Wakhan, is a mountainous area in the northeastern corner of Afghanistan, and people of Wakhan are known as Wakanis, Wakh means a highland and second part of the name an means the Pass, therefore the meaning of Wakhan is Pass to a highland.
Wakhan, overshadowed by the Pamir plateau (the roof of the world) it links the four famous mountain ranges of Central Asia, Hindukush and Karakoram to its south and Kunlun and Tien Shan to its north. The famous river of Central Asia, Oxus, springs from its very vicinity. Overall length of Wakhan is about 300 km. The famous Afghan promontory shares a 300 km border with Pakistan. Southern Passes of Wakhan salient traverse the Hindu Kush range, and have been of great military significance providing access from Wakhan to Pakistan. The eastern-most section between Korambar & Broghil Pass forms a lower range and the western range makes the chain of highest mountain peaks in the region including twenty four peaks over 7000 m, like Istor Nal (7373m) and Trich Mir (7708m), the highest peak of Hindu Kush range.
DAY-01 Departure for Pakistan
DAY-02 Arrive Islamabad:
meet & assist on arrival at Islamabad airport, freshen up at a hotel & then drive to Peshawar. Traveling on the Grand Trunk Road laid down by the Pathan Emperor of United Indian Empire: Sher Shah Suri. Crossing Indus river at Attock, we may stop for photo at the meeting point of Indus & Kabul rivers just beyond Attock bridge. Arrive Peshawar and visit Khyber Pass, the most important and strategic land route leading to Indian sub-continent. All the historic invaders, including Alexander The Macedonian, had used this route to explore the wonders of fertile land that lies south of this pass. Afternoon city tour. O/N at hotel.
DAY - 03 Enter Chitral:
Proceed for the fabled valley of Chitral by road. Passing through the lush green plains of Peshawar, we ascend the Malakand Pass that brings us to the Swat valley. We drive shortly through the Swat valley to arrive at the village of Dir for lunch. From Dir we leave the asphalt road and drive on jeep track to ascend of Lowari Pass (3,200 Meters), the gateway of Chitral Valley. From the top of the pass we have fascinating view of the Hindokush and Himalayan mountains. The descend of the pass is more interesting than the ascent, as we take 96 hair-pin turns to get to the valley floor. Passing through the dry and rocky landscape we arrive at Chitral town. Overnight Motel.
Day 04 - Chitral to Buni:
Cross Zani Pass Two hours jeep drive from Chitral to Buni, the largest town in upper Chitral, and quiet historic place because of siege of Chitral in 1895. It is on the south of Mastuj river. Othal is a bit further settlement after Buni if the road remain open then the jeeps go up to Othal. We will start walking from Othal, a zigzag path leads to Zani Pass. Views form the top of Zani Pass are outstanding. Top of Zani Pass is wide flat ground with outstanding views of Trich Mir (7708m) the highest peak of Hindukush and also the Trich valley on our west. In north the pass offers views of Wakhan corridor and Afghan border. On our east will be the area of Shah Jinali and Broghil Passes and in South will be the main Chitral town. After some photography on the top we will descend down on the Trich valley side of the Pass and walk towards Zundragram our first camping site. Overnight at camps.
Day 05 – Trek to Sor Rich:
Today we will continue our trek in Trich valley the trek today is easier than yesterday. We will walk along the Rich river, half of the distance will be covered by jeeps today. arrive Sor Rich for overnight camping.
Day 06 – Trek to Jinali Ghari base of Shah Jinali Pass:
This is a beautiful walk through knee high grass and flowers and across plenty of side streams surrounded by groves of willows, with the Shah Jinali river well below you on your left. After three hours the path turns north and here we will leave the main stream and climb up a green hillside. Arrive Jinali Ghari a shepherds settlement.
Day 07 – Cross Shah Jinali Pass – Yashkist:
Today in the start the trek is again through the knee high geraniums and wild onions, with good views north to the snowy domes of a mountain wall separating you form Afghanistan and the Oxus river. Just before the top is a wide flat meadow which is know as the "Kings Polo Ground" that gives the pass its name Shah Jinali. We will corss the meadow and arrive at the top of the Pass. The top is also flat, with several small lakes on either side. We will walk down to Yashkist for overnight camping.
Day 08 – Trek to Kishmanja:
On the trek we would encounter many river crossings, so it is wise to keep sneakers in your day pack. For the first 3 hours we walk under the shade of poplar and willow trees along the bank of Yarkhun river, crossing three branches of Kankhun river. Excellent views of Thui peaks with their respective glaciers : Thui II (6,525m) with Shetor glacier, Thui I (6665m) in the middle of Panarillo glacier & Kotalkash glacier and Kouo Zom (6875m). We camp at (3325m) on a green spot facing the Kouyo Zom mountain in south, Broghil region begins from here and local people have Mangolian features, having migrated from Wakhan.
Day 09 – Exc. Broghil Pass – Ishkarwarz:
Today we are in Boroghil, that offers the easiest route between Indian sub-continent and Central Asia, frequently featuring in the history. The population speaks Wakhi language, also spoken in southern Tajikistan, and upper Hunza. We ascend a thousand feet from the river to a vantage point with excellent views of Chatibol glacier with its numerous crevasses. Ishkarwaz houses Chitral Scouts and border police`s post to guard the entrance to Wakhan Corridor through Boroghil Pass. Wakhan Corridor, belt of Afghanistan separats Pak. and Thjikistan. While finalizing the boundaries between Afghanistan and British India, this belt was purposely planned as buffer zone between British India and Russian Empire. These days it not allowed to cross Broghil Pass we will only go to top of the pass and walk back by the same route to Ishkarwarz for O/N camping. On our way to the Broghil Pass we will carry only water and cameras.
Day 10 – Trek to Lalay Rabat:
From Ishkarwaqz three main treks divert in different directions. We take the eastern option, a leisurely walk along the Yarkhun river passing by horses and Yaks grazing on green pastures. As we pass the northern trek leading over 3888m Darwaza Pass to Wakhan. We arrive at summer settlement of Lashkargaz (meaning cavalary`s pastures) home of the Sardar (chief) of Bjoroghil. Three hours walk further is Lalay Rabat at 4000 m. Today the trek is flatter and we will walk along the Yarkhun river through many green meadows.
Day 11 – Over Korambar Pass:
Unlike many trek days in Pakistan when the day over the pass is the hardest , this is a lovely day. Passing through rolling pastures and romantic Karambur Lake we arrive at the flat top of Karambur Pass with pools draining in lakes on easy and west sides of the pass. As we descend down gradually through broad green valley and lovely Zhoe Lake which is scattered in miles, we leave behind North West Frontier Province and enter in the Northern Areas. Camp at Shuinj.
Day 12 – Sokhterabad:
Walking along the left bank of Karambur river for two hours we arrive at the snout of Cashboi glacier and then cross the glacier to the south side of the valley that is completely filled at this point by the glacier. We continue our trek along its edge for about three hours to arrive at our campsite at 3353 m surrounded by birch and willow bushes.
Day 13 – Walk to Chilinji Easy:
flat walk of eight kilometers along the south bank of Karambur river. Arrive Chilinji at 3201m, a sandy patch at the base of Chilinji Pass.
Day 14 – Yasin The trek:
is not strenuous anymore and today we will walk along the Chilinji river. Arrive Yasin the most beautiful camping site of our trek, with lots of trees and green pastures.
Day 15 – Matramdas Matramdas:
is the first permanent settlement after crossing Koramabar Pass. The place is consists of about ten house, beside the Chilinji river. It is wide flat area and people are very friendly. enjoy another walking day.
Day 16 – Bilhanz:
If the road remain open then the jeeps reach to Bilhinz. Today we will walk in Ishkoman valley. In our east is Gilgit area across Naltar Pass and in our west across Ishkoman and Korambar Passes will be the Chitral valley. Todays trek is quiet soft. Arrive Bilhinz and small village consist of about 20 houses.
Day 17 – Gahguch:
Today we will board on 4x4 soft top jeeps or we will take a short walk to road blockage area in case of any road blockage. Drive to Gahguch the biggest town in Ghizar valley. This interesting drive is along the Ghizar river. By lunch time we will be in Gahguch for overnight camping.
Day 18 – Drive to Gilgit:
Today we will drive towards Gilgit the administrative capital of Northern Areas of Pakistan. Arrive Gilgit and transfer to hotel for fresh ups. After lunch we drive out from Gilgit to re-enter the town from the historic route, crossing a suspension bridge over river. At Kargah to visit the rock-carved Buddha from 7th century AD. In the ancient times the Kargah valley used to be the traveling route of the Buddhist monks, to go to Taxila. Stroll down the colorful Bazaars of Gilgit. Overnight in hotel.
Day 19 – Drive to Besham / Narran:
Now we are on the KKH, on the bank of Indus river. The Highway was a joint venture between Pakistan and China and it took 20 years & 850 lives to complete this 8th wonder of the world. After three hours we will stop in Jaglot a unique place of its kind in the world. Here the worlds three highest mountain ranges Himalayas, Karakorams and Hindukush are meeting it is also the meeting point of Indus river with Gilgit river. We also have views of Nanga Parbat (8,125m). By eve. we will arrive Besham.
Day 20 – Drive to Islamabad:
Drive on the greener part of KKH to Islamabad. We may stop at Taxila, the archaeological site of Gandhara Buddhist civilization dating from 500 BC to 500 AD era. At Islamabad, transfer to hotel for overnight.
Day - 21 At Rawalpindi:
Full day city tour of the twin cities Rawalpindi & Islamabad. We also have the time to hunt the colorful bazaars. Farewell dinner at a traditional restaurant, O/N at hotel.
Day - 22 Fly home: Transfer to airport for departure flight.
Cost & Condition Sheet:
Following is our quote for the above mentioned tour in US$
15 & Above Pax + 1 FOC : $ Half Twin. Per Person
08 - 14 Pax : $ Half Twin. Per Person
06 - 07 Pax : $ Half Twin. Per Person
04 - 05 Pax : $ Half Twin. Per Person
02 – 03 Pax : $ Half Twin. Per Person
Single room/tent Supplement : $ Per Single.
Accommodation on twin sharing basis at standard category hotels in towns, 2 person dome tent during trek.
Meals: half board at hotels, full board during trek.
Transport: Air conditioned transport and Soft top 4x4 jeeps to trek head & trek end.
Camping Facilities: 2 Pax dome tents with matrices, dinning tent with folding table & chairs, kitchen tent with complete kitchenette and staff, toilet tent.
Porterage of 15 Kg during trek. Tips & Portage at airport & hotels, entrance fee at sites & museums.
English speaking Mountain Guide.
Domestic/International airfare and airport taxes. Any expense due to forced measures, cancellation of flight, landslides, natural calamities, acts of God, forced majeurs: beyond the control of Rock Valley Tours, their staff and suppliers. Any expense of personal nature not mentioned above.
GEAR & Clothing
While on an organized trek, it is best to pack all items for your trip in one large piece and one carry on. The large piece must be a duffel bag (weighing not more than 12.5 Kg.) because duffels are easier for porters to carry. A small day pack is suggested as carry-on to keep items that you will use during while on the trek, bus or jeep.
Packing list for your Duffel.
With your knowledge of Pakistani culture you are well aware of precautions to be taken while traveling through remote areas. Cloths for the trek should be durable, comfortable and easy to wash and dry. In good weather you will spend much of your time in a T-shirt or medium shirt and outdoor trousers. You will need warmer clothes for evening in the camps. Temperature falls rapidly as soon the sun goes down.
Men could wear shorts once we are through the populated areas, that means from the third day of trek. Women are advise to use cotton shalwar kameez (loose long shirts and baggy trousers) the traditional Pakistani dress, as these are comfortable during warm conditions, and also appreciated & respected by the locals.