If you’ve grown bored of the typical white-sand beach resort island getaway, than you should take a look at this bizarre spot. Out of all the weird places in the world, this island, described as “the most alien-looking place on earth”, just might be the strangest.
The island is called Socotra and is part of a small archipelago of four islands located in the Indian Ocean. It’s part of Yemen and is the main island of the archipelago, accounting for 95% of its land mass. It’s incredibly remote and is one of the most isolated landforms on Earth of continental origin (meaning it wasn’t formed by a volcano).
But what really makes this place special is its abounding flora and fauna.
About 1/3 of the plant life on Socotra can’t be found anywhere else in the world, and many of the plants are so exotic and strange that they makes the island look like some type of alien land.
The combination of the island’s isolation and its fierce heat is what makes the wildlife so stunning.
One of the islands most notable plants is the Dragon’s Blood tree (dracaena cinnabari), an umbrella shaped-tree with red sap that’s used as paint and varnish.
Other notable plants are the endemic aloes, the giant succulent tree (dorstenia gigas), the cucumber tree (dendrosicyos socotranus), and the Socotran pomegranate (punica protopunica). The island also hosts several endemic bird and reptile species.
Socotra is home to three geographical terrains: narrow coastal plains, a limestone plateau permeated with karstic caves, and the Haghier Mountains.
Its climate is a mix between tropical desert and semi-desert.
Despite its small size, there are endless astounding sights to see.
Unfortunately, after over 2000 years of human settlement, the environment of the island is slowly but surely changing.
Current fauna is diminishing, particularly endangered by newly introduced species and climate change.
While the trees may look strange, many are delicate and in danger of disappearing for good.
Until a few centuries ago, the island was abundant with wetlands, streams, and pastures. Today, it’s covered in sand gullies instead.
Given the difficulty of traveling to Yemen, especially in the current global social climate, it might be challenging to see the island and all its amazing wildlife in person. Nevertheless, it’s still incredible to know that such an unbelievable place like this even exists.
Photo Credit: Reddit user Geeky_