Ancient Megalithic sites in Indonesia link mysteriously to Gold Mines

Ancient archaeological sites in Indonesia point to an unknown civilization that went before us. A few include the Gunung Padang Pyramid and the mysterious “Chess-pieces” in Ciletuh which were recently unearthed by a landslide. So who were these mysterious megalithic builders?

Ancient Gold artifacts from Java Indonesia
Javanese gold artifacts. Image Source.
Many of these megalithic sites across Indonesia date to the Prehistoric times. Yet, there is no writing or inscriptions to tell us who these creators were. We do not know the name of the kingdom or even the king.

Archaeologist, Doctor Ali Akbar, believes a single Megalithic Civilization is responsible. According to Ali, these sites were built by the same civilization, in an era long before us. Ali is known for his long-time research in the Gunung Padang Megalithic site. Despite the controversy which surrounds the site, Ali is convinced that the historic structure is man-made.

Nation of Columnar Joints - Megalithic Builders in Indonesia
Clockwise from Top Left: Gunung Padang, Ciletuh "Chess-pieces", Candi Kethek, Gunung Padang again.
For anyone that has visited Gunung Padang or Ciletuh, both located in Sukabumi, you may have noticed similarities in the architecture. Both the Gunung Padang and Ciletuh “chess-piece” site are constructed with long, columnar stones. Other ancient sites in Indonesia such as the Candi Kethek pyramid in Central Java also bear similar resemblance.

“But, there is still one more similarity that may give us a good idea about the makers of these relics,” explained Ali Akbar.

Did ancient Megalithic Civilizations mine for gold?

Not too far from Ciletuh flows the Ciemas river, which is Sundanese for “River of Gold.” Aptly named, as the river passes a flourishing gold mine. Oddly, there is another gold mine just a few kilometers from the Gunung Padang Pyramid as well. This gold mine has been in operation through the Dutch colonial rule and is still in operation now – clearly indicating an exorbitant amount of gold resources.

River flows through gold mine at Ciletuh megalithic site
Ciemas "River of Gold," Sukabumi. Image Source.
 “The more you look, the more you will see other megalithic sites which are also linked to gold mines. This also includes the sites in Sukanagara and Cisolok. From these sites, you can also see the Southern Ocean,” he continued. “One could even say this was a Kingdom of Gold in the mountains.”

And now, Ali Akbar has given these builders a name.

The Nation of Columnar Joints

"I personally temporarily use the term ‘Nation of Columnar Joints,’” he said. “I use this name to refer to a people who created buildings and monuments using ‘columnar joints’ or stout pillars. This civilization was also able to determine the potential for gold, and know how to use it. They also had a relationship with the sea and the ability to interact throughout the seas,” Ali explained.  

“When visiting these sites in modern days, it is quite difficult, as they are generally accessed from the north through winding, uphill roads. It seems our ancestors may have more easily accessed these sites through the Southern ocean,” he added further. “The megalithic sites are far more accessible from the Southern Ocean.”

In short, Ali describes his “Nation of Columnar Joints” as a Sovereign Nation – rulers of Gold, architecture and the high seas.

The Legacy of the Nation of Columnar Joints

Ali Akbar concludes by telling us that thousands of years after these mysterious megalithic builders have gone, humans continue to use the ‘columnar joint’ in building.

“These can be seen across almost all major kingdoms in Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam. We can see it in the Kutai Kingdom in Kalimantan, the Srivijaya Kingdom in Sumatra, and even the Pajajaran and Majapahit Kingdoms of Java. They are even seen as far as the eastern islands of Indonesia.”

Candi sukuh, ancient pyramid in indonesia
Candi Sukuh, a 15th Century Majapahit temple. Image Source.
 Dr. Ali Akbar is an archaeologist, writer, and lecturer in Archaeology and Humanities at Universitas Indonesia.
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About Flame Rozario

A self-proclaimed Crypto-anthropologist with a personal interest in ancient intelligent civilizations, underwater archaeology, and the truth that lies behind the legend. I write about a combination of fact, fantasy, and my own personal theories. Why? Because I can.


  1. I'm a 26yr old Australian Citz. from Sydney and would love to know if I can do some volunteer work online or locally in regards to these megalithic discoveries and sites.
    If there's anything I can lend a hand with, please PM me at