Northern Areas of Pakistan lying under the great mountain ranges of
Himalaya –Karakorum –Hindu Kush –Hindu Raj and Pamir, surrounded
by high peaks of 6500 m to 8600 meters.
Administratively divided with five districts, which runs by DC,s and the
concern authority. Controlled from Gilgit by Chief Secretary. The chef
secretary controlled by Federal Government Islamabad.
Gilgit the capital of Northern Areas has been inhabited for thousands of
years, the various invaders, reached in the South, reached here. The
animism of early inhabitants was over laid by fair worship, brought from
in Iran. Which was modified by the Indo Aryans in 1700 BC.
Northern Areas is the fairy land, which covers thousands of Squire
Kilometers if high snow capped mountain, surrounded by Lashed green
valleys rivers, Glaciers- High meadows –high passes –Pine Dev Dar
Forest, Juniper trees, Cultivated fields, Fruit orchards, which offer
Spectacular panoramic view of natural disaster. Northern Area is a
tourist paradise for Trekkers, Climbers –Skiers –Jeep Safaris-Rock
Climbing –Whit Water Rafting-Cultural Tours, Silk Route Travelers –Mountain
Bike Tours and many many.
is situated at the last end of Himalaya, beside Deosai Plain and Satpara
Lake. Baltistan the tourist destination of Mountains paradise where the
world 2nd highest peak is K-2 (8611M) and the other 8000m are
Broad Peak –Gasherbrum I & II Likely 8068 to 8047m and there are
many peaks 7750 – 7800m. Its snow capped peaks, and Long glaciers
gives you the spectacular view for climbers, trekkers and travelers.
capital of Baltistan is perched 2,438 metres above sea level in the
backdrop of the great peaks of the Karakoram mountain range. The largest
district of the Northern Areas, Baltistan is home to some of the highest
peaks in the world, the Karakoram Range, and is very popular with
Mountaineering Expeditions. It is equally popular with high altitude
trekkers, with treks to Baltoro Glacier, K-2 Base Camp and Concordia
being especially renowned. The major city in Baltistan is Skardu which
by road, lies approximately 5 hours away from Gilgit. A daily flight to
and from Islamabad is also in operation.
is one of the largest fresh water lakes of the country. By and large,
the lake offers ample opportunity for trout fishing, boating and rowing.
One hour drive by jeep will take you upto an altitude of 16000 feet on
to the second largest plateau of the world popularly known as Deosai
A visit to Deosai plain is a unique experience of a life time. Fishing
permits are issued by the Fisheries Department at Skardu and Gilgit. The
facility remains open during season from May to October.
265 km from Islamabad, its an ideal place to break the journey for an
overnight stay enroute to Gilgit, or beyond. Overlooking the mighty
Indus River, a strategic junction on the road linking the Swat Valley
over the Shangla Pass with the main KKH.
a located at an altitude of Aprox 1500 Meters (4800 Feet) in the North
east of Pakistan . The city had been a central point of trade and
political activity as early as 1st century AD. Since then it
has always been a very strategic point for the neighboring countries
surrounded by the massive mountains of Karakorums. Gilgit is a small
valley with a ground just enough to form a small city of 500000 persons.
Beyond here there is no such a big town or city in any direction within
a distance of about 450 Kilometers in any direction. Gilgit is the
administrative and commercial capital of Northern areas.
Mountains of the region are known to be the highest and greatest in the
Number around the world. Stretch of Gilgit comes in the rain shadow of
Nanga Parbat Mountain i.e. the moon soon winds are blocked by the massive
of Nanga Parbat and clouds can not reach Gilgit which makes it dry &
rugged but the labor of the strong and willing local population has even
claimed the hard mountains for cultivation's. Due to this there are
beautiful green orchids of many fruits in the valley. This makes an
spectacular contrast in the green fields and ruggedness on the mountains
topped with white snow a scenery only found in the northern areas of
Being the main city, Gilgit is linked by road with Hunza, Nagar, Astore,
Yasin and Ishkomen valleys. With Gilgit as a base, one can visit Kargah,
Naltar or any of the aforesaid valleys. The road to Gilgit is an other
adventure and beauty filled experience Karakorum Highway built Between
1966 to 1978 by the Chinese and Pakistani engineers, above the shoulders
of gigantic mountains of Himalaya , Hindukush & Karakorum ranges.
More than five hundred lives are buried under this marvelous road which
is known all over the world for its beauty and variation in terrain and
culture. The highway runs along the river Indus and later continues to
Gilgit on Gilgit river.
probably Pakistan's most visited valley, by the tourists. It is a fairy
tale land surrounded by beautiful rugged & snow capped mountains.
Only at a distance of 100 Kms. from Gilgit Hunza is a small town on
Karakorum Highway. The central Hunza usually known as Karimabad is
basically a town of just 6 villages. The first villages as you come from
Gilgit on the main Karakorum Highway is Aliabad. There is Rakaposhi
View. Just above Aliabad on the hill are Altit and Baltit villages the
heart of Hunza. There is a very interesting Bazaar and two Forts in
Altit & Baltit Villages. The Baltit fort has recently been restored
and converted into a guided museum.
Hunza is undoubtly
the Shangri-la of James Hilton's novel The Lost Horizon. It is probably
the most Photogenic point in the world.
located in the North west of Pakistan is a beautiful valley in the
Hindukush range of Mountains. It has always been a very important route
for many invaders to south east Asia, Including Alexander the great
Scythians, Mangol Changez Khan and numerous others. Chitral is a small
town with a one single street bazaar and a few tourist class hotels. At
the end of Bazaar on the right (River side) there is the Chitral fort
and Palace of Mehtar (Mir Or King) In front of the Fort is the Jami
Mosque of Chitral an impressive architecture with beautiful inlays and
the major attractions of Chitral are the Kalash valleys- the home of the
Kafir-Kalash or "Wearers of the Black Robes", a primitive
pagan tribe. Their ancestry is enveloped in mystery and is the subject
of controversy. A legend says that five soldiers of the legions of
Alexander of Macedonia settled in Chitral and are the progenitors of the
Over 3,000-strong Kafir-Kalash live in the valley of Birir, Bumburet and
Rambur, south of Chitral. Bumburet, the largest and the most picturesque
valley of the Kafir-Kalash , is 40 kms. from Chitral and is connected by
a jeep-able road. Birir, 34 kms. away is accessible by a jeep-able road.
Rambur is 32 kms from Chitral.
The Kalash women wear black gowns of coarse cloth in summer and
hand-spun wool dyed in black in winter. Their picturesque headgear is
made of woolen black material decked out with cowry shells, buttons and
crowned with a large coloured feather.
The Kalash are fun loving people who love music and dancing particularly
on occasion of their religious festival like Joshi Chilinjusht (14th
& 15th May-spring), Phool (20th – 25th
September) and Chomas (18th to 21st December for a
distance of 220 km from Islamabad and 4 hours journey, lies Balakot, the
‘Gateway’ to the Kaghan Valley. The town lies on the bank of the
River Kunhar and serves as a market for the surrounding villages. With
its moderate climate, Balakot is famous for the shrines of the renowned
Martyrs, Syed Ahmad Shaheed and Shah Ismail Shaheed Brailvi.
Kaghan Valley has long been one of the most popular destinations for all
type of tourists. This is a 154.5 km. (96 miles) long picturesque valley
ending northwards in the 4148 meters (13.600 ft.) high Babusar Pass. It
is an ideal area for trekking and trout fishing.. Its mountains, dales,
lakes, water-falls, streams and glaciers are still in unbelievable
pristine state, and unspoiled paradise. That is why it can be such a
deeply satisfying experience to spend a few days in Kaghan. The Valley
extends for 155 kms. Rising from an elevation of 2,134 meters to its
highest point, the Babusar Pass, at 4,173 meters. Kaghan is at its best
in the summer months (May to September). In May the temperature is:
maximum 11 C and the minimum 3 C. From the middle of July up to the end
of September, the road beyond Naran, snow-bound throughout the winter,
is open right up to Babusar Pass. Movement is restricted during the
monsoon season also.
hours journey, preferably by jeep from Balakot, is Naran. 10 km east at
an elevation of 10500 feet lies the famous Saif-ul-Muluk Lake. The visit
to the lake takes one hour by jeep and about two and a half hour if you
decide to trek. The famous Lalazar plateau is about 20 km ahead.
Interesting excursions to Batakundi and Lake Lulusar can also be made.
Further on the route over Babusar Pass takes one onto the KKH at Chilas.
Saiful Muluk has a touch of the unreal about it, nestling 3,200 meters high in the shadow of the Malika Parbat (Queen of the mountains) 5,291
meters high. You can go boating on the lake and hear the local legend
about Prince Saiful Muluk who fell in love with a fairy. Further up are
quaint woodland villages; Battakundi, Burawai, Besal Gittidas and
Kaghan Valley is blocked at the end by high mountains but a pass lets
the jeep-able road snake over into the Chilas Valley. This is the 4,173
metres high Babusar Pass which commands the whole Kaghan panorama as
well as gives you, on a clear day, glimpses of the Nanga Parbat (The
Naked Mountain) glistening at 8, 126 metres.
once the cradle of Buddhism of all its schools- Little Vehicle, Great
Vehicle and the Esoteric sects where once 1,400 monasteries flourished.
It was the home of the famous Gandhara School of Sculpture which was an
expression of Graeco-Roman form in the local Buddhist tradition.
Swat was also the historical land where the Muslim conquerors, Mahmud of
Ghazni, Babur and Akbar fought their battles preparatory to the conquest
of the South Asia.
The ruins of great Buddhist stupas, monasteries and statues are found
all over Swat. The valley of Swat sprawls over 10,360 sq. kms at an
average elevation of 975 meters. The maximum temperature in July is 38 C
and minimum (during January) is 1 C. The normal temperature is maximum
21 C and minimum 7 C. Located in the monsoon belt, it receives more rain
than most northern areas, so the land is particularly fertile and green.
The Swat River and its tributaries gush through rocky gorges and are
particularly known for trout fishing. The houses of the small villages
in the area are stacked one on top of the other up the mountainsides,
with the roofs of one level of houses used as a front street for houses
on the next level.
The hillsides abound with forts, a testament to the region's strategic
importance. Alexander the Great and his army marched through Chakdar,
and subsequent invaders left their mark: the town still has remains of
Buddhist monasteries from the 1st to 7th centuries, while Hindu forts
from the 8th to 10th centuries loom on the hilltops. Worth visiting are
the valley's graveyards, which have been used for 3,500 years.
Mount Ilam (2,811m, 9,222 ft) has been considered sacred since
prehistoric times. A trek to the top brings visitors to a group of
massive square blocks of stone, which archaeologists guess were used as
an ancient altar.
The Greek fought for its beauty, the Buddhist inhabited it because of
its eternal beauty and peace, the Moguls envied its lush green valleys
and fast flowing rivers and today it is coveted by the pathans, the
Kohistanis and the Gujars. Over two thousand years ago, this prosperous
valley of Swat originally known, as Udyan was the home of well-settled
people, living with magnificently planned towns. In 327 BC, Alexander
the Great fought his way to Udigram and Barikot and settled a good part
of his army here. Later, the Buddhists came, they preached, converted,
fought and stayed to worship. Graphic remains of Buddhist culture date
back to the 2nd century. In the 11th century Muhmud of Ghazni invaded
Swat after having advanced through Dir, and defeated Gira, the local
ruler, near Udigram. After him followed Moguls, under Babar and his
grand son Akbar, yet they were unable to conquer the valley. There is
evidence that by then the Yusufzai pathans - fierce, proud and resolute
warriors - defended their soil against all invaders, including the
British. Winston filled slopes, meandering rivers, and tumbling streams
and is surrounded by the mighty ranges of the Hindukush and the
Karakurams. The valley is 3250 feet above sea level and Saidu Sharif and
Maingora are the towns that form the twin capital of this area. The
Museum in Saidu Shariff has a large collection of Gandhara sculptures
collected from some of the Buddhist sites in Swat. In the ethnographic
section there is some local embroidery, carved wood and tribal Jewelry.
There are also a few coins on display. Butkara- the remains of one of
the most important Buddhist shrines in the valley. This site consists of
a main stupa around which jostle 215 votive stupas in apparently
glorious disarray. The main stupa was believed to contain some ashes of
Lord Buddha and to have been built by the Mauryan Emperor Ashoka. It is
difficult to imagine it, as it must have been once, all painted and
gilded and topped by stone umbrellas. You can still see the statues of
lions crouching on the tall columns, which once stood near the stupa.
Sharif is the District Headquarter of Swat, with its twin city Mingora,
which is a big commercial and trading center. The main attractions of
twin cities are the Swat Museum which contains one of the finest
collections of Gandhara art in the world, Gulkada Archaeological site,
Marghazar and Golf Course at Kabal.
3 kms. From Saidu Sharif, has yielded magnificent pieces of Buddhist
sculpture and the ruins of great stupas. Other beauty spots worth
visiting are Marghzar, 13kms. from Saidu Sharif, famous for its "Sufed
Mahal" the white marble palace of the former Wali (ruler) of Swat;
Kabal, 16 kms. from Saidu Sharif with its excellent golf course, Madyan,
55 kms. from Saidu Sharif, Bahrain, Miandam and Kalam.
Malam Jabba, at 2,636
meters above sea level and 45 kms. north-east of Saidu Sharif is being
developed as a ski-cum-summer resort.
kilometers from Miandam lies Kalam, the heart of the Swat valley.
Located along the Swat River, Kalam is by far the most popular
destination in these parts.
Jabba the fairytale land of romance and beauty, offers unlimited sights
that the eye can behold, mighty ranges of Hindu Kush, the Karakuram and
black mountains, gentle slopes, placid plains, torrential streams, lush
green meadows and thick green forests of pine. Come over for an exciting
experience to this nature’s art gallery and you will never forget.
Stands on top of a mountain of the Hindu Kush range, at a distance of 40
Kilometers north east of Saidu Sharif. Surrounded by wonderful panorama
of scenic splendor and mighty mountains, Malam Jabba is much more than
just a ski resort. It is a holiday resort that holds great fascination
for tourists and is also home to the remains of ancient civilization.
Malam Jabba is 314 Kilometers from Islamabad and 51 Kilometers from
Saidu Sharif airport.
Lush-green valley of Swat, with its rushing torrents, icy-cold lakes,
fruit-laden orchards and flower-decked slopes is ideal for
holiday-makers intent on relaxation. It has a rich historical past, too.
This is "Udayana" (the "Garden") of the ancient
Hindu epics; "the land of enthralling beauty" where Alexander
of Macedonia fought and won some of his major battles before crossing
over to the plains of Pakistan. This is "the valley of the hanging
chains" described by the famous Chinese pilgrim-chroniclers, Huain
Tsang and Fa-Hian in the fifth and sixth centuries.