You might have heard of this famous place named Skardu if you have ever visited or have planned to visit the northern areas of Pakistan. Skardu valley is located far in the northern areas of Pakistan surrounded by the monumental Hindu Kush and Karakoram Himalaya mountain ranges. Interestingly, this beautiful city is located in the region of Pakistan known as Gilgit-Baltistan. This district is a part of the northern areas of Pakistan bordering India, China, and Afghanistan. To the north of this area is another famous valley known as Hunza Valley and to its west side lies the majestic Fairy Meadows.
However, Skardu is the most important city in this region due to its beauty and mesmerizing mountain ranges. Skardu is the perfect tourist destination for people who love to spend time near lakes, valleys, mighty forts, and cold desserts.
Moreover, this beautiful city is famous for its huge mountain ranges. The second highest mountain in the world K2 lies in this beautiful city which attracts mountain climbers from all over the world to Skardu. The mesmerizing landscape, captivating forts, beautiful culture, traditions of the city, and the hospitality of the inhabitants make this valley a worth visiting travel destination in Pakistan.
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10 Most Incredible Destinations in Skardu Worth Travelling for
If you’re planning to visit Skardu then keep on reading as in this article we’ll share the top 10 most beautiful places in Skardu that everyone should witness during their visit to Skardu.
So, let’s start exploring the following places one by one:
1. Deosai National Park
Deosai National Park is the most famous travel spot in Skardu. This place is popularly known as the roof of the world. This huge highland is the second-highest highland in the world that is situated at an elevation of 13,497 feet. This national park can only be visited during summers due to extreme cold weather in winters. It usually takes 2 hours maximum to reach the park through a Jeep ride from Skardu city.
Moreover, to enter the park you need to buy an entrance ticket. You’ll come across and witness many Himalayan brown bears there. The Deosai Plains offer emerald green meadows, crystal clear lakes, and fascinating peaks to witness. Its beautiful landscape, striking Flora & Fauna in the spring season, and exclusive wild life has made this place famous all around the world. Some tourists come to Skardu especially to visit Deosai national park.
Manthoka waterfall is another beautiful place that is situated in Skardu. You will find this mesmerizing waterfall in the Khaplu valley of Skardu city. It is one of the most beautiful and intriguing places in Skardu. The water of this striking waterfall is not just beautiful but freezing cold too. The water is so cold that one can’t put their hands or feet in it for even a few minutes. You can reach here with a distance of two hours’ drive from the southeast of Skardu valley.
This stunning waterfall is encircled by an emerald green valley and mighty mountains. This man made waterfall emerges magnificently from huge and tall mountains which makes it hard to believe that it is not a natural waterfall. From drinking pure fresh water to witnessing a pristine waterfall, from witnessing colorful rainbows to capturing silky streams, you can have so much fun in this beautiful place with your friends and family.
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Another must visit place in Skardu city is Shigar valley and Shigar Fort. Beautiful Shigar valley is located near Shigar river which is at a distance of one hour from northeast of Skardu city. You have to travel through a scenic road to reach the mesmerizing village of Shigar. On your way, you will witness many local architectural gems such as the ancient wooden Kilangrong Mosque, and Shigar Fort. You will also have a glimpse of traditional Balti village life in this area.
The culture, history, ancient tradition, cold sand, blind lake, and a beautiful fort makes this valley an attractive spot for tourists. Shigar Fort is one of the most popular historical sights in this valley. This magnificent piece of architecture was constructed back in the 17th century. Also known as Place of Rock, this historical fort has also secured an award as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Currently, this fort is used as a guest house which has 20 rooms to serve, and a big grand hall where Baltit culture is showcased to the visitors.
Another beautiful site to have in your list of must visit places in Skardu is Shangrila Lake. Shangrila Lake is also known as Upper Kachura lake which is about 32 kilometers or 20 miles away from main Skardu city. You can easily reach this sparkling lake in two hours by jeep ride.
The presence of different kinds of colorful flowers during the spring season, adds more beauty to the scenery of this place. In addition, you can also have the experience of tasting delicious apricot, apple, and peaches freshly plucked from the trees nearby. Moreover, to experience a comfortable and luxurious place, you can also stay at a fancy Shangrila resort here. Here you will also witness a unique diversity of flora and fauna.
Another scenic place in our list is Kaplu Valley which is located near Skardu city. On your way to this enchanting scenic valley, you will experience a worth viewing sight. The path to the valley shades the visitors with beautiful trees along the way. With a few hour’s travel on a curvy road, you will reach this beautiful valley. The panoramic views of this place are an absolute pleasure to the eyes. The jeep ride to this valley makes the trip more fun and entertaining.
This ancient valley is situated at the base of the mighty Karakoram mountain range which was the hub of the Yabgo dynasty. Also, you will witness a fort here which is converted into a museum to showcase the culture and tradition of this ancient place for the attraction of the tourists. There is also one very old mosque here known as Chaqchan mosque which is considered one of the oldest mosques of northern Pakistan.
Skardu is blessed with many astonishing and hypnotic lakes. The upper and lower Kachura Lakes are some of these mesmerizing lakes. The dense green forest has encircled this beautiful valley along with monumental mountains of the Himalayas. The serenity of this place will give you an exceptional experience of peace and calmness. Boating, rafting, and fresh pristine water are some of the few things that you can enjoy here. Moreover, you can also enjoy delicious trout fish during your stay at Kachura Lake.
Furthermore, you will find the Lower Kachura Lake inside the mesmerizing Shangrila Resort. Here you can enjoy walking in the emerald green garden, taste delicious organic apple juice, and can also stay at the beautiful Shangrila Resort.
At an elevation of 8650 ft., lies another beautiful lake in Skardu known as Satpara Lake. You can reach this stupefying lake with a distance of 2.5km from Skardu city. In the middle of the lake, there is a picturesque island that adds more beauty to this astonishing place. Apart from its beauty, this lake is one of the biggest resources of fresh water in Pakistan. This lake serves as the main source of drinking water and electricity for Skardu city. Moreover, hundreds of tourists come to visit this mesmerizing turquoise blue lake to enjoy boating, rafting, and fishing in the pure fresh water of the lake.
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Another marvelous lake to witness in Skardu is Sheosar Lake. You will find this spellbinding lake at the vast plains of Deosai. With an elevation of 13,589 ft above sea level, this beautiful lake has its own charm and beauty that should be witnessed at least once in life. The beauty of the lake is spellbinding in every season, in summers its sparkling fresh water reflects numerous colors whereas, in winters, this frozen lake casts a spell on the visitors with its striking beauty. Moreover, you will also witness the stunning mountains of Nanga Parbat in the backdrop of the green plains of Deosai which surround the lake from all around.
Katpana Lake and desert is another most beautiful place to visit in Skardu. In between the monumental mountains of the Himalayas and Karakoram, there are sand dunes that are no less than a wonder. These mesmerizing sand dunes lie near the Indus River which covers the two central deserts of Skardu which are known as Katpana Desert and Shigar Desert. These hypnotic sand dunes are also popularly known as cold deserts due to the cold weather and environment of the desert.
Besides the desert, there is also a small beautiful lake here known as Katpana Lake which is also an attraction point for tourists because of the serenity and beauty of this place. This stunning lake features fresh pristine water, lush green pastures, and the Karakoram Mountains in the background which truly increases the beauty of this spellbinding place.
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Skardu Fort is another mystical place that you should explore during your visit to Skardu. This ancient fort is one of the oldest forts in Pakistan that is claimed to be constructed in the 8th century. This glorious piece of architecture beautifully resembles the art of Tibetan architecture.
Moreover, you will also find a very old mosque inside the fort which was constructed back in the days when Islam arrived in this region in the early 16th century. This epic fort in Skardu is a seven-story building that is a great tourist attraction point because of its history, art, and architecture.