Top Places to Visit in Skardu

Top Places to Visit in Skardu

For some people to travel is to live and for others life is work, save, travel, repeat. Skardu is one of the places many adventure enthusiasts have bookmarked or added in their bucket list. From Cold Dessert to lakes to skyrocketing mountains, everything is here. As you must be looking for the Skardu’s places to visit or things to do in Skardu, we will show you the best ones. So, get ready as we take you to the mountains and valleys. 

Shigar Valley Skardu


Shigar, a nearby small valley in Skardu, gained recognition with the restoration of the 17th-century Shigar Fort – Palace of the Raja of Shigar, transformed into a museum and luxury hotel under Serena Hotels’ management.

Erected in the 17th century by the ruler of the Amacha Dynasty, the fort, known as ‘The Fort on the Rock,’ exudes historical significance. It’s essential to note that the hotel operates exclusively during the high season (April-October). 

Satpara Lake Skardu


Satpara Sar Lake, a major tourist attraction near Skardu Valley, Gilgit Baltistan, is set against rocky terrain and fed by the Satpara stream from Deosai Plains. A picturesque island within offers a serene space. En route to Deosai from Skardu, the 2.5 km² lake at 2,636 meters above sea level is perfect for a 30-minute restful break, adorned with vibrant flowers.

Accessing Satpara Lake is a 7 km, 30-minute drive from Skardu towards Deosai Plains. The easy hike around the lake allows you to witness a Buddha carving on a nearby mountain, enhancing the pleasurable experience in this majestic natural setting.

Kharpocho Fort (Skardu Fort)


Imagine this 500-year-old wonder called Kharphocho Fort in Gilgit Baltistan, Pakistan, standing tall at 4,600 feet above sea level. It’s like a time machine with steep trekking, unveiling ancient rooms and a mosque that have weathered the ages. The fort throws in a bonus with apricot and cherry orchards – a sweet treat for your senses. No strict ticket rules, just a chill daily opening from 11 am to 5 pm. This place is a historical hug wrapped in natural beauty – a total must-visit! Don’t forget to bring your camera – you’d kick yourself later if you miss capturing the magic of this place!

Manthokha Kharmang Waterfall


Ever heard of Manthokha Waterfall in Skardu? It’s like nature’s VIP section, pulling in visitors for its breathtaking beauty and cool vibes. Picture this – icy waters tumbling down, surrounded by lush green meadows, and, wait for it, delicious trout for a scenic snack! The journey from Skardu is like a visual feast with rocky mountains and the Indus River playing peek-a-boo. So, pack your bags, plan ahead, and get ready for a dose of nature’s bliss at Manthokha Waterfall – the ultimate summer escape!

Deosai National Park


Imagine a magical land called Deosai – an alpine plateau in Skardu that’s like nature’s canvas spread over 3,000 square kilometers, with an average elevation of 4,114 meters. It’s not just a place; it’s a sanctuary of pristine beauty, a haven for adventure seekers. Picture this: Himalayan brown bears, red foxes, golden eagles, and Tibetan wolves roaming free. Initially designed to protect endangered species, Deosai is now a UNESCO tentative world heritage site. If luck’s on your side, you might spot the elusive snow leopard. 

Though open to visitors from June to September, the sweet spot is the last two weeks of August – the flower season, where lush green grass and vibrant blooms paint a picturesque scene. It’s a slice of heaven on Earth!

Basho Valley

Basho Valley, nestled in Skardu, Gilgit-Baltistan, is a hidden gem renowned for its breathtaking beauty, surrounded by towering granite mountains and dense pine forests. Home to attractions like Chocolate Rock and the serene Basho river, the valley offers a close-to-nature experience, making it perfect for activities such as fishing, camping, and hiking. Accessible by a 3-hour drive from Skardu, Basho Valley is best visited from June to September, providing facilities like riverside camping, restaurant, and guest house.

This family-friendly destination promises an unforgettable retreat for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts alike. With stunning natural scenery, abundant wildlife, and opportunities for outdoor activities, Basho Valley offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. So, pack your bags and head to Basho Valley for a truly memorable experience.

Katpana Desert (Cold Desert)

The Katpana Desert, also known as the Cold Desert, is a must-visit destination located just 30 minutes from Skardu city. Nestled amidst the majestic mountains of Karakorum and the Himalayas, its sandy dunes and small lake offer a picturesque sightseeing experience. The best time to explore this desert is from June to September when the moderate temperatures allow for jeep rides and leisurely walks. Alternatively, winter visits offer stunning views of snow-covered landscapes against clear skies, creating a heavenly ambiance. Don’t miss the opportunity to savor the unique culinary offerings during your visit.

Katpana Lake, positioned by the River Indus in the Katpana Desert near Skardu city, offers a tranquil escape from the vibrant streets of Skardu. With pristine waters, it’s an ideal spot for a refreshing swim and capturing the scenic beauty around. The lake’s proximity to the Katpana Desert allows visitors to explore the distinctive desert landscape, adding a unique dimension to their experience.

Sarfaranga Dessert

Sarfaranga Desert in Skardu is a unique cold desert with frigid temperatures, nestled in the northernmost part of Pakistan. Best visited from June to September, it boasts majestic mountains, strong winds, and mesmerizing sunsets. Affordable ticket prices and a range of activities like horse riding and camping make it budget-friendly. Special events, including the Sarfaranga Desert Jeep Rally, add excitement. Reach by a 14-hour jeep ride from Islamabad or a flight to Skardu. A must-visit for adventure lovers and nature enthusiasts in Gilgit Baltistan.

Kachura Lake

Kachura Lakes in Skardu, like Upper and Lower Kachura (Shangrila Lake), are stunning natural spots. Lower Kachura, just 30 minutes from Skardu, is perfect for boating and fishing, with the scenic Shangrila resort offering a captivating stay. Upper Kachura, accessible with a 30-minute uphill walk from Lower Kachura, is great for hiking. These lakes, nestled in the Karakoram mountain range, are truly mesmerizing natural attractions in the area.


Skardu is a thrilling adventure hub with its historic sites, serene lakes, and unique landscapes. From the enchanting Shigar Valley to the refreshing Manthokha Waterfall and the hidden gem Basho Valley, each spot has its own magic. The iconic Katpana Desert, along with the chilly beauty of Sarfaranga, add variety to Skardu’s charm. Whether exploring ancient forts or relishing the tranquility of lakes and deserts, Skardu promises a captivating experience for history buffs, nature enthusiasts, and adventure lovers.

Many Travel & Tourism services are available on OLX Pakistan. So, get your adventure before it’s too late because in the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take. 

Which place(s) in Skardu would you like to visit? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

You may also like:

Top 9 Touring Bikes in Pakistan

Download the OLX App Now!

Photos Credits: &

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *