A road built thousands of years ago has been discovered at the bottom of the Adriatic Sea – a small bay that forms part of the Mediterranean Sea. According to archaeologists from the University of Zadar in Croatia, the remains of this Paleolithic track were found at the submerged Neolithic site of Solin, located off the coast of a Croatian island called Korčula.
However, according to the researchers, it linked the island to a settlement that was on an artificial landmass, which now lies between four to five meters below sea level.
Solen was first seen in 2021 when archaeologists were examining satellite images of the waters around the island. After noticing an unusual feature on the sea floor, they dived in to get a closer look.
During the exploration, the researchers stumbled upon the walls of an ancient settlement that appeared to be connected to the main island by a narrow strip of land. Now underwater, the site is believed to have been built by the Neolithic culture, who occupied the eastern Adriatic.
While carbon dating places the organic artifacts at Solin around 4,900 years old, scientists say the newly discovered pathway is likely even older — around 7,000 years old.
The road is about four meters wide and was constructed of carefully stacked stone slabs buried under layers of mud on the sea floor.
Another Paleolithic road has recently been found
According to Bayan, the paved walkway has held up for thousands of years thanks to the fact that the Croatian coast is dotted with islands that protect the area from big waves.
Announcing the discovery of the Neolithic road, the researchers also revealed details of their ongoing survey around the Gulf of Gradina, on the other side of Korcula. There, the team located a second submerged settlement at a similar depth as Soline, which is nearly identical to the site discovered two years earlier.
Preliminary excavations of these underwater ruins found flint blades, stone axes, and fragments of millstones. Like the objects found at Soline, these newly discovered items also seem to be associated with Hvar culture.
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