Gilgit Baltistan is, perhaps, the most spectacular region of Pakistan in terms of its geography and scenic beauty. Here world’s three mightiest mountain ranges: The Karakoram, The Hindukush, and The Himalayas – meet. The whole of Gilgit Baltistan is like a paradise for mountaineers, trekkers, and anglers. The region has a rich cultural heritage and variety of rare fauna and flora.
Five out of the fourteen mountain peaks with a height of over 8000 meters including the K-2 (world’s second highest peak) and some of the largest glaciers outside polar regions including Baltoro Glacier are located in Gilgit Baltistan. Acknowledging the vast potential of tourism and its effects on downstream industries, the Government of Pakistan, as well as the Gilgit Baltistan Government, are focusing on tourism for creation of employment opportunities, achieving higher economic growth and to introduce to the outside world, “the hidden treasures” of Gilgit Baltistan.
From the route of Karakoram Highway, which is a visual wonder of the world, the whole area encapsulates Gilgit Baltistan. The world-famous annual polo encounter between Gilgit Baltistan and Chitral is held every year at the Shandur Plains which is the highest polo field in the world.
Beautiful landscape, unique cultural heritage, and rich biological diversity has given Gilgit Baltistan, a competitive advantage in attracting tourists from all over the world.
The number of tourists visiting Gilgit Baltistan has steadily increased over the years. However, the challenge ahead is not merely to increase the number of tourists visiting Gilgit Baltistan but also to consider how tourism can be better promoted without affecting the natural and cultural heritage of the area, while also improving the quality of life of people to the desired levels.