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Are there any underground cities known except those found in Cappadocia?

Are there any underground cities known except those found in Cappadocia?



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I've recently read the story about the discovery of the underground city of Derinkuyu. Now I'm a bit curious if there are other similar archaeological discoveries: I mean something we could really call a city, a place where many people would be able to live for a long while (at least a month) and deal a "normal" life. My first steps and researches lead me to rather "Modern" underground cities such as Coober Pedy, the Wieliczka Salt Mine, Dìxià Chéng and a couple of malls which have been built in the underground of bigger cities. But what I'm looking for is something that is much older (middle age or earlier).

Strictly speaking "City" is somewhat incorrect, but I think it is clear what I mean a refuge which is big and well equipped enough to accommodate a lot of people for a longer duration and where they could still deal a good life. About Derinkuyu they pretended that the people where able to go ahead with their trade, handcraft and even gather their live stock inside this labyrinth. That staying there for a very long time would have effects on ones health is clear.


There are a few underground cities that I can think of, some may fit your requirements better than others. If you consider tunneling into rocks, then Petra would be a very large city that was built into the cliffs and ground. If you are only considering cities that are entirely under the ground, Naours France has an underground city that was built in an old Roman quarry and occupied in the middle ages. It has enough space to host several thousand people and several churches, wells, bakeries, wine presses, etc…


Dating in its origins from the 2 millenium BCE and still inhabited by up to 40 million people today:

The first type of yaodong were underground dwellings that date back to the 2nd millennium BC, China's Bronze Age, and according to Chinese tradition, the Xia Dynasty. Chinese scholars generally believe that this type of habitat has developed mainly from the Han dynasty (206 BC to 220 AD), along with a progressive improvement of construction techniques to the dynasties Sui (581 to 618) and Tang (618 to 907). But it is during the dynasties Ming (1368 to 1644) and Qing (1644 to 1912) that the pace of construction reached its peak.


Source: Wikipedia - Yaodong

The number of 40 million is a quote from the Wikipedia page, which relies on:

In northern China, an estimated 40 million people currently live in cave homes known as yaodong. As the human population of the entire planet in 8,000 BC was probably only five million, there are eight times as many cavemen now than there were people of any kind then.
Source: "Where did Stone Age people live?" in: John Lloyd and John Mitchinson: "The Book of General Ignorance. The Noticeably Stouter Edition", Faber and Faber: Londom, 2010.

While the exact number of people living in these kind of structures may be hard to ascertain, the order of magnitude seems to check out:

Some 30 million Chinese still live in caves and over a 100 million people reside in houses with one or more walls built in a hillside. Many of the cave and hill dwellings are in the Shanxi, Henan and Gansu provinces. Caves are cool in the summer, warm in the winter and generally utilize land that can not be used for farming. On the down side, they are generally dark and have poor ventilation. Modern caves with improved designs have large windows, skylights and better ventilation. Some larger cave have over 40 rooms. Others are rented out as three-bedroom apartments.
Source: Facts and Details: Cave Homes and Ant People in China, that number is apparently based on: Ronald G. Knapp: "Chinese Landscapes The Village as Place", University of Hawaii Press: Honululu, 1992, p25.

A "Remarkable aerial pictures reveal China's 'invisible village' where local residents live in subterranean caves - a lifestyle they have kept for 4,000 years" (DailyMail.UK, 5 April 2016) for one conglomeration with 10000 homes:


Nushabad in Iran was apparently used to avoid Mongol invasions (13th Century), but is perhaps older as artefacts from earlier periods have been found within. It is not clear how long people stayed down there, but there is an extensive ventilation system to allow fresh air within the underground city.


中洞 village in 安顺 prefecture is the largest current cave city by year-round population, with a population of around 100. The village dates back to either the Chinese communist revolution or hundreds of years before that, depending on who you ask. As other answers have noted the practice of cave housing is not unusual in China (with tens of millions of people currently living in caves), and dates back to around 2000 BC. Nonetheless, most cave housing is part of a larger, non-subterranean settlement. 中洞 is unusual in that the settlement itself is exclusively subterranean, excepting the remnants of (thus far unsuccessful) government efforts to end the practice.


Are there any underground cities known except those found in Cappadocia? - History

What goes up must come down. At least, that&rsquos true as far as cities are concerned. Following the news that super-cities are continuing to expand in size&mdashand predictions that two-thirds of the world&rsquos population will be city-dwellers by 2050&mdashurban centers that are short on space are starting to turn their attention underground.

From subterranean parks and malls to inverted skyscrapers and tunnel-bound farms, these hidden underground cities and urban projects are going to have us doing some serious spelunking in the future.

London’s Growing Underground gardens bring produce back to its subterranean roots. Image courtesy of Growing Underground.


The Underground Railroad

During the era of slavery, the Underground Railroad was a network of routes, places, and people that helped enslaved people in the American South escape to the North.

Social Studies, U.S. History

Home of Levi Coffin

The house of American Quaker and abolitionist Levi Coffin, in Cincinnati, Ohio. His home was a stop along the Underground Railroad, a network of routes, places, and people that helped enslaved people escape to the North.

Photography by Cincinnati Museum Center

During the era of slavery, the Underground Railroad was a network of routes, places, and people that helped enslaved people in the American South escape to the North. The name &ldquoUnderground Railroad&rdquo was used metaphorically, not literally. It was not an actual railroad, but it served the same purpose&mdashit transported people long distances. It also did not run underground, but through homes, barns, churches, and businesses. The people who worked for the Underground Railroad had a passion for justice and drive to end the practice of slavery&mdasha drive so strong that they risked their lives and jeopardized their own freedom to help enslaved people escape from bondage and keep them safe along the route.

According to some estimates, between 1810 and 1850, the Underground Railroad helped to guide one hundred thousand enslaved people to freedom. As the network grew, the railroad metaphor stuck. &ldquoConductors&rdquo guided runaway enslaved people from place to place along the routes. The places that sheltered the runaways were referred to as &ldquostations,&rdquo and the people who hid the enslaved people were called &ldquostation masters.&rdquo The fugitives traveling along the routes were called &ldquopassengers,&rdquo and those who had arrived at the safe houses were called &ldquocargo.&rdquo

Contemporary scholarship has shown that most of those who participated in the Underground Railroad largely worked alone, rather than as part of an organized group. There were people from many occupations and income levels, including former enslaved persons. According to historical accounts of the Railroad, conductors often posed as enslaved people and snuck the runaways out of plantations. Due to the danger associated with capture, they conducted much of their activity at night. The conductors and passengers traveled from safe-house to safe-house, often with 16-19 kilometers (10&ndash20 miles) between each stop. Lanterns in the windows welcomed them and promised safety. Patrols seeking to catch enslaved people were frequently hot on their heels.

These images of the Underground Railroad stuck in the minds of the nation, and they captured the hearts of writers, who told suspenseful stories of dark, dangerous passages and dramatic enslaved person escapes. However, historians who study the Railroad struggle to separate truth from myth. A number of prominent historians who have devoted their life&rsquos work to uncover the truths of the Underground Railroad claim that much of the activity was not in fact hidden, but rather, conducted openly and in broad daylight. Eric Foner is one of these historians. He dug deep into the history of the Railroad and found that though a large network did exist that kept its activities secret, the network became so powerful that it extended the limits of its myth. Even so, the Underground Railroad was at the heart of the abolitionist movement. The Railroad heightened divisions between the North and South, which set the stage for the Civil War.

The house of American Quaker and abolitionist Levi Coffin, in Cincinnati, Ohio. His home was a stop along the Underground Railroad, a network of routes, places, and people that helped enslaved people escape to the North.


Beno Cizelj forbidden, denied and hidden history, Genesis, Ancient culture, archeology

Objavljanje starih, od uradne zgodovine še ne vsega priznanih tekstov, dejstev, izkopanin, arheoloških, paleontoloških in drugih spoznanjih. Publication of old, from official history, not all recognized texts, facts, excavations, archaeological, palaeontological and other insights

The Sumerian record provided a probable description of the lion-headed Sphinx at Giza, and if that great creature was built to guard or obliterate ancient stairways and lower passages leading to subterranean areas below and around it, then its symbolism was most appropriate.

Old records confirmed

Those plans were compiled from information originally discovered by the supposed founder of the Order of the Rosicrucians, Christian Rosenkreuz , who allegedly penetrated a "secret chamber beneath the ground" and there found a library of books full of secret knowledge.

The schematic drawings were produced from information possessed by mystery school archivists before sand-clearing commenced in 1925, and revealed hidden doors to long - forgotten reception halls, small temples and other enclosures. (Those plans are included in "The Master Plan" section at the end of the book.)

Among the mystics or members of Egyptian mystery schools, tradition explained that the Great Pyramid was great in many ways. Despite the fact that it was not entered until the year 820, the secret schools of pre-Christian Egypt insisted that the interior layout was well known to them.

Around the same time, the international news media released further details of the find.

The underground connector complex was originally built between the Great pyramid and the Temple of the Solarmen, for the Pyramid of Khephren was a later and superficial structure. The subway and its apartments were excavated out of solid, living bedrock-a truly extraordinary feat, considering it was built thousands of years ago.

There is more to the story of under-ground chambers at Giza, for media reports described the unearthing of a subterranean passageway between the Temple of the Solar-men on the plateau and the Temple of the Sphinx in the valley. That passageway had been unearthed a few years before the release and publication of that particular newspaper article.

The discoveries led Dr Selim Hassan and others to believe and publicly state that, while the age of the Sphinx was always enigmatic in the past, it may have been part of the great architectural plan that was deliberately arranged and carried out in association with the erection of the Great Pyramid.

Archaeologists made another major discovery at that time. Around halfway between the Sphinx and Khephren's Pyramid were discovered four enormous vertical shafts, each around eight feet square, leading straight down through solid limestone.

Some of the chambers contained huge, sealed sarcophagi of basalt and granite, 18 feet high.

The discovery went further and found that in one of the seven rooms there was yet a third vertical shaft, dropping down deeply to a much lower chamber. At the time of its discovery , it was flooded with water that partly covered a solitary white sarcophagus. That chamber was named the " Tomb of Osiris " and was shown being "opened for the first time" on a fabricated television documentary in March 1999.

According to a separate newspaper report of the time, the statue was an excellent sculpted bust of Queen Nefertiti, described as "a beautiful example of that rare type of art inaugurated in the Amenhotep regime". The whereabouts of that statue today are unknown.

The report also described other chambers and rooms beneath the sands, all interconnected by secret and ornate passageways. Dr Selim Hassan revealed that not only are there inner and outer courts, but they also found a room they named the "Chapel of Offering" that had been cut into a huge, rock outcrop between Campbell's Tomb and the Great Pyramid. In the centre of the chapel are three ornate vertical pillars standing in a triangular shaped layout.

Those pillars are highly significant points in this study, for their existence is recorded in the Bible. The conclusion drawn is that Ezra, the initiated Torah writer (c. 397 BC), knew the subterranean layout of passages and chambers at Giza before he wrote the Torah.

That underground design was probably the origin of the triangular shaped layout around the central altar in a Masonic lodge. In Antiquities of the Jews, Josephus, in the first century, wrote that Enoch of Old Testament fame constructed an underground temple consisting of nine chambers. In a deep vault inside one chamber with three vertical columns, he placed a triangular-shaped tablet of gold bearing upon it the absolute name of the Deity (God).

The walls are beautifully sculpted with scenes, inscriptions and emblems of particularly the lotus flower. The descriptions of alabaster vessels and the emblematic lotus flower have remarkable parallels with what was found in the temple-workshop on the summit of Mt Sinai/Horeb by Sir William Petrie in 1904.

Additional underground rooms, chambers, temples and hallways were discovered, some with vertical circular stone support columns, and others with wall carvings of delicate figures of goddesses clothed in beautiful apparel. Dr Selim Hassan's report described other magnificently carved figures and many beautifully colored friezes. Photographs were taken and one author and researcher who saw them, Rosicrucian H. Spencer Lewis recorded that he was "deeply impressed" with the images.

It is not known where the rare specimens of art and relics are today, but some were rumored to have been smuggled out of Egypt by private collectors.

The foregoing particulars are but a few contained in Dr Selim Hassan's extensive report that was published in 1944 by the Government Press, Cairo, under the title Excavations at Giza (10 volumes). However, that is just a mere fragment of the whole truth of what is under the area of the Pyramids.

The intriguing question that arises out of the discovery is: where is that city today?

Its secret location was recently revealed to a select group of people who were given permission to explore and film the city. It exists in a huge natural cavern system below the Giza Plateau that extends out in an easterly direction under Cairo. Its main entry is from inside the Sphinx, with stairs cut into rock that lead down to the cavern below the bedrock of the River Nile.

That remarkable item revealed an unknown form of technology and was recently sent to NASA in the USA for analysis.

Historical documents recorded that, during the 20th century, staggering discoveries not spoken of today were made at Giza and Mt Sinai, and Egyptian rumors of the discovery of another underground city within a 28-mile radius of the Great Pyramid abound. In 1964, more than 30 enormous, multilevelled subsurface cities were discovered in the old Turkish kingdom of Cappadocia.

Because of Dr Selim Hassan's excavations and modern space surveillance techniques, the records and traditions of the ancient Egyptian mystery schools that claim to preserve secret knowledge of the Giza Plateau all rose to the highest degree of acceptability.

However, one of the most puzzling aspects of the discovery of underground facilities at Giza is the repeated denial of their existence by Egyptian authorities and academic institutions. So persistent are their refutations that the claims of mystery schools were doubted by the public and suspected of being fabricated in order to mystify visitors to Egypt. The scholastic attitude is typified by a Harvard University public statement in 1972:

No one should pay any attention to the preposterous claims in regard to the interior of the Great Pyramid or the presumed passageways and unexcavated temples and halls beneath the sand in the Pyramid district made by those who are as located with the so-called, secret cults or mystery societies of Egypt and the Orient.

All of our excavations in the territory of the Pyramid have failed to reveal any underground passageways or halls, temples, grottos , or anything of the kind except the one temple adjoining the Sphinx.

It was well enough for scholarly opinion to make such a statement on the subject, but in preceding years, official claims were made stating that there was no temple adjoining the Sphinx. The assertion that every inch of the territory around the Sphinx and pyramids had been explored deeply and thoroughly was disproved when the temple adjoining the Sphinx was discovered in the sand and eventually opened to the public.

The same question is addressed of the interior of the Great Pyramid, and Egyptologists have agreed that flaming torches were not used, for ceilings had not been blackened with residual smoke.

From what is currently known about subsurface passageways under the Pyramid Plateau, it is possible to determine that there are at least three miles of passageways 10 to 12 storeys below ground level. Both the Book of the Dead and the Pyramid Texts make striking references to "The Light-makers", and that extraordinary description may have referred to a body of people responsible for lighting the subterranean areas of their complexes.

It was their belief that the light tubes were created by their beloved Imhotep, who would some day return to make them work once again.

It was common practice among early Egyptians to seal lighted lamps in the sepulchres of their dead as offerings to their god or for the deceased to find their way to the "other side". Among the tombs near Memphis (and in the Brahmin temples of India), lights were found operating in sealed chambers and vessels, but sudden exposure to air extinguished them or caused their fuel to evaporate. (6)

Greeks and Romans later followed the custom, and the tradition became generally established-not only that of actual burning lamps, but miniature reproductions made in terracotta were buried with the dead. Some lamps were enclosed in circular vessels for protection, and instances are recorded where the original oil was found perfectly preserved in them after more than 2,000 years.

There is ample proof from eyewitnesses that lamps were burning when the sepulchres were sealed, and it was declared by later bystanders that they were still burning when the vaults were opened hundreds of years later.

The possibility of preparing a fuel that would renew itself as rapidly as it was consumed was a source of considerable controversy among mediaeval authors, and numerous documents exist outlining their arguments. After due consideration of evidence at hand, it seemed well within the range of possibility that ancient Egyptian priest-chemists manufactured lamps that burned if not indefinitely then at least for considerable periods of time.

Numerous authorities have written on the subject of ever-burning lamps, with W. Wynn Westcott estimating that the number of writers who have given the subject consideration as more than 150 and H. P. Blavatskyas 173. While conclusions reached by different authors are at a variance, a majority admitted the existence of the phenomenal lamps.

Only a few maintained that the lamps would burn forever, but many were willing to concede that they might remain alight for several centuries without replenishment of fuel.

It was generally believed that the wicks of those perpetual lamps were made of braided or woven asbestos, called by early alchemists "salamander's wool". The fuel appeared to have been one of the products of alchemical research, possibly produced in the temple on Mt Sinai.

Some believe the fabled perpetual lamps of temples to be cunning mechanical contrivances, and some quite humorous explanations have been extended.

In Egypt, rich underground deposits of asphalt and petroleum exist, and some would have it that priests connected asbestos wicks by a secret duct to an oil deposit, which in turn connected to one or more lamps. Others thought that the belief that lamps burned indefinitely in tombs was the result of the fact that in some cases fumes resembling smoke poured forth from the entrances of newly opened vaults.

Parties going in later, and discovering lamps scattered about the floor , assumed that they were the source of the fumes. There were some well-documented stories concerning the discovery of ever-burning lamps not only in Egypt but also in other parts of the world.

De Montfaucon de Villars gave this fascinating account of the opening of the vault of Rosicrucian Christian Rosenkreuz .


Are there any underground cities known except those found in Cappadocia? - History

"The Giza-plateau and old Cairo are crisscrossed with subterranean passageways, shafts, natural caverns, lakes and chambers that contain surprising artifacts, but Egyptian authorities are not ready to reveal these to the public"

Tony Bushby, an Australian, became a highly successful businessman and entrepreneur very early in his life. He established a magazine publishing business and spent 20 years researching, writing and publishing his own magazines, primarily for the Australian and New Zealand markets.

With strong spiritual beliefs and an interest in metaphysical subjects, Tony has developed long relationships with many associations and societies throughout the world. He has been given access to rare biblical manuscripts in the archives of numerous private libraries and museums.


To comprehend fully the secret information in the Bible, it is important to understand the extent of the subterranean tunnel system and associated chamber facilities existing below the surface of the Pyramid Plateau, for it was there that major elements of Mystery School teachings developed.

What happened under the sands thousands of years ago is not reflected in today's history books, and discoveries made in the last eight decades or so verify that point.

The Fayum Oasis district, just a few kilometers outside the boundary of the Memphis Nome, presents a site of unusual interest. It was in that lush, fertile valley that Pharaohs calling themselves the "masters of the royal hunts" fished and hunted with the boomerang (1) , Lake Moeris once bordered the Fayum Oasis and on its shores was the famous Labyrinth, described by Herodotus as "an endless wonder to me".

The Labyrinth contained 1500 rooms and an equal number of underground chambers that the Greek historian was not permitted to inspect, according to Labyrinth priests, "the passages were baffling and intricate", designed to provide safety for the numerous scrolls they said were hidden in subterranean apartments.

That massive complex particularly impressed Herodotus and he spoke in awe of the structure:

There I saw twelve palaces regularly disposed, which had communication with each other, interspersed with terraces and arranged around twelve halls. It is hard to believe they are the work of man.

The walls are covered with carved figures, and each court is exquisitely built of white marble and surrounded by a colonnade. Near the corner where the labyrinth ends, there is a pyramid, two hundred and forty feet in height, with great carved figures of animals on it and an underground passage by which it can be entered.

I was told very credibly that underground chambers and passages connected this pyramid with the pyramids at Memphis.

Underground passages connecting pyramids

The pyramids at Memphis were the pyramids at Giza, for Giza was originally called Memphis (see reference, "Giza formerly Memphis" on Nordan's map from Travels in Egypt and Nubia, 1757, on page 152 of previous chapter).

Many ancient writers supported Herodotus' record of underground passages connecting major pyramids, and their evidence casts doubt on the reliability of traditionally presented Egyptian history. Crantor (300 BC) stated that there were certain underground pillars in Egypt that contained a written stone record of pre-history , and they lined access ways connecting the pyramids.

In his celebrated study, On the Mysteries, particularly those of the Egyptians, Chaldeans and the Assyrians, Iamblichus, a fourth-century Syrian representative of the Alexandrian School of mystical and philosophical studies, recorded this information about an entranceway through the body of the Sphinx into the Great Pyramid (2) :

This entrance, obstructed in our day by sands and rubbish, may still be traced between the forelegs of the crouched colossus, It was formerly closed by a bronze gate whose secret spring could be operated only by the Magi. It was guarded by public respect, and a sort of religious fear maintained its inviolability better than armed protection would have done.

In the belly of the Sphinx were cut out galleries leading to the subterranean part of the Great Pyramid. These galleries were so art-fully crisscrossed along their course to the Pyramid that, in setting forth into the passage without a guide throughout this network, one ceasingly and inevitably returned to the starting point.

It was recorded in ancient Sumerian cylinder seals that the secret abode of the Anunnaki was,

"an underground place. entered through a tunnel, its entrance hidden by sand and by what they call Huwana. his teeth as the teeth of a dragon, his face the face of a lion".

That remarkable old text, unfortunately fragmented, added that,

"He [Huwana] is unable to move forward, nor is he able to move back", but they crept up on him from behind and the way to "the secret abode of the Anunnaki" was no longer blocked.

The Sumerian record provided a probable description of the lion-headed Sphinx at Giza, and if that great creature was built to guard or obliterate ancient stairways and lower passages leading to subterranean areas below and around it, then its symbolism was most appropriate.

Local 19th-century Arab lore maintained that existing under the Sphinx are secret chambers holding treasures or magical objects.

That belief was bolstered by the writings of the first-century Roman historian Pliny, who wrote that deep below the Sphinx is concealed the,

"tomb of a ruler named Harmakhis that contains great treasure", and, strangely enough, the Sphinx itself was once called "The Great Sphinx Harmakhis who mounted guard since the time of the Followers of Horus".

The fourth-century Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus made additional disclosures about the existence of subterranean vaults that appeared to lead to the interior of the Great pyramid (3) :

Inscriptions which the ancients asserted were engraved on the walls of certain underground galleries and passages were constructed deep in the dark interior to preserve ancient wisdom from being lost in the flood.

A manuscript compiled by an Arab writer named Altelemsani is preserved in the British Museum, and it records the existence of a long, square, underground passage between the Great Pyramid and the River Nile with a "strange thing" blocking the Nile entrance.

He related the following episode:

In the days of Ahmed Ben Touloun, a party entered the Great pyramid through the tunnel and found in a side-chamber a goblet of glass of rare color and texture. As they were leaving, they missed one of the party and, upon returning to seek him, he came out to them naked and laughing said,

"Do not follow or seek for me", and then rushed back into the pyramid.

His friends perceived that he was enchanted.

Upon learning about strange happenings under the Pyramid, Ahmed Ben Touloun expressed a desire to see the goblet of glass. During the examination, it was filled with water and weighed, then emptied and re-weighed. The historian wrote that it was "found to be of the same weight when empty as when full of water".

If the chronicle is accurate, that lack of additional weight provided indirect evidence of the existence of an extraordinary science at Giza.

According to Masoudi in the 10th century, mechanical statues with amazing capabilities guarded subterranean galleries under the Great Pyramid. Written one thousand years ago, his description is comparable to the computerized robots shown today in space movies. Masoudi said that the automatons were programmed for intolerance, for they destroyed all "except those who by their conduct were worthy of admission".

Masoudi contended that,

"written accounts of Wisdom and acquirements in the different arts and sciences were hidden deep, that they might remain as records for the benefit of those who could afterwards comprehend them ".

That is phenomenal information, as it is possible that, since the times of Masoudi, "worthy" persons have seen the mysterious underground chambers.

"I have seen things that one does not describe for fear of making people doubt one's intelligence. but still I have seen them".

In the same century, another writer, Muterdi, gave an account of a bizarre incident in a narrow passage under Giza, where a group of people were horrified to see one of their party crushed to death by a stone door that, by itself, suddenly slid out from the face of the passageway and closed the corridor in front of them.


Old records confirmed

Herodotus said Egyptian priests recited to him their long-held tradition of "the formation of underground apartments" by the original developers of Memphis. The most ancient inscriptions therefore suggested that there existed some sort of extensive chamber system below the surface of the areas surrounding the Sphinx and pyramids. Those old records were confirmed when the presence of a large cavity was discovered in a seismic survey conducted at the site in 1993.

That detection was publicly acknowledged in a documentary called The Mystery of the Sphinx, screened to an audience of 30 million people on NBC TV later that year.

The existence of chambers under the Sphinx is well known.

Egyptian authorities confirmed another discovery in 1994 its unearthing was announced in a newspaper report that was carried under the headline, "Mystery Tunnel in Sphinx":

Workers repairing the ailing Sphinx have discovered an ancient passage leading deep into the body of the mysterious monument. The Giza Antiquities chief, Mr Zahi Hawass, said there was no dispute the tunnel was very old.

However, what is puzzling is: who built the passage? Why? And where does it lead.

Mr Hawass said he had no plans to remove the stones blocking the entrance. The secret tunnel burrows into the northern side of the Sphinx, about halfway between the Sphinx's outstretched paws and its tail. (4)

The popular supposition that the Sphinx is the true portal of the Great Pyramid has survived with surprising tenacity. That belief was substantiated by 100-year-old plans prepared by Masonic and Rosicrucian initiates, showing the Sphinx was the ornament surmounting a hall that communicated with all Pyramids by radiating underground passages.

Those plans were compiled from information originally discovered by the supposed founder of the Order of the Rosicrucians, Christian Rosenkreuz , who allegedly penetrated a "secret chamber beneath the ground" and there found a library of books full of secret knowledge.

The schematic drawings were produced from information possessed by mystery school archivists before sand-clearing commenced in 1925, and revealed hidden doors to long - forgotten reception halls, small temples and other enclosures. (Those plans are included in "The Master Plan" section at the end of the book.)

The knowledge of the mystery schools was strengthened by a series of remarkable discoveries in 1935 that provided proof of additional passageways and chambers interlacing the area below the Pyramids.

The Giza complex showed major elements of being a purposely built, uniting structure with the Sphinx, the Great Pyramid and the Temple of the Solar-men directly related to each other, above and below the ground.


Chambers detected by ground penetrating radar

Chambers and passageways detected by sophisticated seismograph and ground penetrating radar (GPR) equipment in the last few years established the accuracy of the plans. Egypt is also successfully using sophisticated satellites to identify sites buried beneath the surface at Giza and other locations. The novel tracking system was launched at the beginning of 1998 and the location of 27 unexcavated sites in five areas was precisely determined.

Nine of those sites are on Luxor's east bank and the others are in Giza, Abu Rawash, Saqqara and Dashur.

The printouts of the Giza area show an almost incomprehensible mass of net-like tunnels and chambers crisscrossing the area, intersecting and entwining each other like latticework extending out across the entire plateau.

With the space surveillance project, Egyptologists are able to determine the location of a major site, its probable entrance and the size of chambers before starting excavations.

Particular attention is being focused on three secret locations:

  1. an area in the desert a few hundred meters west/southwest of the original location of the Black Pyramid, around which is currently being built a massive system of concrete walls seven meters high covering eight square kilometers

  2. the ancient highway that linked the Luxor temple with Karnak

  3. the "Way of Horus" across northern Sinai

Among the mystics or members of Egyptian mystery schools, tradition explained that the Great Pyramid was great in many ways. Despite the fact that it was not entered until the year 820, the secret schools of pre-Christian Egypt insisted that the interior layout was well known to them.

They constantly claimed that it was not a tomb nor a burial chamber of any kind, except that it did have one chamber for symbolic burial as part of an initiation ritual. According to mystical traditions, the interior was entered gradually and in various stages via underground passageways . Different chambers were said to have existed at the end of each phase of progress, with the highest and ultimate initiatory stage represented by the now-called King's Chamber .

Little by little, the traditions of the mystery schools were verified by archaeological discoveries, for it was ascertained in 1935 that there was a subterranean connection between the Sphinx and the Great Pyramid and that a tunnel connected the Sphinx to the ancient temple located on its southern side (today called the Temple of the Sphinx).

As Emile Baraize's massive 11-year sand and seashell clearing project neared completion in 1935, remarkable stories started to emerge about discoveries made during the clearing project.

A magazine article, written and published in 1935 by Hamilton M. Wright, dealt with an extraordinary discovery under the sands of Giza that is today denied. The article was accompanied by original photographs provided by Dr Selim Hassan, the leader of the scientific investigative team from the University of Cairo who made the discovery.

We have discovered a subway used by the ancient Egyptians of 5000 years ago. It passes beneath the causeway leading between the second Pyramid and the Sphinx. It provides a means of passing under the causeway from the Cheops Pyramid to the Pyramid of Chephren [Khephren] . From this subway, we have unearthed a series of shafts leading down more than 125 feet, with roomy courts and side chambers.

Around the same time, the international news media released further details of the find.

The underground connector complex was originally built between the Great pyramid and the Temple of the Solarmen, for the Pyramid of Khephren was a later and superficial structure. The subway and its apartments were excavated out of solid, living bedrock-a truly extraordinary feat, considering it was built thousands of years ago.

There is more to the story of under-ground chambers at Giza, for media reports described the unearthing of a subterranean passageway between the Temple of the Solar-men on the plateau and the Temple of the Sphinx in the valley. That passageway had been unearthed a few years before the release and publication of that particular newspaper article.

The discoveries led Dr Selim Hassan and others to believe and publicly state that, while the age of the Sphinx was always enigmatic in the past, it may have been part of the great architectural plan that was deliberately arranged and carried out in association with the erection of the Great Pyramid.

Archaeologists made another major discovery at that time. Around halfway between the Sphinx and Khephren's Pyramid were discovered four enormous vertical shafts, each around eight feet square, leading straight down through solid limestone.

It is called "Campbell's Tomb" on the Masonic and Rosicrucian plans, and,

"that shaft complex", said Dr Selim Hassan, "ended in a spacious room, in the centre of which was another shaft that descended to a roomy court flanked with seven side chambers ".

Some of the chambers contained huge, sealed sarcophagi of basalt and granite, 18 feet high.

The discovery went further and found that in one of the seven rooms there was yet a third vertical shaft, dropping down deeply to a much lower chamber. At the time of its discovery , it was flooded with water that partly covered a solitary white sarcophagus. That chamber was named the " Tomb of Osiris " and was shown being "opened for the first time" on a fabricated television documentary in March 1999.

While originally exploring in this area in 1935, Dr Selim Hassan said:

We are hoping to find some monuments of importance after clearing out this water. The total depth of these series of shafts is more than 40 metres or more than 125 feet. In the course of clearing the southern part of the subway, there was found a very fine head of a statue which is very expressive in every detail of the face .

According to a separate newspaper report of the time, the statue was an excellent sculpted bust of Queen Nefertiti, described as "a beautiful example of that rare type of art inaugurated in the Amenhotep regime". The whereabouts of that statue today are unknown.

The report also described other chambers and rooms beneath the sands, all interconnected by secret and ornate passageways. Dr Selim Hassan revealed that not only are there inner and outer courts, but they also found a room they named the "Chapel of Offering" that had been cut into a huge, rock outcrop between Campbell's Tomb and the Great Pyramid. In the centre of the chapel are three ornate vertical pillars standing in a triangular shaped layout.

Those pillars are highly significant points in this study, for their existence is recorded in the Bible. The conclusion drawn is that Ezra, the initiated Torah writer (c. 397 BC), knew the subterranean layout of passages and chambers at Giza before he wrote the Torah.

That underground design was probably the origin of the triangular shaped layout around the central altar in a Masonic lodge. In Antiquities of the Jews, Josephus, in the first century, wrote that Enoch of Old Testament fame constructed an underground temple consisting of nine chambers. In a deep vault inside one chamber with three vertical columns, he placed a triangular-shaped tablet of gold bearing upon it the absolute name of the Deity (God).

The description of Enoch's chambers was similar to the description of the Chapel of Offering under the sand just east of the Great Pyramid. An anteroom much like a burial chamber, but "undoubtedly a room of initiation and reception " (5) was found higher up the plateau closer to the Great Pyramid and at the upper end of a sloping passage, cut deep into rock on the northwest side of the Chamber of Offering (between the Chamber of Offering and the Great Pyramid). In the centre of the chamber is a 12-foot long sarcophagus of white Turah limestone and a collection of fine alabaster vessels.

The walls are beautifully sculpted with scenes, inscriptions and emblems of particularly the lotus flower. The descriptions of alabaster vessels and the emblematic lotus flower have remarkable parallels with what was found in the temple-workshop on the summit of Mt Sinai/Horeb by Sir William Petrie in 1904.

Additional underground rooms, chambers, temples and hallways were discovered, some with vertical circular stone support columns, and others with wall carvings of delicate figures of goddesses clothed in beautiful apparel. Dr Selim Hassan's report described other magnificently carved figures and many beautifully colored friezes. Photographs were taken and one author and researcher who saw them, Rosicrucian H. Spencer Lewis recorded that he was "deeply impressed" with the images.

It is not known where the rare specimens of art and relics are today, but some were rumored to have been smuggled out of Egypt by private collectors.

The foregoing particulars are but a few contained in Dr Selim Hassan's extensive report that was published in 1944 by the Government Press, Cairo, under the title Excavations at Giza (10 volumes). However, that is just a mere fragment of the whole truth of what is under the area of the Pyramids.

In the last year of sand clearing, workers uncovered the most amazing discovery that stunned the world and attracted international media coverage.


"The City" deep in huge natural cavern

Archaeologists in charge of the discovery were "bewildered" at what they had unearthed, and stated that the city was the most beautifully planned they had ever seen. It is replete with temples, pastel-painted peasant dwellings, workshops, stables and other buildings including a palace. Complete with hydraulic underground waterways, it has a perfect drainage system along with other modern amenities.

The intriguing question that arises out of the discovery is: where is that city today?

Its secret location was recently revealed to a select group of people who were given permission to explore and film the city. It exists in a huge natural cavern system below the Giza Plateau that extends out in an easterly direction under Cairo. Its main entry is from inside the Sphinx, with stairs cut into rock that lead down to the cavern below the bedrock of the River Nile.

The expedition carried down generators and inflatable rafts and travelled along an underground river that led to a lake one kilometer wide. On the shores of the lake nestles the city, and permanent lighting is provided by large crystalline balls set into the cavern walls and ceiling. A second entry to the city is found in stairs leading up to the basement of the Coptic Church in old Cairo (Babylon). Drawing from narratives of people "living in the Earth" given in the books of Genesis, Jasher and Enoch , it is possible that the city was originally called Gigal.

Film footage of the expedition was shot and a documentary called Chamber of the Deep was made and subsequently shown to private audiences. It was originally intended to release the footage to the general public, but for some reason it was withheld.

A multi-faceted spherical crystalline object the size of a baseball was brought up from the city, and its supernatural nature was demonstrated at a recent conference in Australia. Deep within the solid object are various hieroglyphs that slowly turn over like pages of a book when mentally requested to do so by whoever holds the object.

That remarkable item revealed an unknown form of technology and was recently sent to NASA in the USA for analysis.

Historical documents recorded that, during the 20th century, staggering discoveries not spoken of today were made at Giza and Mt Sinai, and Egyptian rumors of the discovery of another underground city within a 28-mile radius of the Great Pyramid abound. In 1964, more than 30 enormous, multilevelled subsurface cities were discovered in the old Turkish kingdom of Cappadocia.

One city alone contained huge caverns, rooms and hallways that archaeologists estimated supported as many as 2,000 households, providing living facilities for 8,000 to 10,000 people. Their very existence constitutes evidence that many such subterranean worlds lie waiting to be found below the surface of the Earth.

Excavations at Giza have revealed underground subways, temples, sarcophagi and one interconnected subterranean city, and validation that underground passageways connected the Sphinx to the Pyramids is another step towards proving that the whole complex is carefully and specifically thought out.

Because of Dr Selim Hassan's excavations and modern space surveillance techniques, the records and traditions of the ancient Egyptian mystery schools that claim to preserve secret knowledge of the Giza Plateau all rose to the highest degree of acceptability.

However, one of the most puzzling aspects of the discovery of underground facilities at Giza is the repeated denial of their existence by Egyptian authorities and academic institutions. So persistent are their refutations that the claims of mystery schools were doubted by the public and suspected of being fabricated in order to mystify visitors to Egypt. The scholastic attitude is typified by a Harvard University public statement in 1972:

No one should pay any attention to the preposterous claims in regard to the interior of the Great Pyramid or the presumed passageways and unexcavated temples and halls beneath the sand in the Pyramid district made by those who are as located with the so-called, secret cults or mystery societies of Egypt and the Orient.

These things exist only in the minds of those who seek to attract the seekers for mystery, and the more we deny the existence of these things, the more the public is led to suspect that we are deliberately trying to hide that which constitutes one of the great secrets of Egypt. It is better for us to ignore all of these claims than merely deny them.

All of our excavations in the territory of the Pyramid have failed to reveal any underground passageways or halls, temples, grottos , or anything of the kind except the one temple adjoining the Sphinx.

It was well enough for scholarly opinion to make such a statement on the subject, but in preceding years, official claims were made stating that there was no temple adjoining the Sphinx. The assertion that every inch of the territory around the Sphinx and pyramids had been explored deeply and thoroughly was disproved when the temple adjoining the Sphinx was discovered in the sand and eventually opened to the public.

On matters outside official policy, there appears to be a hidden level of censorship in operation, one designed to protect both Eastern and Western religions.

In spite of amazing discoveries, the stark truth is that the early history of Egypt remains largely unknown and therefore unmapped territory. It is not possible, then, to say precisely how miles of underground passageways and chambers beneath the Giza Plateau were lit, but one thing is for sure: unless the ancients could see in the dark, the vast subterranean areas were somehow illuminated.

The same question is addressed of the interior of the Great Pyramid, and Egyptologists have agreed that flaming torches were not used, for ceilings had not been blackened with residual smoke.

From what is currently known about subsurface passageways under the Pyramid Plateau, it is possible to determine that there are at least three miles of passageways 10 to 12 storeys below ground level. Both the Book of the Dead and the Pyramid Texts make striking references to "The Light-makers", and that extraordinary description may have referred to a body of people responsible for lighting the subterranean areas of their complexes.

Iamblichus recorded a fascinating account that was found on a very ancient Egyptian papyrus held in a mosque in Cairo. It was part of a 100 BC story by an unknown author about a group of people who gained entry to underground chambers around Giza for exploratory purposes.

They described their experience:

We came to a chamber. When we entered, it became automatically illuminated by light from a tube being the height of one man's hand [approx. 6 inches or 15.24 cm] and thin, standing vertically in the corner. As we approached the tube, it shone brighter. the slaves were scared and ran away in the direction from which we had come!

When I touched it, it went out. We made every effort to get the tube to glow again, but it would no longer provide light. In some chambers the light tubes worked and in others they did not. We broke open one of the tubes and it bled beads of silver-colored liquid that ran fastly around the floor until they disappeared between the cracks (mercury?).

As time went on, the light tubes gradually began to fail and the priests removed them and stored them in an underground vault they specially built southeast of the plateau.

It was their belief that the light tubes were created by their beloved Imhotep, who would some day return to make them work once again.

It was common practice among early Egyptians to seal lighted lamps in the sepulchres of their dead as offerings to their god or for the deceased to find their way to the "other side". Among the tombs near Memphis (and in the Brahmin temples of India), lights were found operating in sealed chambers and vessels, but sudden exposure to air extinguished them or caused their fuel to evaporate. (6)

Greeks and Romans later followed the custom, and the tradition became generally established-not only that of actual burning lamps, but miniature reproductions made in terracotta were buried with the dead. Some lamps were enclosed in circular vessels for protection, and instances are recorded where the original oil was found perfectly preserved in them after more than 2,000 years.

There is ample proof from eyewitnesses that lamps were burning when the sepulchres were sealed, and it was declared by later bystanders that they were still burning when the vaults were opened hundreds of years later.

The possibility of preparing a fuel that would renew itself as rapidly as it was consumed was a source of considerable controversy among mediaeval authors, and numerous documents exist outlining their arguments. After due consideration of evidence at hand, it seemed well within the range of possibility that ancient Egyptian priest-chemists manufactured lamps that burned if not indefinitely then at least for considerable periods of time.

Numerous authorities have written on the subject of ever-burning lamps, with W. Wynn Westcott estimating that the number of writers who have given the subject consideration as more than 150 and H. P. Blavatsky as 173. While conclusions reached by different authors are at a variance, a majority admitted the existence of the phenomenal lamps.

Only a few maintained that the lamps would burn forever, but many were willing to concede that they might remain alight for several centuries without replenishment of fuel.

It was generally believed that the wicks of those perpetual lamps were made of braided or woven asbestos, called by early alchemists "salamander's wool". The fuel appeared to have been one of the products of alchemical research, possibly produced in the temple on Mt Sinai.

Several formulae for making fuel for the lamps were preserved, and in H. P. Blavatsky's profound work, Isis Unveiled, the author reprinted two complicated formulae from earlier authors of a fuel that,

"when made and lighted, will burn with a perpetual flame and you may set this lamp in any place where you please".

Some believe the fabled perpetual lamps of temples to be cunning mechanical contrivances, and some quite humorous explanations have been extended.

In Egypt, rich underground deposits of asphalt and petroleum exist, and some would have it that priests connected asbestos wicks by a secret duct to an oil deposit, which in turn connected to one or more lamps. Others thought that the belief that lamps burned indefinitely in tombs was the result of the fact that in some cases fumes resembling smoke poured forth from the entrances of newly opened vaults.

Parties going in later, and discovering lamps scattered about the floor , assumed that they were the source of the fumes. There were some well-documented stories concerning the discovery of ever-burning lamps not only in Egypt but also in other parts of the world.

De Montfaucon de Villars gave this fascinating account of the opening of the vault of Rosicrucian Christian Rosenkreuz .

When the Brethren entered the tomb of their illustrious founder 120 years after his death, they found a perpetual-lamp brightly shining in a suspended manner from the ceiling.

"There was a statue in armor [a robot] which destroyed the source of light when the chamber was opened." 7

That is strangely similar to the accounts of Arab historians who claimed that automatons guarded galleries under the Great Pyramid.

A 17th-century account recorded another story about a robot. In central England, a curious tomb was found containing an automaton that moved when an intruder stepped upon certain stones in the floor of the vault. At that time, the Rosicrucian controversy was at its height, so it was decided that the tomb was that of a Rosicrucian initiate. A countryman discovered the tomb, entered and found the interior brilliantly lit by a lamp hanging from the ceiling.

As he walked toward the light, his weight depressed the floor stones and, at once, a seated figure in heavy armor began to move. Mechanically it rose to its feet and struck the lamp with an iron baton, destroying it and thus effectively preventing the discovery of the secret substance that maintained the flame.

How long the lamp had burned was unknown, but the report said that it had been for a considerable number of years.

Comment: in the book THE CAVE OF THE ANCIENTS - the tibetan Lobsang Rampa talks about these kind of lamps.

" . One sequence of pictures showed a group of thoughtful men planning what they termed a "Time Capsule" (what we called "The Cave of the Ancients"), wherein they could store for later generations working models of their machines and a complete, pictorial record of their culture and lack of it. Immense machines excavated the living rock. Hordes of men installed the models and the machines. We saw the cold light spheres hoisted in place, inert radio-active substances giving off light for millions of years. Inert in that it could not harm humans, active in that the light would continue almost until the end of Time itself.

We found that we could understand the language, then the explanation was shown, that we were obtaining the "speech" telepathically. Chambers such as this, or "Time Capsules", were concealed beneath the sands of Egypt, beneath a pyramid in South America, and at a certain spot in Siberia. Each place was marked by the symbol of the times the Sphinx. We saw the great statues of the Sphinx, which did not originate in Egypt, and we received an explanation of its form. Man and animals talked and worked together in those far-off days.

The cat was the most perfect animal for power and intelligence. Man himself is an animal, so the Ancients made a figure of a large cat body to indicate power and endurance, and upon the body they put the breasts and head of a woman. The head was to indicate human intelligence and reason, while the breasts indicated that Man and Animal could draw spiritual and mental nourishment each from the other. That Symbol was then as common as is Statues of Buddha, or the Star of David, or the Crucifix at the present day.

We saw oceans with great floating cities, which moved. "


The world hears of the discovery of a "secret" Egyptian city (1935)


A city of the dead lies in secret tunnels below Paris

Paris is the city of romance and beauty, but it also contains miles of tunnels running beneath the surface. These tunnels were originally dug into the limestone under the city in order to mine for the materials that would eventually build Paris itself. After the city was built, the tunnels went largely unused until the 17th century.

1600s Paris had a real problem with odor. Specifically, the smell of rotting corpses, because its small graveyards were overfilled with the dead of a city that had far outgrown its cemeteries. Kings Louis XV and XVI both tried to order people to bury their dead outside of Paris, but neither was successful. It took a cemetery wall collapsing in 1780, spilling corpses into the the streets, before someone had the bright idea to take all of those bodies and stuff them into the unused limestone tunnels.

Now called the Paris Catacombs, these tunnels are chock full of the bones of those relocated under the ground. It took 12 years to move them all, according to Smithsonian Magazine. Creepiest of all is the warning sign put up at the entrance to the Catacombs: "Stop, this is the empire of death!" These days, the tunnels are inaccessible except for a small portion open to tourists. That doesn't stop people from breaking in, of course.


New illuminati

To fully comprehend the secret information in the Bible it is important to understand the extent of the subterranean tunnel system and associated chamber facilities existing below the surface of the Pyramid Plateau, for it was there that major elements of Mystery School teachings developed. What happened under the sands thousands of years ago is not reflected in today's history books, and discoveries made in the last eight decades or so verify that point.

The Fayum Oasis district, just a few kilometers outside the boundary of the Memphis Nome, presents a site of unusual interest. It was in that lush, fertile valley that Pharaohs calling themselves the "masters of the royal hunts" fished and hunted with the boomerang (1) , Lake Moeris once bordered the Fayum Oasis and on its shores was the famous Labyrinth, described by Herodotus as "an endless wonder to me".


The pyramids at Memphis were the pyramids at Giza, for Giza was originally called Memphis (see reference, "Giza formerly Memphis" on Nordan's map from Travels in Egypt and Nubia, 1757, on page 152 of previous chapter).

Many ancient writers supported Herodotus' record of underground passages connecting major pyramids, and their evidence casts doubt on the reliability of traditionally presented Egyptian history. Crantor (300 BC) stated that there were certain underground pillars in Egypt that contained a written stone record of pre-history , and they lined access ways connecting the pyramids.

The Sumerian record provided a probable description of the lion-headed Sphinx at Giza , and if that great creature was built to guard or obliterate ancient stairways and lower passages leading to subterranean areas below and around it, then its symbolism was most appropriate.

Local 19th-century Arab lore maintained that existing under the Sphinx are secret chambers holding treasures or magical objects. That belief was bolstered by the writings of the first-century Roman historian Pliny, who wrote that deep below the Sphinx is concealed the "tomb of a ruler named Harmakhis that contains great treasure", and, strangely enough, the Sphinx itself was once called "The Great Sphinx Harmakhis who mounted guard since the time of the Followers of Horus".

If the chronicle is accurate, that lack of additional weight provided indirect evidence of the existence of an extraordinary science at Giza.

According to Masoudi in the 10th century, mechanical statues with amazing capabilities guarded subterranean galleries under the Great Pyramid. Written one thousand years ago, his description is comparable to the computerized robots shown today in space movies. Masoudi said that the automatons were programmed for intolerance, for they destroyed all "except those who by their conduct were worthy of admission".

In the same century, another writer, Muterdi, gave an account of a bizarre incident in a narrow passage under Giza, where a group of people were horrified to see one of their party crushed to death by a stone door that, by itself, suddenly slid out from the face of the passageway and closed the corridor in front of them.

Herodotus said Egyptian priests recited to him their long-held tradition of "the formation of underground apartments" by the original developers of Memphis. The most ancient inscriptions therefore suggested that there existed some sort of extensive chamber system below the surface of the areas surrounding the Sphinx and pyramids.

Those old records were confirmed when the presence of a large cavity was discovered in a seismic survey conducted at the site in 1993. That detection was publicly acknowledged in a documentary called The Mystery of the Sphinx, screened to an audience of 30 million people on NBC TV later that year.

The existence of chambers under the Sphinx is well known. Egyptian authorities confirmed another discovery in 1994 its unearthing was announced in a newspaper report that was carried under the headline, "Mystery Tunnel in Sphinx":

The popular supposition that the Sphinx is the true portal of the Great Pyramid has survived with surprising tenacity. That belief was substantiated by 100-year-old plans prepared by Masonic and Rosicrucian initiates, showing the Sphinx was the ornament surmounting a hall that communicated with all Pyramids by radiating underground passages. Those plans were compiled from information originally discovered by the supposed founder of the Order of the Rosicrucians, Christian Rosenkreuz, who allegedly penetrated a "secret chamber beneath the ground" and there found a library of books full of secret knowledge.

The schematic drawings were produced from information possessed by mystery school archivists before sand-clearing commenced in 1925, and revealed hidden doors to long - forgotten reception halls, small temples and other enclosures. (Those plans are included in "The Master Plan" section at the end of the book.)

Chambers detected by ground penetrating radar

Nine of those sites are on Luxor's east bank and the others are in Giza, Abu Rawash, Saqqara and Dashur. The printouts of the Giza area show an almost incomprehensible mass of net-like tunnels and chambers crisscrossing the area, intersecting and entwining each other like latticework extending out across the entire plateau.

With the space surveillance project, Egyptologists are able to determine the location of a major site, its probable entrance and the size of chambers before starting excavations.

3. the "Way of Horus" across northern Sinai

Among the mystics or members of Egyptian mystery schools, tradition explained that the Great Pyramid was great in many
ways. Despite the fact that it was not entered until the year 820, the secret schools of pre-Christian Egypt insisted that the interior layout was well known to them. They constantly claimed that it was not a tomb nor a burial chamber of any kind, except that it did have one chamber for symbolic burial as part of an initiation ritual.

According to mystical traditions, the interior was entered gradually and in various stages via underground passageways .

Different chambers were said to have existed at the end of each phase of progress, with the highest and ultimate initiatory stage represented by the now-called King's Chamber .

Little by little, the traditions of the mystery schools were verified by archaeological discoveries, for it was ascertained in 1935
that there was a subterranean connection between the Sphinx and the Great Pyramid and that a tunnel connected the Sphinx to the ancient temple located on its southern side (today called the Temple of the Sphinx).

As Emile Baraize's massive 11-year sand and seashell clearing project neared completion in 1935, remarkable stories started to emerge about discoveries made during the clearing project. A magazine article, written and published in 1935 by Hamilton M. Wright, dealt with an extraordinary discovery under the sands of Giza that is today denied. The article was accompanied by original photographs provided by Dr Selim Hassan, the leader of the scientific investigative team from the University of Cairo who made the discovery. It said:

Around the same time, the international news media released further details of the find.

The underground connector complex was originally built between the Great pyramid and the Temple of the Solarmen, for the Pyramid of Khephren was a later and superficial structure. The subway and its apartments were excavated out of solid, living bedrock-a truly extraordinary feat, considering it was built thousands of years ago.

There is more to the story of underground chambers at Giza, for media reports described the unearthing of a subterranean passageway between the Temple of the Solar-men on the plateau and the Temple of the Sphinx in the valley. That passageway had been unearthed a few years before the release and publication of that particular newspaper article.

The discoveries led Dr Selim Hassan and others to believe and publicly state that, while the age of the Sphinx was always enigmatic in the past, it may have been part of the great architectural plan that was deliberately arranged and carried out in association with the erection of the Great Pyramid.

Some of the chambers contained huge, sealed sarcophagi of basalt and granite, 18 feet high.

The discovery went further and found that in one of the seven rooms there was yet a third vertical shaft, dropping down deeply to a much lower chamber. At the time of its discovery it was flooded with water that partly covered a solitary white sarcophagus.

In the centre of the chapel are three ornate vertical pillars standing in a triangular shaped layout. Those pillars are highly significant points in this study, for their existence is recorded in the Bible. The conclusion drawn is that Ezra, the initiated Torah writer (c. 397 BC), knew the subterranean layout of passages and chambers at Giza before he wrote the Torah.

That underground design was probably the origin of the triangular shaped layout around the central altar in a Masonic lodge. In Antiquities of the Jews, Josephus, in the first century, wrote that Enoch of Old Testament fame constructed an underground temple consisting of nine chambers. In a deep vault inside one chamber with three vertical columns, he placed a triangular-shaped tablet of gold bearing upon it the absolute name of the Deity (God ).

The walls are beautifully sculpted with scenes, inscriptions and emblems of particularly the lotus flower. The descriptions of alabaster vessels and the emblematic lotus flower have remarkable parallels with what was found in the temple-workshop on the summit of Mt Sinai/Horeb by Sir William Petrie in 1904 .

Additional underground rooms, chambers, temples and hallways were discovered, some with vertical circular stone support columns, and others with wall carvings of delicate figures of goddesses clothed in beautiful apparel. Dr Selim Hassan’s report described other magnificently carved figures and many beautifully colored friezes. Photographs were taken and one author and researcher who saw them, Rosicrucian H. Spencer Lewis recorded that he was “deeply impressed” with the images. It is not known where the rare specimens of art and relics are today, but some were rumored to have been smuggled out of Egypt by private collectors.

The foregoing particulars are but a few contained in Dr Selim Hassan’s extensive report that was published in 1944 by the Government Press, Cairo, under the title Excavations at Giza (10 volumes). However, that is just a mere fragment of the whole truth of what is under the area of the Pyramids. In the last year of sand clearing, workers uncovered the most amazing discovery that stunned the world and attracted international media coverage.

"The City" deep in huge natural cavern

The expedition carried down generators and inflatable rafts and travelled along an underground river that led to a lake one kilometer wide. On the shores of the lake nestles the city, and permanent lighting is provided by large crystalline balls set into the cavern walls and ceiling. A second entry to the city is found in stairs leading up to the basement of the Coptic Church in old Cairo (Babylon). Drawing from narratives of people "living in the Earth" given in the books of Genesis, Jasher and Enoch, it is possible that the city was originally called Gigal.

Film footage of the expedition was shot and a documentary called Chamber of the Deep was made and subsequently shown to private audiences. It was originally intended to release the footage to the general public, but for some reason it was withheld.

A multifaceted spherical crystalline object the size of a baseball was brought up from the city, and its supernatural nature was demonstrated at a recent conference in Australia. Deep within the solid object are various hieroglyphs that slowly turn over like pages of a book when mentally requested to do so by whoever holds the object. That remarkable item revealed an unknown form of technology and was recently sent to NASA in the USA for analysis.

Historical documents recorded that, during the 20th century, staggering discoveries not spoken of today were made at Giza and Mt Sinai, and Egyptian rumors of the discovery of another underground city within a 28-mile radius of the Great Pyramid abound. In 1964, more than 30 enormous, multilevelled subsurface cities were discovered in the old Turkish kingdom of Cappadocia.

Excavations at Giza have revealed underground subways, temples, sarcophagi and one interconnected subterranean city, and validation that underground passageways connected the Sphinx to the Pyramids is another step towards proving that the whole complex is carefully and specifically thought out.



Because of Dr Selim Hassan's excavations and modern space surveillance techniques, the records and traditions of the ancient Egyptian mystery schools that claim to preserve secret knowledge of the Giza Plateau all rose to the highest degree of acceptability.

However, one of the most puzzling aspects of the discovery of underground facilities at Giza is the repeated denial of their existence by Egyptian authorities and academic institutions. So persistent are their refutations that the claims of mystery schools were doubted by the public and suspected of being fabricated in order to mystify visitors to Egypt.

On matters outside official policy, there appears to be a hidden level of censorship in operation, one designed to protect both Eastern and Western religions.

In spite of amazing discoveries, the stark truth is that the early history of Egypt remains largely unknown and therefore unmapped territory. It is not possible, then, to say precisely how miles of underground passageways and chambers beneath the Giza Plateau were lit, but one thing is for sure: unless the ancients could see in the dark, the vast subterranean areas were somehow illuminated. The same question is addressed of the interior of the Great Pyramid, and Egyptologists have agreed that flaming torches were not used, for ceilings had not been blackened with residual smoke.

From what is currently known about subsurface passageways under the Pyramid Plateau, it is possible to determine that there are at least three miles of passageways 10 to 12 storey below ground level. Both the Book of the Dead and the Pyramid Texts make striking references to "The Light-makers", and that extraordinary description may have referred to a body of people responsible for lighting the subterranean areas of their complexes.

We made every effort to get the tube to glow again, but it would no longer provide light. In some chambers the light tubes worked and in others they did not. We broke open one of the tubes and it bled beads of silver-colored liquid that ran fastly around the floor until they disappeared between the cracks (mercury?).

As time went on, the light tubes gradually began to fail and the priests removed them and stored them in an underground vault they specially built southeast of the plateau. It was their belief that the light tubes were created by their beloved Imhotep, who would some day return to make them work once again.

It was common practice among early Egyptians to seal lighted lamps in the sepulchres of their dead as offerings to their god or for the deceased to find their way to the "other side". Among the tombs near Memphis (and in the Brahmin temples of India), lights were found operating in sealed chambers and vessels, but sudden exposure to air extinguished them or caused their fuel to evaporate. ( 6)

Greeks and Romans later followed the custom, and the tradition became generally established - not only that of actual burning lamps, but miniature reproductions made in terracotta were buried with the dead. Some lamps were enclosed in circular vessels for protection, and instances are recorded where the original oil was found perfectly preserved in them after more than 2,000 years. There is ample proof from eyewitnesses that lamps were burning when the sepulchres were sealed, and it was declared by later bystanders that they were still burning when the vaults were opened hundreds of years later.

The possibility of preparing a fuel that would renew itself as rapidly as it was consumed was a source of considerable controversy among mediaeval authors, and numerous documents exist outlining their arguments. After due consideration of evidence at hand, it seemed well within the range of possibility that ancient Egyptian priest-chemists manufactured lamps that burned if not indefinitely then at least for considerable periods of time.

Numerous authorities have written on the subject of ever-burning lamps, with W. Wynn Westcott estimating that the number
of writers who have given the subject consideration as more than 150 and H. P. Blavatsky as 173. While conclusions reached by different authors are at a variance, a majority admitted the existence of the phenomenal lamps. Only a few maintained that the lamps would burn forever, but many were willing to concede that they might remain alight for several centuries without replenishment of fuel.

It was generally believed that the wicks of those perpetual lamps were made of braided or woven asbestos, called by early
alchemists "salamander's wool". The fuel appeared to have been one of the products of alchemical research, possibly produced in the temple on Mt Sinai. Several formulae for making fuel for the lamps were preserved, and in H. P. Blavatsky's profound work, Isis Unveiled, the author reprinted two complicated formulae from earlier authors of a fuel that

Some believe the fabled perpetual lamps of temples to be cunning mechanical contrivances, and some quite humorous explanations have been extended.

In Egypt, rich underground deposits of asphalt and petroleum exist, and some would have it that priests connected asbestos wicks by a secret duct to an oil deposit, which in turn connected to one or more lamps. Others thought that the belief that lamps burned indefinitely in tombs was the result of the fact that in some cases fumes resembling smoke poured forth from the entrances of newly opened vaults.

Parties going in later, and discovering lamps scattered about the floor, assumed that they were the source of the fumes. There were some well-documented stories concerning the discovery of ever-burning lamps not only in Egypt but also in other parts of the world.

De Montfaucon de Villars gave this fascinating account of the opening of the vault of Rosicrucian Christian Rosenkreuz . When the Brethren entered the tomb of their illustrious founder 120 years after his death, they found a perpetual lamp brightly shining in a suspended manner from the ceiling.

That is strangely similar to the accounts of Arab historians who claimed that automatons guarded galleries under the Great Pyramid.

In the book THE CAVE OF THE ANCIENTS - the Tibetan Lobsang Rampa talks about these kind of lamps.

Hordes of men installed the models and the machines. We saw the cold light spheres hoisted in place, inert radio-active substances giving off light for millions of years. Inert in that it could not harm humans, active in that the light would continue almost until the end of Time itself.

We found that we could understand the language, then the explanation was shown, that we were obtaining the "speech" telepathically. Chambers such as this, or "Time Capsules", were concealed beneath the sands of Egypt, beneath a pyramid in South America, and at a certain spot in Siberia. Each place was marked by the symbol of the times the Sphinx. We saw the great statues of the Sphinx, which did not originate in Egypt, and we received an explanation of its form. Man and animals talked and worked together in those far-off days.

The cat was the most perfect animal for power and intelligence. Man himself is an animal, so the Ancients made a figure of a large cat body to indicate power and endurance, and upon the body they put the breasts and head of a woman. The head was to indicate human intelligence and reason, while the breasts indicated that Man and Animal could draw spiritual and mental nourishment each from the other. That Symbol was then as common as is Statues of Buddha, or the Star of David, or the Crucifix at the present day.


Factor's Walk

Factor's Walk of Haunted Savannah

Named for the cotton factors of the 19th century which made Antebellum Savannah rich and famous, Factor’s Walk remains one of the least discussed locations in the city . . . although it shouldn’t be.

Those who were enslaved were brought into Savannah by being led into the buildings of River Street. Behind those buildings lay Factor’s Walk, now the home to the many sealed off tunnels that would have descended under Bay Street and into the basements of those buildings. Basements like the Moon River Brewing Company, which is now regarded as one of the most paranormally active locations in the city, where the spirits are sinister and oftentimes even violent.

But at Factor’s Walk, the ghosts are no less quiet, which can be expected as thousands of people were separated from their families and forced into slavery.

For the brave souls who still wander down that way, the heavy wooden doors that once opened to the dark tunnels beneath the street harken back to the 1700s. Dark shadows have been seen darting in and out, and sometimes even follow the living to wherever they might go next.

Factor’s Walk is a symbol of Savannah’s dark past, and its ghosts are all too eager to remind those who visit that the beauty of Savannah was constructed by the souls who lost their freedom.

Stand next to the doorway of one of the old tunnels and pause for a moment. Listen. And wait for the sounds of footsteps padding along the cobblestone street, and just know that if you hear another pair of footsteps in tune with yours as you leave . . . you aren’t going alone.

Want to check out Factor’s Walk on your next trip to Savannah? Check out our Grave Tales Ghost Tour where it is an often featured stop!


Underground works

Underground works are a travel destination of interest to a number of travellers.

Humans have been digging holes and underground structures since prehistory.

As well as expanding natural caves, humans have constructed or expanded countless works of their own efforts underground from early residences of prehistory through to contemporary tubes and tunnels that support a modern lifestyle, or for disposal of its wastes.

A number of underground structures were built for warfare, be it tunnels under enemy positions or underground fortresses and anything from subsurface storage rooms through to the hardened bunkers built for a "day after" - which thankfully never arrived.

Other Underground works however were built to aid the flow of trade and people, be it road, river or rail, going underground made sense to the engineers of history when the surface way was congested or impractical to the demands. New underground structures are still being built to this day and sometimes they tunnel through the same mountain again but at a lower level, making for so called "base tunnels".

There are also the underground follys, and subterranean grottoes built by those with both the money and eccentricity to desire them.

The easiest underground works to access are those which were clearly designed as public spaces or where tourist facilities have been installed specifically to aid access by visitors.

A number of cities have vast underground public spaces, such as Japan's underground shopping malls, or Houston's tunnel system. In other cities railway stations are partly or entirely under ground. Leipzig for instance has underground through tracks beneath its multilevel shopping mall/terminus railway station.

Urban rail Edit

Many large cities have transit systems where the stations and tracks are below the surface, whose public areas can be accessed for the price of a standard fare. Some systems of particular note are London, New York, Paris, Berlin, Moscow, and the worlds longest art Gallery in Stockholm, but other systems are also of interest to transit fans.

Whilst some Urban Rail systems occasionally run limited enthusiast tours 'behind the scenes', the health and safety considerations of a working railway, the current 'security' climate in many regions, coupled with the confined operational environment, mean that these are rare, and typically take place outside operational periods. Specialist Enthusiast publications may advertise these type of tours, but booking early is essential owing to limited numbers.

Military sites Edit

However, not all underground works are necessarily open to the traveller (even on an organized tour), It should be especially noted that military facilities (even if seemingly abandoned or out of use) often remain highly sensitive sites. An unexpected or unannounced visit could at best lead to a lengthy interrogation, with considerably worse outcomes depending ultimately on the mood of the personnel you encounter. You should make formal contact in writing with the relevant military authorities as soon as you have firm travel plans. Do not be disappointed if a planned or agreed visit has to be cancelled or curtailed for operational and security reasons. Or if you are denied access without any reason at all being provided.

For the countless underground works resulting from mining or quarrying see Mining tourism.

See also Nuclear_bunkers for cold-war bunkers.

Australia Edit

South Australia Edit

  • -29.011111 134.755556 1Coober Pedy . An opal mining town in the South AustralianOutback that is almost fully underground, as this is the only way to ensure human habitation in the harsh climate. ( updated Dec 2015 )

Western Australia Edit

  • Fremantle Prison Tunnels . A tunnel system in Western Australia underneath the Fremantle Prison ( updated Dec 2015 )

Bosnia and Herzegovina Edit

  • 43.81974 18.33727 2Sarajevo War Tunnel Museum , Sarajevo . A house converted to a museum sitting at the entrance of the tunnel that linked the city to the airport, thus providing the only lifeline for the inhabitants of the city during the Siege of Sarajevo which lasted for three years in the context of the Yugoslav Wars of the 1990s. ( updated Dec 2015 )

Canada Edit

  • 45.35136 -76.04796 3Diefenbunker - Canada's Cold War Museum, Carp, Ontario , toll-free: +1-800-409-1965 . Self-guided tours 11AM-4PM daily, guided tours by reservation only . Built to protect the government from nuclear attack, this once-secret bunker is now a museum and National Historic Site of Canada. See the Ottawa and nuclear tourism articles for details $14 adults, $13 seniors, $10 students , $8 youth 6-18, $40 families (2 adults plus 3 youth), free for children 5 and under .
  • 48.852965 -64.396162 4Fort Peninsula ( Fort Péninsule ), Forillon National Park, Gaspé, Quebec ( 1.2 km [0.7 miles] east of La Penouille via Route 132 ). Quebec's only fully preserved World War II-era shoreline battery, Fort Peninsula was one of the three fixed defences that comprised HMCS Fort Ramsay, a naval base established in 1942 by the Canadian military to defend against Nazi U-Boat attacks, to ensure the safety of merchant vessels passing through the region, and to serve as a refuge for the British Royal Navy in the event that Hitler's forces were to successfully conquer the UK. Nineteen warships based here served a key role in waging the Battle of the St. Lawrence which saw 23 Allied vessels sunk by German subs off Canada's east coast. Today, visitors can walk through the underground corridors of the fortification and observe the vintage gun mortars and other artillery still pointed seaward, and read descriptive panels along the way that explain the strategic military importance of the Gaspé Peninsula during the Second World War. Outside, there's a pleasant seaside picnic area.

France Edit

  • 48.86261 2.30254 5Musée des Égouts de Paris ( Entrance opposite 93, quai d'Orsay near the Pont d'Alma, Métro: Alma-Marceau ), ☏ +33 1 53 68 27 81 . For an interesting take on Paris, check out its underground sewer system. See swords found in the sewers over the years and get an appreciation for what it takes to keep Paris running. Full fare: €4.30, Student: €3.50 .
  • The Mines of Paris often erroneously termed the Catacombs.

Germany Edit

During the second world war, constant allied bombardment which had destroyed several important military factories forced the Nazis to dig deep and hide their military infrastructure underground. Nazi architect and minister of armament Albert Speer was the leading force behind those efforts often brutally abusing and outright murdering the forced laborers used for those projects. While many of those structures were deliberately destroyed after the war, a few survive to this day and can be visited.

  • 51.535278 10.748611 6Dora Mittelbau concentration camp , Near Nordhausen . Site of the building of the V2/Aggregat4 rocket which was fired on London and later other cities in a futile effort to turn the tide of the lost war. Conditions for the forced laborers were horrific and more people died building the rockets than in their use. ( updated Apr 2018 )
  • 52.54792 13.39133 7Berliner Unterwelten. The "Berlin Underworlds" consists of various structures built below Berlin throughout its troubled history. The Verein of the same name offers a large amount of various tours. ( updated Jan 2019 )

Italy Edit

  • The First World War on the Alpine Front pitted Austria-Hungary against Italy and involved a lot of mines and tunnels, some of which are still visible a century later.
  • Napoli Sotterrano ( Napoli Underground ), Piazza san Gaetano ( Via Tribunali at San Paolo Maggiore ). Caves under the city center created by mining from the first Greek settlers 2000 years ago. ( updated Jun 2016 )

Japan Edit

  • Metropolitan Area Outer Underground Discharge Channel in Kasukabe, Saitama prefecture is a monumental underground flood-control system finished in 2009. It was constructed to prevent damages caused by the perennial floods which have plagued this part of the Kanto plain. It is possible to book a tour underground.

Korea Edit

  • 37.9168 126.6986 8The 3rd Tunnel ( 제3땅굴 ). In the demilitarized border zone between the Koreas there are tunnels dug by North Korea for the purpose of secretly moving troops under the border to the South. South Korea has found four such tunnels and the third one (or rather a section of it on the South Korean side) has been turned into a tourist attraction, often visited on a tour to the DMZ. As with many places in the DMZ, photography is not allowed in the tunnel itself but it's so dark and narrow you'll not be able to get any good photos anyway. ( updated Dec 2015 )

Norway Edit

  • 60.325333 5.081806 9Fjell festning ( Fjell fortress ), Sotra island at Bergen . A second world war fortress mostly in mountain tunnels. Huge artillery was mounted on the summit. Now museum. ( updated Dec 2015 )
  • 69.727748 30.051105 10Andersgrotta shelter , Kirkenes, Finnmark . A makeshift bomb shelter made the people of Kirkenes during the second world war. The small town of Kirkenes was the most bombed out town during the war after about 300 air raids. ( updated Dec 2015 )
  • 59.854167 8.649167 11Gausta funicular ( Gaustabanen ), Rjukan . Small train/funicular transport through a 1000 meter horizontal tunnel and a sloping 1000 meter tunnel inside iconic Gausta summit. Built for military and telecom purposes in the 1950s, now open for tourists. ( updated Dec 2015 )
  • Bremnes fort, Lofoten . Fort with bunkers built by German forces during second world war. Artillery has been removed. Guided tours possible. ( updated Dec 2015 )

Russia Edit

  • 69.3955 30.6143 12Kola Superdeep Borehole ( Кольская сверхглубокая скважина Kol'skaya sverhglubokaya skvazhina ), Murmansk Oblast ( between Zapolyarny and Nikel ). At more than 12 km (7.5 mi) in depth, this is the deepest hole ever drilled by mankind—and indeed, it is further into the earth's crust than the Mariana Trench, the deepest point in the oceans. However, this is certainly not an abyss with a huge opening at the top, and do not expect to enter, descent down or even peek into the hole, so you have to decide whether it is worthwhile to drive across the tundra of a remote Arctic peninsula for hours for an urbex expedition into a derelict Soviet-era research station to see a rusty and fairly unimpressive metal lid saying 12.266 metrov in Russian Cyrillic handwriting.

Turkey Edit

  • 41.0084 28.9778 13Basilica Cistern ( Yerebatan Sarnıcı ), Yerebatan Cad. 13, Sultanahmet, Istanbul . One of the many underground cisterns of Constantinople that was in use during the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman periods (and perhaps the most easily visitable one). Inside is an eerie "forest" of columns, standing on an ankle deep of water. ( updated Dec 2015 )
  • 38.658333 34.853611 14Cappadocia . The early Christians dug numerous underground cities — complete with sleeping chambers, food storage, kitchens, wineries, and even an inn for traders — into the soft volcanic soils of the Cappadocia region, to escape raids and persecution. ( updated Dec 2015 )

United Kingdom Edit

  • 51.4074 0.0575 15Chislehurst Caves, Old Hill, Chislehurst , ☏ +44 20 8467-3264 , ✉ [email protected] . W-Su 10AM-4PM, seven days during school holidays . A seriously underlooked attraction, the caves are not in fact caves but a twenty-mile long network of passageways, carved from the chalk deep under Chislehurst. Used as a massive air-raid shelter during World War II, the Caves are now a local tourist attraction. Tours often last for an hour, were you'll learn the fascinating history as well as hear ghost and horror stories. It can also be rented as a venue. £5, concessions £3, under 5's free .
  • 51.5021 -0.1286 16Cabinet War Rooms and Churchill Museum, Clive Steps, King Charles St, London/Westminster ( tube: Westminster ). 09:30-18:00 daily (last admission 17:00), closed 24-26 Dec . A branch of the Imperial War Museum, the Cabinet War Rooms preserves the underground corridors and rooms from which Churchill and the cabinet directed the war against Hitler and the Nazis, maintained almost exactly as they were left in 1945. Opened in 2004, the attached Churchill Museum is the world's first permanent museum dedicated to the life and wartime achievements of Sir Winston Churchill, voted the Greatest Briton in 2002. £10, children under 16 free, seniors £8, students £8, unwaged £5, group concessions available .
  • Kelvedon Hatch Secret Bunker, ☏ +44 1277 364883 . 10AM to 4PM during the week and 10AM to 5PM weekends & bank holidays . A well preserved and maintained example of a Cold-war Rotor station, and one of the deepest Cold-war Bunkers in the United Kingdom. £7.00 . ( updated Dec 2015 )
  • 51.5024 -0.0537237 17The Thames Tunnel , London . Although it cannot be visited directly because it is used as part of the London Overground rail network, the Brunel Museum is housed in the former engine house on the Rotherhithe side of the Thames. A concrete raft was built near the bottom of the shaft, above the tracks, when the tunnel was upgraded for the London Overground network. This space, with walls blackened with smoke from steam trains, is accessible from Railway Avenue, and functions at times as a concert venue and occasional bar. A rooftop garden has been built on top of the shaft. The entrance hall is an exhibition space, with a staircase providing easy access to the shaft. ( updated Dec 2020 )
  • 53.40617 -2.95717 18Williamson's Tunnels, The Old Stable Yard, Smithdown Lane, Liverpool L7 3EE , ☏ +44 151 709-6868 , ✉ [email protected] . Heritage Centre Tu-Su . In the early 1800s, a Liverpool tobacco merchant, Joseph Williamson, funded the construction of an enormous labyrinth of tunnels under the Edge Hill area of Liverpool. Nobody knows his reasons for doing so though many guess it as an act of philanthropy, using his wealth to provide jobs and training for thousands of Liverpool workers. There is also a Williamson's Tunnels Heritage Centre.
  • A small number of Ice Houses associated with grand houses, remain in the UK. These were used prior to modern refrigiration to store the ice used by the house.


For less well known Underground works consider joining a specialist organization such as Subterranea Brittanica who specialize in the research of such sites.

Vietnam Edit

  • Cu Chi Tunnels , Cu Chi . Mainly used for military purposes (although there was also a civilian life going on as the inhabitants of the town escaped the bombings on the ground), these tunnels were started in the 1940s during the French occupation and later expanded by the Viet Cong during the Vietnam War. Amounting to a claustrophobia-inducing system of 250 km of passages below the town, some of the former sleeping chambers, hospitals, and military headquarters are open for visits. ( updated Dec 2015 )
  • 17.0742 107.1113 19Vinh Moc Tunnel , Demilitarized Zone . Near the border once separating North and South Vietnam from each other, the entire population of a village found refuge in this tunnel for two years during the Vietnam War. ( updated Dec 2015 )

Photos Edit

If you are permitted to take simple photos, take them. You should however be aware that taking photos in low light will require a 'fast' sensor and/or a fast lens. Many shots will be easiest with a wide-angle lens. Seek appropriate local advice if you wish to use a flash.

There are few risks associated with underground works clearly adapted for tourism or intended as accessible public spaces, and if you have any doubts as to your ability or fitness (including mental attitude), sticking to these is very strongly recommended. Sites that have organized formal tours will also have established rules and procedures which should be adhered to.

In order to stay safe when visiting less accessible underground works, it is vital to know as much as possible about the specific sites(s) you wish to visit, so that you can plan accordingly.

Underground works where access, up to and including the entrance, involves tight crawls, confined space, vertical drops, sharp climbs, any expanse or mass of water, or in general where a failure of any equipment is going to become a critical problem, are considered beyond the scope of accessibility for the non-specialist. For safety advice concerning visiting these caves or works, specialist advice will need to be obtained from dedicated caving and subterranean exploration organizations, familiar with the specific site.

For other reasonably accessible underground works not as well adapted for the tourist or traveller (if at all), you should seek and heed local advice even if it seems easy at a cursory glance at the surface or entrance. Contacting the site's current (or former) operator in advance will also allow them to inform you of any known risks – but don't rely on them knowing or telling anything unless they take responsibility.

There is some detailed advice on cave safety at caves.org, which is also applicable to underground works. Some advice:

  • Know the works you wish to visit and your exit(s) before you enter, and if there is more than one entrance or exit, know which ones will be safe to use. Practically all responsible underground explorations are planned only after weeks or months of research.
  • NEVER enter underground works alone, because not only will there be no-one to get you out, but no-one will know where you are!
  • It is best practice to follow the example of the professionals and visit in groups of at least four. As well as lodging plans with appropriate contacts, in nearly all circumstances a surface watchman is essential whose responsibility is to contact the authorities if things go bad or a group below the surface fails to return by a specified time.
  • Your "smart" phone will have little or no service, below ground.
  • Underground works are naturally dark, and without artificial light (which in disused or abandoned works you will have to provide yourself), you will have a hard time navigating them. Don't rely on a single light source, which could fail. Spare light sources are strongly recommended.
  • Check the weather first! A number of underground works can and have flooded. In wet conditions water levels can change unexpectedly, limiting or cutting off access routes or even exits. In others the removal of flood or storm water is a primary function of the work concerned, and the water level in the system can change automatically within minutes. Getting caught by rising water levels isn't worth it.
  • Do not under any circumstances enter any underground expanse or mass of water, without having in advance sought appropriate advice. Not only can the depth be deceptive, but the water may not be as pure as its appearance suggests. Caution should similarly be exercised in respect of moderate mud, silt, and fallen debris.
  • Whilst countless disused military facilities may seem abandoned, many of them are still nominally highly restricted sites, and unauthorized access to these will at the very least lead to a lengthy interrogation by the respective military authority. Also many civilian facilities are considered sensitive by their respective current or former operators, for safety and security reasons. If in any doubt, confirm your intended plans with the relevant authorities, site owners or operators well in advance.
  • Disused facilities are not going to be well maintained, and fixed access equipment may well have been removed at abandonment, or has subsequently decayed beyond use.
  • In addition to dust, the local wildlife may not appreciate being unduly disturbed.

Be respectful of the underground environment you are visiting. Ideally you should try to leave the underground environment as you found it as far as possible. No garbage and human waste should be left behind. The very presence of human beings and light can also severely change the micro-climate in the underground environment, issues like Lampenflora or plants growing due to the light and warmth of artificial light sources being a serious problem in some underground structures.

If the Underground works are not generally accessible or don't operate formal tours, discreetly and politely seek the consent of the site's owners and operators first. Not only does this express your genuine interest in any given site, but will allow those familiar with the site to advise on specific procedures, taboos or prohibitions. Some site owners and operators may also be willing to provide additional information to place the site in context. Joining a specialist group, is also recommended.

Exceptional care must be exercised where unique historic (or prehistoric) cultural heritage exists, so that it it is not lost or degraded to future generations. Some of these sites are associated with tragic historical events and others are literally the place where people died or were buried. Some underground structures may also be considered "holy ground" in a religious or secular sense, so behave accordingly.


The Underground Railroad

Map. The Underground Railroad was the network used by enslaved black Americans to obtain their freedom in the 30 years before the Civil War (1860-1865).

Geography, Human Geography

The Underground Railroad was the network used by enslaved black Americans to obtain their freedom in the 30 years before the Civil War (1860-1865). The &ldquorailroad&rdquo used many routes from states in the South, which supported slavery, to &ldquofree&rdquo states in the North and Canada.

Sometimes, routes of the Underground Railroad were organized by abolitionists, people who opposed slavery. More often, the network was a series of small, individual actions to help fugitive enslaved persons.

Using the terminology of the railroad, those who went south to find enslaved people seeking freedom were called &ldquopilots.&rdquo Those who guided enslaved people to safety and freedom were &ldquoconductors.&rdquo The enslaved people were &ldquopassengers.&rdquo People&rsquos homes or businesses, where fugitive passengers and conductors could safely hide, were &ldquostations.&rdquo

Stations were added or removed from the Underground Railroad as ownership of the house changed. If a new owner supported slavery, or if the site was discovered to be a station, passengers and conductors were forced to find a new station.

Establishing stations was done quietly, by word-of-mouth. Very few people kept records about this secret activity, to protect homeowners and the fugitives who needed help. If caught, fugitive enslaved persons would be forced to return to slavery. People caught aiding escaped enslaved people faced arrest and jail. This applied to people living in states that supported slavery as well as those living in free states.


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