TOP PAKISTANI TOURIST SPOTS / TOP PAKISTANI TOURIST DESTINATIONS

TOP PAKISTANI TOUR SPOTS / TOP PAKISTANI TOUR DESTINATIONS

 

Pakistan is a country of true natural beauty, home to some fantastic mountain peaks, lush green landscapes and archaeological sites for the truly curious.

Western media might try to tell you otherwise, but trust me – Pakistan is an absolutely stunning country.

Think famous mountain peaks, emerald-green and turquoise-blue valleys, deserts filled with remnants of ancient civilization… And that’s not even the half of it.

It’s hard to imagine a more magnificent landscape than the rugged peaks, hidden villages and wind-swept plains of Pakistan.

Pakistan is full of breathtaking locations which will make you fall in love with this country all over again. Wild Frontiers have a deep connection with Pakistan.

It was here, in the Northwestern Frontier, One thing’s for sure: Pakistan sure isn’t lacking in beautiful places to visit!

If you are a tourist or love travelling then you must compile a list of places you plan to visit in Pakistan.

Without further ado, here are the most beautiful places in Pakistan (in no particular order).

A country that quickly and fiercely stole my heart from wild mountain passes and unreal lakes to ornate mosques and ancient fortresses.

  1. KARACHI

Pakistan’s most populous and most cosmopolitan city, Karachi lies on the shores of the Arabian Sea.

Home to two of the country’s busiest seaports, it began life as a fortified settlement in the early years of the 18th century, before going on to play a major role in British India before Partition.

Today it enjoys a reputation as one of Pakistan’s most liberal and ethnically diverse cities

And plays host to an important collection of museums and shrines, including the National Museum of Pakistan, the Mausoleum of Muhammad Ali Jinnah and the shrine of Abdullah Shah Ghazi.

A short distance from the city you’ll discover the World Heritage treasures of the Shah Jahan Mosque in Thatta and one of the largest necropolis sites in the world, Makli Hill. 

  1. LARKANA

Larkana With a history that stretches back millennia, Larkana is home to the ancient site of Mohenjo-Daro.

Once one of the largest settlements of the Bronze Age civilisation that occupied the Indus Valley around 2500 BC.

Occupying a fertile plain that once saw it christened the “Garden of Sindh”, the city has in recent years become better known for its connection with the powerful Bhutto family (Zulfikar Ali and Benazir Bhutto are both buried here).

It is its historic antecedents that draw the visitors though, in particular the nearby setting of Mohenjo-Daro (Mound of the Dead).

Once the most advanced city of its time, and covering some 300 hectares, today the site is lauded as one of the best-preserved urban settlements anywhere in South Asia. 

  1. RANIKOT FORT

Ranikot, with a circumference of about 26 km, is the largest fort in the world. However, this has not been enough to convince the authorities to develop it as a major tourist attraction.

This fort is easily accessible from Karachi through the National Highway. After departing from Karachi, head to Dadu through on the Indus Highway.

The road is in excellent condition. It’s an hour-long journey to San, the home of Sindhi nationalist, GM Syed.

A little further from the town there comes a diversion. A rusty board announces that Ranikot is some 30 km away. Even though the road is in pathetic condition, the distance can be covered in 30 to 40 minutes. 

  1. KERTHAR AREA

The Kirthar range stretches from Sindh to Balochistan, serving as a natural border between the two provinces.

This mountain range includes the scenic Gorakh Hill (5700), Kutte Ji Qabar (6877) and Bandu Ji Qabar (7112).

This region is not just known for its breathtaking beauty but also for its rich history.

Spread across 150 miles, it is an ideal tourist spot due to several streams, springs and historic locations; however, it’s unfortunate that few tourists prefer to visit.

The local population is eager to welcome visitors and want to make this area a better place. 

  1. GORAK HILLS

Hills in the desert, the Gorakh Hill Station is located in Sindh but is certainly elevated as a part of the Kirthar Mountains.

Gorakh is a scenic plateau situated at a height of over 1,734 metres 5,688 feet and is part of the Kirthar Mountain Range that covers the entire Sindh’s border with Balochistan in the west.

At the top of the hills provide some of the most beautiful views in Southern Pakistan. This is the perfect spot for a weekend camping trip.

Snowfall in Sindh — sounds more like fantasy but no, there’s one place in Sindh where it really snows in winter, to the extent that in 2008 the mountains got entirely covered with a layer of snow.

Gorakh Hills is about 8 hours from Karachi, but only 2 to 3 hours from the city of Dadu, making the latter a better place to start your journey.

There is no public transport, but there are a few rest houses for anyone who isn’t looking to pitch a tent. 

  1. HINGOL NATIONAL PARK

Hingol National Park is technically in Pakistan, but it looks more like a Martian planet!

The park is over 6,000 square-kilometres and contains incredibly unique rock formations, vast canyons, numerous animal species, and even a mud volcano.

What’s more, part of the National Park hugs the coast, adding the ocean to all its other assets. Though totally out-of-this-world in its looks, Hingol is only 3.5 hours from Karachi, Pakistan’s most populous city.

Pakistanis shouldn’t have any problem entering the park, but foreigners have had mixed experiences.

Some who were accompanied by locals have been able to spend a night/ weekend in the park, while others were only given day permission.

There is no public transport to the park, so having access to your own transportation is a must. 

  1. SHAH JAHAN MOSQUE

Thought all the Mughal relics were in Punjab? Think again! The Shah Jahan Mosque – also known as the Jamia Masjid is located in Thatta, a town in Pakistan’s Sindh province.

It’s widely known for having the most elaborate display of tile work in all of South Asia. Blue and sandstone colours adorn the interior of the mosque and are sure to wow all who visit.

The mosque was commissioned by Shah Jahan when he sought refuge in Thatta back in 1647 and somehow remains in amazing shape today.

Though Sindh might seem to be a far cry from the mountains, the immaculate artistry present here makes it one of the most beautiful tourist places in Pakistan. 

  1. SUKKUR

Situated on the western bank of the River Indus, the strategically important city of Sukkur has lain at the heart of trade in this region since time immemorial.

With a historic pedigree that can trace its roots back to before the arrival of Alexander the Great in 326 BC, the city has, over the years, absorbed the influences of the Umayyads, the Mughals and the British.

Indeed, it was under the auspices of the British, in the guise of Sir Charles Napier, that the modern city came into being.

One of its most impressive landmarks stems from that period of British rule – the spectacular Sukkur Barrage, which was built between 1923 and 1932 and still remains the largest single irrigation network of its kind in the world. 

  1. MUBARAK VILLAGE KARACHI

Mubarak remains the second-largest fishermen village in Karachi. Bordering with Gadani (Balochistan), the landscape encircles a stark contrast of golden hills and turquoise clear waters.

Away from the city frenzy, this place welcomes you with a lot of love. As soon as you park near the shore, numerous boats are anchored floating on crystal clear waters, beneath the expansive blue sky. 

  1. LAHORE

Other than the many famous historical monuments, this city, the second-largest in Pakistan, is also known for its beautiful gardens laid out during the Mughal Empire and the British Raj.

Its faded elegance, busy streets and bazaars and a wide variety of Islamic and British architecture make it a city full of atmosphere, contrast and surprise.

The people of Lahore, when they want to emphasize the uniqueness of their town, quite simply say – “Lahore is Lahore”.

The traditional capital of Punjab for a thousand years, it had been the cultural centre of Northern India extending from Peshawar to New Delhi.

Lahore may be a metro but its treasure trove of historical places surely makes it one of the most beautiful places to visit in Pakistan.

Lahore was the city of Mughals, and so much of their creations still remain. If you’re wondering what the best places to visit in Lahore are, hold tight because there’s a whole lot of them!

The most famous of the city’s monuments include the Badshahi Mosque, the Wazir Khan Mosque, and of course the Lahore Fort.

Add to that dozens upon dozens of beautifully preserved tombs, lively shrines, and Havelis, and you have yourself the cultural capital of Pakistan.

  1. BAHAWALPUR

The princely state in Punjab boasts a treasure of historic buildings, monuments and parks that many have never heard of. Bahawalpur – a city located along the left bank of the Sutlej River.

Along with desert areas, Bahawalpur is known as the land of lush gardens that soothe your eyes whereas the splendour palaces don’t fail to impress you.

Visit Bahawalpur Fort Lying amongst the arid landscapes of the Cholistan Desert, close to the border with neighbouring India.

Bahawalpur once lay at the heart of a princely state that formed part of the Rajputana States that stretched across Rajasthan in neighbouring India.

Ruled over by the Nawabs, the city is filled with an impressive array of monuments that date back to those golden days, including the Noor Mahal,

The Farid Gate and the royal tombs, found amongst the imposing majesty of the Derawar Fort, 100 kilometres to the south.

The fortress itself dates back to the 9th century AD, its impressive 30 metre high walls encompassing some 40 towering bastions that can be seen for miles across its desert setting.

  1. MULTAN

Amongst the fertile plains that are fed by the waters of the Chenab River, Multan’s history stretches back through antiquity.

Besieged by Alexander the Great and conquered by the Arabs under Muhammad bin Qasim in the 8th century, it was once one of the most important trading centres in medieval Islamic India.

During the 11th and 12th centuries, it attracted Sufi mystics from across the region, to such a degree that the city went on to earn the title of “City of Saints”.

Today it is home to a staggeringly rich collection of Sufi shrines, including those of Bahauddin Zikria, Shah Rukn-i-Alam and Shams Tabriz, the latter of whom is believed to have been the spiritual teacher of Rumi himself.

  1. ROHTAS FORT

A 16th-century fortress that is recognized as a World Heritage Site, the Rohtas Fort is located near Jhelum in Punjab, which is about 4 hours from Lahore and 2 hours from Islamabad.

The fortress is one of the largest in the Subcontinent and has remained in remarkable condition despite its age.

Hours can be spent roaming around the massive structure, a beautiful relic that almost seems to transport visitors back in time.

It’s easy to get lost amongst the walls and gates for an entire day. Keep in mind that the fort charges an entrance fee for foreigners and Pakistanis as well.

  1. RURAL AREAS NEAR PUNJAB RIVER

Punjab has been gifted with countless blessings including fertile land and lush green farms. Nature has also blessed Punjab with colours of every season, as winter ends vivid colours of spring spread around.

According to Syed Mehdi Bukhari, Sialkot, a city standing near the banks of River Chenab, is also known as the centre of artisans.

Perhaps, not only the soils straddling this river but also the people living near its banks owe their fertility to Chenab.

Iqbal, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Shiv Kumar Batalvi, and many other fertile minds have their roots here. The River Chenab flows from Marala, 24 kilometres from the city of Sialkot.

  1. ISLAMABAD

Islamabad has been the capital of Pakistan since 1967 when it moved from Karachi.

As a relatively young city compared with others in the country, Islamabad does suffer from being somewhat sterile and characterless, and in all honesty, is usually only used as a gateway to the rest of the country,

But it is a good place from which to visit the bustling bazaars of Rawalpindi and the Buddhist ruins at Taxila and does boast some interesting sites such as the Faisal Mosque.

As the capital and diplomatic centre of Pakistan, it is also home to some of the country’s best hotels and restaurants.

  1. MARGALA HILLS

Islamabad might be a glitzy ‘new’ city, but did you know it also has a vast array of hills perfect for climbing? The Margala Hills are spread out over 12,000 hectares and contain multiple hiking and running trails.

Ascending to the various peaks of the range show off Islamabad in ways you might not have known were possible. Few places in Pakistan remain so close to the city yet so deeply connected to nature.

  1. PESHAWAR

Visit Peshawar Markets, like many of the subcontinent’s bustling bazaars, the streets of old Peshawar especially around Qisa Khawani.

The storyteller’s bazaar is a swirling kaleidoscope of colour, cultures, races and creeds, only here it’s on a massive scale.

The jewellers don’t have stalls next to the cloth merchants, or the leather sellers close to the vegetable traders; squashed into the sunless alleyways, the merchants have their own bazaars all to themselves.

It’s a noisy place buzzing with life and energy: a storybook town, echoing the times of The Arabian Nights.

For the traveller to wander the streets, lost in this very different world, is simply a joy. Whenever possible we stay in the heart of the old town at the Khan Klub, an old haveli now converted into a fine heritage hotel.

  1. GILGIT

Gilgit, found within Gilgit Baltistan region, is certainly no postcard town. Encircled by stark black mountains it carries the oppressive feeling of a place cut off from the rest of the world.

However, since the opening of the Karakoram Highway and the Kunjarab Pass, the old trade route between China and the subcontinent has flourished giving rise to a teeming bazaar packed with strange goods, animals and people.

It is also a superb place to watch frontier polo, a wild version of the spectacular sport where few if any, rules apply.

  1. NALTAR VALLEY

Naltar is famous for its colourful lakes, it is situated at a drive of 2.5 hours from Gilgit. World’s tastiest potatoes are cultivated here. Covered with pine trees, this valley doesn’t seem to be a part of this world.

Though many tourists just come for the slopes, I think the real magic of Naltar can only be witnessed in the summer months when the lakes unfreeze and the forests can be best enjoyed.

If you really want to experience paradise in this world, you should visit Naltar at least once.

This place will make you fall in love with it. This magical valley is only accessible via Jeep, but public transport does exist from Gilgit.

Naltar Valley is about 54 kilometres (34 miles) from Gilgit City in Pakistan’s Gilgit-Baltistan region.

The popular tourist attraction is known for its dramatic forests, a collection of crystal-clear lakes, and in the winter, skiing facilities.

There are several hotels and guesthouses to accommodate tourists in the valley’s two villages.

To avoid peak tourist season, steer clear of visiting during the month of May and try coming in fall instead. You might be lucky enough to catch some epic foliage towards the end of October.

  1. NEELUM VALLEY, AZAD KASHMIR

Opposite to the Keran sector of Indian held Kashmir. From the Chella Bandi Bridge – just north of Azaad Kashmir’s capital Muzaffarabad – to Tau Butt, a valley stretches out for 240 kilometres.

It is known as the Neelum Valley (literally, the Blue Gem Valley).

Neelum is one of the most beautiful valleys of Azaad Kashmir, and it hosts several brooks, freshwater streams, forests, lush green mountains, and a river.

Here, you see cataracts falling down the mountains; their milky-white waters flowing over the roads and splashing against the rocks, before commingling with the muddy waters of River Neelum. 

  1. DEOSAI PLAINS 

Deosai is located on the boundary of the Karakoram and the western Himalayas, and at no point, it is less than 4000 meters above sea level.

It remains covered with snow for 8 months. The rest of the year, it hosts a range of beautiful flowers of all hues and colours, but not a single tree is found in this plateau spread over 3000 sq. km.

Sheosar Lake is also part of this. This lake is one of the highest lakes in the world.

The deep blue water, with snow-covered mountains in the backdrop, and greenery with wildflowers in the foreground offer such a view in summers, that one is left amused for the rest of his life.

Renowned for its rich flora and fauna, the Deosai Plains lie along the alpine steppes of the Karakoram-West Tibetan Plateau.

         NATIONAL PARK 

During the spring, these fertile plains are blanketed in millions of colourful wildflowers that attract a vast army of butterflies to their dazzling blooms.

The highest plateau on the planet, spread across almost 3,000 square kilometres, it sits at the boundary of the Karakoram and western Himalayan ranges and its remarkable biodiversity has earned it the accolade of a national wilderness park.

Established initially to secure the survival of the Himalayan brown bear, the park is also home to golden marmots, snow leopards and huge soaring Lammergeiers. 

Deosai is often referred to as the roof of the world. And it kind of is at 4,117 meters (13,497 feet), the massive plateau is the second-highest on the planet, and is only really accessible during summer.

Sprawling emerald-green meadows, snow-capped peaks and glistening blue lakes greet visitors who make the journey to this beautiful spot.

The Himalayan Brown Bear calls Deosai it is home and has been spotted by many a visitor – watch out for them if you’re camping!

  1. RAMA MEADOW

Just a little ahead of Rama Village, which is 11 kilometres from Astore, is a beautiful and serene plain called Rama Meadow.

If you ever happen to find yourself in plain, ice-cold and milk-white water flowing in streams, sheep and cows grazing in peace, pine trees.

Chongra’s ice-covered peak in background and Nanga Parbat’s southern ridge are in view, then you are probably in Rama Meadow. 

  1. PAYE

Shogran had seen an influx of tourists, who trampled over its beauty, leaving it jaded. Siri Paye, nonetheless, still retains its strong attraction for tourists as a green plateau on top of the Hindu Kush.

Engulfed in clouds and fog more often than not, it entices many as a rendezvous which allows one to observe Nature play peek-a-boo.

Here, you see numerous small ponds filled with freshwater, meet horse-riders wandering about and smell wild yellow flowers blooming everywhere.

With the Makra Peak set as a backdrop, the beauty of the Siri Paye meadows comes to life.

  1. THE SHANDUR PASS

The Shandor Pass is a must-visit place in Pakistan Situated between Chitral and Gilgit, in the heart of the Hindu Kush, the Shandur Pass is a spectacular mountain plateau rising to a height of almost 4,000 metres.

Surrounded by snow-capped peaks, dissected by tumbling rivers teeming with trout and inhabited by grazing yaks, eagles, fox and the rare snow leopard, this is where the subcontinent dramatically transforms into Central Asia.

It is also home to the highest polo ground in the world. In our opinion, especially during the polo festival in July, there is simply nowhere better.

The three or four-day journey from Chitral to Gilgit is when Wild Frontiers truly lives up to its name.

  1. CHITRAL

Chitral Nestled within a fertile valley beneath the mighty Tirich Mir at 7,700 meters the highest mountain in the Hindu Kush, Chitral Town is a cosy place, inhabited by warm and welcoming people.

A lively bazaar, many of the stalls and restaurants run by Afghan refugees, leads through its centre to the small airstrip at one end and the polo field at the other.

The old mud fort, scene of the famous British siege, still rest on the banks of the Chitral River next to the Shahi Mosque.

From here the hot springs of Garam Chashma, the Kalash Valleys, Mastuj and the Shandor Pass are all accessible.

Cut off as it is from the rest of the country by high mountains, Chitral has developed its very own particular feel and charm that you simply must experience for yourself.

  1. AYUN AND BAMBURET VALLEY

Ayun district is a village of Chitral. Located at 12 kilometres from south of the city at the confluence of the River Bamburet.

There are no words to describe the beauty of the mountains surrounding the village. Beyond Ayun valley is Bamburet Valley, it is one of the three Kalash valleys.

Bamburet is a nearly two-hour journey from Chitral. Locals trace their roots to Alexander the Great and Greece. Bamburet valley is a picturesque valley with lush greenery and mountains that give you a sense of calm and solitude.

  1. THE KALASH CULTURE  

Visit the Kalash in Pakistan Obscured by time, the routes of the Kalash are steeped in myth and legend.

Descended, they maintain, from the armies of Alexander the Great, the Kalash worship a plethora of ancestral gods and hold colourful religious festivals of music and dance.

Though the men now wear the standard Pakistani shalwar kameez, the women still dress in traditional garb; voluminous black dresses held tight around the waist with thick red belts, flamboyant head-dresses made of wool.

Decorated with cowry shells, old buttons, beads and bells and, perhaps most striking of all, around their necks hang great strands of coloured beads.

Practising the ancient agricultural system of transhumance, the Kalash divide the summer months between herding their goats in the high pastures and tending their crops of wheat and maize in the valleys.

           THE KALASH VALLEY 

The Kalash Valleys, comprised of Bumboret, Rumbur, and Birir, are home to the Kalash people, a religious and ethnic minority in Pakistan with their own beliefs, culture and language.

The valleys they live in are certainly some of the most beautiful places in Pakistan not just for their natural splendour, but also for the beauty of the Kalash themselves.

The valley of Rumbur is particularly stunning. Here, kilometres of dusty road and mountains rumble alongside the Kalash River.

The Kalash people live in wooden homes that cling to the high hills, and the women are particularly famous for their brightly-coloured traditional dress and headwear that differs from anything else one can find in Pakistan.

Being only 2.5 hours from Chitral City, it’s very easy to make it out to one of the valleys these days. If you do decide to head to Rumbur, take a day to trek all the way into the valley.

The last settlement of Rumbur, Sheikhandeh, is a former Nuristani village whose inhabitants migrated across the border to Pakistan a few hundred years ago. 

  1. BROGHIL VALLEY

Located way up north very close to Afghanistan’s Wakhan Corridor, Broghil Valley was formerly only accessible via trek or horseback.

These days, the once-hidden locale can be reached by a treacherous jeep track – yet it still only receives a handful of visitors during the few months it’s not frozen under heaps of snow.

Currently, whether or not foreigners are allowed to visit Broghil is iffy. (If you’re insistent, make sure you check with the Deputy Commissioner’s Office in Chitral before making the trek up there.).

The valley is home to numerous high-altitude lakes, yaks, and sprawling green pastures, all set against a dramatic mountainous backdrop that soars above 13,000 feet.

Moreover, a day’s trek from Lashkargaz, the last village in Broghil, will lead you to Karambar Lake, one of the highest in the world!

  1. CHAPURSAN VALLEY

Like Broghil, Chapursan Valley also borders Afghanistan’s Wakhan but is situated more to the east.

This stunning collection of villages and vistas sees only a handful of tourists and is one of the most remote places you can visit in Hunza.

Chapursan is home to the Wakhi people, an ethnic group who speak Wakhi and belong to the Ismaili sect of Islam.

With royal blue skies, massive mountain peaks, sprawling lakes and virtually no commercialisation, Chapursan Valley is as beautiful a place in Pakistan as they come!

To reach it, you’ll first need to head to the town of Sost that sits near the Pakistan-China border.

If you have your own vehicle, you’re all set to head on up from there. If not, shared jeeps leave from Sost each morning around 6 am.

While in the valley, don’t miss the Baba Ghundi Shrine, a mystical Sufi shrine dedicated to a saint who supposedly held magical powers. Also, don’t forget to enjoy the company of yaks!

Snow-capped mountains and a small man-made structure at the Pakistan-China border crossing. 

  1. YARKHUN VALLEY

Though it’s relatively unheard of and forgotten compared to Pakistan’s most famous tourist spots, I think Yarkhun Valley was the most beautiful place I visited in the country.

Located in the Upper Chitral district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Yarkhun dazzles with its mountain ranges and untouched villages.

Reaching the valley, which stretches for many kilometres past the administrative town of Mastuj, requires a bit of effort if you don’t have your own vehicle.

If you do have one though, the ride isn’t too bad – just prepare for mostly dirt roads!

The side valley of Gazin is most definitely worth a detour if you make it all the way to Yarkhun.

Here, you can see the mountains of the Thoi Pass, a high-altitude pass that connects Upper Chitral with Yasin Valley in Gilgit Baltistan.

A beautiful blue lake surrounded by fall foliage, one of the most beautiful places in Pakistan. 

  1. SWAT VALLEY

Though it has had a rough past, the present and future of Swat Valley are shining very bright. This stunning valley in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan is something straight out of a fairy tale.

Think bright green fields and forests, picturesque villages, and rivers boasting shades of blue so clear and bright you wouldn’t have thought them real!

The true beauty of Swat can be found around the town of Kalam, which serves as a base to explore the beauty of the valley.

  1. BOYUN VILLAGE

Boyun, also known as Green Top, is a short drive or manageable up-hill walk from Kalam town.

When you finally reached the pinnacle, you’ll be rewarded with a panorama of one of the vastest and beautiful villages I’ve ever seen along with sweeping views of the valley below. Boyun is an easy day trip from Kalam.

  1. KANDOL AND SPINDHOR LAKES

These alpine lakes lie 2 hours away from Kalam. These days, Kandol Lake is accessible via jeep track and is a bit more commercialised, whereas Spindhor can only be reached on a 2-hour trek.

Whichever you choose to visit, both are absolutely counted among the most beautiful places in Pakistan.

  1. USHU FOREST

This well-preserved forest is full of deodar trees and is a fabulous place to get lost. The road that leads into the forest continues on to several villages set along the Kalam River. 

  1. WHITE PALACE SWAT

White Palace Marghazar is the only breathtaking location in the Swat district that’s situated at a distance of around 12 km from the city of Mingora.

Not only do tourists visit Marghazar for its natural beauty and pleasant weather but also to visit the historic White Palace (1941), built during the era of Swat state.

After the White Palace was constructed on the directives of the founder of modern Swat state, Miangul Abdul Wadood also known as Badshah Sahab.

Marghazar became the capital of Swat state during the summer season.

Even today, after seven decades, White Palace remains an attraction for tourists.

The Palace doesn’t just look beautiful in summer; even during winter, it remains enchanting especially after a snowfall. Also read: Swat’s White Palace: Cut from the same stone as the Taj Mahal 

  1. GHANCHE DISTRICT, GILGIT–BALTISTAN

Gilgit-Baltistan’s Ghanche district stands almost aloof with its beautiful valleys and settlements inhabited by the most hospitable locals and river irrigated lands.

The central location in the district is Khaplu, which is a beautiful landscape with high summits, flowing blue waters and waterfalls.

The people of this small settlement on the bank of River Shyok, are warm and loving, as they were centuries before.

Going a little ahead from Khaplu, the curvy road takes one to the delta of River Shyok, where it splits up, flowing through the gravel filled river plain. The Peak of Mashabrum Mountain can also be seen in the backdrop.

  1. NARAN VALLEY

Naran Kaghan Valley is Pakistan’s most popular tourist places. This medium-sized town situated in the upper Kaghan valley in KPK province of Pakistan at an elevation of 2500 meters.

The landscape surrounded by green lush mountains, elevated with grassy knolls and jagged waterfalls.

Further, with dense forest clinging to the top the area if truly ablaze trout here is a treat between the months of late summer and winter.

The neon blue ribbon of river Kunhar meanders its way through the valleys and the splattering sound of the fast-flowing river makes you quiver.

Naran is the place for outdoor leisure that attracts tourists from all around for fishing Trout and Mahasher.

The bazaar generally crowded with people and has a view of mall road like that of Murree at night. Naran is a one day Jeep Ride Trekking to the astounding Ansoo Lake.

The temperature at Naran remains hot during summer and frequent snowfalls during the winters keep the valley covered with snow giving away a spectacular view.

  1. KAGHAN VALLEY

Kaghan Valley is an alpine-climate valley in Mansehra District of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan.

This valley extends 155 kilometres (96 miles) rising from an elevation of 2,134 feet (650 miles)

Located to its highest point, Babusar Pass at 13,690 feet (4,170 miles).

Lush green mountains, streams of water flowing beside the roads and peaceful environment is an ideal place for tourists.

  1. LAKE SAIFUL MULUK

Saiful Muluk located in Mansehra district of KPK about eight kilometres north of Naran, the northern part of Kaghan valley.

  1. FAIRY MEADOWS

Visit Fairy Meadows Pakistan is blessed with areas of matchless beauty and Fairy Meadows can easily be considered one of the most beautiful locations in the region

It is an absolute must on the list of places to visit in Pakistan.

It requires a hike of approximately three hours but the views of Nanga Parbat, the 8,000 meters plus Killer Mountain, are very rewarding.

You will have the best views of Nanga Parbat from Fairy Meadows sitting comfortably in a cosy log cabin.

Though it has become a bit touristy (and pricey), Fairy Meadows is no doubt a stunner. The meadows offer an incredible view of Nanga Parbat, the world’s 9th highest mountain peak.

Reaching Fairy Meadows is a bit of a challenge. The journey starts with a jeep ride across one of the most dangerous roads in the world and culminates with a 5-kilometre trek.

It’s possible to rent a campsite, or you can bring your own equipment to enjoy a night or two baskings in one of Pakistan’s most epic views.

Currently, the price for a jeep into the meadows is around 8,000 rupees ($51), and walking the road is prohibited. Lucky it’s possible to split the cost with other travellers.

  1. THE KARAKORAM HIGHWAY

Karakoram Highway in Pakistan, The Karakoram Highway is the greatest wonder of modern Pakistan, connecting Pakistan to China on one of the most spectacular roads in the world.

It twists through three great mountain ranges of the Himalayas, Karakoram and Pamir following one of the ancient silk routes along the valleys of the Indus, Gilgit and Hunza rivers to the Chinese border at the Khunjerab Pass.

It then crosses the high Central Asian plateau before winding down through the Pamirs to Kashgar, at the Western edge of the Taklamakan Desert.

By this route, Chinese silks, ceramics, lacquer-work, bronze, iron, fur and spices travelled south and west while the wool, linen, ivory, gold, silver, precious and semi-precious stones, asbestos and glass of South Asia and the west travelled north and east.

  1. PASSU CONES

The Passu Cathedral is a natural work of art and one of the most recognizable scenes in Pakistan.

Though staying overnight in Passu village is no longer allowed, the cones are visible from a ways away, starting from the village of Gulmit.

The most iconic view of the Cathedral is from the Karakoram Highway, about an hour’s drive from Gilgit City.

  1. HUNZA

If you live in Pakistan or have read anything about the country it’s almost certain you’ve come across the name Hunza.

Don’t let the word ‘valley’ confuse you, though – Hunza is actually a massive district made up of numerous valleys and villages. One part of the ancient Silk Road, here are some of the most beautiful sights in Hunza

Hunza Bridge The area known as Hunza lies on the ancient Silk Road to Kashgar and today the Karakoram Highway follows the same route, with Karimabad being the region’s main town.

This small, mountainous region was, until recently, a semi-autonomous state but is now fully unified with Pakistan.

It is named after Prince Karim Agha Khan, the spiritual head of the Shia Ismaili Nizari community and is one of the most beautiful areas of Pakistan.

Cricket, Pakistan’s national sport, is often played in the streets and as the people are famed for their friendliness and hospitality you might be asked to take part in a few overs.

The main language here is Brushuski although most people understand some English and Urdu. The majority of the region’s peoples are Ismaili Muslims.

  1. ATTABAD LAKE

A lake that does not look real even when if you are standing right in front of it. Attabad was born out of tragedy when a massive landslide occurred in 2010.

The flow of the Hunza River was blocked and the famous lake was created in its wake. Its bright-blue turquoise waters make it one of the most beautiful places in Pakistan.

  1. GOJAL VALLEY

The Gojal Valley borders China and Afghanistan, with its border meeting the Chinese border at Khunjerab (15,397 feet above sea level) and remains covered with snow all year long.

In the North West, there is Chiporsun, whose border touches the Wakhan region of Afghanistan. Wakhan is about six square miles in area, after which starts Tajikistan.

The Karakoram Highway which connects Pakistan to China also passes through Gojal Valley and enters China at Khunjerab.

  1. SHIMSHAL

Though a bit out of the way compared to some of the other beautiful tourist places in Pakistan featured on this list, Shimshal Valley is well worth the effort required to reach it.

The locale is known for being a major adventure destination that’s particularly popular amongst climbers and mountaineers.

But Shimshal isn’t just one of the most beautiful places in Pakistan for adrenaline junkies. The village itself is divine in summer.

Incredibly, it almost exclusively relies on solar energy! Easier short treks to nearby yak pastures can also be arranged, as can just simply wandering around and enjoying the epic vistas and fields of mustard-yellow flowers.

  1. EAGLE’S NEST

Want to see one of the most epic sunsets in the Hunza Valley? Head to Eagle’s Nest around a golden hour! The name comes from an upscale hotel/restaurant nearby, but you can drive up to the viewpoint without going there.

  1. KHUNJERAB PASS

The highest point on the famous Karakoram Highway and the highest paved border crossing in the world.

The Khunjerab Pass lies at a lofty 4,693 meters, straddling the frontier between Pakistan and the Xinjiang Autonomous Region of China.

Located amongst some of the most spectacular mountain landscapes on the planet.

The pass, which was completed in 1982, links the barren wastes of Pakistan’s desert gorges with the fertile high altitude plateau of the Chinese side.

Where grazing herds of yaks and sheep live amongst the local populations of Tajik herders.

This high-mountain pass isn’t for the faint of heart. At nearly 4,600 meters (15,397 feet), this popular tourist attraction connects Pakistan with China to form the highest paved border crossing in the world.

Many people venture to the border to take photos at the official gate, which is surrounded by insanely tall peaks and grassy fields.

As for transport, it’s best to travel here with your own vehicle as bus tickets can get pricey. For adventurous travellers, hitchhiking is also an option, as it is on much of the Karakoram Highway.

  1. SKARDU

Set in a landscape of towering mountains, deep gorges, resounding waterfalls and calm, deep lakes.

Skardu is perched at an elevation of 2,286 meters in the backdrop of the great peaks of the Karakoram mountain range.

As the capital of Baltistan, it sits on the old tea and trade routes between China and the subcontinent and for trekkers and non-trekkers alike, it is a fascinating place to visit in Pakistan.

  1. SHANGRILA RESORT, SKARDU

In the extreme north of Pakistan, Skardu the central valley of Gilgit-Baltistan is an epitome of beauty, serenity and wilderness.

After Jaglot on the Karakoram Highway, a narrow road turns towards Skardu. During the seven-hour journey, one is greeted with several streams, springs, and the hospitality of the local people.

After crossing the old wooden bridge built over the River Indus, one reaches Shangrila, a paradise on earth for tourists.

It is a famous tourist spot in Skardu, which is about 25 minutes away by drive. Restaurant in Shangrila rest house is the highlight of this place, which is built in the structure of an aircraft.

  1. LOWER KACHURA LAKE / SHANGRILA LAKE

Lower Kachura Lake also known as Shangrila Lake after a resort built on its bank in 1983 and is located at a drive of about 20 minutes from Skardu town in Gilgit Baltistan

  1. KHAPLU

Khaplu Fort is a beautiful village, a few miles away from east of Skardu with picturesque terraced fields growing all sorts of crops.

It was once a famous and wealthy kingdom and the Khaplu Palace was once the residential fort of the local ruler.

Recently, Aga Khan showed interest in the palace, which has now been renovated into an exquisite hotel where our guests will stay.

  1. PHANDER LAKE

Phander Lake, located in Phander Village, is almost too good to be true. The teal-coloured lake sits silently amongst light-green trees befitting a landscape painting.

Despite being insanely beautiful, Phander Lake doesn’t see anywhere as close to the number of tourists as the more popular Attabad Lake does.

It is recommended to stay at the Lake Inn, a short walk away in reasonable charges. There is also the expensive  PTDC that overlooks the lake.

  1. RAKAPOSHI BASE CAMP

For all those trekking enthusiasts out there – this one’s for you! The Rakaposhi Base Camp Trek is doable in one day, even for beginners, and offers some truly insane views of Rakaposhi, a 7,800-foot peak!

There are few ways to get as up close and personal with Pakistan’s giants than this. The trek starts from the village of Minapin, where it should take those with a decent fitness level about 4 to 5 hours to reach the top.

While it is possible to camp, the descent is much quicker, making the entire journey there and back a plausible one-day affair. Due to extreme weather, it’s only possible to do the trek between May and October.

  1. KATPANA DESERT

Beautiful places in Pakistan truly cover every landscape imaginable including the Katpana Cold Desert.

Though it has all the makings of a ‘warm’ desert, which makes the Katpana stand out is its altitude. It does, in fact, become covered with snow in the winter.

Said to be the highest cold desert in the world, sand dunes at this altitude look truly unique. Very few countries can lay claim to such a rarity.

Travellers can reach the Katpana Desert easily from Skardu, as it’s only about 30 minutes away. Don’t count on there being public transport, though. 

  1. SOON SKACER VALLEY

Soon Skacer Valley blessed with serene natural beauty which includes beautiful lakes, springs, forests and many archaeological sites. If you have one day and you want to visit maximum places in Soon Skacer Valley.

Scheduling your time will be quite beneficial for quenching your thirst of exploring this beautiful and alluring valley.

Soon Skacer Valley, Naushera surrounded by high hills, beautiful lakes, jungles, natural pools and ponds.

Naushera also blessed with ancient civilization, natural resources, and fertile farms.

The major settlement of the valley ‘Nausehra’ lies almost in the geographical centre of the valley and is located at 72″ II’ 29″ north latitude and 32″ 34′ 58″ west longitude.

The general height of surrounding hills is around 2500 feet above sea level, with several peaks reaching over 3000 feet. 

  1. KUMRAT VALLEY

Kumrat Valley is one of the scenic valleys of KPK, and a picturesque spot for travellers.

Even in every summer season thousands of tourists from different areas of the country visit to Kumrat valley to enjoy the greenery and cool weather.

The climate is pleasant in summer, like 20C but very cold in winter because of heavy snowfall about 3 to 11 feet and temperature fall down almost -4 to -10 C.

Therefore the best time to visit the place is in spring and summer.

  1. MUSHKPURI TOP

Mushkpuri is the second highest hill of Galiyat located in the Hills of Nathiagali in District Abbottabad, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

Track to Mushkpuri Top between Dungagali and Ayubia, also known as the pipeline track. The pipeline laid to supply water to the busiest hill station Murree, Pakistan.

This track follows the pipeline from Donga Gali to Ayubia, a distance of 4 kilometres.

Mukshpuri Top (Mukshpuri Peak) or Moshpuri Top (Moshpuri Peak) or Mukeshpuri Top (Mukeshpuri Peak) is a 2,800-metre-high (9,200 ft) mountain in the Nathiagali Hills

Situated in the Abbottabad District of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in northern Pakistan.

It is 90 kilometres (56 mi) north of Islamabad, just above Dunga Gali in the Nathiagali area of Ayubia National Park. Much of it the mountain covered with Western Himalayan subalpine conifer forests.

Mushkpuri Top distance via Kashmir Road from:-

Islamabad = 2 h 23 min (81.6 km)

Rawalpindi = 2 h 53 min (94.1 km)

Lahore = 6 h 34 min (453.8 km) via Lahore-Islamabad Motorway/M-2

 

Upcoming Tours

Hunza Valley via Naran Disney.pk

HUNZA VALLEY VIA NARAN TOUR

Skardu Disney.pk

SKARDU AND HUNZA TOUR

Mushkpuri Top Disney.pk

MUSHKPURI TOP TOUR

Swat Kalam Mallam Jabba Disney.pk

SWAT KALAM MALAM JABBA TOUR

Naran Kaghan Disney.pk

NARAN KAGHAN TOUR

Neelum Valley Disney.pk

NEELUM VALLEY & AZAD KASHMIR TOUR

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