To say Pakistan is shut to our hearts could be a grasp understatement. It was right here within the late 90s that the entire concept for Wild Frontiers happened, and it was by means of these wonderful mountains that we ran our first journey. Of course the world and our enterprise as moved on a great distance since then however we nonetheless really feel it is a nation that provides the adventurous traveller a rare expertise.
Pakistan is a big nation, from Karachi within the south to the Khunjerab Pass main to China it covers stretches over 2,000 kilometres and is residence so some 200 million individuals. And though we’ve just lately placed on a brand new tour that focuses on the south and specifically the wonderful websites of the Indus Civilisation that blossomed in these elements some 5,000 years in the past, for essentially the most tourism to Pakistan will give attention to the north.
An excellent entry level to this area is Lahore. As the cultural capital of the nation it’s a fascinating city, steeped in historical past with a plethora of nice websites to go to, together with the well-known Lahore Museum, the Moghul fort and Badshahi Mosque, the previous city and the Wazir Khan Mosque.
Four hours’ drive north of Lahore is the nation’s new capital Islamabad – with its spectacular Faisal Mosque – and from right here the mountains start.
And what mountains they’re. The three largest mountain ranges on earth converge right here, setting a backdrop to one of the vital spectacular journeys you’re ever possible to take as you swing from the Hindu Kush, by means of the Karakorum’s to the Himalayas.
The first place of curiosity is Chitral. An historical mountain kingdom, till very just lately lower off from the remainder of the nation for six months of the yr, this area is a good place to kick off your journey to the north. The city boasts the well-known previous fort, scene of the British siege of 1895, a spectacular mosque and video games of frontier polo, a sport locals will inform you originated right here.
The area can also be residence to the Kalash, and historical those that inhabit three slim valleys that buttress up in opposition to the Afghan frontier. As the final of the pagan tribes that inhabit the Hindu Kush the Kalash, a race that declare decedents from the armies of Alexander the Great, the Kalash are identified for his or her festivals of dancing and singing and symbolize a real spotlight of any journey to the nation.
From Chitral Town you possibly can take one of the vital spectacular roads anyplace on the planet, across the towering type of Mount Tirich Mir, which at 7,500m is the very best mountain within the Hindu Kush, to Mastuj and on over the Shandur Pass. As a watershed between Central Asia and the Indian subcontinent, it is a good spot to stroll and luxuriate in a picnic, or in case you are right here in early July get pleasure from a gathering of 1000’s for the very best polo recreation performed anyplace on the planet.
From Here you’ll drive on by means of Gilgit the place you possibly can see relics from the areas Buddhist previous, earlier than driving on up the well-known Karakoram Highway – or KKH because it’s domestically identified – to one of the vital stunning locations anyplace on earth, the Hunza valley. Besides simply taking within the epic views, right here you possibly can go to the UNESCO restored Baltit Fort, and the neighbouring Altit Fort, and go for walks each by means of native meadows and on close by glaciers. There can also be the brand new lake at Attabad, fashioned by an enormous rockslide in 2010, on which you’ll be able to take a ship trip.
And from right here, if not travelling on to China over the Khunjerab Pass, you possibly can head nonetheless additional east, following the Indus, to Skardu.
If you need to go trekking this area gives the very best hikes anyplace on the planet, starting from 3 to 4 day walks to the epic K2 Concordia trek. And conversely the area additionally boasts a few of the norths finest inns at Shigar Fort and Khaplu Place. It can also be the place the Wild Frontiers Foundation construct its first faculty.
There are in fact many different fascinating websites to go to similar to Peshawar and the Khyber Pass, Fairy Meadows, sitting within the lee of the enormous Nangar Pharbat, the purpose at which the three nice mountain ranges collide and the attractive Dosia Plateau.