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Themyscira/Paradise Island is located somewhere in the Mediterranean Sea (from the wiki), hidden by a divine barrier created by Zeus. So how was it that Steve Trevor and the soldiers following him were able to find the island?

Why were they the first one? Surely, if the protection was not that strong (for lack of a better word), then since its creation by Zeus (a very long time), someone else would have stumbled upon it.

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    “since its creation by Zeus (a very long time), someone else would have stumbled upon it” — not necessarily. The Mediterranean is big; whereas boats, and the island, are small. – Paul D. Waite Jul 16 '17 at 10:11
  • Could WWI era planes get that far out at sea? I do not know much about aviation, but I seem to recall the planes of that era were quite short range. – Magikarp Master Jul 16 '17 at 11:46
  • that's one of the things that helps narrow down where the island has to be: a WWI plane could probably cross the Aegean from Turkey to Greece if it was launched close enough to shore (and, obviously, not shot down by the Germans) – KutuluMike Jul 16 '17 at 13:16
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There's a few things going on here:

First, to be clear, we don't know where the island is, at least in the DCEU, but we can make some pretty good guesses and the Aegean Sea (the eastern-most part of the Mediterranean) is probably right.

If you look at the Aegean Sea on a map, it's not really that big relative to say an ocean, but it is full of islands. It's a very rocky sea, and even in the movie, we can see that Themyscira was surrounded on all sides by tons of rocky outcroppings. One of those took down the German warship that was following Steve Trevor -- it sank before it got anywhere near the island. It was only the small, very slow-moving rowboat that managed to get through the outer "barrier" intact. On top of that, the island is constantly surrounded by fog, and the fact that there even is an island there is hidden behind the invisibility barrier. Had the Germans not seen Trevor fly that way, and the one soldier not seen the glint of the downed plane under the water, it's unlikely they would have ever found the island.

In that kind of an environment, it's very unlikely that boats are going to go sailing around in what looks to be very dangerous waters. Mostly, people travelling by sea stick to well-defined routes that are know to be free of underwater hazards. And precisely because people look at the Aegean Sea as small and full of uninhabited (and dangerous) islands, there's not much incentive to explore -- everyone would just assume we knew what was there already and it wasn't worth it.

Of course, that only prevents people from finding the place by sea. Airplanes are a very new thing in Wonder Woman - the first Trans-Atlantic flight doesn't happen until a year after it ends. Planes were not nearly so reliable, and travelling out over open sea with nowhere to land, refuel, etc. isn't something most pilots would try. Trevor was desperate, trying to avoid German ground forces shooting at him, or he probably never would have flown where it did.

How, exactly, Themyscira stays hidden now is IMO a more interesting question, one that we may learn more about in future movies.

  • From a practical viewpoint, Steve seemed to start out somewhere in France/Western Germany. There is no way the plane he stole could carry enough fuel to fly somewhere in the Aegean in a single leg. Likewise the way the boat trip back was edited it appeared to last less than 16 hours max (midnight in Themyscira to middle of the day in London). Even if they hitched a ride 100% of the way that isn't happening either. – Peter M Jul 16 '17 at 12:56
  • Found a link to the plane en.wikipedia.org/wiki/… 1.5 hours duration at 140 km/h – Peter M Jul 16 '17 at 13:02
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    @PeterM the movie explicitly says that he was in a secret German base in the Ottoman Empire. That's present-day Turkey -- the Aegean is the western border. And there are other questions on here & movies.SE about the boat trip; my belief is that it was just edited badly but really took many days. – KutuluMike Jul 16 '17 at 13:17

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