We (me and my wife) are planning to visit northern areas in late june and want to know whether the following plan looks fine:
2 nights in Balakot (including visits to Paras and River Kunhar)
2 nights in Naran (including visit to safe-ul-malik lake)
1 night in Shugran (including visit to Siri paey)
Please advise us:
- whether to include/delete any destination (we can increase number of days);
- safe/comfortable mode of transport and the price for each mode;
Well plan looks good. I also advise minimum 3-4 nights for this area.
No doubt Balakot itself is a beautiful place & view of Kunhar River is great here but mostly people skip Balakot & directly go to Naran. From Naran you can go to:
1. Saiful Maluk & further to Aansoo Lake( 1 day)
2. Lalazar via Batakundi (1 day)
3. Dudipatsar Lake & Lulusar Lake (1 day)
You can enjoy view of Kunhar River in the way to Naran & even Naran itself is situated on the bank of Kunhar River. So in my openion you may subtract one night from Balakhot & add it to Naran. Otherwise its a fabulous plan.
Note: Don't opt for Aansoo Lake, if travelling with ladies/kids. its a bit tiring.
As far as transport is concerned. You will get local transport (hiace, van etc.) from Balakot to Naran & Shogran. Jeeps are required for further excursions.
Some people hire jeep direct from Abbotabad or Mansehra for the full trip. For complete 5 nights they may charge you around 15000-20000 for 5 nights. In this case driver also works as guide.
Jeep fare from Naran to Saiful Muluk is around 1500-1700 for round trip.
Fondest memory: Kewai is a connection point between Balakot, Shogran & Naran. From Kewai a private Jeep will cost around 400/- till Shogran. If you have time do stop over at Kewai. There is a restaurant which has sitting arrangement in Kewai River. You can sit there and enjoy good recreation in the low waters.
Depart early for Each place: Like from
Balakot to Naran,
Naran to Saiful Maluk,
Naran to Shogran &
From Shogran to Sari Paya.
So you may reach the destination / come back from excursion before night.
Bonjour from Chitral,
June, better time of the year to visit the region, July, August are wet due to monsoon and roadblocks are common.
I didn't get your flies (machar) query, either you are asking about mosquitoes (Machar) or makhi (flies)?
Above 2000 m, Malaria doesn't exist, so no worries.
The main risk's roadblocks with kids, otherwise I don't see any troubles with taking the kids to that area.
There are good reviews about Pine Park/View, though June is not a very busy time of the year in Naran so you could find enough space.
Favorite thing: I met Tariq here. Tariq is a young man from Abbottabad come here with 5 friends all male, speak excellent English. Tariq was so nice, he is the one who called in the restaurant. He wanted to introduce all his friends to me for nothing except friendly chit chat, they treated us the yummy dinner as well....
Favorite thing: I snap so many photos here, I will upload later. I especially like to look at the villagers' stone houses, a hut like construction, so ancient. To us it was nice, but to the villagers, it wasn't nice at all because they have their kids going all over to beg for money, on the street.
Favorite thing: Naran is a place far up the snow mountain very cold and it look quite a paradise for tourism but probably some reasons stop tourists coming here. I did not see a foreign tourists here but lots of local Pakistanis in all sizes of luggages. Lots of hotels, budget.
Favorite thing: Most visitors come to Naran to visit the Saiful-Maluk lake somewhere 3 hours of hike at the path after the bridge. Malik was there and we were too risky to challenge him, no way, his is a retired military man.
Alpine scenery. Snow capped mountains around you. Peace and quite.
Fondest memory: In the evening, when all is quite, the only sound that you hear is the roar of gushing water flowing past your hotel.