Wednesday, June 8, 2016


Posted By: aftab hussain - 1:14 AM


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Ziarat (زیارت‎) is the capital of Ziarat DistrictBalochistan Province Pakistan. It is a holiday resort, and was the summer residence of the chief commissioner of Balochistan and a sanatorium for European troops. It is 8,850 feet above sea level and is located about 125 km from Quetta. The surrounding hills are wooded and picturesque. The Khilafat Hills include Ziarat's highest peak, with an altitude of 11,400 feet (3,475 m). Most tourists visit in the summer.

Near Ziarat is a juniper forest also called sanober, which features the species Juniperus macropoda.

Juniper trees at Baba Khrwari
Pakistan’s largest juniper forest is located in this reserve. The ecosystem is of inestimable value for biodiversity conservation. It is also of great ecological significance, providing local, regional, and global benefits.

The biosphere reserve is home to the largest area of juniper forest (Juniperus excelsa) in Pakistan, covering about 110,000 hectares. It is believed that the forest is the second largest of its kind in the world. The juniper species found there are of global significance because of their advanced age and slow growth rate. In fact, the junipers of Ziarat are among the oldest living trees in the world. Although no dendrological study has yet been conducted, according to one estimate, the age of a mature tree in Ziarat can exceed 5,000 years. Local people refer to the trees as "living fossils". Their remarkable longevity allows research on past weather conditions in the region, making the species of particular significance for studies on climate change andecology.

Ziarat and the surrounding juniper valleys offer good opportunities for hiking and trekking, as well as various gorges. The city is also becoming popular for a taste of snowfall during the winter.
The Quaid-e-Azam Residence in Ziarat in winter

Ziarat is the location of the Ziarat residency where Jinnah spent the last days of his life. The residency, constructed in 1892, is a wooden structure with great architectural importance. It was originally meant to be a sanatorium, but was converted into the summer residence of the Agent of the Governor General. It is now a national monument. The residency catches tourists' attention because of its location and hilly surroundings.

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