Astola Island is around 40 miles off the coast of Pasni, Balochistan. The island is under the Balochistan administration and is guarded by Pakistan coast guards and Pakistan Navy.
The only way to reach this mysterious yet charming place is by helicopter or boat. Due to its benign beauty, the place is home to exotic marine life including sea turtles, sea urchins, sea shells, sea gulls, sea snakes, cat fish, eels and multiple variations of ocean life.
Though, that exist on most islands, and talking about them in this post will make it dull and boring. Here are few things that exist on the island, not known to the outsiders yet – especially those who want to take a trip to astola island.
1. The Astola Island has seven mountains
All the mountains in Astola Island are joined together. There are few spaces in between rocks that decipher the differences in between them.
2. It has four helipads and a mosque
There are four helipads on top of the mountains. Locals say the helipads were built by military. A mosque also exist on top of one of the mountain, said to have been built by fisherman.
3. Remains of a crashed helicopter can be found on top of one mountain
A local said around six years ago a private chopper tried to land on Astola, unfortunately due to cloudy atmosphere, it crashed. It is not known, whether the passengers survived or not.
4. Four types of beaches can be found on the island including sandy, rocky, mountainous, coral reef and muddy.
The island has four different beaches on all sides of it. In between, there is a 6 kilometer mountain range. You can find the sandy beach on one side, where Mazar e Khizar is located. On its back side, the coral reef can be found followed by rocky beaches. On the other side of the island, muddy beach and mountaineos terrain can be found.
5. Remains of Kali mata mandir cannot be found due to lack of maintenance
Moreover, on our trip to Astola island from Karachi on Dec 15th, 2016, we tried to locate the mandir of Kali mata, however we were not successful. The remains, of Kali mata mandir (if existed) are not distinguishable from the other collection of stones found on the island.
6. The island has a mazar (Baba Khizar) built around the crusade period, and often visited by fisherman of Pasni.
7. Astola has numerous small cave openings, befitting marine life such as crabs and sea urchins
8. Two graves exist on the southern side of the island known as Turtle beach
During the trip to Astola Island, a fellow traveller saw two graves on eastern side of the turtle beach. Turtle beach is famous for turtle breeding, but now fishermen have polluted it with nets, camps and fishing boats.
9. The island has a light tower installed for easy docking of ships.
10. Naval SSGs train at Astola
On a few rocks on Astola mountains, ‘SSG’ is written in capital letters. I was not able to get the picture, but it is evident that naval SSGs train at this rugged and isolated land.
Excited about Astola yet? If you are, don’t forget to contact 0km through the contact us page for a customized trip to Astola Island from Karachi through Ormara, Pasni and Kund Malir.
0km also offers trips to Gawadar, Balochistan, Moola Chotok, Khuzdar and Gorakh Hills (Murree of Karachi).