21 Day Budget Tour Hunza, Minapin, Chitral, Swat & Peshawar
As it is clear from the title of the tour it is basically a low budget tour to attract the young tourists. In this tour we will stay in tourist class hotels and travel by public transport. Experience the beauty of Karakoram, Himalayas & Hindukush in an economical manner.
You get to know the lifestyle of people of North. Driving on legendary KKH you visit the meeting place of Fairies (Fairy Meadows) Nanga Parbat base camp. Then drive to Gilgit onto Hunza valley. Take a short trek to Diran and Rakaposhi peaks. Take a jeep road to the remote Chitral valley and then descend to Peshawar.
- Visit the ruins of the former city of Sirkup
- See the Shatial rock carving in Thakot
- Stroll down the colourful bazaars of Gilgit
- Embrace the culture of the Hunza Valley people
- Pass by the Passu and Batura glaciers
- Visit the famous suspension bridge in Passu over the Hunza river
- Spend a night between the Diran glacier and the ridge of Rakaposhi
- Visit Fairy Meadow and witness and superb views
- Visit the most famous Polo grounds in the world at Shandir Pass
- Trek over the steep 3k ridge between the Bumburet and Binir Valleys
- See the fruit-laden orchards and flower-filled sloped of Swat
- Visit the Street of Storytellers in Peshawar
- Get panoramic views of the Pak-Afghan border from Michni Post
- Scheduling: Semi-Private Tour
- Languages offered on the Activity / Tour: English, German, French, Chinese, Urdu
- Duration: 12 days
- Printed Voucher Accepted
- Pick-up servicePick up from Islamabad airport.
- Easy CancellationThere is no cancellation fee once Customers Cancel at least 7 day(s) prior to the date of the activity or tour.
There is 50% cancellation fee for Customers to Cancel 3 and 6 day(s) prior to the date of the activity or tour.
There is 100% cancellation fee for Customers to Cancel 2 day(s) prior to the date of the activity or tour.
- Instant Confirmation
- Cut-off TimeAvailable to be booked until 10 days before the tour starts. We reserve the option to confirm the tour or not due to availability.
- English Speaking Guide.
- Tips & Portage at airport & hotels, entrance fees at sites & museums.
- Portage: of 12 Kg during trek.
- Transport: Ac Van / Coaster Land Cruiser fand Soft top 4x4 jeeps to trek head & trek end.
- Meals: half board at hotels, full board during trek.
- Accommodation on triple sharing basis at tourist category hotels in towns, 2 person tent during trek.
- Any expense of personal nature not mentioned above.
- landslides, natural calamities, acts of God, forced majeurs: beyond the control of Rock Valley tours, their staff and agents.
- Any expense due to forced measures, cancellation of flight, landslides.
- Domestic/International airfare and airport taxes.
- Meals Lunch & Dinner at Hotels.
Arrive Islamabad the federal capital of Pakistan, transfer to hotel for rest. Afternoon city tour of the twin cities Pindi & Islamabad. An evening stroll down the narrow streets of Raja Bazaar.
Drive to Taxila, the capital of Gandhara Buddhist civilization. We visit the ruins of a former city (Sirkup), a former monastery (Julian)built on top of a hill and the splendid site museum that contains the artefacts recovered from the excavation sites.
Here one could also see the gold and silver coins of Alexander The Great (326 BC)and local kings. After Taxila, we will drive towards the Karakoram High passing through the lush green valleys of Mansehra, enjoy the beautiful landscapes of the valley.
KKH is the joint effort of Pakistan and China. Its completion took 20 years. 300 Chinese and 600 Pakistanis sacrificed their lives for the completion of this road. Overnight at Motel. (4/5 hours, 200 km)
Early morning drive to Gilgit the capital city of Northern areas of Pakistan. At Thakot, we cross Chinese made bridge to enter the gorge of Indus river. For centuries this branch of Silk Route was used by the traders and Buddhist missionaries. There are many rock carving sites of that time: Shatial rock carving is one of them.
Lunch in Chilas, we stop at Thalichi for the best viewpoint of Nanga Parbat (8,125m) the 9th highest peak of the world and the second highest after K 2 in Pakistan, also known as the killer mountain. Rakaposhi (7,788m) and the Haramosh range can also be viewed from here.
As we drive north we arrive at the meeting point of the mountain ranges. The three highest mountain ranges of the world Karakoram, Himalayas and Hindukush meet where Indus River is joined by Gilgit river. We continue along Gilgit river, overnight at Hotel. (9/10 hours, 320 km)
We drive out from Gilgit to re-enter the town from the historic route, crossing a suspension bridge over the river.
At Kargah to visit the rock-carved Buddha from 7th century AD. In the ancient times the Kargah valley used to be the traveling route of the Buddhist monks, to go to Taxila. Stroll down the colorful bazaars of Gilgit. Later drive to the beautiful, breathtaking Hunza Valley through a scenic route.
On our way, we see the old Silk Route used by the Buddhist monks and traders. En route short stay at Rakaposhi (7,788m) viewpoint. Enter the Hunza valley and arrive at the capital Karimabad. Overnight at Hotel. (2/3 hours, 110 km)
Day free in Karimabad for short walks to Altit and Baltit Forts, and for other explorations in Hunza Valley The people of Hunza are famous for their long lives. You can also see some beautiful peaks of Karakoram range from Karimabad; Rakaposhi 7788m, Diran 7266m, Ultar 7400m, Golden peak 7027m and the Nagar valley on the left bank of Hunza river.
In Hunza each family grows enough wheat, maize, apricots and walnuts for its own use. The people are mostly self-sufficient, making their own clothes, shoes, wooden and stone bowls and growing all their own food. The people are very friendly and cheerful.
In the afternoon you could walk to Ultar glacier, follow the irrigation channel through the village or stroll through the single lane bazaar for better views of soaring peaks around you. Overnight at Hotel.
Short drive through the heart of Karakoram. We stop at the village of Gulmit, in the shadow of the virgin Gulmit tower. Walk through the village fields to visit the Polo ground and old houses.
Later take a short trek to Gulkin glaciers and Borit Lake. As you end your trek near Borit Lake, the transport will pick for 15 km drive to Passu.
Passu is a small charming village in the backdrop of soaring Passu Cones, with Passu and Batura glaciers at short walking distance. Walk through the village to see the village life. Overnight at Lodge. (1 hour, 50 km)
Day Excursion Some 70 years ago Passu used to be the second largest settlement in Hunza after Karimabad. The glacier upstream on Hunza river moved down to create a large dam, that later broke and destroyed the fertile fields and houses. Now the river occupies the major share of the valley with the village on its right bank.
Morning walk to the Passu glacier and Passu Lake. From the snout of the glacier, you have fascinating views of Shispar ( 7,611 m) and Passu Peak (7,478 m). Walk back for lunch. Afternoon visit to the famous suspension bridges of Passu. These 800 feet long bridges over Hunza river are still in use.
In the morning drive on KK H along the Hunza river with soaring rocks of the Karakoram on both side of the gorge, we arrive at the small village of Minapin in the shadow of Rakaposhi (7,788m)and Diran (7,265m) mountains.
After some rest at Minpin trek to Tagafuri Interesting moderate trek, passing through hills covered by juniper, throne and rose bushes, with occasional fields of barley and potatoes. Lunch at a summer settlement. Later follow a path through steep pastures to arrive at the campsite between the lateral moraine and the foot of Rakaposhi.
Our campsite is ideally located in the green patch between the Diran glacier and the ridge of Rakaposhi, offering fascinating views. Overnight at Camp. (Long day, 11/12 hours).
Walk down from Tagafuri to Minapin village. Camp overnight.
Back on the Karakoram Highway we drive to Raikot Bridge over Indus river, and enter a narrow gorge in our jeeps. Continue on the narrow jeep track to small Tatto village where we leave our jeeps to start the trek.
Fairy Meadow at the foot of Nanga Parbat (8125 m), the ninth highest peak in the world, also known as "The Killer Mountain" as many climbers have died while attempting to reach the top. The view of the Mountain, the glacier flowing from it and the pine forests at foothills is just superb. Camp overnight.
Fairy Meadow Day at Fairy Meadow with option to trek to the base camp of Nanga Parbat after crossing the glacier. We shall carry pack lunch from our camp at Fairy Meadow and have it at the Base Camp and then return to our camp.
In the morning we will walk for about three hours to reach at Tatto to catch the jeeps. From Tatto we will drive down to Raikot bridge to on KKH and continue our drive to Gilgit. Arrive Gilgit and transfer to hotel. Evening free. Overnight in hotel.
Jeep drive to Phander with occasional drop-offs from the jeep for short walks along the trek.
As we drive, we bid farewell to Karakoram range and enter the Hindukush range. Wild landscape meets us during the drive as this route is visited by fewer people and is snow covered during the winters so only nomads move with their goats, searching the higher slopes for green pastures. Camp.
From Phander the jeep-track leads over to the Mastuj.
A zigzag jeep track climbs up the Shandur Pass, so we leave the jeeps and walk over the pass to the highest Polo ground in the world. This is where every year a grand festival of Polo takes place where teams from all of Pakistan meet together to decide the Champion. The festival is attended by many enthusiasts from every village, who came here for days to see their team progress towards the glory.
We Continue to drive to Mastuj.
We start, take a lot of water as few springs on the way have a doubtful supply.
This trek takes us over steep 3,000 meters (from sea level) ridge separating the Bumburet and Birir valleys. We start with the first light of the day to cross the ridge in the cool hours of the day. The trek offers good opportunity to experience the unique landscape of Kalash valleys and to meet the local population during their daily life.
We arrive Bomburet, the largest village of Kalash. Back to Chitral. O/N in hotel.
Morning drive to Swat. Proceed towards Lowari Pass (3,200 Meters). The ascend is very interesting as it encounters around 96 Hair-pin turns to bring you to the top of Lowari Pass. Descend to Dir, Chakdara and Malakand Pass.
Arrive Swat, a land that shines with fruit-laden orchards, flower-filled slopes, meandering rivers, rumbling streams and is surrounded by the mighty ranges of the Hindu Kush and Karakoram.
The valley is 3,250 feet above sea level, Saidu Sharif and Mingora are the towns that form the twin capital of this area. Arrive and transfer to hotel for O/N in Mingora
After breakfast proceed for the full day sight seeing in the valley. Visit museum, Whitel Palace, some rock carvings from Buddhist period, and in Upper Swat visit Malam Jaba and Kalam. Drive back to Mingora for overnight.
Peshawar has always been important in the history of sub-continent because of its location in by Khyber Pass & Gandhara civilization. The city is now known more for its special feeling of being a frontier town than for its monuments.
In the morning we will visit the street of story-tellers: Kissa Khawani bazaar, the street of Gold (Kasera bazaar), Karavan Serai and Mahabat Khan Mosque & Museum of Peshawar, known for its collection of Gandhara artefacts.
Morning excursion to Khyber Pass the most important land route leading to Indian sub-continent. All historic invaders, including Alexander, had used this route to explore the wonders of fertile land that lies south of this pass.
We may be allowed to visit Michni Post from where we have a panoramic view of the Pak-Afghan border. (45 km one way). Evening free. Overnight in hotel
Morning drive to Islamabad while travelling on the Grand Trunk Road laid down by the Pathan Emperor of United Indian Empire: Sher Shah Suri., crossing Indus river at Attock.
You may stop for a photo at the meeting point of Indus & Kabul rivers just beyond Attock bridge. By passing the important archaeological site of Taxila by evening we shall reach Islamabad. Afternoon visit of the Federal Capital of Pakistan. Overnight Hotel
Departure Transfer to Air Port for departure flight to home.
- While on an organized trek, it is best to pack all items for your trip in one large piece and one carry on. The large piece must be a duffel bag (weighing not more than 12.5 Kg.) because duffels are easier for porters to carry. A small daypack is suggested as a carry-on to keep items that you will use during while on the trek, bus or jeep.
- Luggage -Large duffel bag with a lock. It is not recommended to put your stuff in a backpack as the straps might get damaged while being transferred from bus to jeeps, jeeps to campsites and during loading and unloading by porters each day. A small padlock that fits through the zipper of your duffel bag is recommended.
- Day Pack - Large enough for camera gear, cap, sunglasses, water bottle, jacket and other items you may like to use while on the trek. Extra carry-on - For storing city clothes in Skardu. Money Belt - A small fanny pack, money belt or around the neck passport bag is suggested for keeping safe your passport, travel documents and money. Packing list for your Duffel.
- Sleeping Bag - As we shall be sleeping for four nights at Concordia at 4,700meters or at Snow Lake and Hispar Pass at 5151meters above sea level, so the bag should be rated for 0 degree F or -18 degree C. Ratings are all relative since the amount of insulation needed for a particular person to stay comfortable depends on their rate metabolism. A down bag will be warmer for its weight and pack smaller but does not retain its insulative properties when wet. A waterproof breathable shell or a bivy-bag will keep the bag dry. A synthetic bag keeps you warm even when wet and is a less expensive alternative, but will weigh more for a given amount of warmth.
- Trekking Boots - The single most important item on this list! Never take brand new boots on a trek, make sure they are well broken-in before departure. Good trekking boots are hard to get in Pakistan. If you are buying a new pair from abroad, look for medium-weight boots of fabric or a fabric/leather combination. They should provide adequate ankle support. A vibrum or other deep-lug will protect you from rocks and add support. Always use thick socks when trying shoes so that you get the correct size. Short shoes can jam your toes painfully during steep descents. You could also try to get new “Grouted” shoes that provide protection against water and are good while walking in rain or through the snow. Make sure you can fit crampons on your shoes, as it is vital for crossing different passes.
- Camp Shoes - Jogging shoes or sneakers to slip in at the end of the day. Tiva sandals are ideal for this trek, as you can use them while crossing streams and also at the campsite for strolls.
- Crampons - You may need crampons on certain treks, sometimes only for one day. It helps in having a better grip on hard snow to have crampons fitted to your boots. Look for easy to fix ones. (Check with us for your specific trek if you need the crampons or not). From our regular trek list, you would need to bring crampons for: Gondogoro La, Biafo Hispar and Wartum Peak Thermal socks - The socks you wear are a critical element. A cotton/wool combination is useful while on the glacier, and for warmer conditions, cotton socks are best. For those who are sensitive to wool synthetic/cotton socks are recommended. Liner Socks - A thin, wickable material. Polypropylene, Capilene, Thermax and Drylete all work very well. Silk does not work nearly as effectively as any one of the above.
- Polyester Fleece/Pile Jacket or Pullover - Stays warm even when wet. Polyester Fleece Pants - Good for afternoon strolls, same as above. Rain gear - A rain suit available from the local market is best for rain, doubles as a windbreaker, and fits over pile jacket and pants. Wicking Long Underwear (tops & bottoms). Wick moisture to keep you warm and comfortable and dry quickly. Two suits are a good idea. Ski Hat - Covers your ears properly, use one with a cotton liner. Woollen cap is also good.
- Mittens or Gloves - Woolen gloves are useful when at higher elevations and during windy conditions when the temperature drops quickly. Brimmed Sun Hat - Very important for this trek, as when we start the trek and till we arrive at Concordia, we are generally walking towards east. This can be annoying in the morning as the sun is low and hits your eyes. Bathing Suit - Men can take bath by the rivers or occasional lakes in ablation valleys. Toiletries - Keep everything you normally use. Just remember to bring effective sunscreen, chapstick/lip balm, skin lotion and laundry soap.
- With your knowledge of Pakistani culture, you are well aware of precautions to be taken while travelling through remote areas. Cloths for the trek should be durable, comfortable and easy to wash and dry. In good weather, you will spend much of your time in a T-shirt or medium shirt and outdoor trousers. You will need warmer clothes for the evening in the camps. Temperature falls rapidly as soon the sun goes down. Men could wear shorts once we are through populated areas, that means from the third day of the trek. Women are advised to use cotton shalwar kameez (loose long shirts and baggy trousers) the traditional Pakistani dress, as these are comfortable during warm conditions, and also appreciated & respected by the locals.
- Check List: Headgear, Parka, Wool shirt & trousers, Sweater, Cotton shirt & pants, Gloves & Mittens, Rain/wind suit, Cotton & Wool undergarments, Socks (Cotton & Wool/synthetic), Boots (Trek & Camp), Belt, Down Jacket, Shalwar Kameez (Cotton), Spare laces for boots, Sunglasses Towel, Washcloth, Bandanna/Scarf, for covering your mouth while riding in a jeep, Water bottle, with a durable screw top, Sunscreen, Headlamp with flashlight + extra batteries and bulb, Insect repellent
- Swiss Army knife or a similar, Nylon cord for a clothesline, Personal Medical Kit, Pocket size sewing kit, Lighter or matches for general use, Wrist Watch, We provide close-cell mattresses but you may want to supplement for additional comfort, Stuff sacks of various sizes for storing your used clothes, Toilet paper or travel pack of tissues, An interesting book, Notebook and pen for a journal, Snacks: personal choice of dried fruit, candy, energy bars, Binoculars, Camera, film, extra batteries, cleaning supplies and extra lenses, Sports gear (playing cards/Frisbee), Water purification tablets.