The castle at the bottom of a Turkish Lake


It has been thought by many that the breaching of the Bosphurus thousands of years near present day Istanbul may have given rise to the accounts of the legendary Great Flood not just with Noah in the Holy Bible but in various other ancient texts.
When the area was flooded, no doubt thousands of people would have died in this once fertile area, much as was the case with Britain’s own lost Atlantis, Doggerland.
The Black Sea is a remnant of what is known as the Paratethys sea.  However over
Paratethys sea

The ancient Paratethys Sea

millions of years the sea level in general rose whilst techtonic forces pushed up some of the land areas which has given us the Middle East geography that we know with various large isolated seas or lakes becoming marooned hundereds or even thousands of miles from the open seas.
The relics of the Paratethys sea

Relics of the Paratethys Sea – The Black, Caspian, Aral, Dead and Galilee Seas as well as numerous large lakes including Van in Turkey and Urmia and Namak in Iran.

An interesting property of the Black Sea is no doubt partially due to it’s almost complete isolation from the open seas is that it is around 90% oxygen sea meaning that for all intents and purposes it is dead even at a micro-orgasm level.  Whilst deadly to life, it does mean that it helps preserve man made objects and archeology as aside from the sea waters themselves, there is nothing to eat away or cover objects.
long-forgotten fortress dating back 3,000 years has been discovered in Turkey’s Lake Van – a find that has been described by researchers as nothing short of a “miracle”.

The ancient structure was located by divers during an excavation conducted by the Van Yüzüncü Yıl University this week, and is thought to have belonged to the Urartu civilisation during the Iron Age.

Footage has emerged of divers exploring the remarkably preserved ruins, which consist of walls that still reach up to 13 feet high and stonework that spans a kilometre.

“It is a miracle to find this castle underwater,” Chief diver Tahsin Ceylan told the Hürriyet Daily News, adding that archaeologists would be descending to the site in order to further assess its history.


According to National Geographic, the water level of Lake Van – a soda lake which stretches across 1449 square miles, the biggest in Turkey – was hundreds of metres lower during the Urartian occupation, which would explain its drowned state today.

Experts had already been investigating Lake Van for nearly a decade in search of its hidden treasures before stumbling across the fortress.

Last year they discovered a 2km stretch of stalagmites rising from the depths which they dubbed the “underwater fairy chimneys”.

It is believeed that the ruins belong to the former capital of the Kingdom of Urartu which at the time spanned the nations of present day Turkey, Armenia and Iran.

The earliest mentions of Urartu date back to Assyrians in the early 13th Century BC, and by the 9th Century BC the nation was thriving, occupying a 200,000 square mile portion of the Middle East.

Lake Van

Lake Van

After a gradual decline in power that stemmed from a number of lost battles, Urartu was conquered by the Medes in the 6th Century BC, later to be succeeded by the Armenians.

Urartian remnants were first rediscovered by French scholars in the late 1820s, and excavations have been ongoing on and off since then.

Scatters of Urartian ruins can be visited in the surrounding areas of Lake Van in Turkey, as well as Armenia and Iran to this day.

If you want to read about another discovery in present day discovery then why not check out my post on the Vulture Stone.

About Stephen Liddell

I am a writer and traveller with a penchant for history and getting off the beaten track. With several books to my name including several #1 sellers. I also write environmental, travel and history articles for magazines as well as freelance work. I run my private tours company with one tour stated by the leading travel website as being with the #1 authentic London Experience. Recently I've appeared on BBC Radio and Bloomberg TV and am waiting on the filming of a ghost story on British TV. I run my own private UK tours company (Ye Olde England Tours) with small, private and totally customisable guided tours run by myself!
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3 Responses to The castle at the bottom of a Turkish Lake

  1. Ankur Mithal says:

    Thanks for another interesting post

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kelly MacKay says:

    very interesting thanks

    Liked by 1 person

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