Nature’s masterpiece, where towering mountains, pristine lakes, and meandering rivers converge in breathtaking harmony. Embark on an unforgettable adventure through this hidden gem, exploring its untamed beauty and immersing yourself in tranquility. Skardu- A Climber’s Paradise The capital town of […]
Nature’s masterpiece, where towering mountains, pristine lakes, and meandering rivers converge in breathtaking harmony. Embark on an unforgettable adventure through this hidden gem, exploring its untamed beauty and immersing yourself in tranquility.
The capital town of the largest district, “Skardu,” of the Gilgit-Baltistan region, Skardu Valley is surrounded by three world-famous ranges, Karakoram, Himalaya, and Ladakh. Famed as the Climber’s Paradise, Skardu Valley is the trekking hub to four of the world’s highest summits; Gasherbrum-I, Gasherbrum-II, Broadpeak, and K-2.
It contains the most spectacular and fascinating mountainous region of the world, where hundreds of virgin peaks still lie unclimbed challenging climbers the world over. Trekkers and climbers from all over the world hustle to trek through these mighty peaks so as to expand their list of summits. Hiking among them is an exceptional experience, but exploring the valleys and the local culture is equally rewarding.
Times change, but what hasn’t changed is the magnetism of Skardu Valley for local and foreign tourists. The crisp forest breeze, diverse wildlife, blossoming trees of apricots, cherry, and mulberry, and the serenity of the meadows and mighty mountain ranges fascinate travel enthusiasts and adventure lovers to explore the ethereal beauty of these faraway lands.
Every time you invest time and effort to visit the valley, it offers something brand new to your experience of life; Skardu Valley is worth it!
Having an awareness of the culture, history, significant locations and attractions, hotels in the area, weather information, and road conditions is imperative to tailor a trip according to your desires and your trip mates’ expectations.
Skardu Valley is accessible from various cities in Pakistan. If you’re starting your journey from Islamabad, the capital city, you have two options:
The Islamabad to Skardu distance is approximately 637 kilometers. A road trip from Islamabad to Skardu takes around 14 to 20 hours, depending on road conditions and traffic. For a seamless journey, it’s advisable to seek assistance from a reliable tour guide such as GuideToPakistan. The scenic route passes through breathtaking valleys and picturesque landscapes, providing an immersive experience
The fastest and appropriate way to reach Skardu is by air. Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) operates scheduled direct Skardu flights from Islamabad. The duration of flight is around one hour, offering stunning aerial views of the majestic mountains, including Nanga Parbat and K-2.
The Lahore to Skardu distance is approximately 1,030 kilometers, offering travelers a picturesque journey through the heart of Pakistan. Embarking on a road trip from Lahore to Skardu is an adventure in itself.
The journey typically takes around 4 hours, depending on the road conditions and stops along the way. While the distance may seem considerable, the breathtaking scenery and unique experiences make it a memorable trip.
Skardu Valley, known for its breathtaking landscapes and exhilarating adventures, offers a plethora of must-visit places. Immerse yourself in the beauty of Skardu and explore these places to visit in Skardu:
Shangrila Resort is a popular tourist spot in Skardu Pakistan. Located near Upper Kachura Lake, it offers breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding mountains. The resort features luxurious accommodations, restaurants serving delicious local cuisine, and opportunities for boating and fishing in the lake.
Skardu is home to the highest cold desert in the world, known as the Sarfranga Cold Desert. This unique landscape, with its vast expanse of black sand dunes and mesmerizing views, provides an otherworldly experience. Visitors can enjoy jeep safaris, camel rides, and camping under the starry sky.
A visit to Skardu is incomplete without exploring the enchanting Deosai National Park. Placed at an altitude of over 4,000 meters, it is one of the world’s highest plateaus. The Deosai Skardu boasts breathtaking meadows, wildflowers, and diverse wildlife, including the iconic Himalayan brown bears. Trekking, camping, and bird-watching are popular activities in this pristine wilderness.
Basho Valley Skardu, also known as Basho Meadows, is a hidden gem near Skardu. This picturesque valley offers stunning views of lush green meadows, crystal-clear streams, and towering mountains. It’s a perfect spot for hiking, photography, and enjoying the tranquility of nature.
Located near Skardu, Satpara Lake is a serene water body surrounded by mountains. The lake offers boating and fishing opportunities, allowing visitors to relax and soak in the tranquility of the surroundings.
The Summer climate of Skardu is moderate, with low levels of rain throughout the year. Average temperature staggers between 24°C maximum to 4°C minimum from March to September. The Severe winter season is marked by freezing temperatures dropping to -10°C from October to February; afterward, it starts climbing up the scale again.
The inhabitants of Skardu belong to multiple ethnicities, mainly Baltis, and Tibetans. Commonly spoken languages are Shina, Burushaski, Balti, and Wakhi. The literacy rate is 100 percent all over the Gilgit-Baltistan region. Khaplu, Machalu, Chorbat, and Haldipa are significant villages in Skardu Valley.
The population of Gilgit-Baltistan is Muslim, the majority belonging to the Shia Sect; however, followers of Sunni, Wahabi, and Noorbakhshia sects are also found in the great majority. Ismailism is also one of the major sects whose practitioners reside in Gilgit Baltistan.
The commendable hospitality, warmth, and friendliness of Skardu’s folks make it a safe tourist attraction for all kinds of travelers. Each house in Skardu Valley has its orchard of fruits; apples, apricots, and peaches adorn the landscape in every village. Traveling along the villages and towns, people generously offer pleasantries to the tourists. They may also invite you to stay in their homes and offer you meals. People do not accept tips; however, you can leave a small amount of money or some gift item for them as a thank-you, although it is common for them to refuse. Women are treated with respect in the conservative society of Gilgit- Baltistan, and you will not find many women outside of their houses.
Besides the landscape, history, and culture, the flamboyance of festivals in Skardu Valley is also appealing to tourists. In addition to many local festivals characteristic of each valley, the world-famous Polo Festival in Skardu is a great attraction. Polo is a traditional Balti game, which is also called “The Game of Kings” or “The King of Games.” The polo festival is held during the second week of August each year, in which the polo tournament marks the liberation of Baltistan from the Dogra rule in 1948.
Jashn e Nowruz is celebrated in all parts of Gilgit Baltistan as the Persian new year begins. People gather to enjoy feasts; paint eggs to decorate their tables, and ladies beautify their hands with henna (a local plant ground blended with water to paint hands red.