The idea of unimaginable wealth that is out somewhere just waiting to be picked up is a seductive and enticing idea, but the truth is that many of these fortunes are either just myths or have probably been recycled long ago. For instance, vast amounts of German gold that went missing at the end of WWII was smuggled to South America and slowly reintroduced to the market or is still locked in the vaults of private banks impossible to claim.
When we speak of pirates, treasure quests, sea battles, secret tunnels, some old maps and hidden treasure our imagination is bound to set on fire immediately. Although it might sound silly, people have continually been lured by the prospects of lost treasures. You would say that nowadays it is much too easier with the advanced technology to find buried treasures, but still not all treasures in the world have been found.
Here is our list of the most famous lost treasures around the world.
The Secret City of Paititi
Have you heard about El Dorado, the city full of gold lost somewhere in the rain forests of South America? El Dorado is actually a legend about a Muisca Chieftain who would cover himself with gold dust before certain religious ceremonies and the real City of Gold is Paititi. The city’s gold was estimated about $10 billion containing Incan gold and artifacts, jewelers, gold bars etc. When the Spanish conquered the Incas they found the city largely deserted and appeared as if the Incas had fled to a new location in the rainforests of southern Brazil taking their vast treasure of gold with them. The new located city was never found nor was the gold and the story was relegated as myth. But in 2009, satellite photos of deforested areas of the Boco do Acre region of Brazil have revealed that there were once vast settlements and this can be clearly seen on Google Earth. Many historians and archaeogists were forced to review their thinking and now seem possible that Paititi really existed and hidden within it is a potential hoard of lost Inca gold.
Genghis Khan Issyk-Kul’s Treasure
Many legends about Issyk Kul tell that the great commander and conqueror Genghis Khan was buried in the lake along with all his treasure, which he gathered by capturing most of Asia and China. Everyone that knew where is the tomb’s location was killed and when the soldiers that killed all returned from the brutal site, they were killed also. The value of the treasure is considered to be immense, bu the location of the tomb and treasure is unknown. There were many attempts to find the tomb and treasure, but the recent attempt was by American researchers who believe that they have located the tomb of Genghis Khan, but there has been no treasure found to date.
Treasure of the Flor De La Mar
The Flor de la Mar (Flower of the Sea) was a 400 ton Portuguese carrack built in Lisbon during 1502. Alfonso de Albuquerque was the captain of the ship when it was loaded with a vast treasure taken from Malacca as well as tributes from the King of Siam. The treasure was estimated to value of $2.6 billion and contains gold goblets, extensive gold bullion and silver plates. When the ship set sail for Portugal with four other ships, a violent storm in the Straits of Malacca caught them and broke the ship in two. Captain Alfonso was saved, but the treasure and many young slaves were lost to the waves. The exact location of the shipwreck is not defined, but it is considered the richest treasure still to be found.
Lost Adams Diggings
The canyon Lost Adams Diggings in New Mexico supposedly lead to a canyon wall that cries tears of gold. In the early 1860s, Adams with his team made his way along the White River into the White Mountains and there they have found gold nuggets, which were hidden what Adams called ‘corn-grinding basin’. Adams left the mine on the second night, but his mining crew stayed and later was killed by Apache Indians. Supposedly, Adams was never able to find this gold canyon again.
Thousands of shipwrecks are the reason of many lost treasures and the shipwreck of Santissima Concepcion or “El Grande” seems like a movie script. Santissima Concepcion was a ship with 500 people on board which was a victim of hurricane in Florida. Between 4 to 190 people have survived and 1,800,000 pesos, 49 chests of emeralds and ”77 chests of pearls worth treasure was lost. Numerous failed attempts have been made in search for this treasure, but it is believed that Sir William Phipp found about a quarter of the treasure during his 1687 expedition.
The Oak Island Money Pit
Oak Island is located just off the southeast coast of Nova Scotia and is 140 acres in size. The story about it tells about a 16 year-old boy, Daniel McGinnis and a friend of him, noticed a circular depression as if a pit had been dug and then filled in again. Hoping that there is something of value they dug to a depth of 9.1 metres and initially discovered a layer of flagstones followed by traces of pickaxes on the rocks. Stories say they found platforms of logs approximately every 3 metres and at the end failed to find anything of value. But this 1795′ story from was spread and quickly linked to the missing treasure of Captain Kidd and Edward Thatch. Over the centuries the pit has been excavated many times and it wasn’t an easy task. The pit is claimed to be booby trapped and has regularly flooded. The most hopeful clue found so far was a code inscription on a flat stone which stated that two million pounds lie buried forty feet below.
White City, La Ciudad Blanca
A famously rumored city of gold is a fascination of many for some time because of the interesting stories related to it. It is believed that the nobles of the White City ate from plates of gold, which indicates to unestimated treasure. Herman Cortes stumbled upon it in 1526 and later Cristobol de Pedraza in 1544. Archeologist William Strong noted ‘archeological mounds’ near Rio Patuca and Rio Conquirre in 1933. Many archeologists and other researchers from the National Science Foundation and the University of Houston have used advanced technology to map the ancient ruins.