Yonaguni Islands epitomize the island culture of Japan in miniature. Situated 68 miles beyond the east coast of Taiwan, Yonaguni is remarkable for its rugged and mountainous coastlines. This 4 by 10 km island has a refreshingly virgin atmosphere, unspoiled by the influence of modernity. Its small populace is mostly traditional Japanese with a touching warmth and hospitality. Yonaguni is known for its wonderful natural settings that offer endless scope for adventure and exploration to spirited tourists.
However, the real attraction of these islands is the submerged ruins that you find in the southern coast of Yonaguni. A superb 100x50x25 meters man-made artifact made of solid rock slabs stands erect at right angles. Its age is estimated to be around 8000 years old, which is remarkably early for the kind of technology that has been used for carving it. Different theories exist about the possible identities of this structure.
While some opine that these ruins are the remnants of the missing Continent of Mu , other archeologists attribute them to be the outcome of unexplained geological processes. Although when you see the finely designed hallways and staircases, this ‘natural phenomenon’ idea will appear sheer out of place.
This wonder megalith was discovered quite accidentally by a sport diver in 1995 when he had strayed beyond the permissible limit off the Okinawa shore. He was awe struck to find the reigning stone structure on the seabed covered with coral formations. His snaps created a great sensation after they were published the next day in the major Japanese newspapers. Further searches were conducted by organized teams of experts after the initial findings and soon specimens of other ancient underwater civilizations were discovered.
The interesting thing about this massive stone building was that it had arches made of beautifully fitted stone blocks bearing resemblance with the building architectural style of the Inca civilization. Debates were rife about the ruins being associated with the prehistoric Motherland of Civilization. Surveying the ruins minutely takes time and skill because of the rough oceanic currents.