In 20 B.C., the Egyptian city of Heracleion was a pleasure ground, a veritable Las Vegas of the ancient world. Famed for its handsome beaches, palatial villas and sexually charged rites, the lush city offered a paradise that seemed infinite. But with the arrival of the Romans and the suicide of Cleopatra, the region sank into a long decline, eventually mysteriously disappearing beneath the sea.
Now, archeological discoveries piece together an historical jigsaw puzzle that explains how this area evolved to gain such notoriety in the ancient world. Join French explorer, Franck Goddio, as he makes an astonishing find off the coast of modern-day Alexandria – a series of beautifully preserved statues, columns and walls that could only be the long-lost remnants of the missing city of Heracleion and its crowning jewel, the Temple of Hercules. Thanks to the remarkable preservation of the artifacts, scientists are able to reconstruct the look of one of the world’s most mythic regions.
But, beneath the sand and silt lies an even greater discovery. Watch as Goddio and his team use the latest electronic equipment – including single side-band sonar and nuclear magnetic resonance magnetometers – to dig deeper, probing beneath the seafloor to uncover a 3,000-year old temple-city frozen in time with its statues and shrines in pristine condition.
CineNova Production for Discovery Channel