Ripley’s Round Trip: The Pyramid Puzzle

It’s no secret that the Egyptian pyramids of Giza are world-famous and beloved by all. But did you know that there are other pyramids around the world in places like Sudan or Mexico? Today, we’re embarking on a thrilling round trip across the globe to explore this pyramid enigma plus some of the theories behind their construction.

Perplexing Pyramids

Egypt is a treasure trove of pyramid wonders! Apart from the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Step Pyramid of Joser, there are several others that showcase the architectural mastery of ancient Egyptians.

Take, for instance, the Red Pyramid, built by Pharaoh Sneferu around 2600 BCE. This striking structure, named after the reddish hue of its limestone, is the third-largest pyramid in Egypt. It represents an early attempt at constructing a true smooth-sided pyramid. Then there’s the Bent Pyramid, also built by Sneferu and is believed to be the result of either an architectural miscalculation or an intentional design to ensure the pyramid’s stability.

Bent Pyramid Dahshur, Egypt

The famous Bent Pyramid. Dahshur, Egypt

While there are many more Egyptian pyramids, we’re going to head south to the Nubian pyramids of Sudan. Believe It or Not! There are more pyramids in Sudan than there are in Egypt. The remarkable pyramids of Sudan showcase a distinct style. They have steep sides and smaller bases, setting them apart from their famous Egyptian neighbors. Each pyramid is adorned with intricate hieroglyphics and artwork, revealing the rich culture and history of the Kushite civilization.

Magnificent Mesoamerica

Crossing the ocean, we arrive in Mesoamerica, where the ancient Maya and Aztec civilizations built awe-inspiring pyramids as well. Pyramids such as Chichen Itza in Yucatan peninsula or the Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Moon in Teotihuacan. These colossal structures form the heart of lost cities, hiding secrets of a long-forgotten past.

The purpose of the pyramids at Teotihuacan is still a topic of debate among historians and archaeologists. It’s believed that they served as religious and ceremonial centers for the city’s inhabitants. The city was a hub of trade and commerce, with a thriving economy and a diverse population that included people from all over Mesoamerica. 

Panorama of Pyramid of the Sun.

Panorama of Pyramid of the Sun.

When you venture into the jungles of Guatemala, you’ll most likely discover the Tikal Temple Complex. Surrounded by lush rainforests, this site was once the thriving capital of a powerful Maya kingdom. Among the towering pyramids, is the Temple IV, the tallest structure in Tikal, standing at a whopping 213 feet. As you explore these giant pyramids rising above the canopy, you’ll feel like a true explorer.

Endless Theories

What about the theories behind the emergence of pyramids all over the world? Well, there are some ideas that simply suggest that different cultures came up with pyramid-like structures on their own, based on their unique needs, resources, and styles. It’s like an ancient case of great minds thinking alike!

Another theory believes that pyramid-building spread from one civilization to another through trade, migration, or cultural exchange which you can think of as an ancient game of architectural telephone! Some theories focus on symbolism and religious beliefs and many ancient cultures have linked pyramids with a connection to the heavens or the divine.

And now, for the most out-of-this-world theory – aliens! Some believe that extraterrestrials were involved in pyramid construction, providing advanced technology or knowledge to the builders below. While it’s a fun and entertaining idea, there’s no credible evidence to support this claim. But hey, it makes for a great sci-fi story! Tell us your pyramid theories in the comments below.

Well, that’s a wrap on our epic pyramid excursion! We hoped you enjoyed learning that there are many different pyramids all over the world and perhaps more just waiting to be discovered so stay curious, and happy adventuring!


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