GILGIT/BALTISTAN SPRING/AUTUMN TOUR

GILGIT/BALTISTAN SPRING/AUTUMN TOUR
09 Nights / 10 Days
Islamabad-Besham-Gilgit-Karimabad-Chilas-Swat-Islamabad

The tour will clearly make a difference in the magnificence regions of Gilgit/Baltistan as well as other northern parts of Pakistanin two different seasons. The blossom in spring attracts the travelers to catch a mouthful of air & varying the colors in autumn at the end of the season. These two distinctions have its own charm by changing of colors in the region.

TOUR ITINERARY:

Day 01:  Islamabad         

Upon arrival at Benazir Bhutto International airport. Meet, assist and transfer to the hotel.

Overnight in Rawalpindi/Islamabad. (No meals).

Day 02:  Islamabad-Besham

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Besham. En-route lunch at local restaurant.

Arriving at Besham we are at the base perimeter of Indus valley with fascinating view of the Indus River and the legendary road known as the Karakuram Highway  (KKH) 8th wonder of the world. The widen of our traveling from Besham to Thakot (Shangla) is just a slight glance of the wonders and inspirational values that this road has in store for its travelers who take their journey with it on upstream path. Arrive and transfer to the hotel.

Dinner & overnight in Besham. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 03:  Besham-Gilgit

After breakfast drive to Gilgit along Karakuram Highway. On the way lunch in a suitable restaurant.

Gilgit is administratively capital city of Gilgit/Baltistan and business hub in the region. Its ancient name was Sargin, later it is locally known as Gilit. Gilgit was an important city on the Silk Road, along which Buddhism was spread from south Asia to rest of the Asian countries.

Arrive and transfer to the hotel. Dinner & overnight in Gilgit. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 04:  Gilgit-Karimabad

Breakfast at the hotel. Morning excursion to Bagrot Valley.

Bagrot valley is 35 kilometers away from Gilgit city, and is one of the antique villages in the region where the culture of the Shina people still remains as pure as the environment of majestic Karakuram. The  village  itself  is situated  near  a  spectacular glacier which  links Bagrot mountains  with Rakaposhi. The local historians says that the culture of Gilgit start off here and then extended to other parts of the Gilgit valley. The people of Bagrot are very simple who welcome all guests with traditional hospitality.

After lunch drive to Karimabad Hunza. Arrive and transfer to the hotel.

Karimabad is the delightful old capital of the Hunza Kingdom. From Karimabad, with its souvenir shop, post office and tea shop, you can obtain a superb view of the valley laid out below you and of the peaks at the back. Karimabad area is scattered with natural flowers and blossoming fruit orchards. We will spend half our day in this town enjoying the greenery and enchantment in the sound of waterfall.

Dinner & overnight in Karimabad. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 05:  Karimabad Full day

Breakfast at the hotel. Early morning proceed to Duiker to view Sunrise by Willy Jeep.

Duiker is a small village which is 4-5 kms away from Karimabad, situated above Altit Village at a height of (9,327 ft / 2,850 m) approximately, from where one can get  gorgeous  view  of  whole  Hunza valley  and all  adjoining peaks  as well  as Hoper Glacier from this view point.

Lunch at the hotel. Afternoon visit Nagar Valley, Baltit Fort and Bazaar.

A short jeep traveling will take us to Nagar Valley. The beauties of the village are fruit orchards, longevity of local people and enjoy the many mountain flowers that point the landscape. We have excellent views of Ultar Peak, and the Hunza Valley as seen from Nagar.

Baltit fort (Museum) was the old palace of the Mirs of Hunza and was settled until 1960. It is more then 700 years old.  Baltit is a questioning long-winded old place and has four stories, strongly built of stones, sun-dried mud and wood.  Baltit is built on a cliff edging at the back side; it is a gorge and then the Ultar glacier shining in the sunshine. The structural design here, as at Altit Fort, reflects a Tibetan influence.  The local people says that a Princess of Baltistan get married a time in power Mir and brought with her Balti masons, carpenters and craftsmen to build Baltit and Altit as part of her gift/dowry. In the ‘museum room’ are coats of mail, weapons and the warning drums that sounded the alarm in an attack. The view from the top of the fort is well worth the climb.

Dinner & overnight in Karimabad. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 06:  Karimabad-Chilas

Breakfast at the hotel. Morning drive to Chilas. En-route lunch in Gilgit.

Chilas was on the very old caravan track over the Babusar Pass into India and on the Indus trail of Besham, and many rock engravings/impressions were left by travelers in this area. Chilas is standing under the shadow of world famous Killer Mountain Nanga Parbat. Arrive and transfer to the hotel.

Dinner & overnight in Chilas. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 07:  Chilas-Swat

After breakfast drive from Chilas to Swat via Shangla Pass. On the way lunch at Besham.

The drive during the day is an experience of huge diversities. Turning off from Besham to swat valley towards west, we start climbing the Shangla Pass (6,683 ft / 2,042 m). The top presents the most gorgeous views of the adjacent mountains whose slopes are laden with alpine trees, at faraway distance, the Swat Valley with the river is also visible. Transfer to the hotel.

Dinner & overnight in Swat. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 08:  Swat-Full day tour

Breakfast at the hotel. Proceed to visit Swat Museum, Butkara, sites & Mingora Bazaar.

The museum in Saidu Sharif has a huge compilation of Gandharan sculptures collected from some of the Buddhist sites in Swat Valley.  There are some local embroidery, carved wood, rare coins & tribal jewelery displayed.

Lunch at the hotel.

Butkara ruins are one of the most significant Buddhist places of pilgrimage in the valley. Site is consists of a main stupa around which pushed around 215 votive stupas, in it seems that magnificent disarray. The main stupa was supposed to have some ashes of Lord Buddha built by the Mauryan Emperor Ashoka. One can see still there are statues of lions bend down on their side. They may be fell off the ends of the tall columns which once located close to the stupa.

Mingora Bazaar is the business centre which is important to visit, one can locate emeralds, for which Swat Valley is famous in this region. Then carry on to Murghazar where you will visit the old white palace constructed from white marble and ornamented with elaborated carvings.

Dinner & overnight in Swat. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 09:  Swat-Islamabad

After breakfast drive to Islamabad en-route visiting Taxila and sights.

Taxila is 40 kms away from Islamabad the capital city of Pakistan, was once the seat of Oriental civilization. In 6th century B.C, It was first talked about as a satrapy of the Archemenian Empire. It was attacked by Alexander the Great (Sikandar-e-Azam) & passed along to other monarch until finally he reached the hands of Ashoka, who give the shape of the city into a learning and cultural centre. The original Gandhara era pursued in a while. After that    Taxila remained the centre of learning, thinking and sculptures. It came to a devastating and pitiable closing stage when sacked by White Huns. Today, here is a well-maintained museum & eight sites sprinkled in the region of a very short radius. Amongst the best conserved are Sirkap, Jaulian (the University) and Mohra Moradu. Arrive and transfer to the hotel.

Dinner & overnight at the hotel in Rawalpindi/Islamabad. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

Day 10:  Islamabad

Breakfast at the hotel. Morning proceed for full day city sight seeing of Islamabad.

Our sightseeing tour will start from, Faisal Mosque, Shakar Parian & National monument with a trip to Damn-e-Koh, to catch an eye bird view of the twin cities & Saidpur Village.

Lunch at the hotel. In the evening after dinner transfer to Benazir Bhutto International airport for home bound flight. (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).

SERVICES END