Posted: 20 March 2006 at 4:01pm | IP Logged
Gilgit is 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 Pakistan.
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 continuos to Gilgit on Gilgit river. Each stop of this highway will definitely force you to admire it. There are nice PTDC motels on main points and towns of the Highway.
An Ideal Itinerary will to take go from Islamabad to Besham overnight at PTDC motel Besham is located on the Bank of Indus river. Later you continue to Gilgit With several photo stops on the way. There are also some interesting Rock drawings from the Buddhist period along the road.
Flights to Gilgit are depending on weather so are not advisable for a good reliable tour.Road Journey is much scenic and more reliable.
Gilgit Airport to Hotel
Gilgit Airport is located at a small ground very close to the center it takes 5 - 10 Minutes from Airport to any hotel in town
100 Kilometers one of the most scenic journeys in the world. Stopping at several photo stops it takes 3 - 4 Hrs to reach Hunza the Shangri-La
Gilgit to Besham
310 Kilometers is also an spectacular journey as described above. it usually takes 8 Hours with stops on the way at Shatial Rock drawings, The Nanga Parbat view points and Lunch stop at PTDC Barseen or a local restaurant in Dassu.
Besham to Islamabad
275 Kilometers usually takes 8 - 9 Hours with stops at Abbottabad & Taxila road is pretty good running along the Indus you will take a diversion to the foot hills of Himalaya Tarai mountains and reach Rawalpindi / Islamabad via Margalla pass.
Gilgit to Skardu.
An spectacular drive along the Indus river between Karakorum & Himalaya mountains. Road is narrow so 220 Kms. Takes about 9 Hours
Tours & Excursion.
Gilgit city tour. 2 - 3 Hours. We visit the Gilgit bazaar and Kargah Buddha Usually it is done by Jeeps we can also do it by Hiaces and Suzuki. carriers
Full Day Excursion to Hunza.
Best outing from Gilgit Hunza is 100 Kms. from Gilgit We take a slow drive stopping at different places for Photos and short walks. Also stop at the memorial of Pakistan army's Mortals who gave their lives for the road, stop at mark where The two continents collided ( Collision of Asian and Indian tatanic plats which resulted the gigantic mountains in the area) Tea at Rakaposhi View point from where you can see Rakaposhi facing right before you. Lunch at Baltit Inn . Free time in Hunza bazaar Afternoon return to Gilgit.
Naltar is probably one of the most spectacular Excursions in Pakistan, for those who like a little bit of adventure. The road to Naltar is pretty but Very dusty until the village of Nomal after Nomal you drive along the side of mountains and the climb is quite steep. At the upper Naltar you very instantly see the beautiful meadows the temperature is also very comfortable so one can really get a fancy escape from Gilgit's heat. There is a small restaurant at the meadows which can serve a hot meal or you can carry Lunch boxes from Serena and have the restaurant make tea for you.
Half day tour of Rakaposhi point.
Drive towards Hunza upto Rakaposhi view point and enjoy a hi tea there. For the adventure-loving tourist, there are few places in the world that can compare to the valleys of Gilgit and Hunza. Gilgit is an ancient trading post, whose bustling bazaar has been a caravanserai for many of the traders of the silk road.
With the opening of the Karakoram Highway leading to China, the population of Gilgit has increased manifold; however, its dusty, old-world ambience remains largely unaffected by the large numbers of fortune seekers, traders, ambassadors, and tourists that seasonally swell the town. Dominated by the 6134m Domani Peak, the city is encircled by featureless, brown and black coloured 'hills' ranging up to 4500m high. The local population has made an effort to turn this dusty bowl of a city into an oasis, and one will see patches of green, terraced fields, interspersed with orchards of apricot, cherry and apple.
While Gilgit is noted for its bazaar and its potpourri of peoples, Hunza is known for its breath-taking mountain vistas. Snow-capped Rakaposhi (7788m), and Ultar (7388m) dominate the valley, and the village, and the villages of Karimabad and Gulmit are the prettiest in this former kingdom. Nestled close to China and the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan, the entire valley is of great strategic importance. Hunzakurts have historically taken advantage of their strategical placement, and used to waylay without discrimination all manners of caravans plying on the trade routes to and from China. In fact, their legendary toughness has contributed to the myth that the Hunzakurts routinely live to be 120 years old! However, their strength and ruggedness is belied by their gentle, warm and hospitable character. It is the serene environment, coupled with the joie de vivre of the Hunzakurts that makes one's trip to Hunza the memory of lifetime.