Juniper tree at Prospect Point at Ziarat, Balochistan, Pakistan - July 2006
Ziarat is a hill station town in Ziarat District, Pakistan. Ziarat is situated over 2400 metres above sea level and has one of the largest and oldest Juniper forests in the world, some trees thought to be a 5000 years old. Juniper trees grow an inch every year and the forest is now under threat.
The name Ziarat means 'Shrine'. A local saint, Kharwari Baba, is believed to have rested in the valley and blessed it. After his death he was buried here. People frequently visit the saint's shrine, which is 10 kms from Ziarat.
Pashtu is spoken here. Wildlife is rare but there leopard, the rare balochistan bear, markhor, eagles and falcons. In the background is the Khalifat mountain which is 3487m high.