Cold Desert in PakistanAmazing Tourist DestinationNorthern Areas of PakistanMountains and Desert

A desert 10,000m above the sea level. At Skardu, (Urdu: سکردو, Hindi: स्कर्दू, Balti: སྐརདུ་་ from Tibetan (Balti): skar rdo སྐར་རྡོ་ – “star stone, meteorite”), is the main town of the region Baltistan and the capital of Skardu District, one of the districts making up Pakistan’s Gilgit Baltistan.

This is one of the most beautiful tourists attraction of Northern areas of Pakistan. There are huge sand plains in Skardu Desert, at an elevation of more than 10000 feet it is the highest desert area of the world interestingly the surrounding valleys are green and covered with vegetation.

How to reach there?

By air

Pakistan International Airlines flies daily from Islamabad. However, since the pilots fly on mere sight (no computer navigation), the flight only goes on clear days. During the flight it’s possible to catch a glimpse of Nanga Parbat (the 9th highest mountain in the world) and K2 (the 2nd highest mountain in the world.The air journey is full of thrills and could itself be regarded as the highlight of the visit. After following the same air route, which connects Gilgit to Islamabad/Rawalpindi, the plane turns right and flies over the gorge of the Indus River.

By road

Skardu can be reached by bus from Islamabad. The drive takes you all the way over the KKH (Karakoram Highway).

Since the KKH is still under construction and the Skardu road still has to be repaired, the road can take up to 36 hours by public transport (cost approx. 1500 Rupees).

It’s also possible to get to Skardu from Gilgit. Though it’s less than 200km the journey will take you close to 8 hours (by public transportation.

Most places in Skardu town are within a 30 minute walk. However it’s pretty easy to get a taxi or hire a driver for trips that will take you outside of the town.

Hotels and Resorts:

  • Karakoram Inn, Hotel & Resturant, skardu. S.R. D.R. Tel: (92-0575)55438


  • Concordia – II, Near K-2 Motel, skardu. S.R. D.R. Tel: (92-058154)52515
  • Hunza Inn, Naya Bazar, Skardu. Room Rs. 200/- Tel: (92-0575) 2570 Meal: Rs. 60/-
  • Baltistan Tourist Cottage, Chowk Yadgar, Skardu. Room: Rs. 150/- to 200/- Tel: (92-0575) 2707
  • Baltoro Rest House, Satellite Town, Skardu. Rooms: Rs. 200/-, Tel: (92-0575) 2443 (for government servants)
  • Northern Areas PWD Rest House, Hamid Garh, Skardu. VIP Rooms = 07 – Rs. 2500/-, Tel: (92-0575) 2405 (for government servants)
  • Yak N Yurt Sarai, Satellite Town, Skardu. Tel: (92-0575) 2856
    • Skardu Inn, in the main Bazaar
    • Indus Hotel
    • Karakuram Hotel in the main bazar
    • Hotel & Restaurant Dewan-E-Khas[2], is the only hotel that is open year round. Rooms feature western bathrooms (some with bathtub), 24 hour hot water, TV and Wireless internet.

    ph.+92 5815 455494 Mob.+92 3009091494

    • Shangrila resort [3] is the most popular resort of the country.
    • Shigar Fort Residence [4] recently restored by Aga Khan trust is a must see. Rooms start at 8,000 Pakistan Ruppees (about $100).
    • K2 Motel is a PTDC motel in Skardu

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