Anton Paul von Däniken (born 14 April 1935) is a
Swiss author of several books which make controversial
claims about extraterrestrial influences on early human
culture, including the best-selling Chariots of the Gods?,
published in 1968. Däniken is one of the main figures
responsible for popularizing the "paleo-contact"
and ancient astronauts hypotheses. The ideas put forth
in his books are largely rejected by scientists and academics,
who categorize his work as pseudohistory and pseudoarchaeology.
later became a co-founder of the Archaeology, Astronautics
and SETI Research Association (AAS RA). He designed Mystery
Park (now known as Jungfrau Park), a theme park located
in Interlaken, Switzerland, that opened in May 2003.