Lakeshore City

Complete Travel Guide to Pakistan

November 8, 2023

With good reason, Pakistan is quickly becoming one of the most sought-after travel destinations worldwide. Welcome to Pakistan, a country with warm people, stunning mountains, intriguing history, and mouthwatering cuisines that awaits travelers.

If you intend to visit the northern regions of Pakistan, Lakeshore City, the smartest online real estate market in Pakistan, has put up a comprehensive travel guide for you to follow. Thus, this is a travel guide to Pakistan’s northern regions.


The following itinerary is made with the consideration that tourists are visiting Pakistan for two weeks.

Week 1 Week2 
Arriving in Lahore Karimabad 
Lahore to Islamabad Hunza and its surrounding 
Seeing Islamabad Onwards to Skardu 
Towards Gilgit Valley Nearby Skardu 
The Fairy Meadows Thereon to Kalash 
Minapin Back to Islamabad 
Rakaposhi Basecamp  

Before you start looking for plane tickets and hotels, keep in mind that two weeks will not be enough to explore Pakistan in its entirety, let alone half of it.

This plan will allow you to visit a tiny section of the country’s best travel spots, which are primarily located in the northern and northeastern regions.

Visa Requirements

The government introduced a new e-visa system in 2019, which greatly streamlined the application process for a Pakistan tourist visa. 175 different nations’ nationals can apply for an e-visa. For further details on the application process, go to the official e-visa website.

The steps involved in applying for an e-visa are as follows:

  • A visa’s cost depends on several criteria, such as the type of visa, number of entries, and nationality.
    The processing time is officially stated as taking seven to ten days. However, as anything can happen, it is highly recommended that you apply for your visa a few weeks in advance.
  • One-month, three-month, and even six-month visas are available. It depends on your requests and the details of your application.
  • The duration of your visa determines how long you can stay in Pakistan after entering the nation. People typically receive 30 days. Nevertheless, obtaining a sixty-day term is also an option.
  • Letter of invitation: It is said that the e-visa system makes hotel reservations easier in place of the customary letter of invitation procedure. While some find that using hotel bookings works well, others would rather get an invitation letter.
  • You can enter the nation via air, land, or sea using an e-visa. The three most common overland borders are Wagah, Sost, and Taftan. See the sections below for more details on flying and overlanding in Pakistan.

Documents Needed for Tourist VISA

Before you can apply for your visa, you must first obtain a Letter of Invitation (LOI) from a Pakistani travel agency. A number of tour companies are now attempting to sell you an LOI.

In addition, you will need the following documents:

  • A passport-sized photograph of yourself.
  • Photocopy of ID card of the person who issued you the LOI.
  • A copy of the tour operator’s license issued by the company that issued the letter of intent.
  • If you’re traveling on your own, you’ll need to secure a hotel room for at least one night.
  • A letter from your employer may be requested by the visa authorities, but this is not always the case.
  • A certified copy of your passport.

Arriving in Lahore

Punjab, the most populous province in Pakistan, with Lahore as its cultural center. It is a singular fusion of contemporary capitalism, Sufi heritage, delicious cuisine, extensive history, and some of the most exquisite mosques on the planet.

Because of its accessibility to the Northern Areas and ease of use, Islamabad is the preferred landing destination for most travelers to Pakistan. On the other hand, anyone traveling through the nation should make time to visit Lahore.

One of the most exquisite mosques in the world is the Badshahi Mosque in Lahore. More worshippers can fit in its courtyard than in Barcelona’s Camp Nou Football Stadium—up to 100,000.

Wazir Khan, another little mosque in the Old City, was once one of the most well-known locations for Islamic calligraphy instruction. It was built in the seventeenth century.

After seeing the mosque, take a leisurely stroll around the Old City’s narrow streets, where you can lose yourself in colorful bazaars selling spices and a plethora of street cuisine.

Travelers advise having a lamb karahi at one of the many rooftop eateries along the upscale Food Street of the city after night.

If you have time, you may also witness the flag-lowering ceremony at the Indian-Pakistani border at Wagah at dusk. Every day, hundreds of people show up, and there is a great deal of energy on all sides.

Lahore to Islamabad

The goal of building Islamabad in 1960 was to make it the capital of Pakistan. Islamabad might make you think differently about the nation because of its wide, spotless streets and abundant vegetation.

The most upscale restaurants in Pakistan are located here, as are the homes of the nation’s elite. Large homes and expensive cars are typical in the city.

The largest mosque in the nation, the Faisal Mosque, is a must-see. If you intend to stay the night, make your way to the Monal restaurant, which is perched atop the Margalla Hills and has breathtaking views across the city, for dinner and to watch the sunset.

The absurdly large distances make getting around town a little challenging. If you don’t possess a car, you’ll have to depend on taxis. However, there are also sensible substitutes, such ride-hailing services like Careem or Uber. Learn about the well-known Pakistani mementos.

The Fairy Meadows

One of Pakistan’s most picturesque spots is Fairy Meadows, a verdant meadow that may be reached by taking a detour around Raikot Bridge when heading from Islamabad via the KKH. From here you can also see Nanga Parbat, a magnificent 8,125-meter-high peak in the Himalayas.

Buses to Gilgit leave Islamabad four or five times a day, between six and nine o’clock in the evening. The public uses NATCO, which is the best company out there. The VIP bus, which costs about 2,000PKR, is the only bus with air conditioning.

The trip takes about fifteen hours on average. Nevertheless, taking into account landslides and malfunctions along the route, it may take up to 21 hours.

Those who intend to travel around Pakistan are advised to buy their tickets at the bus station the day before they depart. If you can, reserve a spot in the front row. The Raikot Bridge is where you have to get off, and it’s about two hours before Gilgit.

Towards Gilgit

The nation’s capital, Gilgit-Baltistan The fascinating city of Gilgit is a fantastic place to begin your exploration of the surrounding areas. Along with bazaars and tourist attractions, this area is home to a large number of hotels and restaurants.

Due to its advantageous location, which for a considerable amount of time linked China and the Indian subcontinent, Gilgit developed into a recognized city.

The village is surrounded by a river that has multiple hanging bridges that are well-liked by photographers. Travelers recommend that anyone visiting Pakistan visit the Kargah Buddha, a 7th-century Buddha statue etched into a cliff.

Although Gilgit is a lovely town, you shouldn’t spend too much time here if you just have two weeks because the surrounding valleys are where Gilgit-Baltistan’s true beauty can be found. If you own a car, you should actually head straight to Minapin.

Minapin and Rakaposhi Camp

Travelers visiting Pakistan can take a detour on the Karakoram Highway around 75 kilometers from Gilgit to Minapin, a small, charming village with breathtaking views of the mountains. You can plan a trek to the Rakaposhi base camp from here.

Prior to departing early the following day for the base camp, spend the first night in Minapin. You can get there in one day and back the following day if you’re reasonably fit. You won’t be disappointed by the village’s breathtaking scenery.

The Beautiful Karimabad

Hunza, the northernmost district of Pakistan, has Karimabad as its capital. Tall mountains rising to a height of more than 7,000 meters and two forts recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Sites encircle Karimabad.

It’s easy to spend four or five days wandering through Karimabad’s narrow streets, which are formed of stone and resemble some ancient European cities, given the relaxed atmosphere.

The Baltit and Altit forts, in addition to Eagle’s Nest, a 360-degree vantage point with unobstructed views of Rakaposhi, Diran, and Lady Finger, are must-sees. In addition, Karimabad is a great place to go on day trips if you like hiking.

Back to Islamabad

Buses depart Gilgit very early in the morning and the trip can take up to 21 hours, so if you want to take public transit back to the city, plan ahead of time. Therefore, on the twelfth day, you should probably go from Karimabad.

Alternatively, to save a full day, you might take a plane from Gilgit to Islamabad. Additionally, schedule your return flight from Islamabad rather than Lahore to save a half-day.

Additionally, you can learn about travel guides for various locations in Pakistan, like the definitive guide to the Hunza Valley.

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