Show Us the World's Most Incredible Historic Ruins!

I did visit 4 of the 5 Franciscan monasteries included in the Sierra Gorda UNESCO Heritage Site, only missed Tancoyol. Loved the architecture of the facades and the Biosphere Reserve that surrounds them, with its eclectic mix of forest, jungle and desert plants, but if I worked in UNESCO I would’ve given the title to the Dominican sites in Oaxaca first. The Querétaro ones are beautiful, but in Oaxaca things get IMPOSING. The Dominicans liked going big.

Didn’t bring up the Franciscan sites here either, as to me they seemed quite well-kept and not really in ruins. I definitely wish to return to the Sierra Gorda and Huasteca Potosina with more of an emphasis on the natural landscapes, though.

The one imposing convent ruin that I haven’t been to but is high on my list is Tecali de Herrera, Puebla. Seems like a taller, greyer Cuilapan.

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This is just amazing insight, truly truly appreciate the depth of this response!!! :beers: I remember the first story I was working on for Atlas was about the discovery of the first temple related to Xipe Tótec, “Our Lord the Flayed One” who wore the flayed skins of humans. Super important deity so the discovery of this temple was fascinating because none had been found. Such an interesting history.

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Agreed!! I was thinking about posting about Montezuma Castle in Arizona. There is truly so much undiscovered history across the Americas.

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Xipe Totec was a pretty hardcore god , and a really disturbingly fascinating one , Kind of like a Meso-American Buffalo bill of sorts

Have you read about the tale of the daughter of Culhualcan ? it is absolutely horrifying and is kind of inseparable for me from Xipe … :scream:

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I have not!! If you have a link to some source material feel free to drop it. I LOVE researching this stuff.

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Ive seen quite a few ruins around the world. I’m in always in awe of rock-cut structures - Petra in Jordan, the churches of Lalibela in Ethiopia, and Geghard Monastery in Armenia. But in my mind, nothing in the world can compare with the carved stone structures at Göbekli Tepe in Turkey.

We’re so used to using the Pyramids or Stonehenge as our standard for ancient, but those ruins re-write history. Göbekli Tepe has been dated to 10,000 BC, it would be almost 7,500 years later before the pyramids were built! We are closer now to the construction of the pyramids (4,500 years) than between the pyramids and Göbekli Tepe.

The large carved stones would be buried and lost near 7,000 BC (forgotten millenia before the pyramids would be constructed). The age, the scale, the state of civilization at that time (pre-farming)… It’s all absolutely mind-boggling and truly without peer anywhere else on the planet (so far!).

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The naturally occurring fairy chimneys and man-made underground cities of Cappadocia, Turkey, are the most unique sites I have ever visited. The carving out of the underground cities and the remnants of murals left in the cave churches serve as haunting reminders of religious persecution in the cradle of civilization.

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And of course, Chaco Canyon in NM…

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I love ruins. Every place I visit I try to find some to see. When I studied abroad in Mexico I saw a few. Teotihuacan is a great site with it’s Pyramids of the Sun and Moon. I liked the ball game I saw at Xochicalco. I’d have to say the best experience I had was at El Tepozteco in Tepoztlan. There definitely was a sense of accomplishment as the path up the mountain to reach the site can be pretty strenuous. It was worth it though.

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It is truly an amazing site! I’ve read that many speculate it could be the world’s oldest temple and possibly changes how we view that period of humankind because it was thought that many people were still hunter-gatherers! Thanks a great deal for the post :fist:

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I was awe struck visiting Moray in Peru, a sunken terrace extending down over 30 metres. Much less crowded than Machu Piccu and just as impressive!

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So many favorite ruins!!
1 - Holyrood Abbey ruins in Edinburgh. Part of the Holyrood castle - the official residence of the royal family in Scotland.


2 - Convento do Carmo in Lisbon. In ruins due to an earthquake in 1755.

3 - Valley of the Temples, in Agrigento, Sicily. Feels like being in Greece!

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Another favourite is La Ciudad Perdida (Lost City) in Colombia. Reached only after a gruelling 5 day trek through the Colombian jungle! It’s almost 1000 years older than Machu Piccu and was built by the indigenous who lived in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. It was abandoned after the Spanish conquest and only rediscovered in the 1970s.

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On my first visit to Greece in 1985 I explored the Acrocorinth, or Upper Corinth. Like the Acropolis in Athens it was the formation overlooking the city of Corinth. Unlike the Acropolis it was nearly deserted and basically open. I don’t remember if anyone else was even there, but sheep were roaming amongst the ruins. It made me feel how travelers to Greece in the 18th century must have felt in the then village of Athens. I’ve been to Greece a number of times since, and driven by on my way to my family’s home town, but haven’t been back. I’m afraid it would be less wild now.

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These are all awesome!!! thanks for sharing. I want to venture to Scotland one day, I love the medieval period.

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FIVE DAYS!!! That’s really amazing salute to you :beers: I walk to the train in the evening and feel like death lol. I bet this was an awesome experience!

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Thanks :slight_smile: it was pretty tough in the heat and with all the creepy crawlies but soo worth it! We also chose the 5 day trek rather than the 4 days which I’ve heard is terrible as you get literally no rest.

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Fort Drummond on Drummond Island, MI was the last British military settlement on US soil. It was made of log structures and limestone chimneys, one of which remains on private land (a second is in a pile a hundred yards away).

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Ostia Antica

Ostia%20Antica%20%20%20Linda%2001 Ostia%20Antica%2007 Ostia%20Antica%20Ampi%2006 After watching a documentary about the ancient port of Rome we decided to visit Ostia before leaving our two-week visit to Italy. WOW! Our first impression was how we had the site almost to ourselves. It was as if the port was sleeping and awaiting our arrival. Far more intimate than sites like Pompei with an amazing forum and arena and enormous mosaics still in the process of restoration. Magical!

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Did you see the coatis at the top of Tepozteco ? They are such characters , I once saw one actually climb up and sit in someones lap like a cat

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