Dig uncovers ancient beach camp site
A popular bungee jumping location along a Cypriot beach has revealed what archaeologists say may be the earliest evidence of Mediterranean seafaring.
Fragments of rudimentary imported stone implements believed to be up to 12,000 years old were discovered near Nissi Beach in the Cyprus resort town of Ayia Napa, The Times of London reported Wednesday.
There were similar finds at a second site at Aspros, near the Akamas Peninsula on the western coast of the island, the newspaper said, and since no evidence of buildings was found at either location, archeologists believe the sites were used as temporary camping spots by ancient mariners on forays from what is now Syria, Lebanon and Turkey.
"The sites were located in good places for those making seasonal visits," Pavlos Flourentzos, director of Cyprus's department of antiquities, told The Times.
The island lies at least 30 miles from any land mass and the discovery contradicts previously held academic views that ancient mariners never ventured out of sight of land.
Copyright 2005 by United Press International