China Pakistan Silk Route Tour
|Days:||10||Location:||Kashgar – Gilgit – Islamabad|
|Max Altitude:||4734m||Season:||June – October|
|Country:||Pakistan – China||Group Size:||2-40|
The Silk Road was an interconnected series of routes through Southern Asia traversed by Caravan and ocean vessel, and connecting China with Antioch, Syria as well as other points, Silk Road is a translation from German Seidenstraße, the term first used by German geographer Ferdinand von Richthofen in the 19th century.
With stability established trade soon flourished and along with it flow of ideas that would slowly revolutionise the Chinese world, setting out from ancient monastic city of Gandhara, modern day Taxila in Pakistan, traders and Pilgrims carried the new faith of Buddhism high over the treacherous passes of the Karakoram mountains and down into the glacier fed Oases of todays Xinjiang.
For centuries, the ancient Silk Route was one of the land links connecting Northern Areas with the outside world; the armies of Alexender the Great, the early pilgrims taking Buddhism to China, caravans of spiece and silk traders, and mysterious explorers-cum-spies playing out the “Great Game” of imperial rivalry between the Russian and British empires have all trodden this path.
All these people who explored the adventure of this route brought new ideas and influences instrumental in shaping the way people think and see. The sluggish Process of change in Northern Areas, due to remoteness, suddenly speeded up with conversion of this historic path into Karakoram Highway (KKH) in early 1980s.
Initially KKH, connecting Pakistan with China spurred feeling of openness, connectivity, hope and business opportunities. However, true potential of KKH as a means to uplift the socio-economic conditions of the broader NA society has yet to be realized.
For its sheer mountain grandeur and beauty, few places can match the landscape through which Karakoram Highway passes. A fantastic spectacle is the passage of the highway along the Batura glacier, rated among the world?s seven largest. The Khunjarab pass, which the Highway crosses, and the nearby Mintaka pass lies on the ancient Silk Route connecting Europe with Asia.
The 804.47 kms (500 miles) black-top Karakoram Highway, great marvel modern engineering, links the northern region of Pakistan with Chinese Province Xinjiang. The highway follows the ancient Silk Route that was used by Chinese traders during the rule of Han Dynasty 2,000 years ago. There has always been a steady flow of visitors, scholars and traders through this route. Famous scholars like FaHian, Huen Tsang and travellars like Marcopolo also used this route. A brisk trade of tea, silk and porcelain from China and Gold, Ivory, jewels and spices from the India-Pakistan subcontinent flourished almost 2,000 years ago. Where the ancient trade caravans took months to cross the mountains, the same distance can now be covered in hours over an all-weather metalled road.
Karakoram Highway took about twenty years to complete. The 775 kms long Highway was hacked through the world?s toughest terrain. It involved the service of 15,000 men of Pakistan Army and Chinese workers. During the course of construction more than 900 workers both from China and Pakistan laid their lives. Their memorial can be seen near Nomal and at Danyore. The road between Shatial and Chilas is particularly interesting as on its stretch ancient rock-carvings and etchings can be seen which date back to the Buddhist times.
On arrival you will be received at the Airport or the road border, Transfer to hotel. With over 2000 years old history Kashgar is an isolated desert city, located at the western end of the Taklamakan Desert, shightseeing at Kashgar bazaar, dinner at Local restaurant, overnight in hotel.
Day-2: KASHGAR CITY TOUR
If any place is to be seen where time has stood still, it is Kashgar, or Kashi, as it is known locally, one finds walking through the narrow lanes of old town, a scene from Arabian Nights, and a culture that has remained intact from outside influences and local people are very friendly, Amongst the most popular professions include copper smiths, blacksmiths, carpenters, jewellers and cobblers all using tools of bygone days, We will Visit Abak Hoja Tomb, the Idkah Mosque and the old town, an opportunity to take a ride on the donkey cart taxi, dinner and overnight at hotel.
Day-3: KASHAGAR SUNDAY BAZAAR/TAXKORGAN
Sunday bazaar in Kashgar, Once a week, on Sundays, the population swells by over 100-000 people-all have varied ethnic origins like Uyghurs, Tajiks, Kyrgyzs,and Kazaks etc, selling wares from scissors to a camel. They come by foot, horsebacks, bikes, and donkey carts.
In the afternoon we drive to Taxkorgan,(370km),3-4 hrs drive, a city once controlled by Bolsheviks, mostly Tajiks inhabit the town, which lies on the ancient Slik Road, Enroute stop at Karakul lake, The beautiful view of Muztagata,(meaning ice mountain father)is magnificent, Traditional dinner at local restaurant, overnight at hotel.
A drive via Khunjerab Pass will get you into Pakistan, to the mountain kingdom of Hunza,(262km),In the older time there were few high passes leading from China, that were suitable for travel. Today the Khunjerab Pass, which at an Elevation of 4734m is the highest point on the Karakoram highway, provides an easy all-weather entry from the famous Sinkiang Province of the Peoples Republic of China. This route is a beautiful drive, with views of the high mountains of Karakorams and distant Pamir Mountain Ranges, Khunjerab is now declared a National Park, one can see Marco Polo Sheep (ovis ammon poli), We do our lunch at Sost,the 1st town of Pakistan side, after lunch proceed to Gulmit,5-7 hours drive from Taxkorgan to Sost, and further 1-2 hrs to Gulmit, dinner and overnight at hotel.
Day-5: GULMIT DAY HIKE,
After breakfast, we drive to Gulkin Village, from there we will start hiking to Borit Lake over Gulkin glacier, almost 1-2 hours walk on Gulkin glacier, we will reach to Borit lake, a beautiful lake in the middle of small Village of Borit, our staff will provide lunch at Borit lake, after lunch some walking around Borit Village, visit some traditional old houses at Borit Village, meet the local people, afternoon back to Gulmit, dinner and overnight at hotel.
After breakfast, we start boating to Attabad, on Attabad Lake or Know as Gojal Lake, on 4th January 2010,a massive rockslide blocked the Hunza river at Attabad, a 22km long lake developed behind the barrier, 2-3 hrs boating until Attabad, further drive to Karimabad, Very few places in the world compare with this small mountainous region, which was a sami-autonomous state until 1974, During the summer there is an abundance of apricots, peaches, pears and grapes, Hunza lies on the ancient trade route to Kashgar in the Chinese Province of Sinkiang, Hunza is probably most famous for longevity of its people, due to their simplicity and natural diet, along with the unpolluted mountain air. Tibetan traders referred to the beauty of this humble paradise as Shangri-La., after lunch, walk around Karimabad Village, see the culture of Hunza, Visit some Old traditional houses, meet the famous people of Hunza,,dinner and overnight at hotel.
Day-7: KARIM ABAD,
Early in the morning drive to Duiker, for sun rising on the top of some famous peaks in Hunza and Nagar Valleys, one of the best Bird View of Hunza and Nagar from Duiker, open air breakfast at Eagle Nest
Hotel Duiker, Drive back to Karimabad, we will take you to the 700 years old Baltit Fort, The old residence of Mir of Hunza, Baltit on a rocky outcrop at the base of the Ultar Nala, you will also Visit the Altit Fort, which is 200 older then Baltit fort, Evening you can spend your time walking in Karimabad Bazaar and enjoy view of Rakaposhi (7788m)Diran Peak,(7266m) Golden Peak(7027m),Ultar Peak( 7388m) Distagil Sar (7885m) etc. evening Traditional Hunza Dinner with Hunza Music and traditional dance. Overnight at hotel.
Drive to Gilgit and on arrival of City tour of Gilgit and Kargha. A visit to Gilgit and its Bazaar will give you an opportunity to become acquainted with mountain people. Situated 12km southwest of Gilgit is Kargah, a small valley with several large rock carvings of Lord Buddah, It is not known exactly when the carvings were completed, but the workmanship is definitely that of a talented master. After lunch proceed to Chilas, 3-4 hrs drive, overnight at hotel.
After breakfast, drive to Islamabad via Karakoram highway, with some photo stops, enroute, we will also stop at Shatiyal to see the Rock Carvings before driving further to Islamabad via Besham and Abbottabad, The drive to Islamabad is full of scenery and the culture on the way is so enchanting that you cannot come out of it until you stop at your hotel in Islamabad, 10-12 hours drive from Chilas. Overnight at hotel.
Day-10: DEPART ISLAMABAD
Morning Rawalpindi and Islamabad City Tour, Proceed to Taxila, about 25km, almost 45 min drive, an UNESCO world heritage site and most important site of Ghandahara Cultures some 2000 years ago. Visit the Museum with rich collection of artifacts and statues of Buddah dating back to pre-Christian era, lunch at Taxila, drive back to Islamabad, dinner at hotel, at night transfer to Islamabad International airport, Fly back homeland
What is include in service?
- Accommodation as per the list provided.
- Private air-Conditioned transport for all ground transfers.
- Meals, breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, in hotels.
- Entrance fees to museum and sites during Tour.
- Tips at hotels and airport.
What is not include in service?
- International airfares.
- Personal insurance.
- Extras at hotels, like drinks, laundry, personal phone calls, etc.
- Anything which is not mentioned at above given programme.
|Gilgit:||Marco Polo Inn|
|Karimabad:||Hunza Embassy/Hunza Baltit Inn|
|Chilas:||Panorama Inn/Shangrila Midway|
|Islamabad:||Regency Inn/Hunza Embassy|