Pavlopetri - The City Beneath the Waves

Radio Times
Review by:
Jane Rackham

It’s not as famous as its Italian cousin, but Pavlopetri is a sort of Greek Pompeii submerged for thousands of years but only discovered in the 1960s. Five thousand years ago, though, it housed a thriving civilization with flushing toilets, a textile industry and sophisticated villas.

The archaeologists not only map out the city but with the help of a visual effects expert digitally re-create it stone by stone. So as a diver swims past some rocks, a building magically springs up in their place and a tiny shard of pottery becomes a delicate soup bowl. Even the most innocuous finds tell an elaborate story.

About this programme

Archaeologists use submersible robots and computer simulations to investigate the submerged city of Pavlopetri, which lies off the southern coast of the Greek mainland. Originally rediscovered in 1967, it is believed to be the oldest underwater city in the world. Philip Glenister narrates this documentary following Jon Henderson of the University of Nottingham as he leads a team of experts hoping to discover what life was like for the citizens of Pavlopetri 3,500 years ago.

Cast and crew


Philip Glenister
Jon Henderson


Paul Olding
Paul Olding