color ful pictures of neelum valley

Neelum Valley is one of the beautiful places in Azad Kashmir and it is called the “PARADISE OF KASHMIR”. Neelum Valley is located in the North and North East of Muzaffarabad and it lies parallel to the Kaghan Valley. Its snow-covered mountains are located on 4000 metres above sea level. It consists of 370 villages. It is hilly and mountainous valley. The valley comprises of thick forest, clear water streams and rivers. The valley can be approached from two different points; i.e., one from Kaghan Valley and the other is from Noori Top. Besides these two routes, it has been reached through many other minor passes as well.

The district of Neelum is situated 43 kilometres away from Muzaffarabad and the area is famous for its minerals. Local fruits like Apples, Apricots, Walnuts and Plums are famous for their unique taste.

The Sarwali peak (6,326 metres) is the highest mountain peak in Azad Kashmir. Some famous places of Neelum Valley are Shounter Pass, Chita Khata Lake, Ratti Gali Lake, Baboon, Noori Top, Sharda, Kutton, Jagran, Kundal Shahi, Athmuqam, Kel, Surgan, Tao Butt etc.

Some Important Areas of Neelum Valley:


It is situated in the lower part of Neelum valley, Jagran Nullah (stream) adds charm to its landscape and beauty. A mega hydro-electric project is constructed here.  Himalayan mountain range starts from here and stretches to Kaghan Valley, Skardu and Chilas.


Athmuqam is the town with its unique beauty, as LoC starts from here. It is given the name Athmuqam, because it was 8th station from Muzaffarabad to Upper Valley. Typical Kashmiri pattern houses are built here with wooden logs and mostly double-storey. Hiking tracks to adjacent mountains are traced by the tourists.


Sharda is another beautiful place with its lush green plains, smooth flowing river. This is a major tourist attraction and there found remains of Buddha (Sharda) University.


It is another tourist attraction of the Neelum Valley. A long track goes towards Nanga Parbat from here. A beautiful resort of Arrang Kel is located on a distance of two and a half hour hiking from Kel.


Shalwar-Kameez is common dressing code of both men and women. The men usually wear a coats, sweaters and jackets. Women mostly wear a Burka or cover themselves with dopatta.


The official language is English but Urdu is widely understood language. Local people speak Kashmiri, Pahari and Hindko. A few people can speak Punjabi and Pashto as well.


Carpet, Namda, Gubba, Silken & Woolen shawls, Wood Carving, Rugs and Papier Mashe, etc. are famous handicrafts.

Local Cuisine:

The popular dishes are Gushtaba, Tabak Maaz, Hareesa, Risstey, Kofta, Yakhni, Kebabs etc.

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The Valley of Jammu and Kashmir is not only rich in cultural and ethnic diversity but also its Art has countless shades, which are nurtured through the centuries till date. The Art has gets more and more diversified and modern day by day. Kashmir is famous for its Tweed Textiles, Pashmina Shawls, Embroidered Suits, Kashmiri Silk Saris, Papier Mache, Wood Carving Crafts, Hand Woven Carpets and a lot of other traditional handicrafts.

  •  Carpets:

Kashmiri Carpets is traditional asset and famous for two reasons; firstly, these are completely hand-made and secondly these are knotted manually, not tufted. The carpets are made up of silk yarn or cotton ( as well as woolen) yarn and both the categories have a cotton base. However in case of silken base the price of the carpet increases proportionately. The color combination is always eye-catching that make the Kashmiri carpets a wonderful genre. The carpet-weaving skills instilled in Kashmiri Artisans originally from Persia, which are reflected from the local Patterns with sophisticated touch of Persian variation in the Carpeting.

kashmiri carpet

  • Namda:

It is a traditional colorful floor covering, made up of woollen and cotton fibre, which has been manually moulded into desired shape. It is decorated as a rug on the carpets,  in the corridors and on the tiled floor of the houses. Its prices vary with the genre of the wool, for instance, a Namda is more expensive which contains 80% of wool than that of containing 20% of wool. The rugs are often embroidered with chain stitch embroidery and mainly woollen and cotton threads are being used.

Kashmiri Namda Work

  • Papier Mache:

Papier Mache is an ancient Art. Papier Mache products are fabricated through moulding a paper. Firstly a piece of paper is soaked in the water until it starts getting disintegrated, then pounded it well with hands and mix an adhesive solution into it. Spread it over a mould and allow it to get dried so that it could take a proper shape. After getting drying, apply bright, glossy and shiny paint or varnish on the product with artistic designing, to smoothen its surface and enhancing its beauty.

kashmiri papier mache

  • Shawls:

Kashmiri Shawls are famous all over the world for their quality, tenderness and delicacy. These are fabricated through three types of fibres, namely Wool, Pashmina and Shahtoosh. Woollen Shawls are cheaper version, while Shahtoosh is the most expensive one. Woollen Shawls are popular speciality of Kashmir and the embroidery and quality of wool is matchless, which determines the price of the Shawls. Pashmina Shawls are produced from yarn spun from the hair of the ibex, collected from the high mountains (14,000 feet). The hair sticked and fasten to the shrubs, while Ibex are grazing there and carefully picked, one by one. Shahtoosh (Ring Shawl) is distinguished for its thin lightness, softness and warmth.

kashmiri shawls

  • Crewel work: Crewel work is a typical Kashmiri Art and it is in great demand all over the world. The pre-shrunk white cotton fabric is adored with the embroidery. The price of every piece is depends upon the size of the stitches and the quality of the yarn. Chain stitch embroidery is created with wool, silk or cotton threads. Instead of usual needle, a hook is used in the embroidery and applied on the fabricated decoration pieces like wall hangings, furniture coverings and rugs.

crewel work

  •        Tweeds: Tweed is a coarse cloth, woven with pure and non-blended woollen threads. On the other hand the silk-worms, reared in Kashmir, produce one of the superior quality fibre and its fineness speaks itself. The Silk is recognized as Chinon (Crepe De Chine).

silk tweeds

  •        Pherans:

That is a coat-like or a cloak-like dress worn by Kashmiri folk. It is often loose enough to place a Kangri (a small mud-basket with coals embers, which is carried like a hot water bottle) in the winters. Pherans for men are produced with a tweed or coarse wool, on the contrary woman-Pherans are fabricated with Ari (Hook) embroidery on the neck, cuffs and edges of the Pherans. The quality of embroidery and thickness of the thread determines the price of the Pherans.


  •        Basketry:

Basketry is another renowned handicraft in the Kashmir Region. It is created through willow stripes. It includes the attractive and colorful decoration pieces like baskets, table lamps, wall-hangings, pen-holders, cutlery-holders etc.


  •  Walnut Wood Carving:Walnut Wood is unique in its color, intrinsic designs and sophisticated look. Kashmiri Artisans are famous for carving and crafting wood-work, especially on walnut wood.It speaks aloud in its designing and volume of quality work.

kashmiri walnut carving

  • Naqash Crafting: Naqash is a Kashmiri Art of ancient origin. It is seen on the walls, floors and even in the ceiling, of the local homes and other buildings in the Valley. Naqash are crafted on the house-hold items like samovars, bowls, plates, ash-trays and decoration pieces etc. with floral, geometric, leafy and even calligraphic motif-designing. It is crafted mainly on a copper or a silver base.
  • copper and silverware

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Shandur Polo Festival:

Shandur Top is located at 12,200 feet (3,719 metres) above sea level, in District Ghizer, Gilgit-Baltistan and it is often called the ‘Roof of the World’. The top is actually a flat plateau and it can be crossed from the end of April to the beginning of November. Shandur Pass is one of the major mountain passes of Gilgit-Baltistan. The people, who live on both sides of Shandur Top, speak the Khowar language.

Shandur Polo Festival invites a number of visitors to experience a traditional Polo Tournament. It has started in 1936, and it is held annually from 7th to 9th July, in the Shandur Polo Ground, on Shandur Top, between the teams of Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral. The festival includes Folk music and traditional dance as well. A camp village has been set up to accommodate visitors. The game is played in its original form. In the past, the British Rulers remained the patrons of the game.

shundur polo festival

Kalash Festivals:

Kalash Valley consists of Rumbur Valley, Bunboret Valley and Birir Valley in Chitral, near Nuristan in Afghanistan. Kalash is the home of Kalash (wearers of the black rose), a primitive pagan tribe. The Kalash is an ancient tribe and have a unique religious and cultural heritage. It is narrated that a General Salik Shah, who was called by the Greek as “General Sulfurous”, came with five soldiers of the legions of Alexander of MACEDON and got settled in Chitral; they are the progenitors of the Kalash (Kafir) Tribe. The Kalash are famous for their traditional festivals. There is much dancing where the elders chant lyrics with drum-beat, the women-folk dance around. Locally brewed mulberry wine is drunk in copious quantities. The Kalash People celebrate three main festivals in the year.

Chilam Joshi Festival kalaash


This Festival is celebrated on 14th and 15th May, to thank the Almighty. They celebrate it on the arrival of spring season with new hopes and aspiration.

Festival Chilam Joshi


On 19th to 20th August, Kalash celebrate Uchao to pay homage to Almighty, for the grapes and other ripe fruits. They prepare wine, cheese, corns etc. and rejoice in Uchao Festival.

Gianni Festival:

21st June to 25th June

The traditional “Ginani’’ festival has been celebrated in Central and Lower parts of Hunza valley, during 21st to 25th June, with traditional zeal and fervour. Two major gathering points are; Altit and Aliabad villages. Local community performs the traditional rituals, at the main places and along with traditional dances on local tunes. Special traditional dish, locally known as Dirum Pitti, has been prepared to mark the festival.

This carnival is called Ginani and Chineer in Hunza, Strublah in Baltistan and Ganoni in Gilgit.


It is celebrated in Gilgit, Hunza, Skardu and Chitral, from 21st to 23rd March to welcome spring season. Polo, foot-ball, volley-ball and hockey matches are played. Traditional folk dance and music also part and parcel of the carnival.

Silk Route Festival:

The Festival of colors, on the Roof of the world, where natural environment, serene landscape, highest mountain peaks of the world, spectacular scenic beauty, wildlife, glittering glaciers, valleys with lush green foliage and fruits, clear water of gleaming and scintillating streams, rich diversity of people, culture, folklore, arts, crafts and heritage, await you here in the Silk Route Festival.

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How technology reforming tourism in Pakistan

Over the past ten years, the tourism sector has grown to become a pillar of the Pakistan economy, driven by political cooperation, social change and far – reaching advances in technology; both in communications and infrastructure.
This article looks at some of the major issues related to technology, innovation and their impact on domestic tourism as a whole.

The Process of Traveler’s Booking System.

How Online Booking Companies working in Pakistan ?

  • Online Setup Like Website
  • Online Marketing via (GoogleFacebook, Twitter,etc )
  • Tourist Stations Ground work

Among the cyclical succession of symbolic terms that have become part of global tourism discourse, ‘innovation’ and ‘technological change’ have started to occupy a privileged place and it is highly likely that they are here to stay.
It is not surprising, since both are central to improving business and destination competitiveness and as such, to improving the tourist’s experience.

The advances in connectivity and processing power that have been made in ICT in recent years are undeniable. It is also true that the expansion of broadband is one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century which, once it has been overcome, will bring an end to the ‘plague of distance’ which exists in many parts of the world. This will bring us closer to becoming the more equal and cohesive society that we dream of, in which access to the Internet really does become a citizen’s right and which contributes to democratization and to widening the horizons of citizen participation.

At the same time the ‘smart world’ in which we live whose landscape –albeit in a permanent process of evolution is becoming friendlier, offering clearer, solutions which serve to reduce time and money and opening new paths towards the personalization of products and services.
The world in which we live – in spite of its many inequalities – offers an immense space to increase travel, since many barriers which used to prevent or slow global travel are gradually falling.

Today, tourism activity is increasingly being shaped by price comparison and combination technology; new applications for mobiles that offer a wide range of opportunities are being developed; social networks are consolidating themselves within a more transparent market in which citizens are able to provide services together; changes in the concept of the value chain are producing new business models. In short, change is becoming more obvious and constant, just like the opportunities that it is creating.
For tourism, the there are multiple challenges
To understand the main trends that are affecting supply and demand.To manage change in the external environment while evolving at the same rate. Improve the capacity for tourism organizations to respond to demand through policies that better integrate diverse interests, taking into account the whole range of a destination’s potential.

In the end, we have no other choice but to understand and manage change, and implement the innovation that comes as a result of cultural change. We must commit ourselves to ensuring that change helps to build a better, more accessible, more inclusive, more creative, more ambitious, tourism that is founded in a firm belief in ethics and social cohesion. As a result, tourism will long continue to be an activity of dreams and of social opportunities.

tourism in pakistan

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Skardu is set strategically between desert and mountains. It lies in the 10 Km wide and 40 KM long oval basin at the confluence of the Indus and the Shigar River. At an altitude of 25,00 meters (8200 feet), the town is surrounded by grey-brown colored mountains, which hide the 8,000-meter peaks of the nearby Karakoram Range.

Skardu is the base town of the famous K2 Concordia trek and the Biafo Hispar trek, also known as Snow Lake trek. The 67 km long Biafo Glacier meets the 49 km long Hispar Glacier at an altitude of 5128 m ( 16,824 ft ) at Hispar La ( Pass) to create the world’s longest glacial system outside the polar regions. This highway of ice connects two ancient mountain kingdoms, Nagar (immediately south of Hunza ) in the west with Baltistan in the east. At the base of Hispar Pass on its eastern flank rests Snow Lake, a basin of ice (16 km wide) surrounded by granite pinnacles yet to be climbed. PakistanTravelGuide is offering Pakistan Tour Packages to domestic and international travelers in Pakistan, also you can book Skardu Tour Packages for our tour lists

Top 10 Places to Visit in Skardu

1. Khaplu

Khaplu Valley of the Shyok River is 103 Kilometres ( 64 miles ) from Skardu to the east. Khaplu was the largest kingdom in old Baltistan, guarding the trade route to Ladakh along the Shyok River. At 2600 meters (8400 feet), Khaplu is the cooler than Skardu, which combined with the friendly character of the people and the superb walks along the irrigation channels, makes Khaplu the nicest place to stay in Baltistan. The tiny village with its apricot and apple orchards, and lush green fields set by rugged mountains, homes set on mountain slopes, and thrilling views of Masherbrum, K-2, and K-7, is heartbreakingly beautiful.

Dominating the Valley from the top end of the alluvial fan, the imposing Palace of the ex-raja gazes down the kingdom. Its whitewashed façade, punctuated by irregularly placed little windows, supports and extravagant carved wooden balcony up its center. Built about 150 years ago, it has a faintly Tibetan style, like Baltit fort in Hunza. Also worth seeing in Khaplu and the old wooden mosques on the way up through the village. The beautiful Chaqchan Mosque is around 700 years old, founded by Mir Sayyed Ali Hamadani, the first Islam preacher in this area.

Traditions are still very much alive in Khaplu. The annual Spring Festival is held on the polo ground just below the old palace and goes on for three days. Polo competitions between local teams from Khaplu and neighboring villages are part of the festivities.  

Khaplu Village Skardu


on 30 minutes drive from Skardu city after crossing the check point and Shyok River entering from Shigar Door ( Babe-Shigar) on Safranga Cold desert you will find different terrain of mountains as feel like that you are on Mars then a beautiful Valley appear along Shigar River.

Shigar is famous for Shigar fort runs under Serena Pakistan and small walnut wood crafted mosques and of freshwater streams. It is dominated by the Tibetan-styled Baltit Fort which stands guard over the entire valley. The exact origins of the Shigar fort are unclear, although the foundations date back to 700 years ago, with rebuilds and alterations over the centuries. Shigar is the base for a number of short walks and excursions, as well as being a popular place with visitors to relax and unwind. The local bazaar is full of colorful shops with local dry fruits, handicrafts, and a number of souvenir shops.

Shigar Skardu

3. Upper Kachura Lake

Beautiful Lake of all time with no seen source of water but always remains full, no source of water coming and leaving from the lake, the water looks very fresh surrounded by mountains, it’s 20 minutes walk from the parking lot to the Upper Kachura Lake. Speed boating is the real fascination and a Chinar tree standing in front of the lake. Trout fish is easily available in small restaurants with the pristine beauty of Upper Kachura Lake Skardu.

Best Season to Visit the Lake is June – November

Upper Kachura Lake Skardu

4. Shangrilla Lake and Resort

Shangri-la is located just 35 minutes away from Skardu. The resort is built along a beautiful lake, which is surrounded by the most enchanting and splendid scenic beauty. One may stay here, take a boat ride, or trekking to the hills nearby. It offers perfect peace to visitors especially in summers amidst a comfortable cool climate and a fresh breeze blowing across the tiny retreat.

Shangrilla Resort and Lake

5. Kharpucho Fort

There are many archaeological sites found in the Northern Areas, particularly in Skardu and Kharpocho Fort is one of them. It is built by Maqpon Bugha (1490-1515 A.D) but the Mughal historians refer it to the great Ali Sher Khan Anchan (1560-1625 A.D). The fort stands on the bank of River Indus in the Skardu and the city can be viewed from the fort. The fort is illuminated at night and it seems as if the olden days get revived. Some observations about this fort have been found in the Imperial Gazetteer of British India, which state that this was one of the most famous of the Gralpos (Monarchs of Skardu), Ali Sher Khan, who ruled over the region till the end of the 16th century, conquered Ladakh and Skardu; and he built a fort at Skardu.

Skardu Fort

6. Buddha Rock

This is the only remaining Buddhist Rock, with rock carvings, located on the Satpara road in the Skardu. The rock carvings and images of Buddha are dated back to the period of the Great Tibetan Empire when the people migrated from Tibet to present-day Northern Areas of Pakistan. They settled here temporarily and carved drawings of Stupas, scenes of their experiences, and images of Buddha with Kharoshti language transcript. There were a number of such Buddhist rock carvings in the Skardu Valley. The sculpture of Buddha and his disciples are 2000 years old. It was a place of worship for Buddhists till the mid of 14th century A.D. There are scriptures of Buddha o the Rock.

Buddha Rock Skardu

7. Nasdoq / Organic Village

Nansoq Village is located behind the famous Kharpocho Fort. It has been developed into an Organic Village through the Aga Khan Rural Support Program (AKRSP). The village is visited by many famous personalities including Prince of Wales, Prince Charles, and His Highness Aga Khan.

Organic Village Skardu

8. Sadpara Lake

Sadpara (Satpara) Lake is located 8 kilometers (5 miles), in the South of Skardu, and takes just 20 minutes by jeep to get there. It is surrounded by high mountains. The lake has an island in the mid of its clear water, which can be reached by boat. The lake is ideal for fishing and home of wild birds migrated from Siberia. Sadpara Dam is also a source of hydroelectricity and freshwaters supply to adjacent areas.

Sadpara Lake Skardu

9. Deosai Plains

The roof ground of the world, an astonishingly different world, immense grassland, and moraine surrounded by the world’s largest plains with brown bears, here bigness is a trademark. Here each day’s travel brings constant revelation the magic of incomparable vistas, breathtaking views of snow, jade lakes, murmuring streams, dancing waterfalls, dynamic and colorful cultures, and rare wildlife.

Deosai Plains Skardu

10. Manthoka Waterfall

Beautiful waterfall attracted in both seasons, Summers and Winters, In winters due to minus temperatures waterfall completely frozen down.

Manthoka Waterfall

 List of Top 10 Places to visit in Skardu

  1. Khaplu
  2. Shigar
  3. Upper Kachura
  4. Shangrilla Lake and Resort
  5. Kharpuchu Fort
  6. Buddha Rock
  7. Nasdoq/Organic Village
  8. Sadpara Lake
  9. Deosai Plains
  10. Manthoka Waterfalls


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shimsal pass

Shimshal is a village located in Gojal Tehsil of Hunza District, in the Gilgit–Baltistan Region of Pakistan, known as Northern Areas of Pakistan. It lies at an altitude of 3, 100 metres above sea level and is the highest settlement in Hunza Valley. The Village connects Gilgit-Baltistan to China. The area of Shimshal is about 3, 800 square kilometres. Shimshal consists of four major hamlets; Farmanabad, Aminabad, Central Shimshal and Khizarabad. Odver Stream flows from Odversar (6, 303 metres) also known as White-horn of Shimshal. It produces hydro-electricity for five months of the year from June to October. After October the water gets frozen. Local Community faces problems during the rest of seven months, because during this period they have to rely on kerosene oil, firewood, solar plates and compressed natural gas in cylinders as alternative sources of fuel.



It is narrated by Shimshalis that some thirteen generations ago, their ancestor Mamusingh explored the area of Shimshal and settled there with his wife. The wife Mamusingh was angry with him for bringing her to such a remote place. A Saint visited them to restore their relationship. They had a son afterward, named as her, who secured ownership of Shimshal by Pamir, by winning a Polo Contest against some Kyrgyz herders, who also had claim the ownership of the area.

Three sons of Sher, are the originators of three main clans of Shimshal;

  1. Boqi Kathor
  2. Ghazi Kathor
  3. Bakhti Kathor

Shimshal remains part of the Royal State of Hunza, until 1974 when Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto abolished Pakistan’s last existing Princely Kingdom, owned by Mir.


More than twenty mountaineers from Shimshal Valley have made Pakistan proud in the field of mountaineering; among them Samina Baig, the first women climber from Pakistan who climbed Mount Everest and all highest peaks in seven continents around the globe. Rajab Shah, who climbed all the five highest peaks in Pakistan, and Mehrban Shah have received Pride of Performance in the field of mountaineering.  Shimshal is often called “The Valley of Mountaineers” in Pakistan.

pamir lake shimshal pass

Shimshal Pass:

Shimshal Pass is elevated at 4, 735 metres above. It lies between the Indus River and Tarim River basins, which leads to the Valley of the Shimshal Braldu River, a tributary of the Shaksgam River on the border with China.

Annually, in the last week of July or the first week of August, there is a festival at Shimshal Pass, where locals participate in a Yak Race, followed by singing and dancing. In Wakhi language, it is called Woolyo.

Tourism in Shimshal:

Shimshal Valley is the largest adventure area in Hunza Valley and is a major tourist’s attraction. The highest mountains of the Valley are Distaghilsar (7, 885 metres), Shimshal White Horn (6, 303 metres) Mingliksar (6, 150 metres), Lupgharsar (7, 200 metres), Yazghailsar (6, 000 metres), Kunjutsar.

Gigantic glaciers include Malangudhi, Yazghail, Khurdopin (5, 800 metres), Braldu, Odver, Ver Zharav, and main passes are Chafchingoal, Khurdopin, Mai Dur, Braldu, Boi.

Solar Electricity in Shimshal:

There are almost 250 houses in Shimshal and almost every house uses solar panels to generate electricity. It means, compared to other people living on high altitudes in the region, residents of Shimshal live in a better way.

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5 reasons to visit Sharda Neelum Valley

  1. Peaceful river with awesome landscapes 

Sharda Neelum Valley is famous just because of it’s peaceful river flowing around village, on your visit to Sharda Neelum Valley you should invest 20 minutes to be seated on bank of river to enjoy it’s peacefulness.

Book your Tour of Sharda  and enjoy your stay.


2. Cheeky Climate 

Cheeky Climate means if it’s sunny in early hours then it will be rainy at afternoon. 24 Celsius in afternoon get turns into 17 Celsius at Night. Gazing of Stars at night is one of the dreamy situation for everyone.


3. White Snowy Village

In season of winter you will find snow at sharda , everything will seem snowy all around. Thousands of tourist rush towards sharda valley to explore it’s mightiness in season of winter.


4. Blue Gem of Sharda 

Sharda River is Blue Gem of Sharda. you may find the blue water with clear visibility of stones in it. Sharda is famous for it’s fish.

five reasons to visit sharda neelum valley

5. Hiking & Trekking

Hiking towards ruins of sharda is a fascinating thing, trekking towards Ground of sharda  (Maidaan) is another awesome thing to do.

sharda view

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neelum valley road conditions 2016

-> January to March Roads will be safe to travel

-> In March Road will be closed due to heavy rainfall expected.

-> March to July Rods will be remained opened for any kind of travel.

Road in Month of March 2016 likely to be closed due to heavy rainfall at Muzaffarabad. But after March till July Roads will be  opened for any kind of tourist activities.

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