Pavlopetri: City Beneath the Waves premieres June 3 on Discovery Channel

Less fabled than Atlantis, but every bit as fascinating, Pavlopetri was once a thriving port that dominated the Mediterranean.

But when it vanished into the sea more than 2,000 years ago, the city’s secrets were lost – until now.

Premiering Sunday, June 3 at 9 p.m. ET/PT, Discovery Channel presents PAVLOPETRI: CITY BENEATH THE WAVES, a compelling one-hour special from the BBC that expertly recreates the sunken city in stunning CGI to reveal a picture of what the bustling Bronze Age port would have looked like at its height.

Nestled in a natural harbour just off the southern Greek coast, this is the oldest submerged city in the world. Pavlopetri was a port that thrived for 2,000 years during the time that saw the birth of Western civilization. Its stone foundations, tombs and the remains of its temples have been preserved intact underwater, but tantalizingly off limits.

Now, an international team of experts applies the latest technology to investigate the submerged site and digitally raise it from the seabed, to reveal the secrets of the ancient city. Led by underwater archaeologist Dr. Jon Henderson, the team uses cutting-edge science and technology to extract age-old secrets from the complex of streets and stone buildings that lie less than five metres below the surface. State-of-the-art CGI helps to raise the city from the seabed revealing, for the first time in 3,500 years, how Pavlopetri would once have looked and operated.

Henderson leads this ground-breaking project in collaboration with a team from the Hellenic Ministry of Culture, and Nic Flemming, the man whose hunch led to the intriguing discovery of Pavlopetri in 1967. Working alongside the archaeologists, a team from the Australian Centre for Field Robotics, collaborate to take underwater archaeology into the 21st century.

The team scours the sea floor for any artifacts that have eroded from the sands. The site is littered with thousands of fragments, each one providing valuable clues to the everyday lives of the people of Pavlopetri. From the buildings and the trade goods, to the everyday tableware, every artifact offers a window into a long-forgotten world. Together these precious relics reveal a time when Pavlopetri would have been at its height, showing viewers what life was like in this distant age.

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