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Where in the World are You?...Neft Daslari (Oily Rocks), Azerbaijan.

Updated on March 24, 2014

Neft Daslari (Oily Rocks); Azerbaijan

Artificial coral reefs are not new, or even unique, the practice of sinking decrepit vessels to create an artificial coral reef has been around since the Persians created an artificial reef to block the mouth of the Tigris River to prevent Indian pirates from sailing up the river. Sinking decrepit ships to create an island is not nearly as widely used, or at all as successful.

You are currently looking at one such example, maybe the only example because I haven’t been able to find evidence of another one. This settlement began, after a valuable fossil fuel was discovered here, as a as an over-water means of extraction and soon developed into a full-fledged population center; complete with homes, schools, shops, and other services common in every village, town, or city on the planet.

Construction began with fill dirt and garbage, followed by the aforementioned ships sunken to create a base upon which this settlement was constructed. Since its construction, the population of the settlement has varied depending upon several factors, not the least of which is the price of energy commodities on a global scale.

The country of which this settlement is a part of is a progressive in the land of conservatives that played a vital role in WWII; for who? If I told you that it would give it away, and after the last puzzle was solved so quickly (again, nicely done Dave Zupak), I have determined I need to be far more vague with the clues that I give. The country in which this settlement can be found achieved its independence from its momma bear in October 1991, and again I ask…Where in the World are You?


Neft Daslari, or “Oily Rocks”, is a settlement built entirely at sea in the former Soviet republic of Azerbaijan. Oily Rocks sits 35 miles out to sea and is built on a base of sunken decrepit ships, garbage, and dirt and was built in 1949 after oil was discovered in the Caspian Sea, making it the first offshore oil platform. The structures built as sea to support the hordes of people working there and their support system include a hotels, hostels, dormitories, a bakery, movie theater, schools, and other creature comforts found in any village, town, or city anywhere in the world. The settlement, though some have reported it as deserted, still maintains a permanent population.

The country of Azerbaijan gained its independence from the Soviet Union, its momma “bear”, in October of 1991.


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