Located 75 miles south of Jakarta, Indonesia is the remarkable megalithic site known as Gunung Padang. The locals consider it a sacred place and its name means Mountain of Light or Mountain of Enlightenment in Sundanese. According to legend, it was built by King Siliwangi during the course of a single night.
D̳i̳s̳c̳o̳v̳e̳r̳e̳d̳ by Dutch colonists in 1914, it has since puzzled the western world.
Gunung Padang is the largest megalithic site in Indonesia and possibly the oldest in the world. It is arranged across five terraces and consists of massive and oddly-shaped columns of volcanic rock.
The complex was built with respect to geomantic and astrological factors which has led researchers to believe it once served as a place of worship. Preliminary indications point out that the entire hill was once a great pyramid.
Located at 885 metres above sea level, the site covers a hill in a series of terraces bordered by retaining walls of stone that are accessed by about 400 successive andesite steps rising about 95 metres. It is covered with massive rectangular stones of volcanic origin.
In 2011, geological surveys of this mysterious megalithic complex ere performed. The top site has been dated at 5,000 years old but as archaeologists dug deeper, the age increased.
While the latest additions to the structure were completed five millennia ago, the original structure is much older. According to senior geologist Danny Natawidjaja of the Indonesian Institute of Science, the age went up from 5,000 to 8,000 to 10,000 and even 23,000 years or older.
Gunung Padang today
This data suggests Gunung Padang is much older than any known man-made structure in the world.
“Gunung Padang is not a natural hill but a man-made pyramid and the origins of construction here go back long before the end of the last Ice Age,” says Natawidjaja.
The work retains its massivity even at the deepest levels and suggests sophisticated construction skills on the part of the builders. Natawidjaja believes this is the work of a long-lost civilization and a fairly advanced one indeed.
The primitive men that mainstream chronology suggests were present at that time could not have been able to design this complex and even less able to build it.
Gunung Padang was constructed in orientation to the Sun and stars and without astronomical and topographical knowledge the site would have been impossible to build.
If the dating is correct, the complex would have been built at a time when sea levels were 400 feet (120 meters) lower than today which means the Java Sea was a fertile plain back then.
The data provided by the geological analysis raises many more questions than it answers. Who inhabited the area 23,000 years ago? Who built this A̳n̳c̳i̳e̳n̳t̳ complex and why? And most importantly, what happened to that advanced civilization? Could it have been Atlantis?