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GO NORTHISSUE 03

Along the Silk Route

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Rakaposhi View Point

While driving through Nagar to Gilgit on the Karakoram Highway, this is the first proper view of the mighty snow-capped Rakaposhi. Towering at an approximate 7,800 meters above sea level, it completely dominates the surrounding landscape. Sacred Rocks On the way to Attabad Lake from Karimabad, you will come across the Sacred Rocks. At first glance, they seem like any other boulders on the side of the road but upon closer inspection, you will notice carvings dating back to the first millennium. It is truly a remarkable site.

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Sacred Rocks

On the way to Attabad Lake fromKarimabad, you will come across theSacred Rocks. At first glance, theyseem like any other boulders on theside of the road but upon closerinspection, you will notice carvingsdating back to the first millennium. It is truly a remarkable site.

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Attabad Lake

About a two-hour drive from Karimabad lies the famous Attabad Lake. Once a bustling village, a massive landslide in 2010 blocked the Hunza River and caused the valley to flood. Before the Chinese contractors built the roadway and tunnels, the only way for people and vehicles to cross the lake was by boat!

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Eagle’s Nest

The world-famous Eagle’s Nest is a must visit when in Karimabad, Hunza. The hotel has a remarkable view of the entire valley and its viewing deck is the best place to witness the spectacular sunrises and sunsets. This one is for your bucket list.

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Serena Hotel, Karimabad

My favourite place to stay in Karimabad was The Serena. With an extremely professional and courteous staff, it was definitely one of the highlights of my trip. Be sure to ask for the tents instead of the regular rooms. They are spacious, comfortable and luxurious. We were served freshly picked cherries on our arrival. Yum!

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Hopar Glacier

Being one of the most accessible glaciers of the region, Hopar is an awesome site. It takes a couple of hours to get there by car but it is definitely worth the nerve-racking drive. The Hopar valley is very scenic and will remind you of places like Switzerland or Austria. Once at the Hopar Hilton, a twenty-minute downhill trek can get you to the edge of the glacier. Be warned! The trek back can be quite strenuous due to a lack of oxygen. Be sure to use the local guide available at the Hilton.

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Gilgit -Biltistan

During our stay in Karimabad, there was quite a bit of rallying as elections were around the corner. The PM himself was on the campaign trail in Gilgit-Baltistan. Political campaigning was in full swing and flags of several parties were being waved around from cars and motorbikes. After the speeches, locals partook in traditional dance on music blaring from loud speakers. Men, women and children from the village participated.

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Ganish Village

Ganish is a small but historical village close to Karimabad that dates back to 1,000 years. After a massive undertaking by the Agha Khan Foundation, Ganish Village was restored to its former glory. Walking through the narrow streets, one feels as though they have travelled back in time. It was an overwhelming experience to say the least.

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Astore & Rama Meadows

After driving 4 hours from Karimabad to Astore, to our frustration we were told the road to Deosai was closed due to heavy snowfall and landslides. We ended up having lunch at a roadside dhaaba and turned around. The only place we could think of staying was PTDC Rama. Never having visited before, we really didn’t know what to expect. The road to Rama was long and broken. At some points, in fact, there was no road. As we approached Rama, we could not believe our eyes. It was the most picturesque place we had seen during our whole journey. The pictures really don’t do it justice. The PTDC lodges were exquisite and the place itself was out of a fairy-tale. The meadow had streams running through it and the lodge was strategically built at the edge of the alpine forest. For the duration of our stay there, we only heard birds chirping and the sound of water running in the streams.

Fahad Rehman
Fahad Rehman

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