The Huffington Post UK  |  Posted:  |  Updated: 18/02/14 GMT

China's Ancient Underwater City Becomes Divers' Paradise (PICTURES)

A Chinese city, left to ruin after a dam flooded the valley it lay in, has become a paradise for divers, after an ingenious idea from a local tourist official.

The ancient city of Shi Cheng, known as the Lion City because it was surrounded by the five Lion Mountains, was founded over 1,300 years ago, but it vanished more than half a century ago to make way for a new hydroelectric power station, and a man-made lake.

The once bustling city is now between 85 and 131 feet underwater in parts.

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But Qiu Feng, a local official in charge of tourism, decided to see what remained of the city under the deep waters.

"We were lucky. As soon as we dived into the lake, we found the outside wall of the town and even picked up a brick to prove it," he said. The town is in remarkable conditions, with wooden beams and stairs still remaining.

Now a film crew has been on site to record the preservation of the lost ruins.

  • An artist's impression of the town as it once was
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