Astola Island


Astola Island – Nature’s Masterpiece in the Arabian Sea

Renowned as the ‘Island of the Seven Hills,’ Astola Island is a small heavenly island in the Arabian Sea. 

Astola Island location

Situated about 25 km south of the closest part of the Balochistan coast, about 39 km southeast of the Pasni fishing port, and 319 km from Karachi, Astola island has kept its stunning beauty intact because of its unique location.

Astola Island is the biggest offshore island in Pakistan, measuring about 6.7 km in length and 2.3 km wide, covering an area of approximately 6.7 km. The top point on the island is 246 feet (75 meters) above sea level. Astola Island lies in the Pasni subdistrict of Gwadar District in Balochistan, Pakistan.

Revealing the Past: Historical Significance of Astola Island

Being one of the ancient and exquisite islands of Pakistan, Astola Island has a fascinating history that goes way back to 325 BC. In a chronicle of Admiral Nearchos, Arrian documented the island where he was sent by Alexander the Great to explore the coast of the Arabian Sea. 

Back then, the sailors were scared by the emptiness and the ghostly stories of this island. It was called by different names like Nosala and Carmina. Though Astola Island was dry and had a scarcity of water, it was believed to be the ancient Nosala. It’s also connected to the myths of Saint Khidr, famously known as the saint of waters. 

Unveiling the Holy Significance of Astola Island  

Astola Island Temple

Islamic Significance: Astola Island is not only a marvel of nature but also a holy place of association with Islamic beliefs. As per the old Islamic stories, Saint Khizar paid a visit to Astola Island. He is a notable figure among Muslims and well-known for his wisdom and guidance, also known as Al-Khizar. He was fond of the green color and was, therefore, linked to the notion of “Green Prophet.” Due to the high respect people hold for Saint Khizar, they have reserved a mosque on Astola Island as a testimony that Al-Khizar stepped into this place once. Few believers suppose that Saint Khizar has kept his eye on his Island from the sky and he favors this holy place. 

Hindu Significance: Some believe Astola Island once housed an ancient Hindu temple dedicated to the goddess Kali, although now it’s in ruins. The temple stands as a symbol of the island’s diverse history and religious importance. Hindus called the island “Satadip,” because of its spiritual significance in their lives. These connections to religion show that the island has a rich history as a place of respect and worship for believers of different faiths. Even though the island is now quiet and deserted, the remnants of these religious practices add unique meaning to its legacy.

Landscapes and Geographical Features of Astola Island

Astola Island has a unique landscape featuring a broad sloping plateau and a row of seven small hills. This is the reason it is called the “Seven Hills” or “Haft Talar” island. The land on the southern side gently slopes towards the shore, while the northern side has cliffs with a sharp drop.

The island’s geography is diverse and offers sandy and rocky beaches, along with mysterious dark tunnels that haven’t been fully discovered yet. Astola Island is full of life and surprises despite having a rugged outlook.

Flora and Fauna at Astola Island

Astola Island Animal Photos

Astola Island’s isolation has played a crucial role in safeguarding its unique wildlife. Notable inhabitants include the endangered green and hawksbill turtles, which use the island’s beaches for nesting. The island is also home to various water birds like coursers, curlews, godwits, gulls, plovers, and sanderlings. Additionally, it houses the Astola viper, a venomous snake. Unfortunately, feral cats brought in by fishermen to control rodents pose a significant threat to the island’s animals and their breeding grounds.

Best Weather to Visit 

The best time to visit Astola Island is during the winter months, from November to March. This period presents a weather that is relatively mild and comfortable, with temperatures ranging from 18 to 25 degrees Celsius (64 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit). The cold season offers pleasant conditions for exploration, whether it’s enjoying the beaches or undertaking any outdoor activities. Summers, from April to October, can be quite hot and humid, with temperatures soaring above 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit) which makes the weather less favorable for a comfortable visit. Therefore, planning a trip to Astola Island during the winter season is recommended for the most enjoyable experience.

Nearby Fascinating Destinations to Explore

If you get the golden opportunity to visit Astola Island, then cash it to the fullest, and don’t forget to travel to the incredible destinations close to it. Gwadar Port, Ormara Beach, Princess of Hope, Hammerhead, Kund Malir Beach, Buzi Pass, Ormara Fort, and Ganz Beach are some of the awe-inspiring beauties of Gwadar that are worth watching and deserve a place on your bucket list.

How to Reach Astola Island

 If you want to visit Astola Island from Karachi, it takes around seven hours to reach Pasni. From Pasni, you need to take a 3 to 4-hour boat ride to get to Astola Island or you can also travel via helicopter to capture its exotic aerial view with your eyes.

For your convenience, Guide to Pakistan offers affordable and well-organized trips to Astola Island. By availing of these budget-friendly packages, you can enjoy a worry-free and amazing adventure without the hassle of planning your tour.

astola island tour

In a Nutshell

Astola Island is like a secret treasure of Gwadar, Balochistan that offers visitors cool historical stories, amazing sights, and different species of plants and animals. This island in the Arabian Sea gives a chance to people to explore and admire the awesome splendors of nature.

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