Travel Guide Asia Pakistan Northern Areas Gilgit



Gilgit is a mountain town in the Gilgit-Baltistan region. Travellers exploring the Pakistani Himalayas or en route to or from China are almost definitely going to spend at least one night here. This makes it a great base to further research your trip, meet up with potential travel partners, or simply take a break. It's also a launching pad for climbers to nearby Rakaposhi.



Sights and Activities

  • Gilgit Bridge - The bridge over the fast flowing Gilgit River, at the end of its traditional bazaar, is the largest suspension bridge in Asia (182 metres long and 2 metres wide) permitting enough room for one jeep ata time to cross.
  • Kargah Buddha (Located on a rock near Kargah Nullah (ravine), 10 kilometres from Gilgit . A beautiful rock engraving of Buddha from 7th century A.D.
  • Monument of Taj Mughal - A victory monument of Taj Mughal, built 700 years ago, is a 30 kilometres jeep drive from Gilgit.




Avg Max9.3 °C12 °C17.9 °C23.9 °C28.4 °C34.3 °C36.1 °C35.3 °C31.6 °C25.3 °C17.8 °C11 °C
Avg Min-2.7 °C0.2 °C5.4 °C9.4 °C11.7 °C15.2 °C18.8 °C18.1 °C12.7 °C6.6 °C0.6 °C-2.4 °C
Rainfall4 mm6 mm12.6 mm23 mm25.3 mm6.1 mm15.6 mm15.5 mm6.5 mm8.4 mm1.8 mm4.1 mm



Getting There

By Plane

Gilgit Airport (IATA: GIL) is small and has 45 minute flights to/ from Islamabad on PIA. Due to extreme weather changes, flight delay or cancellation is a normal occurrence.

By Bus

Gilgit is just off the Karakoram Highway between Chilas and Karimabad, and most people arrive by road. The main bus stand is on the Karakoram Highway, and requires a taxi ride or shared jeep to reach from town. There are booking agents in town for long distance buses along the Karakoram Highway. The journey from Islamabad can take as long as 24 hours.



Getting Around

Private vehicles are normally used as local transport. Renting jeeps is also a common way of moving around.




You can try local fruits like apples, cherries, apricots and a variety of nuts rich in omega 5 like almonds, chestnuts, walnuts etc. Restaurants offer all sorts of Western breakfast to local ones - like salted tea and bread as well as Chinese food, Tanduries, and local dishes. In this region, people do not eat spicy food like the rest of the country. Local food consists of special baked breads (different varieties), handmade-noodle soups, salted meats, roasted meat, vegetables, fruits & dairy products. All the products are organic as they believe in traditional farming without the use of chemical fertilizers and sprays.




Most of the high end hotels have their own bars but at some areas they have their local alcohol too.




Gilgit has cheap accommodations for visitors on a budget.


You can use the form below to search for availability (Travellerspoint receives a commission for bookings made through the form)



Keep Connected


Cybercafes can be found on virtually every street corner and the rates are as low as Rs 15-20 per hour. They usually don't have a very fast operating system so don't be too impatient. They usually use 14 inch monitors with Windows 2000, Windows 98 or Windows XP usually installed. Most of the cafes have a decent speed internet connection.

Internet Access can be obtained easily on notebook computers with the help of GPRS enabled mobile connections, supported by almost all of the five mobile operators. Mobilink provides EDGE based connection in very limited areas of Karachi, but Telenor's coverage of EDGE is wider. The standard price of GPRS/EDGE usage is Rs 10-18 per MB of data transferred but Zong offers Rs 15/h. If you wish to download much more, you may want to use unlimited packages, provided only by Warid, Mobilink and Telenor at this time. World Call and Ufone also offers USB Modem.3G and 4G based connections are also available from all the mobile service providers, rates are nearly same as EDGE.

There are Wi-Fi hotspots all over Pakistan, in hotels, malls, and cafes/restaurants.


See also: International Telephone Calls

The country code for Pakistan is +92 if you are calling from outside the country.

Major providers of mobile phone service (GSM) are Mobilink, Telenor, Ufone, Warid and Zong - China Mobile. One very convenient feature is that all Pakistani cellular operators use the GSM platform, so that cellular handsets nationwide are freely interchangeable between providers.
There are various service providers offering a huge variety of plans. Among them are Mobilink, Warid Telecom, Telenor, Ufone & Zong (China Mobile). It's not a bad idea to buy a cell phone and use a prepaid plan to get yourself connected while you are in the country. The mobile phones and the prepaid plans are very cheap; you can usually get a new cheap cell phone just for Rs 2,000 and a prepaid connection for Rs 150-400.

Due to security threats, in order to purchase a SIM card you will need to provide formal identification such as Visas, resident permits, residing address in Pakistan along with a written declaration that you will not use the provided phone number for any illegal activity. Starting March 2015, possesion of unverified SIM will be considered a serious and punishable crime.

Public Call Offices can be found all over the country. You will find a PCO in nearly 50% of the general stores where there is usually someone who operates the phone and fax. Fees will be charged according to the time spent, and you will pay when you have finished your call.


The Pakistan postal service works well. But be aware you are not allowed to send CD's or DVD's out of the country. This includes your photo's on CD. This is due to the high number of software and media trafficking in Pakistan.

Accommodation in Gilgit

We have a comprehensive list of accommodation in Gilgit searchable right here on Travellerspoint.

Gilgit Travel Helpers

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This is version 8. Last edited at 3:38 on Aug 2, 17 by sleepBot. 2 articles link to this page.

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