Day 1: Arrival in Karachi early am
On arrival transfer to hotel for immediate check in. Breakfast and relaxed morning.
This afternoon meet your guide to go for lunch and then a city tour of Karachi
Day 2: Karachi-Hyderabad
Visit the Chaukhandi Tombs, the Bhanbhore ruins and Makli Necropolis en-route to Hyderabad.
Day 3: Hyderabad-Sehwan Sharif
Visit Rani Kot Fort, also known as The Great Wall of Sindh. Continue to Sehwan Sharif.
This evening we attend the devotional dance of dervish at the Shia Shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar.
Day 4: Mohenjo-daro
Visit Mohenjo Daro, or "Mound of the Dead" (UNESCO World Heritage Site), an ancient Indus Valley Civilization city.
Also visit Kot Diji, the forerunner of the Indus Civilization.
Day 5: Sukkur - Multan
Sadhu Bela Mandir, a Hindu Temple complex on an Island near Sukkur City.
Then visit Minaret of Masoom Shah in Old Sukkur.
Day 6: Harappa - Lahore
Visit Harappa, an archaeological site, once the center of the core region of Indus Valley civilization.
Continue to Lahore & afternoon tour.
Day 7: Lahore
Full day tour: the Museum, Fort, Palaces, Shahi Hammam.
In late afternoon drive to Pakistan – India border (Wagah) to attend the Flag ceremony, called Beating Retreat and the Change of Guard.
Day 8: Lahore - Islamabad
Visit the Khewra Salt Mines (2nd largest in the world); continue to Islamabad.
On arrival visit Faisal Mosque and enjoy dinner at Rawal Lake.
Day 9: Islamabad-Taxila-Peshawar
Start with a drive to Taxila and visit world heritage archeological sites.
Continue to Peshawar and afternoon tour.
Day 10: Peshawar – Chitral
A beautiful drive to Chittral, located in a beautiful valley in the Hindukush Range of Mountains. It has always been a very important route for many invaders to Southeast Asia, including Alexander the Great, Scythians, Ghengis Khan and numerous others. Chittral is a small town with one single street bazaar.
Day 11: Day Excursion from Chitral to Kalash Villages
A full day visiting colorful villages of Kalash including Birir Village-a traditional village untouched by tourism or commercialization.
Shandur Pass - Phander
Day 12: Chitral - Shandur Pass - Phander
Drive to Phander through some of the remote mountain villages over Shandur Pass (12000 feet). The grade is gradual and there are plentiful streams in summer. We stop at some villages along the way.
Day 13: Phander - Gilgit
Drive to Gilgit, the capital city of Gilgit-Baltistan. It is located in a broad valley near the confluence of the Gilgit and Hunza Rivers, serving as a hub for trekking in the Karakoram mountain range. Visit villages en-route.
Day 14: : Gilgit-Karimabad (Hunza Valley)
A 3 hour drive on a mountain road to Karimabad (not counting stops for sightseeing).
Surrounded by snowcapped mountain peaks such as the Rakaposhi, vast glaciers such as the Ulter, and deep gorges, Karimabad is a spectacular landscape. Roses, pansies, lilies, zinnias, and cosmos grow wild in the area, as do willow, fir, and poplar trees. Snow leopards, markhors (a type of goat), ibexes, yaks, red-striped foxes, ducks, and Marco Polo sheep also inhabit the region.
Day 15: Karimabad
Karimabad, also known as Baltit, is the capital of Hunza in Gilgit-Baltistan. It has been ranked as one of the five best places to visit in Pakistan.
Today is a full day of exploring the surroundings of Karimabad village
Day 16: Karimabad – Gilgit
Return to Gilgit and visit sacred rock carving at Ganesh Village, Kargha Buddha, Gilgit Bazaar and a short hike towards Kargah Nallah with magnificent views of Gilgit city and Rakaposhi.
Day 17: Gilgit – Islamabad
Transfer to the airport for the flight to Islamabad, PK 452, dep 8:55 am, arrives 10 am; PK606 dep 12:45 pm, arr 1:50 pm. (there are 3 flights per day, we shall purchase all three as insurance in case the first one or two are canceled due to weather). If all the flights cancel we break up the drive into 2 days:
May 3: Gilgit-Besham 8 hrs; May 4: Besham-Islamabad 4.5 hrs, not including stops for bathroom, lunch and photos).
On arrival check into the hotel. Depart for lunch at a local restaurant. This rest of the afternoon is independent
Day 18: Islamabad Tour
Sites to visit include:
Lok Virsa Folk Heritage Museum https://lokvirsa.org.pk/heritage-museum/
Located also on the Shakarparian Hills, it was renamed Pakistan National Museum of Ethnology in 2004.
Presents history and living traditions from the mainstream and remote regions of the country. The museum
consists of several buildings as well as an outdoor museum. Covering an area of 60,000 sq. ft, it features
several exhibit halls making it the largest museum in Pakistan.
Five minute walk to Pakistan Monument and Museum.
Pakistan Monument and Museum
A national monument and heritage museum located on the western Shakarparian Hills. It was constructed
to symbolize the unity of the Pakistani people. Rather than symbolizing the four provinces (as is mistakenly
assumed), the four large petals represent the four different cultures of the people of Pakistan: Punjabi,
Balochi, Sindhi and Pakhtun. The three smaller petals represent: the Minorities: Azad Kashmir and Gilgit
Baltistan. The star of the flag in the monument is designed in shiny black granite with golden stars, which
represent the people who sacrificed their life for Pakistan. The moon crescent is made from stainless steel
with inspirational writings of Quaid-e-Azam, Mohammed Ali Jinnah and Allama Iqbal. The petals are built
of granite (projecting in a suspended cantilever form, among the largest in Asia) and its inner walls are
covered with artwork depicting the various landmarks of the Pakistan. Its’ elevation makes it visible from
across the metropolitan area of Islamabad-Rawalpindi. Covering a total area of 2.8 hectares (6.9 acres), the
design of the monument is rooted in the rich Mughal architecture of the subcontinent. The petal shaped
structure is derived from the traditional muqarnas.
Connecting to the Peoples Monument by a large piazza, known as the Freedom Plaza, is the Pakistan
Monument Museum which narrates the history and tells the story of the creation of Pakistan. These two
structures are connected. Though the name of the architect–Arif Masoud–is inscribed in stone in the main
Dedication Plaque located at the beginning of the main plaza–he has honored all construction workers by
placing their hand impressions all along the long walls flanking this Freedom Plaza on both the sides. At
the farthest end is a viewing platform which gives a birds-eye view of Islamabad city.
Shakarpariyian Hills National Park
Its’ terraced garden offers pleasant sweeping vistas of Margalla and Murree hills, Rawal Lake, Rawalpindi
and Islamabad. There is corner where many plants are located that were planted by foreign Head of States.
The old Gakhars (Rajput clan) tribe leaders settled here before Indo-Pak partition in 1947. The clan was
relocated to create a park for the new federal capital of the country in 1960-61.
We return to the hotel to give you time to organize for the flight home and depart for an early
dinner at Rawal Lake.
Day 19: Depart
Transfer to the airport for flight departing early am May 5. QR 633 dep 3:35 am.