Quetta to Sibi
The village of Kolpur, 24km south of Quetta, lies at the entrance to the Bolan Pass. The Bolan River rises near here, and Kolpur has many fruit orchards and date palms. The larger settlement of Mach, further along the road beside the railway line, is a typically dry and dusty collection of mud huts.
The region bordering the Arabian Sea is known as the Makran, a harsh desert landscape bound by the coast on one side and low mountains on the other. Its name is thought to be a corruption of the Persian mah khoran (fish eaters), for its original inhabitants. The Makran has always been a wild and untamed place.
Hingol National Park
About 100km southwest of Bela (although best accessed from Sindh via the Makran Coastal Hwy) is the 619, 043-hectare Hingol National Park. The park is on the Hingol River along the Sindh–Balochistan border and is home to marsh crocodiles, Olive Ridley turtles, leopards, Persian wild goats, hyenas, spot-billed pelicans and the Houbara bustard.
Hazarganji-Chiltan National Park
This 15, 555-hectare national park in the mountains, about 20km southwest of Quetta, is a showcase of the sort of ecosystems that were once far more widespread in Balochistan. Amid juniper, pistachio, almond and ash trees, a huge variety of bird life is present, from tiny warblers to vultures and eagles. Harder to spot is the impressive array of large mammal species.