PHOTOS: Spain Drought Reveals Submerged Medieval Church

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May 19, 2008—Visitors walk near the newly exposed ruins of an 11th-century church, which had been the only visual evidence of the village of Sant Roma, Spain, on April 6 (top).

The valley housing the town had been flooded in the 1960s to create a reservoir for the Catalonia region, leaving just the bell tower breaking through the waves of an artificial lake, seen at bottom in an undated file photo.

But a severe drought has now exposed the full ruins, drawing tourists to the dusty reservoir.

"Every time it's on television, a whole lot of people come," Joan Riera, mayor of the neighboring town of Vilanova de Sau, told the Reuters news agency.

The drought has already forced the Catalan capital of Barcelona to adopt emergency measures, such as having drinking water shipped in from southern Spain and France.

Officials told Reuters that without such steps, the city could face its first cut in domestic water supplies since 1953.

But the ten boatloads of water are costly and will quench the city's thirst for only a few months. A desalination plant outside Barcelona, due to be completed in May 2009, should provide a more long-term solution, officials said.

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