The second day flies us 50 mins from Islamabad to CHITRAL above Swat and Lowari pass and beside the Hindu Kush mountains, landing in the Chitral valley.
Land travel to KALASH Valley for visiting aunique non-muslim mountain way of life. The kalash is a very small ethinc community that inhabit only three valleys in the eastern Hindu-kush Moutain Range, Birir, Bumburate and Rumbur. These three valleys lie close to the border with Afganistan (Nuristan), surrounded by peaks that are hardly 3000 meters high. Mostly non-Muslim by religion, they have their own religion,language, cuture and dress, unique in the world.
Their religion may have roots in early vedic religion, there is one creator God and several Gods. In summer the men are mostly up in the high pastures and it is women who do the field work and manage the home.
After visiting Chitral and the Kalash people we travel up to Shandur pass (3800 m) along a green valley with views to Tirich Mir and the Hindu Kush Range. Yaks are common on the Pass. Shandur can be cool even in high summer.Shandur hosts the world’s highest polo festival on 7,8,9 July – and if the trip coincides with this event we spend a day and night here – otherwsie travelling throgh Ghizer valley to Phander where we can enjoy the lake views, enhanced in April by Blossoms and in October by Autumn colours.
In full summer we can enjoy fruit straight from the trees. Ghizar valley is a mix of cultures and lanscape people and cultural lifestyle andactivities are all possible to photograph along the way. Gilgit is the capital of the Gilgit Baltistan territory and the bazaar, a standing buddha carved into the rockface, suspension bridge, possible polo practice and local natural beauty all make for a fun packed visit with colorful photography opportunities. From Gilgit we join the Karakorum Highway and travel to the HUNZA and Nagar Valleys.
Again along the way the language and culture can change every fifteen kilometers or so. Sometimes subtelty and sometimes abruptly. In Hunza we have views to eleven snow capped peaks and the perfect place for enjoying Autumn Colours (October), Spring Blossoms (April) , or Summer Fruit (June- Oct). We return down the KKH only to leave it agin for the old silk route way over Babasur pass ( 4663 m) and into the Kaghan and Naran Valleys filled with wildflowers lakes and Pakistani holiday makers enjoying the cooler temperatures.
Re-entering the KKH at Mansehra we drive onto Taxila to explore ancient buddhist community ruins and museum before visiting the sites of some of Pakistans larger cities Lahore and Rawalpindi or the capital of Islamabad. In Lahore witness the unique border closing a symbol of friendly rivalry between Pakistan and India.
|Day 1||Arrival to Islamabad airport, sightseeing of Islamabad and Rawalpindi
Local bazaars and view points.
|Day 8||Excursion to Hopper valley and returning to Duikar above KarimabadHopper Valley has a glacier which is easy to descend from the morraine on the side and walk on. Duikar sits above Karimabad and looks across 11 high peaks and down into the Hunza Valley.|
|Day 2||flight to Chitral drive to Bomboret Valley and stay in Kalash community||Day 9||Drive to Lake north of Hunza, cross by boat then -drive to Passu –visit borit lake –Passu glacer –suspension bridge, Gulkin Valley and glacier visit, Gulmit fort and museum.|
|Day 3||Back to Chitral and sightseeing of the town||Day 10||Passu – –boat –trip start – hunza – travel south down opposite the KKH on local roads from sikanderabad to Nagar Minapin valley|
|Day 4||Departure for Phunder via Mastuj shandur pass||Day 11||Nagar Drive to Chilas . on KKH view of Nanaga parbat|
|Day 5||Continue to Gilgit via Gupis and Ghizar valley||Day 12||Continue to Islamabad via Babusar Pass, to Kaghan a polular forested area with cooler temperatures beautiful lakes summer wildflowers and remnants of forested areas|
|Day 6||Drive to Karimabad on Karakuram Highway||Day 13||Kaghan to Taxila museum and archaeological sites and onward to Rawalpindi or Islamabad (twin cities)|
|Day 7||Half day free for local exploration, visits to Altit and Baltit Forts||Day 14||Departure Rawlpindi to hahore mueum wga boder Depture to home|