Explore Hunza Valley: A Travel Guide to Visit the Pakistani Shangri-La

Explore Hunza Valley: A Travel Guide to Visit the Pakistani Shangri-La
Photo by Faizan K. from Flickr
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Tripboba.com - Is there a heaven on this earth? Yep, there is, and it’s Hunza Valley!

Touch the true beauty of Pakistani nature in this mountainous valley at least once in a lifetime. With their own rhythm, culture, and tradition, the Hunza Valley is probably the most loved region in the country.

You’d adore the extravagant landscape, combined with the majestic aspects, as well as its extremely relaxing and hospitable atmosphere. The beauty of this mountain paradise is matchless; from the soft blossoms of the apricot trees to the dark snowcapped rock monuments of Rakaposhi, recently climbed Ultar Peak jabbing a vivid blue backdrop high above, and Bublimoting Peak.

Before planning your trip here, learn more about Hunza valley and the magnificent landscape it offers that would definitely take your breath away.

About Hunza Valley, Pakistan 

Where is Hunza Valley?

Photo by rehan_lashari from Flickr

Located in the northern part of Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan, Hunza Valley is a mountainous area bordering with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the west and the Xinjiang region of China to the north-east.

The valley is situated at an elevation of 2,438 meters (7,999 feet) and divided into three regions: Upper Hunza (Gojal), Central Hunza (“Hunza Valley”), and Lower Hunza (“Shinaki”).

Hunza Valley people

Photo by AurangzebH from Flickr

Hunza Valley and its scenery are undoubtedly beautiful. But let’s not forget about the people living in such a paradise.

Hunza people are also known as the Burusho/Brusho or Botraj. Actually, they live not only in Hunza, but also in the neighboring districts, such as Nagar, Chitral, and in valleys of Gilgit–Baltistan in northern Pakistan. A smaller group of around 350 Burusho people reside in Jammu and Kashmir, India as well.

When it comes to the language, people of Hunza and northern Gilgit-Baltistan speak a language isolate called Burushaski. It’s totally different from Hindi and Chinese language. Although attempts have been made to establish links between Burushaski and several different language families, none has been accepted by a majority of linguists.

The Burusho are known for their love of music and dance, along with their progressive views towards education and women. 

Best Time to Visit Hunza Valley 

Photo by Umayr Shahid from Flickr

If you’re planning to visit this Shangri-La, you can opt for April to October. Avoid June to August if you do not like crowds. They’re usually pretty crowded during the midsummer months as both the local and the Chinese tourists flock to the place when the temperature is nice and warm.

Travel to Hunza Valley

1. Baltit Fort Hunza valley

Photo by umairadeeb from Flickr

When you’re in Hunza Valley, everything surrounding you is beautiful. But if you want to get to know the place well, don’t forget to visit the historical places of Hunza. Baltit Fort, for example, was once the former seat of the Hunza kingdom and it becomes the Hunza Valley’s most iconic sights nowadays.

This impressive fort overlooks Karimabad, the capital of Hunza district. The scenic fort also offers panoramic views over the Hunza Valley. It has a lot to offer than just a fort, though, for you’d find a unique hotel inside the fort which can serve you authentic organic dishes.

2. Altit Fort

Photo by Huma Imtiaz from Flickr

While Baltit fort is tourists’ fave and it’s pretty much well-maintained, there is another fort, although, without much maintenance, that lies below at the bottom of the valley which is worth visiting as well. 

It was originally home to the hereditary rulers of the Hunza state who carried the title Mir (king), although they moved to the Baltit fort three centuries later. Though there is not much to see inside as the renovation is still ongoing, the exterior is quite interesting in itself.

3. Ganish village

Photo by hanming_huang from Flickr

Don’t forget to explore the historic village of Ganish. It’s the first settlement of Hunza valley where people coming from different areas. There, you can find several old mosques, one of which is 400 years old, and the Shikari watchtower you can go explore.

4. Café de Hunza

Photo by HabibullahQureshi from Flickr

While it’s such a great experience to explore the valley, you might feel like losing touch with the outer world since the internet is unreliable in Hunza Valley, even if you have a local sim card.

To connect with your friends and share the spectacular journey with your loved ones, you can hang out at Café de Hunza. They have a fast internet connection and not to mention great menus.

Try the famous walnut cakes and other selections cakes and have a cuppa while video-calling your friends. No one can resist the charm of the lovely café as well as the splendid scenery before your eyes offered from the clear windows.

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