Nestling in the foothills of the Alps in northern Italy, 30 miles from the historic metropolis of Turin, lies the valley of Valchiusella. Peppered with medieval villages, the hillside scenery is surely picturesque.
But it is deep underground, buried into the historical rock, that the region's greatest wonders are concealed.
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Hall of the Earth: An incredible space built on the 'supernatural' visions of its creator
Here, 100ft down and concealed from manifeste see, lies an amazing top secret - 1 that has drawn comparisons with the fabled metropolis of Atlantis and has been dubbed 'the Eighth Surprise of the World' by the Italian govt.
For weaving their way beneath the hillside are nine ornate temples, on 5 levels, whose scale and opulence take the breath away.
Produced like a three-dimensional e-book, narrating the historical past of humanity, they are connected by hundreds of metres of richly embellished tunnels and occupy virtually 300,000 cubic ft - Huge Ben is fifteen,000 cubic feet.
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Mild wonderful: The big glass dome of the Hall of Mirrors
Certainly, the Italian government was not even mindful of their existence until a couple of many years in the past.
But the 'Temples of Damanhur' are not the wonderful legacy of some extended-misplaced civilisation, they are the operate of a fifty seven-12 months-old previous insurance policies broker from northern Italy who, inspired by a childhood vision, commenced digging into the rock.
It all started in the early Sixties when Oberto Airaudi was aged 10. From an early age, he statements to have experienced visions of what he believed to be a earlier lifestyle, in which there were wonderful temples.
Around these he dreamed there lived a highly evolved neighborhood who appreciated an idyllic existence in which all the people labored for the frequent great.
A lot more bizarrely nonetheless, Oberto appeared to have had a supernatural ability: the present of "remote viewing" - the potential to journey in his mind's eye to explain in depth the contents of any building.
"My objective was to recreate the temples from my visions," he states.
Oberto - who prefers to use the identify 'Falco' - started by digging a trial hole below his parent's home to far more fully fully grasp the principals of excavation.
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Breathtaking: The miles of tunnels allow air to circulate
House of secrets: Beneath this home is the Damanhurian temple which is one of the biggest temple complexes in the world
But it was only as he started a effective career as an insurance policy broker that he started to research for his perfect web site.
In 1977, he picked a remote hillside where he felt the challenging rock would maintain the structures he had in brain.
A home was created on the hillside and Falco moved in with many close friends who shared his vision. Employing hammers and picks, they began their dig to create the temples of Damanhur - named following the historical subterranean Egyptian temple meaning City of Mild - in August 1978 ( via dailymail.co.uk ).