Category: Travel Guide

U.K government reiterates support for tourism in Pakistan, upgrades travel advice!

Posted By : Destination Pakistan/ 582 0

Year 2020 has been a bearer of good news for Pakistan, especially for Pakistan tourism. In the light of improved security situation, which is evident from resumption of cricket matches, with ongoing twenty20 series between Pakistan and Bangladesh,

Year 2020 has been a bearer of good news for Pakistan, especially for Pakistan tourism. In the light of improved security situation, which is evident from resumption of cricket matches, with ongoing twenty20 series between Pakistan and Bangladesh, the U.K government expressed belief in Pakistan by making amends to its existing travel advisory.

The announcement came today after a thorough assessment of security situation in Pakistan on the basis of multitude of factors. It is imperative to note that this the first major announcement since 2015.

The news of changes in travel advisory of Pakistan has been welcomed by masses. In a video message by Dr. Christian Turner- British , posted by Government of Pakistan’s twitter handle, he congratulated people of Pakistan on this big development and acknowledged beauty of Pakistan.

Dr. Christian highlighted allowing travel by road to north of Pakistan to U.K nationals. The development is a result of memorable visit by Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in October 2019 and resumption of British airways in June 2019.

He further added that it was on his agenda after arrival to Pakistan and attributed it to hard work of the government for ensuring improved security situation. He also expressed his delight on that British nationals would be able to explore more of Pakistan’s unexplored jewels.

Details of Travel Advice

• The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) provides travel advice based on objective information to help British Nationals make better-informed decisions about foreign travel.
• The new travel advice for Pakistan reduces the section of the Karakoram Highway where the FCO advises against all travel to the area between Mansehra and Chilas alone (previous travel advice covered the full route from Islamabad to Gilgit). Travelers may bypass this section by taking the alternative route through the Kaghan Valley and Babusar Pass.
• The FCO no longer advises against all but essential travel to the Kalesh and Bamboret Valleys.
• The FCO advises against all travel to most of Balochistan including the city of Quetta. This is except for the southern coast of Balochistan, including the city of Gwadar, where the FCO advises against all but essential travel.
• Like all FCO travel advice, these changes are based on security assessments, which are kept under constant review.
• In 2018, there were an estimated 484,000 visits by British nationals to Pakistan. There are 22 weekly direct flights to the UK.
• For the full list of FCO travel advice to Pakistan, click here: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/pakistan

Wonderland – Sonmiani Beach

Posted By : Alina Maniar/ 1759 0

Sonmiani Beach is a beach located in the Lasbela District of Balochistan province in Pakistan. It is about 2 hours 15 minutes away from Karachi.

Blue sky, blue water, and golden sand with peaceful atmosphere.

Location:

Sonmiani Beach is a beach located in the Lasbela District of Balochistan province in Pakistan. It is about 2 hours 15 minutes away from Karachi. Here’s a link of Google Maps:

Huts at Sonmiani Beach:

The area I visited ‘Sonmiani SADRF’ isn’t open for the general public without a reference. You need a reference from any army person/officer to enter that specific area. Once you’re allowed to enter. There are a few huts to choose from. The price range varies according to accommodation. It starts from Rs. 7,500 to Rs. 15,000 and maybe more for 12 hours. All huts have proper facility of AC, TV, fan, cupboard, bed, chairs, and of course, a bathroom. They charge Rs. 100 per hour separately for generator. (When we were there, the power was out the entire day and they did not turn on the generator, even when we asked them to do so.) But the weather was fine, so it’s okay. Please note that you CANNOT book a hut without a reference.

Attractions at the beach:

There are a few activities that you can do on the beach apart from enjoying the weather itself. But for that you will have to inform the management 24 hours prior as they need to arrange this facility on demand. They also have a play area for children.

  • Boat ride – it costs Rs. 10,000 for 6 hours
  • Camel/horse ride – Rs.500 for half an hour
  • Bonfire/BBQ – Rs. 1,000 each (the price of coal/woods is not included)
  • Beach buggy – Rs. 1,000 for half an hour
  • They can cook food for you, but the prices were not mentioned. They have a separate menu to choose from.
  • They have installed some swings and you can swing free of cost, this was the best part.
  • There’s a separate area in front of every hut where they have kept table and chairs, you can easily enjoy a meal there or just sit and talk.

Apart from all this, the beach was absolutely clean with no trash or anything around. The water was clean and clear, we hardly get to see blue tones of water, but it was present here. Basically, the atmosphere was very mesmerizing, clear blue water and blue sky.

Remember to take this stuff along:

 

  • Mosquito repellent lotion – otherwise you’ll end up scratching yourself till 2 days
  • A pair of socks – if you’re going for a night stay, they’ll become handy. If you stand anywhere for about 15 seconds, ants will start crawling on you. So, socks will keep your feet safe from ants.
  • Sunblock – if you have sensitive skin, it’ll get tanned easily.
  • Powerbank – just in case if they do not turn on the generator when the power is out

Additional information:

As you walk towards the seashore, you’ll have to walk while looking down. There are many crabs, they usually run away if you go near them, but please just don’t step on them. Try to walk safely. They are actually visible clearly right after the sunrise, some of them were white and the others were light yellow. And during the sunset, their color wasn’t visible, they looked transparent and it was difficult to walk. Anyway, when we talk about beaches, seaweeds are necessary. They were present, but tiny ones that’ll stick to your feet eventually. I almost forgot to mention, there’s a shower/washing area in front of every hut, you can clean yourself before entering the hut.

I went there around 5:00 PM and I was there till almost 12:00 PM. I’ve witnessed the sunset as well as the sunrise. I must say, both were equally beautiful, but I fell in love with the sunset. The view was breathtaking. I was swinging on the swing during sunrise and I noticed how crabs came out of their holes and went to the seashore together. Even during the night, I was sitting on the benches under the moonlight; the calmness of the beach was absolutely beautiful. I kept on looking at the waves under moonlight, there was a time when the entire beach looked orange and after a while, I could see a silver lining around the waves due to direct moonlight. I’ve never seen this before.  I’ll definitely recommend everyone to visit with their families, it’s a safe and peaceful picnic spot.

Have you been to Sonmiani Beach? If yes, please share your experience in the comments below. 

Top Romantic Honeymoon Destinations in Pakistan to Escape After the Wedding Hassle

Posted By : Muhammad Saqib/ 806 0

You are officially married, and now it’s time to relax and unwind. The first thing to do on any newlywed couple list is to plan their honeymoon to celebrate their new relationship.

You are officially married, and now it’s time to relax and unwind. The first thing to do on any newlywed couple list is to plan their honeymoon to celebrate their new relationship.  Planning honeymoon tour in Pakistan  lets explore top beautiful and affordable places for honeymoon couples. The romantic sightseeing destinations in your own Country. Romantic Honeymoon Retreat always concerns for Bride, I think exploring Pakistan on your Honeymoon is one of the best Choice.

 

Today, we at Destination Pakistan brings togather Top 10 Honeymoon Destination in Pakistan for an outlandish experience in any budget which is equally beautiful and will not let you get bored during your trip.

Hunza Valley

The Hunza valley is top destination for honeymoon couples situated in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan. It is like the paradise of mountaineers, trekkers, and anglers.

In Hunza there are many places to visit namely; Rakaposhi, Karimabad, Altit fort, Baltit fort, Eagle Nest, Attabad lake, Passu, Gojal, Hussani Bridge, Hoper Glacier, sust and Khunjrab Pass aka Pak China Border are best destinations for honeymoon couples.

Skardu

It is situated on the outskirt of Gilgit Baltistan in the northern region of Pakistan. The views and romance attached to it are the best, 7 to 8 days are required to complete your trip of Skardu.

Top Places to Visit in Skardu are; Shangrilla lake and resort aka Lower Kachura Lake, Khaplu Palace, Upper Kachur, Monthoka Waterfall, Cold Desert, Shigar Fort, Deosai Plains, Sadpara Lake, Sheoshar Lake.

Naran-Kaghan

Most visited tourist attraction for summers is Naran Kaghan Valley and we rate 9/10 for honeymoon couples due to its chilling weather, lakes, lush green mountains, hotel facilities and transport system.

The valley constituent pine forests, alpine pastureland, crystal clear lakes and cool mountain streams. Top Places to visit in Naran-Kaghan are Shogran, Siri Paye, Naran, Saif ul Malook, Babusar, Lulusar Lake.

Swat Valley

Swat Valley is the most beautiful valley and is also called “Switzerland of East”. It is the best place to spend quality time with your partner around the crystal clear lake, green meadows, and high peak mountains.

In 2002, a Swiss tourist declared Swat more beautiful than her homeland. It has many beautiful places around it. It is one of the most delightful honeymoon destinations in Pakistan.

Chitral

No wonder Chitral is diverse due to its culture and beautiful landscape, for honeymoon couples it’s hard to travel but somehow people love to travel across this valley to explore it beauties.

Chitral is situated in the North West of Pakistan in the Hindukush range of Mountains. Summers in Chitral is very pleasant and makes it an ideal destination for honeymoon.

Neelum Valley

Neelum is one of the most beautiful valleys of Azad Kashmir. It has several brooks, freshwater streams, forests, lush green mountains, and a river.

Neelum Valley is ranked on top you need at least 5 days to execute your trip. Top Places to visit are; Kashmir waterfall, Red Fort, Muzaffarabad View Point, Neelum Jhelum Rivers Junction point, Keran, Upper Neelum, Sharda, Kel, Arang Kel, Ratti Gali Lake, Taobut.

Murree Galliat

If you are a couple that is looking for a serene yet adventurous place then Murree is your destination.

Murree, Gilyat are famous tourist attractions, approachable/secure/crowdy destination situated on the outskirts of Islamabad and Rawalpindi, offering Motels, Restaurants, Walkways, Shopping opportunities on Mall Road. Couples find a relaxing environment, temperature in summers is awesome. Most rated place for honeymoon couples.

Hire Services from Destination Pakistan to book car, hotels, tour guide. Planning tour to Hunza is very important , Hunza is top destination for honeymoon couples.

Hussainabad BroQ- Pakistans Trolltunga

Hussainabad BroQ- Pakistan’s Trolltunga!

Posted By : Muhammad Waleed/ 1438 0

The Hussainabad BroQ is a rock formation, located above 4000 meters and is located in upper valley of hussainabad BroQ in skardu.

Someone rightly said that Pakistan is a jewel that remains significantly unexplored. Of late, we have seen surge in tourism in different areas of Pakistan. The north, in particular, has seen huge influx of tourists from across the globe. While foreign and local tourist alike relish memories of water streams, lush green valleys and unparalleled hospitality, few local tourists have gone beyond and discovered what is being termed as Pakistan’s Trolltunga.

Following the discovery of Pakistan’s Trolltunga’s picture online, the place has seen a lot of locals flocking to the place to get their fair share of pictures as Pakistan’s Trolltunga overlooks scenic Skardu valley, Sarfaranga desert, and parts of Shigar valley.

Where is actual Trolltunga?

Trolltunga is popular tourist destination in Norway, located in Odda at 11,000 ft above sea level in Norway’s Hordaland county. According to Norway’s official website, the trail is well signposted but the trek is strenuous as it may require a trekking enthusiast wanting to reach Trolltunga around 10 hours. Moreover, the website advices inexperienced individuals to opt for guided hikes.

Pakistan’s Hussainabad BroQ:

Coming back to Pakistan’s hussainabad BroQ, this is the name that locals have given to Pakistan’s Trolltunga which is becoming increasingly popular over internet and in Pakistan. The Hussainabad BroQ is a rock formation, located above 4000 meters and is located in upper valley of hussainabad BroQ in skardu.

Where is Hussainabad BroQ located?

Before we give out details to your dream hike, this place is reachable through trek. Hussainabad broQ is located 5 Kms from Skardu city and it may require several hours of hike.

You may begin your journey from Hussaini chowk which is 10 mins drive to Hussainabad. Once you have reached hussainabad, you will have to go offroad that will be a mix of steep ascending path. Recommended ride is 4 x 4 vehicle. After about 20 mins, the road ends at unnamed village at 3000m from where the ardous trek starts.

Time required to reach Hussainabad BroQ?

Honestly, it depends on your physique, stamina and a lot of other factors. According to locals, the trek should not take more than 3 hours, and in terms of difficulty, it would be categorized as moderately difficult. Likewise, descent may take 1.5 hours if you are well aware of shortcuts. Therefore, it is recommended to keep ample supplies of energy bars and water.

Have you been there? Share your experience below in comments.

A Complete Travel Guide On How To Plan a Tour To Ratti Gali Lake

Posted By : Muhammad Waleed/ 1198 0

Ratti Gali lake is an alpine glacial lake, located at an altitude of 12,130 ft in the upper neelum valley, which is feb by glacial waters and snowclad peaks of the surroundings.

Kashmir, without doubt, is one of the heavenly places on the face of the earth. When describing this scenic land, it is associated with fast flowing stream of water, lush green valley and blue colored  water of River Neelum. Amongst the numerous tourist destinations in Pakistan, Kashmir happens to have a top slot, and rightly so as the valley has numerous tourist destination that sees huge influx of visitors from across Pakistan. It is imperative to note that recent changes made in light of surging tourist interest in Pakistan, mean that now international tourist would be allowed to travel to Pakistan’s heavenly Kashmir.

On way to Ratti Gali Lake

While there are lot of tourist destination that deserve special mention every time Kashmir is being discussed like Pirchanasi, Arng Kel, Sharda, which in the past was a seat of knowledge and wisdom as indicated by the ruins of Bhuddist university, Athmuqam.

Trekkers are now flocking to Kashmir’s scenic Ratti Gali Lake to get a taste of what the surroundings leading up to the lake has to offer.

Ratti Gali Lake:

Ratti Gali lake is an alpine glacial lake, located at an altitude of 12,130 ft in the upper neelum valley, which is feb by glacial waters and snowclad peaks of the surroundings. The lake receives heavy snowfall throughout the year; therefore, the tourist have a limited window to visit the lake, mainly between May and August.

How to get to Ratti Gali Lake:

You may have to hire a jeep from Dowarian to reach the base camp of the lake. The ride will take approximately 2 hours.  While the trek to the lake from basecamp may take somewhere between 40 mins to 1 hour, it is important you reach Dowarian first, a small town which is accessible on any car. Getting to Dowarian may take upto 2.5 hours if you are enroute to Dowarian through Muzaffarabad Neelum Road.

Jeep Rates?

One of the frequently asked question while planning journey is the Jeep rates.

Let us tell you, the jeep rates will vary depending on the time of the year when you are visiting Northern areas in general, especially during the peak season.

Following are the rates from Dowarian.

  • Same Day Return from Dowarian – Ratti Gali Lake- Dowarian
    • 6000
  • Next Day Return from Dowarian- Ratti Gali Lake- Dowarian
    • 8000

Upon reaching Ratti Gali Lake, you may come across tents fixed by visitors who are planning to stay overnight. From Ratti gali, you may hire a horse which will cost below PKR 1000, approx. PKR 400 -500. Likewise a tent may cost you 1200/ night.

6 Days Itinerary / Travel Plan For Hunza Valley

Posted By : Muhammad Saqib/ 192 0

Hunza Valley is a former Princely State, bordering with Uyghurstan (Xinjiang) China in North-East, to Pamir (roof of the world) in the North-West, to Gilgit Agency in the South and to Nagar Valley in the East. The capital of the State was Baltit but now it’s Karimabad.

The Valley is surrounded by hovering mountains in its surrounding including, Hunza Peak, Rakaposhi, Bojahagur Duanasir II, Ladyfinger Peak, Ghenta Sar, and Darmiyani Peak.

 

The Plan:

The basic purpose of an itinerary/ travel plan to any place is to enjoy the tour with energetic and adventurous journeying around. The two basic rules are to be followed for an excellent, exploring, joyful and soulful tour planning are:

  1. Discover
  2. Plan

Location Of Hunza Vally:

The Budget:

Although it is a six-day travel/ itinerary plan to the Hunza valley, you will need a well-organized budget; which must include all the essential expenditures:

  • Total Expenditure: (in PKR/duration)
  • Hotel/Accommodation: (Prior booking)
  • Transportation Fares
  • Eating Out Charges
  • Sight-Seeing/Ticketing Charges
  • Camping Apparatus Expenditure
  • Miscellaneous Expenses

The Luggage:

  • Casual Shirts
  • Casual Pants
  • Shoes: (for trekking, with a durable rubber sole)
  • Sandals/ sleepers: (for walking during camping)
  • Water Proof Jacket & Trousers or Rain Suit
  • Pairs of Trousers & full Sleeves Shirts
  • Pairs of Socks: (Woolen Stuff)
  • Woolen Hat/Cap:
  • Sleeping Suit
  • Pair of Gloves: (Woolen/Water-Proof)
  • Toiletries
  • Trekking Stick
  • Water Bottles
  • Emergency Light
  • Pocket Knife
  • Map and Compass
  • Binoculars
  • Sun Block
  • Camera

The Medication:

  • Allergy Medicine
  • Eye Drops
  • Aspirin & Pain-Killers
  • Band-Aids
  • Sickness Medicines
  • Tranquilizers

Itinerary / Travel Plan

Day 01:

  • Islamabad to Chilas Via Babusar or Besham
  • Night Stay at Chilas

Day 02:

  • Chilas to Hunza
  • Stop at Garam Chasma
  • Stop at Junction point of Highest Mountain Ranges of the World
  • Stop at Rakaposhi view point
  • Visit of Hunza Market (Karimabad)
  • Night stay in Hunza

Day 03:

  • Visit of Attabad Lake, Passu Cones, Sost Dry Port and Khunjurab National pass (if open)
  • Back to Hunza in the evening

Day 04:

  • Visit of Baltit Fort and Altit Fort
  • Visit of Eagle Nest, Duiker Valley or Hoper Glacier

Day 05:

  • Hunza to Naltar Valley (Naltar Lake)
  • Back to Chilas in the evening
  • Night stay at Chilas

Day 06:

  • Departure for Islamabad

A Complete Travel Guide On How To Plan a Tour To Hunza

Posted By : Muhammad Saqib/ 391 1

Hunza Valley is a former Princely State, bordering with Uyghurstan (Xinjiang) China in North-East, to Pamir (roof of the world) in the North-West, to Gilgit Agency in the South and to Nagar Valley in the East. The capital of the State was Baltit but now it’s Karimabad.

Pakistan has been bestowed with many beautiful natural landscapes and if we get a chance to watch those pieces of heavenly beauty undauntedly, we will erupt saying ‘I have found Heaven on Earth’.

Once in Gilgit, you can’t stop yourself without traveling to Hunza Valley as it is must visit Place.

Hunza Valley is a former Princely State, bordering with Uyghurstan (Xinjiang) China in North-East, to Pamir (roof of the world) in the North-West, to Gilgit Agency in the South and to Nagar Valley in the East. The capital of the State was Baltit but now it’s Karimabad.

The Valley is surrounded by hovering mountains in its surrounding including, Hunza Peak, Rakaposhi, Bojahagur Duanasir II, Ladyfinger Peak, Ghenta Sar and Darmiyani Peak.

 

Location Of Hunza Vally:

Distance from Islamabad

Islamabad to Hunza Via Babusar Pass (Route 1):  Approximately, 16 hours (600 km)

It takes the route from Islamabad to Abbottabad to Balakot to Naran to Kaghan to Babusar Pass to Chilas to Gilgit to Hunza Valley. Relatively, short route but is open only in summers from May to December.

 

Islamabad to Hunza Via Besham (Route 2):  Approximately, 22 hours (715 km)

It takes the route from Islamabad to Abbottabad to Besham to Kohistan to Chilas to Gilgit to Hunza. Relatively, long and curvey route but remains open all over the year.

 

Gilgit to Hunza: 2 h 3 min (100.3 km) via Karakoram Highway.

 

Means of transport:

By Air: Flight from Islamabad to Gilgit will take One hour and fifteen minutes, and in two hours you can be in Hunza Valley traveling by road from Gilgit Airport.

By Road: You can take any vehicle more than 800cc along with you on this trip, the only thing that needs surety i.e. Is your vehicle is well equipped and maintained properly for Road Trip?

The Geography:

Hunza is divided into 2 geographic sub-divisions:

  1. Upper Hunza
  2. Lower Hunza

When To Visit:

The tourists who plan to visit always seek to enjoy the valley during the days of its full bloom and beauty. t is therefore advised to visit Hunza Valley after March because the weather gets warm and cold spells are leaving the valley.

In April and May, the Blossom is at its peak.  June and July provide you with a great opportunity to visit nearby lakes, rivers, base camps, boating, fishing, trekking, camping, etc.

If you want to witness the mesmerizing Autumn colors regarded as the true beauty of Hunza then end of September and in October is the best time to go.

After October, From November to March Hunza Valley takes on the Cold blanket with heavy snowfalls.

Things to do in Hunza:

There are numerous activates in the valley which the tourists can opt according to their preference i.e.

  • Fishing at Hunza Valley River
  • Boating at Borith Lake
  • Legal hunting (Duck/Ibex) at Khunjarab National Park
  • Horse Riding and Polo in Hunza Valley
  • Trekking to nearby base camps
  • Camping amid plateaus and green meadows, also it proves to be a much-liked destination for climbers to surrounding high peaks.

 

Places to Vist:

 

Rakaposhi and its View Point:

At an hour’s drive from Gilgit, there is a point on KKH known as Rakaposhi Viewpoint and it’s a first tourist attraction of Hunza Valley.

The Rakaposhi mountain, a 7,800-meter-high peak, located in Nagar Vally.  The Rakaposhi peak is the 27th highest mountain on Earth but considered one of the most beautiful ones.

Karimabad:

Karimabad is capital of Hunza valley.  The Guardian ranked it as one of the five “Best Tourist Sites” in Pakistan.

Altit fort:

Altit Fort and in particular the Shikari tower is around 1100 years old, which makes it the oldest monument in the Gilgit–Baltistan.

Baltit Fort:

Another great ancient sight of Tibetan and Balti heritage is more than 700 years old fort in Hunza Valley

Eagle’s Nest:

The highest place to view whole of Hunza, on its right you will find Ladyfinger peak and on left the magnificent Rakaposhi.

Attabad Lake:

A disaster made two mountains meet together and they stopped the flow of Hunza River, turning it into a beautiful lake. Starts from Ganish Village and is about 29.3 kilometers in length.

Passu:

The most romantic places in Hunza Valley. Passu is along the Hunza River, some 15 kilometers from Gulmit, the Tehsil headquarters of Gojal. Upper Hunza, also known as the Gojal Valley.

Rush Lake:

One of the highest alpine lakes in the world and difficult to trek as well.

Khunjerab Pass:

The Khunjerab Pass is the highest paved international border crossing in the world and the highest point on the Karakoram Highway.

Have you been to Hunza? If yes, please share your experience in the comments below.