"They were all built of the same colored stone, and most of them had pillars, which was as much as we could make out in the fading light as we passed swiftly up the main road, that I believe I am right in saying no living foot had set in thousand of years."
- Horace Holly ("She : A History of Adventure", 1887)
H. Rider Haggard would wonder about a lost city in Africa's interior. It brought him to ruins that were once sites of mighty civilizations. For instance, "The Yellow God: A Idol of Africa" (1908) described a hidden kingdom in Nigeria. And a woman ruled this part of Africa. Don't be surprised if she had semblance to Queen Victoria.
Some parts of the African continent were impenetrable, which would prompt some to wonder if there were temples and statues that were needed to be unearthed. Maybe technology would locate it sooner than we expected. But there are other lost cities in other parts of the world. You don't need to bring quinine. Here's a shortlist:
Machu Picchu. Urubamba was a breathtaking place, but there was another reason behind the location of this Incan site. Legends detailed the massive wealth of the Inca Empire, and the Incans don't want the conquistadors to take it. The gold was kept safe, and Machu Picchu might be the start of a long trail (leading to the gold). It may be hidden somewhere in the site. Either way, this is one of the great mysteries of the modern era.
Angkor temples. It's hard to imagine Cambodia, one of the poorest nations in Asia, as the center of the mighty Angkor kingdom many centuries ago. No one can tell the extent of their influence, but it's not hard to imagine how majestic these temples were.
Pyramids of Meroe. Looters caused the partial destruction of the pyramids of Meroe, but it would lure courageous souls. Let's not compare it to the Great Pyramind of Giza, which survived the elements and numerous conquests. The architectural designs would suggest another civilization that flourished in Sudan. Perhaps Haggard knew a thing or two.
Shangdu, China. Shangdu, located in Inner Mongolia, was Genghis Khan's summer capital. Don't be surprised if this metropolis would attract people from faraway lands. Try to imagine august structures, all made of stone, a testament to the greatness of the Mongol Empire. Alas, the elements were harsh in this part of the world.
The religious monuments of Java. Sukuh Temple, located in the slopes of Mount Lawu, had features similar to the Mesoamerican pyramids. The Aztecs (or Olmecs) might have traveled from Central America to Southeast Asia. There would be a landmass linking both continents.