Astore Valley

Astore Valley is located in Astore District in the Pakistani region of Gilgit-Baltistan. The valley, adjoining the eastern side of mountain Nanga Parbat, is about 120 km long, having area of 5,092 km2.

The entrance of the valley is located about 60 km southeast of Gilgit with four side-valleys. The valley has more than 100 villages. It’s total population is 71,666 (Census 1998) including Gudai, Shekong, Dass Kariam, Loas, Louze, Chilm, Bubin & Gorikot. Parisheng Eid Ghah, Fina, Bulen, Chongra, Tari Shing, Rattu, Kamri, and Minimerg are also included in this region.

Rama lake and pastures are the most famous tourist attraction in the region. The majority of people practice subsistence agriculture and livestock is the main source of livelihood. Due to its diverse landscape and climatic conditions the valley provides excellent habitat for a variety of commercially important medicinal plants.

Astore valley has a moderate climate during summer. In winter it can snow up to 6 ft in the main valleys and up to 2 to 3 ft in the mountains.

The main language spoken in the valley is Shina. Urdu, which is the national language of Pakistan, is the second most frequently spoken language. Shina has many sub-dialects especially significant in Bunji, Dashkin, Doyan, Praishing, Gorikot, across the Burzil and Rattu regions. Shina is mild phonetically and uses the Arabic script. Astore, a corridor to Dardistan, has a rich linguistic background due to its centuries old connections with the rest of the Indian subcontinent. British officers visiting and surveying led to an admixture of foreign words in the local language.