Swat Valley located in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan, it is district and it is 166 km (91miles) far from the capital city Islamabad. It is also known as Switzerland of Pakistan, it is saying that you can found beauty of Switzerland in Swat but you cannot find beauty of Swat in Switzerland. Before 1969 it was Princely State, it is famous for high mountains, green meadow and clear lakes.
The Valley of Swat is of great historical importance including the history of Buddhist Heritage of Swat, Hindu Shahi Rulers and Sansakrit, Mahmud Gaznzvi (Advent of Islam), Yous zai’s arrival.
1. Swat Museum
2. Malam Jaba
Rama Valley is near Astor of Gilgit Baltistan, Pakistan, location is surrounded by beautiful trees of pine, cedar, fir and juniper, Valley is covered by snow for seven to eight months in year and in summer it becomes lush green and looks like paradise on the earth. It is 3300 above the sea level.
NARAN AND KAGHAN VALLEYS
Naran and Kaghan are small valleys in the district Hazzar province of Khyberpakkhtunhwa. Kaghan Valley is named for Kunar River which flows through the length of valley, the Valley boardens about 160 km rising from an elevation of 2134 feet to its highest point. Valley is full of natural loveliness, pleasant weather, beautiful lakes, streams, amazing topography, glaciers are still in unbelievable.
Naran valley is 23 km far from Kaghan valley; it is small tourist village open only during the tourist season that is from May to September and rest of the time is covered with snow. Lake Saiful Mlook is the visiting point for all tourists that is full of natural beauty of this valley and 6 miles east of the town.
GILGIT AND HUNZA VALLEYS
Gilgit is the capital of Gilgit Baltistan, it lies1454 meters above the sea level and 365 km form Rawalpindi and surrounded by beautiful lakes, mountains ranges, rivers and glaciers. Gilgit has number of historical points, at point of history Buddhism was the way of life in this valley. About 10 km from Gilgit, there is Buddha sculpture carved out of stones, Taj Mughal is another monument which built some 700 years ago and it is located about 30 km from Gilgit town, about 40 km from Gilgit another visiting place is Sher Qila and other places of intrest are Naltar Valley and Kargah Nala which is popular for trekking.
Hunza is mountains valley in Gilgit, situated with an elevation of 2500 meters and territory is spread at about 7,900 sq km. Hunza has three parts divided ethnically, Gojal in this area people speak Wakhi’s, Central in this area people peak Brushaski and Shinaki in this area people speaks Shina language but Brukshaski is understood throughout Hunza.
Karimabad offer an awe-inspiring view of Rkaposhi Peak, the fairy tale like Castle of Baltit above Karimabad is landmark of Hunza. Hunza is ideal for mountaineering, hiking and trekking.
Palas Valley is located in tehsil Palas of district Kohistan of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and on left bank of river Indus of Pakistan. It is famous for beautiful forests, wild life and lush green mountains despite of its natural beauty it is hidden for tourists just because non availability of hotels and accommodation. This place after earthquake of 2005 got special attention from several national and international NGO’S and they contribute a lot for promotion of this tourist place. People of Palas are simple and most of them are uneducated.
CHITRAL VALLEY AND KAFIRISTAN (KALASH VALLEY)
The word Chitral is meant as field in local population. It is located in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan with an altitude of 1,128 meters. Chitral is bounded by Afghanistan on north, south and west .Before Islam it was known as Buddhist country, it has always been remained attraction for invaders like Alexander, Changazee and many more…
Chitral is famous for mountaineering, trekking and hiking, unlike rest of Pakistan Polo is famous game of Chitral and foot ball is also favorite game. Throughout the, the year number of sports events held including the Shandour Polo tournament. Kalash Valley is the main attraction for tourist, Kalash Valley is the home for kafir-Kalash which is primitive Pagan tribe, according to legends, Kafir-Kalash is the descendents of the Alexander. Over 3000 Kafir-Kalash settlers are living in valley; Kalash women wear hand spun wool dyed to black in winter and black gowns in summers.
Glacier is slowly moving mass of snow that is formed by accumulation of snow into granular ice that remains in motion outward and downward by the force of gravity and stressed of its accumulative mass. Pakistan’s glacier covers 13,680 sq km, as a matter of fact 37 percent of KarKaram are is covered by glacier. Pakistan is the land of glacier, it has long glacier of world like Siachin Glacier, Batura Glacier, Hispar Glacier, Biafo Glacier, Baltoro Glacier, Yenguta Glacier, Chiantra Glacier, Tirch Mir Glacier, Chogo Lugma Glacier.
The word Siachin is composed of two words Sia means Rose, Chun means Abundance hence it refers to land of abundance roses. It is the second longest glacier in the world and longest in Karakoram, this glacier lies in the line of control between Pakistan and India. The length of Siachin G lacier is 75 km and 1180 sq km. The Glacier is main source of the river Indus.
Baltoro Glacier is located in Gilgit Baltistan of Pakistan and it runs throughout Karakoram mountain range.Baltoro Glacier is 57 km and ane of the longest Glacier outside the Polar Region. Shigar River which is tributary of Indus River takes origin from this Glacier.Several large tributary Glaciers feed the main Baltoro Glacier including the Godwin Austen flowing south from K2, the Arbuzzi and the various Gasehrbrum Glaciers flowing from the Gasherbrum group of peaks
K2 is name was given by T.G.Montgomery (British Surveyour) with K stands for Karakoram and 2 stands for second peak listed in 1852.Later it is known as Mount Godwin Austen for early explorer but it was never recognised. K2 is located in Pakistan and China border, it is the second largest mountain peak in the world, the Pakistan’s highest one and world’s 22 nd prominent mountain. A Chogori word is used for K 2 which is Balti word derived from Chhogo ri means Large Mountain while locals called it Kechu. The Chinese local call it Oogri which means Great Mountain.
Due to difficulty for ascent it is also known as Savage Mountain and 2nd highest fatility rate among the eight-thousanders. It is more hazardous to climb from Chinese side so most of the time it is climbed from Pakistan side. K2 has an elevation of about 8612 meters that is 28,253 feet.
Word Gasherbrum is derived from Balti words Ragasha means beautiful and Brum means mountain hence it is also called Beautiful Mountain, often claim to means as Shining Wall. It is group of peaks with elevation of 8068 meters located in Karakoram ranges of Pakistan China border located in northeast end of Baltro Glacier. The highest peak is Gasherbrum1 which is known as Hidden Peak and it is world’s 11th higest peak and rest 3 other peaks are over 8000 meters.
Mountain Passes connect Pakistan with China and Afghanistan .Most important passes are KHYBER PASS, BOLAN PASS, KARAKORAM PASS, GOMAL PASS, KHOJAK PASS, and TOCHI PASS
Khyber Pass is mountainous pass that connect Peshawar (Pakistan) to Jalalabad (Afghanistan). It is the most renowned pass in Pakistan with the length of 56 km, throughout the history it has been important trade route between south and central Asia. Khyber Pass is the lowest and widest of all; its height is about 3517 feet. Today two highways thread their way through the Khyber Pass one for motor traffic and other for trade purpose. A railway line also travels to the head of the pass.
Bolan Pass is mountainous and connects Quetta (Pakistan) with Kandahar (Afghanistan) and it is about 120km.It is an important pass connecting Jacobabad and Sibbi with Quetta. Traditionally Brauhi and Balouchi ethnic groups are in charge to maintain law and order situation throughout the pass and they still preserve their Dravidian language.
Karakoram Pass is mountainous pass in between two mountains; the width of pass is approximately 45 meters. The high altitude and lack of vegetation is responsible for increase ratio of deaths for countless pack animals. Karakoram pass assume to be safe and trouble free because of stable upward slope on both sides and lack of summer snow and ice much of the year. Karakoram Pass falls on the boundary of disputed Indian Held Kashmir and China. It plays major role of dispute between Pakistan and India over the control of Siachin Glacier area west to pass.
The name of Gomal Pass has been originated from Gomal River; it is mountainous pass on the Afghanistan border of Pakistan in Federally Administered Tribal Areas and also located in between the Khyber and Bolan Pass. It links Gazni in east Afghanistan with Dera Ismail Khan and Tank in Pakistan through Kot Murtaza and Domandi.
Khojak Pass is located in the Toba Kakar range at a height of about 1945 meters above sea level, it connects Qila Abdullah with Chaman in Baluchistan province of Pakistan. Khojak Pass is 153 km away from Quetta goes and straight to Afghanistan. Khojak Tunnel was built 115 years ago and it is longest tunnel in Pakistan. Historically the Achakzai, across the Khojak mountain have controlled the smuggling routes around the Khojak Pass.
Tochi Pas is located in Khyberpakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan; it connects Bannu in Pakistan with Ghazni in Afghanistan.
Indus River originate from Tibetan plateau in the vicinity of Lake Mansarovar, it courses through the Ladakh (India) then enters into Pakistan via Northern areas and flows all along he Pakistan and finally merges into Arabian Sea. The total length of river is 3180 km and it is the longest river of Pakistan.
Without Indus and its tributaries Pakistan would have been dry barren land long ago. The Indus River is lifeline for Pakistan, it nourishes temperate forests, plain and countryside by its turn and twists.
Sutlej River is the longest river of all five rivers of Punjab; sometimes it is also called Red River. Sutlej River originates near Lake Rakshastal (Tibet) near Mount Kailas and ends in Pakistan. Sutlej is joined by the Beas River and unites with Chenab River forming Panjnad River near Bhawalpur. The Panjnad joins the Indus
River at Mithankot. Total length of Sutlej River is approximately 1551 km.
Chenab River is the major river of Indian Held Kashmir and Punjab. It originates from Himacahal Pardesh of Indian States and takes sout western direction through Punjab province of the Pakistan. Chenab River merges with the Sutlej River near Uch Sharif to form Panjnad River and continues to join Indus River at Mithankot.
The total length of the Chenab is approximately 960 km.
Ravi River is transboundry river courses through India and Pakistan. It is the one of five river which Punjab its name. It originates from Indian state of Himachal Pardesh and courses all around the Indian and Pakistan border. It joins the Chenab River in Pakistan and total length of Ravi River is approximately 720 km.
Beas River originates from Central Himachal Pardesh of India and flows from India and enters into Pakistan. Presently no flowing water but still evident due to Lakes, wet land, topographic or vegetation patterns.
Jhelum River is the largest River of the Punjab, it originates from Himachal Pardesh of India that flows through India and enters District Jhelum of Pakistan. It is the tributary of the River Chenab. Total length of River is approximately 813 km.
Pakistan is blessed country which has everything Rivers, Lakes, Glaciers, Mountain ranges, Green lands and Deserts. Pakistan has three main Deserts namely Thar, Cholistan and Kharan deserts.
Thar desert comes into category of monsoon deserts, its origin is controversial some consider it to be 4000 to 10000 years old while others states that it to be around 2000-1500 BC old. Around his time the Ghaggar River dried and converted into desert .Thar desert is bounded on the north by Sutlej River, on the east by Arravali Range, on the south Rann of Katch and on the west by River Indus.
Thar Desert is world’s 7th largest desert, mostly unpopulated except small towns of Umer Kot, Mithi and Mirpurkhas spread over its vastness. The people live in round mud walled huts. The women of the area wear long, full red or orange colored skirts and cover their heads with embroidered or tie-dyed shawls. Married women encase their arms with bangles from wrist to shoulder, widow wear above the elbow only and singles only around the wrist.
Local people call it Rohi and about the derivation of word there are two concepts which are; most of the people believe that it is derived from Turkish word Chol means Desert (Land of Desert) but a few believe that it is derived from word Cholna means Moving.The people of Cholistan, moving from one place to another in search of water and fodder for their animals Cholistan has population of about 100,000 and belongs to many different tribes, most of them are settlers of Baluchistan .The women wear full red skirts and embroidered shawls and the men pile bright colored turban on their head. The dry bed of the Hakra River runs througt hthe area, along which many settlements of the Indus Valley civilization have been found. Derawar Fort is the major landmark of Desert which is 48 km far from Dera Nawab Sahib.