Pakistan is no ordinary country, though we come from a very humble land mass, four provinces and a channel of meandering rivers as vast as the eye can see; the complexity of geographic and terrain comes to redefine Pakistan as an explorers paradise and a tourist’s resort haven.
On account to popular demand and the lockdown being lifted like sunlight shrieking through a gloomy mist, we have come to see a rise in outdoor activities all over Pakistan.
Below are the five tourist destinations we believe truly shed light over Pakistan as a land of enchantment, mystery and beauty.
The scenic and colossal mountain ranges that meet at the point close to Gilgit is a marvel in its own, the clayish Himalayas, dark Hindukush and the grey Karakoram collide in a magnificent splendor of colour and texture with the great Rakaposhi peaking from a distance.
Hunza is a place lost in time, its people a community of colourful faces with the most welcoming warmth you may ever get. The stone laid streets, asymmetrical houses gliding upon the curvy linear mountain facades add to the beauty of it all. Overlooking Hunza are the Altit and Baltit Forts seamlessly merged with the mountains and the Hunza River cascading through the valley.
A sight truly to behold and our top ranked tourist spot for not just us locals, it is now on the bucket list of many foreign explorers.
The Northern Areas are the perfect getaway Pakistanis long for in the smoldering summers and the freezing winters. Swat being less vivacious than Hunza is a glorified segment independent of large crowds or the hustle bustle of small hill stations.
Its mellow peaks and the lush green meadows stretching throughout every inch of sediment add for a perfect outdoor space. The brilliant blue sky over the shallow green ranges conjoins into a symphony of radiance and astonishment. Safe to say, Pakistan has its own Switzerland bejeweled in its north western regions.
As we Pakistanis love our mountains, Kallar Kahar is a good compromise to limit the travels and still have those altitude feels. In the midst of these limestone riffs and arid landscape lays beautiful water bodies dynamically contrasting the terrain around it. The Katas Raj Temple is also a recent discovery that has created a large inflow of wanderers.
Though all set aside, the true marvel of this area is the Khewra Mines, one of the largest salt mines in the world. More decades on end, people have traveled to see the crystalline craves and the spectacular formations the mines have to offer, not to mention the scaled replicas of some of Pakistan’s iconic monuments made entirely of salt.
Since the inauguration of the Makran Coastal Highway, Balochistan has unlocked a quiet remarkable part of its natural beauty. The beige interior merging into the deep blue ocean is a sight for sour eyes.
A coastline with a limitless stretch of cliffs and beaches strikingly formed into great ridges and sleek rock facades. One can only gaze on over the horizon and see the ocean stretch far into the setting sun. The unchartered land is the connecting point of many sea posts for the country, most notably the connecting point from Karachi to Gawadar.
A perfect escape from city life and the thousands that pour into Hawk’s Bay each weekend, French Beach is the perfect get away. With its tranquil waters and a secluded location, the serene views are all just a zen setting with little to no effort for achieving some quality peace time. The beach offers a wide range of activities from surfing to scuba diving and the limitation of crowds, something we can dearly sympathize with Karachites.
Be it the snowcapped peaks of the north, the agricultural plains of the flat lands or the rivers pouring out in deltas at the sea, Pakistan exudes a beguiling vision, one fit for the scenes for Narnia or Alice In Wonder Land. With a ranging sense of enigmatic majesty, the nation is no stranger to its fair share of beauty and we just can’t seem to get enough of it.