People are unaware of the scenic beauty possessed by Pakistan and the variety in locations that can be explored. One such place that needs to be highlighted is the Astola island, which is also known in the local language as, ‘Jezira haft Talar’ or as ‘Satadip’ (Island of the seven Hills) due to a series of seven hills with deep chasms and crevices. Several natural caves and coves also exist on the Island.
This Island is located in the Arabian Sea approximately 25 km south of the nearest part of the coast and 39 km southeast of the fishing port of Pasni. The Island is fairly unpopulated. Motorized boats connect the Island to Pasni taking approximately 5 hours to commute to the Island.
A small solar powered beacon has been installed on the Island by the Pakistani Government in 1987 to facilitate the passing boats. Fishermen create a temporary base on this island from September to May for catching lobsters and oysters. The island stays deserted for the rest of the year.
In historic references, this island was originally named Nosala by the Arrian, owing to the tales associated with the deserted Island. Alexander the Great was sent in 325 BC to explore the coast of the Arabian sea and the Persian Gulf. The sailors of Nearcho’s were scared to approach the Island due to the terror created by the tales of Arrians.
The isolated island nests some endangered species like the Green Turtle and the Hawksbill Turtle. The Astola viper along with various other breeding water birds is also found here. The Island is void of trees with scrubs and large bushes. WWF launched a programme in 2010 to promote ecotourism and conserve the natural sights of this Exquisite Island and breathtakingly beautiful Island. More efforts are required to bring this Island on the map of tourism globally.