Places to Visit in Hunza
Pakistan is home to some of the world’s most beautiful natural wonders. Its natural beauty finds few parallels and is known for its peace and tranquility. Among the plethora of places, one of the most iconic is Hunza.
Hunza is one of the crown gems of Pakistan’s natural beauty. It is a mountainous valley in the northern region of Pakistan, Gilgit-Baltistan. Formed by the Hunza River, the Hunza Valley borders Ishkoman to the northwest, Shigar to the southeast, Afghanistan’s Wakhan Corridor to the North, and the Xinjiang region of China to the northeast. The serenity and majesty of the place give it a calming outlook providing tranquility and peace to the area. It is a pristine location that offers a whole host of beautiful landscapes. You can see the snow-capped peaks, crystal-clear lakes, and lush green plains in one place.
The magnificence of the Hunza Valley is truly unparalleled, and explaining its beauty in a few words is almost impossible. However, it would be unjust if I didn’t tell you more about it. So today, we will explore Hunza – the people, the culture, and the places you should visit on your next trip.
The Hunza Valley is a mountainous valley in Pakistan’s Northern Gilgit Baltistan region. It gets its name from the Hunza River, which flows nearby. The Valley is situated at an elevation of 2,438 meters (7,999 feet), making it one of the highest inhabited areas in the world. The Hunza Valley borders Ishkoman to the northwest and Shigar to the southeast and is nestled between the international borders of Afghanistan and China. Geographically, the Valley is divided into Upper Hunza (also called Gojal), Central Hunza, and Lower Hunza.
The Hunza Valley is one of the most exotic places in Pakistan. It contains several peaks, ancient forts, watch towers, and mountain passes. The Valley is also home to several eco-friendly hiking treks, which make it a true adventurer’s paradise. It is truly a breathtaking place. The scenery of the area makes you fall in love with it repeatedly. You should visit the Hunza valley if you like getting engrossed in nature.
When Should You Travel To Hunza Valley?
Although the allure of the Hunza valley remains throughout the year, we recommend you visit Hunza during the summer months from April to August. During this time, the temperature remains mild and pleasant. Neither the heat nor the cold spoil your stay, and you can enjoy the Valley to the fullest. You can enjoy the warm sun on your skin with a chilly breeze.
In addition, you also get to experience the magnificent place and indeed dwell on the beautiful places you can visit in Hunza. There are tons of them, and we will get to them in a bit but suffice it to say, you will get the experience of a lifetime.
How To Reach Hunza Valley?
The Hunza Valley, situated in Gilgit-Baltistan, is about a 2-hour drive from the central city of Gilgit, the capital of Gilgit Baltistan. You can take the Karakoram Highway/N-35, making your travel much more effortless. Moreover, you can come from the federal capital, Islamabad, about 600 kilometers from Hunza, and it will take you around 13 hours to reach the Valley.
Alternatively, you can fly into Gilgit airport, about a 45-minute flight from Islamabad, and then travel by road, which will take around 2-3 hours to reach Hunza. The roads leading up to Hunza are sometimes barren, so exercise caution when driving up to the Valley.
25 Best Places To Visit In Hunza, Pakistan
Hunza is home to some of the most beautiful places in Pakistan. It is perhaps the only place where you will never run out of things to do. The glistening mountain tops, encapsulating lakes, and dazzling orchards make Hunza one of the top places to visit.
Moreover, the prepossessing nature of Hunza is only further enhanced by the historical forts, high landscapes, and mouth-watering cuisine. The proximity to Afghanistan and China also means that some of their traditions have made their way into the life of people in Hunza. This makes for a truly wholesome and life-lasting affair, giving you more reason to visit Hunza.
Here are some of our top places to visit in Hunza that you should check out on your next trip:
The Altit fort is one of the top places to visit in Hunza. It is an old castle around 15 minutes from Karimabad. The fort is a vital piece of local history as it served as the residence of Hunza Valley’s hereditary leaders who carried the title of Mirs. The ancient fort traces its roots around 1100 years back when it was created as a watch tower, making it the oldest monument in Gilgit-Baltistan.
Over the years, however, the fort has evolved and now serves as a museum. It is also known for its royal garden and surrounding communities where older local women sit in traditional dresses and converse, carrying on the legacy of the place. The Altit Fort also received the UNESCO Asia Pacific Heritage Award for Cultural Heritage Conservation in 2011. We recommend that you make this place an absolute must-visit on your trip to the Valley.
Attabad Lake Hunza
Also known as the Bride of the Hunza Valley, Attabad lake is one of the most hypnotic places in Pakistan. It is located in the Gojal region of the Hunza valley in Gilgit-Baltistan. It was created in 2010 due to a significant landslide in Attabad. However, despite its less-than-ideal formation, Attabad remains a spectacle for tourists. Its turquoise-blue color is a fascinating sight that leaves everyone in awe of the lake.
Moreover, its proximity to the Karakoram Mountains makes the lake one of the most majestic places in Pakistan, which is why it is considered one of the finest lakes in Pakistan. If you want to be blown away by spellbinding beauty, you should visit Attabad Lake.
Named after the people of Baltistan, the Baltit fort is among the oldest forts in the Hunza Valley. Founded in the 8th Century CE, the fort boasts a long and prodigious history and numerous legends. The fort is a sight to behold, with its roots dating back several centuries.
The fort was once the residence of the Mirs (or Kings) of the Hunza Valley. Today, after centuries of preservation and trust, the fort is a museum where people can visit and immerse themselves in its history. It is one of the top places to visit in Hunza, and we recommend you check it out!
The Batura Glacier is one of the largest glaciers outside of polar regions in the world. It is located in the Gojal region of the Upper Hunza District, just north of the mountains Batura and Passu. The Glacier flows from the West to the East and is calming.
The alpine Glacier is a gem of natural beauty, and its surrounding is dotted with roses and juniper trees, making it a truly magnificent location. If you want to visit one of the most beautiful places in Hunza, we suggest you visit Batura Glacier.
Located in Gojal (Upper Hunza), Borith Lake is one of the most awe-inspiring lakes in Pakistan. It is situated at an altitude of roughly 2600 meters (8500 ft.) above sea level, making it one of the highest lakes in Pakistan. It is located approximately 2 kilometers from Husseini Lake. Moreover, it can be accessed through hiking treks and Jeep Routes.
The lake is surrounded by vast plains and is looked over by the mighty mountains, which only adds to the area’s beauty. The Borith Lake stands tall and distinctive among all the natural wonders in Pakistan and is a sight to behold. It would help if you visited this lake as it is one of the best in Hunza.
Nestled between the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China, Chapursan is a valley in the Northern part of Pakistan. It is close to the international borders of both Afghanistan and China.
The Valley is home to some historical sites such as Yaskuk, Rovai Sam, Khumpir Dior, and the Shrine of Baba Ghundi. The shrine, in particular, is a respected landmark among the locals who celebrate Baba Ghundi as the Sufi Saint who brought Islam to the Valley. If you want things to do in Hunza, you should consider visiting the Chapursan Valley.
The Ganish (or Ganesh) village in Pakistan is known as the oldest and first settlement on the ancient Silk Road. According to scholars, the word “Ganish” is derived from the Burushaski word “Genish”, meaning gold signaling the village’s long history.
Ganish is also home to four mosques that date back 300-400 years and are also UNESCO Heritage Award for Culture Heritage Conservation winners. This long cultural and economic heritage makes Ganish unique and one of the best places to visit in Hunza.
The Gojal Valley is situated in the North Western part of Pakistan and is home to several small and large valleys. It is the second and largest subdivision of the Hunza district. Almost all of the Valley is located by the side of the Karakoram Highway, making it the perfect spot for on-the-road travelers. The Valley is central to the Hunza district as it contains many landmarks commonly associated with Hunza.
The Gojal Valley and its prestigious outlay are also home to several other wonders, such as Shimshal, Shishkat, Gulmit, Gulkhin, Hussaini, Gircha, Sost, and Nazimabad, among others. The Gojal valley is the go-to location while traveling in Hunza as it provides many fantastic places you can check, and we recommend you do that!
Gulmit (or Gul-e-Gulmit) is a town that serves as the capital of Gojal. However, this township nestled between the Gojal Valleys is no ordinary locality. Gulmit is a picturesque location with mountains, monuments, and valleys that portray the site’s beauty.
Moreover, there are several forts that one can see from Gulmit, such as the Qalanderchi fort, Rashit fort, and the Ondra fort, which only make this place more attractive and genuinely one of the most beautiful places to visit in Hunza. Furthermore, the township is home to five Jamat Khanas (or religious community centers), which leave a significant presence in the area. Gulmit is also the location of the old summer Palace of the Mir of Hunza, which stands at the Northern edge of Gulmit’s historic Polo Ground. Lastly, ancient places of worship now serve as public libraries where you can go and relax!
Located in the scenic Hoper Valley, the Hoper Glacier is one of the top places in Hunza. The sprawling white canvas of the Glacier provides a view not matched by other natural wonders in Pakistan. In addition, the serenity of the peak offers a peaceful location where one can feel the tranquility of nature and become one with the wilderness.
The calm and soothing of the Hoper Glacier are unmatched in other places on other making it a special feeling when you visit. If you enjoy yourself and find solace in the mountains, you should visit the Hoper Glacier!
The Hunza River, 190 km long, is one of the best places to visit in the Hunza Valley. The principal source of water in the Valley, the Hunza River, is formed by the confluence of the Chapursan and Khunjerab Nalas (gorges), which are fed by glaciers. The river is then joined by the Gilgit River and the Naltar River before eventually feeding into the Indus River.
The Hunza River is one of the region’s most iconic and picturesque water bodies. The ever-flowing stream crossing through rocks and edging of the water bank make it a remarkable wonder to experience. Its appeal is such that it draws in thousands of visitors each year. If you want to feel the calm and relaxation mother nature offers, we recommend you visit the Hunza River.
Sacred Rocks of Hunza
The Sacred Rocks of Hunza (or Haldeikish) are Petroglyphs that lie east of the Hunza river and are situated on the main Karakoram Highway between the Ganish Village and Attabad Lake. The rocks contain messages such as historical interactions, battles, and warning signs for travelers.
The rich history of these rocks and the chance to witness ancient writing styles pull many travelers to the rock. The opportunity to relive history and become one with our past is an attraction for others. Whatever the case, if you are ever in Hunza, we highly recommend this as a thing that should be on the top of your bucket list.
Hussaini Suspension Bridge
The Hussaini Suspension bridge is one of the most dangerous bridges in the world. Sometimes referred to as the Hussaini Hanging Bridge, the Bridge is a rope structure connecting the Zarabad hamlet to the Hussaini Village. It has become a significant tourist attraction in Hunza and has attracted much attention.
While it may seem dangerous, the Bridge is safe and stable, and you can easily cross it. However, it still makes you feel like you are doing the extraordinary. The locals have also set up juice and dry fruit stalls that complement the experience. If you are an adrenaline junkie, you should put this on your list of must-visit places.
The capital of Hunza, Karimabad (formerly known as Baltit), is one of the fascinating places you will find in Hunza. Its golden sand, apricot trees, and other natural scenic views make it one of the best places in Hunza. Named in honor of Prince Karim Aga Khan, the current spiritual head of the Shia Ismaili Nizari community (who make up the majority of Hunza), the capital is a glistening blend of both flora and fauna.
In addition, the city is known for its history and landmarks, such as the Baltit Fort, Queen Victoria Monument, Channel Walk, and the snow-clad mountains of Rakaposhi and the glaciers of Ulter Nala. There are still some old stone roads reminiscent of the times of the Silk Road, which only add to the area’s legacy. In addition, the Karimabad market is open every day so that you can get a true sense of the culture of the people of Hunza. It is truly a remarkable sight and one you should strongly consider visiting!
Khunjerab National Park Hunza
The Khunjerab National Park is Pakistan’s third largest national and one of the few national parks at a high altitude. It was primarily established as a means to protect the Marco Polo Sheep in the area. However, it has since been upgraded to a category two national park and has also evolved, serving as home to several species. It currently houses various animal species such as the Snow Leopard, Himalayan Ibex, Red Fox, Tibetan Wolf, and Blue Sheep.
The Park is situated a few kilometers from the village of Sost between the borders of Pakistan and China, adjacent to the Taxkorgan Natural Reserve in China. The wide array of mammal and bird species in the Park gives it its unique biodiversity. If you are ever up north, we highly recommend you check out the Khunjerab National Park along with the Khunjerab Pass, which we will discuss next.
Often referred to as the Pak-China gateway for trade, the Khunjerab Pass is vital for trade relations between the two countries. The Pass, which cuts through the Karakoram mountains, is located at an elevation of 4,693 meters (or 15,397 feet), making it one of the highest international border crossings in the world.
If you want to find out the best thing to do in Hunza, this is it! Take a tour to the edge of Hunza and witness firsthand the glimpses of another country. You experience the essence of being in another without leaving your country. The Pass also has some shops where you can buy souvenirs, but if you are out of money, don’t worry; you can also find the world’s highest ATM at the Khunjerab Pass. Overall, it would be an understatement to say that this is one of the best places in Hunza.
Misgar Valley Hunza
The Misgar valley is a small but breathtaking valley located right at the edge of Hunza. It is known for its trekking as many tourists find that trekking between the Kilik Pass and Mintaka Pass is exceptionally comfortable, and they get to witness the luscious green plains of the Valley as they do so.
Moreover, the Misgar Valley is also home to the Qalandarchi Fort, a local landmark made by the British in their days. These attractions make visiting Misgar Valley one of the most worthwhile things to do while in Hunza. So, if you want to stroll into nature, we suggest you visit the Misgar Valley!
The Nagar Valley is one of the most sublime places in Hunza. Located on the Karakoram highway north of the city of Gilgit, the Nagar Valley is the epitome of natural beauty. The nature and calmness of the area make it one of the serene experiences up North.
The Valley is home to several tourist attractions such as mountain peaks (Rakaposhi, Diran, Alchori Sar, Spantik), meadows & pastures (Kacheli, Taghafari, Gappa Valley, Barkot), Lakes (Rush Lake, Snow Lake), Glaciers (Hopar Glacier, Miar Glacier, Hisper Glacier, Biafo Glacier), and Mountain Passes (Hispar Pass, Chaprot Pass, Chumar Bakur Pass). These combine to give Nagar Valley an exquisite blend of natural and human beauty unrivaled in this world.
The Passu Cones (also known as Tupopdan) are a set of mountain peaks that lie North of the Gulmit village in the Gojal Valley. The multiple peaks make the Passu cones one of Pakistan’s most accessed and pictured locations. The scenery of the Passu cones is unmatched in the North, and its supremacy remains unquestioned.
The tall mountain peaks also make for remarkable scenery, adding texture and depth to an otherwise scattered wilderness. So the next time you visit Hunza, make sure you visit this location and take pictures of this prepossessing location.
Passu Glacier Hunza
The Passu Glacier is one of the most phenomenal glaciers in the world. Its pristine white snowcaps make it feel like you are walking amongst the clouds. The Passu Glacier is situated on the South Side of the Passu village. Passu Peak is also located on the backside of the Glacier.
If you like to enjoy the relaxing, calm feel of cold air blowing on your face, then we suggest that the first thing you do in Hunza is to visit the Passu Glacier. It will be a truly life-altering experience that you will have with you for the rest of your life.
Rakaposhi (“light wall”) is a mountain in the Karakoram mountain range. Its prestige is such that you would be amiss if you didn’t take the time to enjoy the view. The hill can be seen from all over Hunza and is accompanied by a large stream flowing downhill, which adds to the beauty of the place.
In addition, the mountain peaks are surrounded by famous glaciers such as Barpu, Biro, and Pisan, further enhancing the area’s beauty. All in all, Rakaposhi is a place where you can soak in all of the wonders of mother nature and truly experience all of the gifts that lie in the wilderness.
Rush Lake Hunza
Dubbed the highest lake in Pakistan, Rush Lake is situated in the Nagar Valley at an altitude of around 4694 meters (15400 ft.) above sea level. It is also considered one of the highest alpine lakes in the world. It is located about 15 kilometers north of the Miar peak and Spantik Peaks which lie within the Nagar Valley.
The beauty of Rush Lake is surreal. The crystal clear water with the backdrop of mountains and glaciers brings out the best of the lake. The trek to Rush Lake is also phenomenal. It provides views of Spantik, Malubiting, Miar Peak, Phuparash Peak, and Ultar Sar, which all contribute to increasing the beauty of the Nagar Valley and Rush Lake. The lake’s general vibe is soothing and relaxing, which are some of the key elements of the best places you can visit in Hunza.
The Shimshal Valley is located in the Gojal Tehsil of the Hunza district. It is one of the highest permanently inhabited places on earth at 3100 meters (10200 ft.) above sea level. It is the enormous Valley in the district, and its beauty is par excellence.
In addition, the Shimshal river also flows near the Valley, further enhancing the area’s scenery. The Valley also houses several mountains such as Distaghil Sar, Kunjut Sar, Trivor, and Pumari Chhish, among others giving the Valley its rightful title of “The Valley of Mountaineers.” Moreover, the Shimshal Valley is home to majestic glaciers such as Malangudhi, Yazghail, and Khurdopin. All these attractions make the Valley one of the best places to visit in Hunza, and we recommend putting it on your bucket list.
Sost Border Hunza
The Sost Border is located between the international boundaries of Pakistan and China. It is referred to as Sost after the name of the village it is located close to, which is also the last village between Pakistan and China. This border is an integral part of Pakistan-China trade and helps in promoting cross-cultural collaboration.
If you want a peek into China, you should visit the Sost Border. It is set to be an experience like no other, and we think you will enjoy it!
Ultar Sar is the southern-eastern most pristine snowclad peak of the Batura Muztagh mountains (a sub-range of the Karakoram mountains) located in the Northeast of Karimabad in the Hunza valley. It lies around 10 kilometers from Karimabad and is one of the most picturesque locations in the Hunza Valley.
The peak is a remarkable piece of natural wonder, and its magnificence is unparalleled. Ultar Sar is also known for its geographic position and outlay. The mountain rises dramatically to around 5300 meters (17388 feet), making it visually striking. If you are an adventurer or just another adrenaline junkie, we highly recommend you check out this place!
1. Which place is Most Famous in Hunza?
Hunza houses some of the most beautiful and famous places in Pakistan, so it isn’t easy to pick one, but if we had to pick our favorite site, it would be Attabad Lake. Created in the aftermath of a landslide, Attabad Lake is one of clearest blue water lakes in the world and a major tourist attraction.
2. Why is Hunza the most famous?
The Hunza Valley is one of the most famous places in Pakistan. This is because it is home to some of the most beautiful places in Pakistan. Mountains, lakes, forts, orchids, and pristine locations are all within the Hunza valley. Moreover, Hunza is also famous for its people’s long life (which is a result of a highly healthy diet) and its enviable position as the most literate place in Pakistan, with a literacy rate of more than 95% (above the national average for both boys and girls).
3. Is Hunza worth visiting?
Hand to heart, we don’t think we have seen a place more fabulous than Hunza. The natural beauty is truly enthralling, and the landscapes are out-of-this-world. If you get the chance, you should visit Hunza Valley without a second doubt!
4. What are the Best things to do in Hunza?
The beautiful places to visit in Hunza make almost every activity there worthwhile. However, we would recommend taking a hike in the wilderness. You can experience the joyful breeze across your skin while you experience all of the natural wonders that Hunza offers.
5. Are the people of Hunza Muslims?
The majority of the population of Hunza is Muslim. Most follow His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan the fourth and adhere to the Ismaili Shia sect of Islam.
All in all, the Hunza Valley is one of the most prestigious and majestic places in Pakistan. Its natural beauty is truly unrivaled, and the environment is like no other. The combination of natural and human beauty is one of the defining features of the Hunza valley. The lush green scenery, untouched snowcaps, and pristine streams all gel well together to make Hunza one of the most beautiful natural hotspots in the world.