
7 min read
Posted in
Conspiracy Theory Analysis, Historical

The apparently lost city of Nan Madol, which sits opposite the eastern coast of Pohnpei, an island which is part of the Federated States of Micronesia in the Pacific Ocean is a wonder to researchers and archaeologists, even being referred to by some as the “eighth wonder of the world”, with Smithsonian Magazine even calling it an “engineering marvel”.

Examples of the stonework and waterways of Nan Madol

The paradise-like scenes of Nan Madol

As we might expect, many researchers suggest the possibility of a connection to apparently sunken and lost cities as Atlantis or more specifically, Lemuria (sometimes referred to as Mu). Others suggest that the largely artificial location is the result of extraterrestrial technology and foresight, as well as being for their own (unknown) purposes.

Is it possible that Nan Madol will reveal the existence of an ancient and advanced civilization? Might this location have acted as some kind of extraterrestrial outpost in the distant past? Might the island have been constructed by an unknown civilization of giants? The questions and possibilities are seemingly in abundance. As are the legends and myths that prompt them?

All of these suggestions, as well as how the island was constructed in the first place, keep the location as one of the most enigmatic and intriguing on Earth. And one, potentially, with many secrets left to reveal.

The location has been studied by multiple researchers and archaeologists over the decades. However, from a UFO and ancient astronaut or civilization perspective, some of the most intriguing research, albeit well outside of the mainstream, comes from David Hatcher Childress, who has written extensively of the mysteries and possibilities of Nan Madol.

The Place Of “The Spaces In Between”

The name Nan Madol translates as “within the intervals” (some sources claim it translates at “the spaces in between”). This is a reference to the canals that intersect the entire location.  What is perhaps most fascinating about Nan Madol is that it is built entirely on a coral reef. It is made up of multiple artificial islands (over 90 in total) which are connected by the intricate canal network.

There are walls around each of the islands made from boulders (some of which weigh around 80 tons) and basalt logs, which weigh on average around five tons each (although some weigh up until 20 tons). What’s more, some of these walls stand at almost 20 feet tick and a huge 50 feet high. Even more intriguing, within the islands themselves are another network of tunnels, some of which lead to mysterious tombs. It is also claimed by some researchers that magnetic anomalies occur at Nan Madol, something which is noted at other equally ancient and mysterious locations.

The purposely arranged stones of Nan Madol

The purposely arranged stones of Nan Madol

The actual age of the island is uncertain, with some research suggesting that significant human activity there as far back as the first century. It is widely accepted that the construction efforts we see today started around the 700s, and by the end of the twelfth century it is thought to have been heading toward the intricate and detailed island network we see the remains of today.

Some researchers in the alternative fields, however, suggest that the remains are likely much older than that, possibly stretching back thousands of years. As with many ancient ruins, the true age is unlikely to be known for certain.

The island was discovered in the early nineteenth century by European explorers. And it is there we will turn our attention to next.

Claims Of Curses, Ghosts, And Strange Orbs

Although European explorers had noted and visited the island as far back as the early 1800s, claims of a curse surfaced at the start of the twentieth century when the German colonial governor of Pohnpei died suddenly in 1907, the day after excavating a tomb on the island.

Official records, though, state that Berg died of sunstroke and exhaustion, and while that in itself doesn’t negate the possibility of a curse (at least in theory), we should also note the general animosity the local population had for the German.

In short, talk of a curse was likely a reflection for the genuine distaste the local population had for Berg, as well as a wider feeling of distrust and rejection of German colonialism.

We should note, though, that even in modern times, tales of the island being haunted persist. In fact, according to some reports, it is referred to among many locals [1] as the “Island of Ghosts”. So scared are some of the islands that they believe to stay there overnight will result in certain death. Many people have even reported strange orbs floating around the island.

Of course, many in the UFO community are familiar with such sightings, occurring as they do regularly around the world. And what’s more, these strange orbs are still sighted regularly in our contemporary era.

The short video below looks at the tales of hauntings and strange lights at Nan Madol.

Intriguing Connections To The Ancient Astronaut Theory?

From a UFO and, in particular, an ancient astronaut perspective, the site is of great intrigue. Perhaps not least as the original name for the location was the Reef of Heaven. Of course, any mention of Heaven or the word Heavens alongside ancient ruins with signs of advanced engineering usually prompt many in the ancient astronaut community to suggest these are references to outer space and visitors from elsewhere in the universe.

We should note that there is no solid evidence for this, but it is a detail worth noting as the same references in other ancient locations can be found. And what’s more, many of these other ancient locations have legends that have led some researchers to believe that they may once have served as some kind of ancient travel hub or even spaceports.

Examples of the structures of Nan Madol

More examples of the structures of Nan Madol

We should also note, at least based on the materials we might use for such vehicles, Nan Madol is unlikely to soundly support such huge and heavy craft. However, as speculative as it might be, and, based on what we know from whistleblowers in the UFO community, might it be that such advanced craft were comprised of lightweight materials? We will not speculate further, only leave the possibility loitering in your mind for a moment or two.

We should also note, recalling the claims of some that the island might have a connection to ancient lost worlds as Atlantis or Lemuria, that there is a fine line between the possibilities of “ancient aliens” and ancient civilizations. Essentially, whether they realize it or not, anyone researching the ancient astronaut theory is also researching the potential of ancient civilizations. Indeed, such collective research may one day reveal that these ancient astronauts are, in fact, our long lost ancient and advanced ancestors from pre-history.

Advanced Technology And Legends Of Black Magic

There are also several intriguing legends of the local population. These legends suggest that the stone used in the construction of the island – something which many mainstream archaeologists admit they struggle to explain – were floated through the air by those who built it. This has led some researchers to wonder if these legends are, in fact, speaking of sonar, pulse, or soundwave technology used to lift such huge blocks. Many locals even insist that the materials used to build Nan Madol were transported there by “black magic”.

Once more, this is pure speculation but again, we can find similar legends in other mystifying locations around the globe. We should note, though, as intriguing as the legends and claims are, there has been, to date, no discoveries to suggest such technologies. However, we might also add, depending on the actual date of the construction, such technology will have disappeared over the course of time.

The waterways of Nan Madol

The waterways of Nan Madol

What is perhaps also intriguing regarding the island is there are no fresh water supplies. And aside from the fish that swim near the island, no other obvious source of food. This would mean that such resources would have to be shipped or transported to the island. This, while not at all impossible to achieve through travel over the water, is another intriguing detail that might indeed suggest advanced technology. While it is certainly not hard to achieve via water travel, why would those who constructed it make life so difficult for themselves?

Furthermore, rumors and claims exist of other ancient islands that have been claimed by the waters – although once more, we should note that mainstream thought rejects such a notion, at least based on their investigations.

The “Giants” Of Nan Madol?

One more aspect of Nan Madol to examine are the legends of the Pohnpeians concerning two twin sorcerers [2] (black magic?) named Olishpa and Olosohpa which state they were responsible for the construction of Nan Madol. Perhaps most interesting is that the legends of these two intriguing twins were “much taller” than the local population.

According to these legends, Nan Madol was constructed by the twins to serve as an alter to Nahnisohn Sahpw – their god of agriculture. What’s more, the rituals they would perform would cause the huge stones to levitate and float through the air. Even stranger, they would have assistance from a “flying dragon”.

This detail of floating stones fits in nicely with the claims of sound wave technology. However, the inclusion of a flying dragon will no doubt raise an eyebrow or two within ancient astronaut circles. Many who highlight claims of flying or fiery dragons draw attention to the fact that these descriptions very well may be a description – through misunderstood technology – of a nuts-and-bolts flying vehicle. One that perhaps, in this case, was used to lift such gigantic stones and put them into place.

Now might be a good time to mention, at least according to some sources, the discovery of “very large human bones” by Japanese pearl divers in the waters around the island. Reports state these remains suggested they belonged to a person between seven and eight feet tall. Might the lost civilization that many believe is connected to Nan Madol belong to a race of giants? Once more, legends from all around the world of antiquity speak of such beings.

The short video below looks at these particular legends in a little more detail.

Many Things To Consider About Nan Madol

Like many other mysterious and ancient locations around the world, the possibilities as to the actual origins and purpose of Nan Madol are likely to remain exactly that, at least for the foreseeable future.

And while we shouldn’t be too quick to lay the achievements of the island at the feet of an unknown civilization – an extraterrestrial one at that in some cases – the fact is the construction of the island in the location it is should alert us to the fact that there likely is some part of the puzzle that we currently can’t locate. Indeed, we may find that an accepted piece of the puzzle has been inserted incorrectly, so revealing the missing piece.

Did extraterrestrials once reside here? Were those who constructed Nan Madol not alien but indigenous to the planet, although what we would term as “giants” today? And was some kind of advanced technology and devices used to construct this marvel in the waters of the Pacific?

The location will continue to remain a focus of researchers, both in mainstream archaeology and the alternative. And it almost certainly has secrets left to reveal. Whether those secrets suggest an advanced civilization, indigenous to our planet or not, remains to be seen. What is perhaps certain, though, is that when those potential secrets are finally revealed they will very likely shed a bright light into the dark corners of history we have yet to discover.

Check out the video below. It looks at the legends and possible origins of this most intriguing location in the Pacific Ocean a little further.


1 Mysterious ‘haunted’ city found floating in the middle of the ocean which terrified locals call ‘Island of Ghosts’, Anna Slater, The Mirror, November 4th, 2017
2 The mysterious ancient coral reef city of Nan Madol, April Holloway, Ancient Origins, February 2nd, 2014

Marcus Lowth

Marcus Lowth is a writer with a love for UFOs, aliens, and the Ancient Astronaut Theory, to the paranormal, general conspiracies, and unsolved mysteries. He has been writing and researching with over 20 years of experience.

Marcus has been Editor-in-Chief for several years due to his excellent knowledge in these fields. Marcus also regularly appears as an expert on radio talk shows including Troubled Minds and Unexplained Radio discussing these topics.

Read Marcus' full bio.

You can contact Marcus via email.

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