The Karachi region is believed to have been known to the ancient Greeks.
The region may be the site of Krokola, where Alexander the Great once camped to prepare a fleet for Babylonia, as well as Morontobara which may possibly be Karachi's Manora neighbourhood.
Coastal mangrove forests grow in the brackish waters around the Karachi Harbour, and farther southeast towards the expansive Indus River Delta.
West of Karachi city is the Cape Monze, locally known as Ras Muari, which is an area characterised by sea cliffs, rocky sandstone promontories and undeveloped beaches.
The town was annexed to British India in 1843 after Sindh was captured by Major General Charles James Napier in the Battle of Miani, with the city declared capital of the new British province.
The city was recognized for its strategic importance, prompting the British to establish the Port of Karachi in 1854.
Known as the Father of Modern Karachi, mayor Seth Harchandrai Vishandas led the municipal government to improve sanitary conditions in the Old City, as well as major infrastructure works in the New Town after his election in 1911.
During the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857, the 21st Native Infantry, then stationed in Karachi, mutinied and declared allegiance to rebel forces in September 1857, though the British were able to quickly defeat the rebels and reassert control over the city.The 1980s and 1990s saw an influx of thousands of Afghan refugees from the Soviet war in Afghanistan into Karachi; who were in turn followed in smaller numbers by refugees escaping from post-revolution Iran.Conflict between the MQM party, and ethnic Sindhis, Pashtuns, and Punjabis was sharp.By 1899, Karachi had become the largest wheat-exporting port in the East.British development projects in Karachi resulted in an influx of economic migrants from several ethnicities and religions, including Anglo-British, Parsis, Marathis, and Goan Christians, among others.Situated on the Arabian Sea, Karachi serves as a transport hub, and is home to Pakistan's two largest seaports, the Port of Karachi and Port Bin Qasim, as well as the busiest airport in Pakistan.Though the Karachi region has been inhabited for millennia, The settlement drastically increased in importance with the arrival of British East India company in the mid 19th century, who not only embarked on major works to transform the city into a major seaport, but also connected it with their extensive railway network.Public building works were undertaken, including the construction of Frere Hall in 1865 and the later Empress Market.In 1878, the British Raj connected Karachi with the network of British India's vast railway system.The settlement was fortified, and defended with cannons imported by Sindhi sailors from Muscat, Oman.The name Karachee was used for the first time in a Dutch document from 1742, in which a merchant ship de Ridderkerk is shipwrecked near the original settlement.