Day 1: Arrive in Islamabad anytime today, we’ll have your airport transfers organised and you’ll be brought straight to the hotel. We have an evening briefing for the group to hear about the adventure that lies ahead, then a group dinner in a rooftop restaurant overlooking the mountains.
Day 2: Time to explore Pakistan. We have a 5 hour drive to our partner community, but try not to nap. If this is your first time to Pakistan, the sights, and sounds from the drive will be something you never forgot. When we reach Sialkot, we’ll check-in and have a briefing from your project coordinator about the work to be carried out.
Day 3: Water pumps and toilets. We’ll take a tour of the community this morning before tea with the elders. After that, both today and tomorrow, we’ll be focused on installing, construction the walls, painting the bricks. And repeat. Depending on how much work the locals have managed to accomplish, we may be working pretty hard the next couple of days!
Day 4: More of the same hard graft today. We hope to install 8 toilets and 8 water pumps, so that’s a lot of digging, a lot of construction and a lot of painting. Hope you don’t mind getting your clothes a little roughed up, time to get to it people!
Day 5: We’re off to our partner school today. Our coordinator has given us a list of things that the kids have been lacking for years, so we’ve stepped in to help them out. This morning we’ll have a little ceremony, tour the school, donate what they’ve requested and hopefully have a little time for a mini sports day! That evening we make our way back to Islamabad for the adventure to really begin.
Day 6: Explore Islamabad, Pakistan’s capital with us. From the delicious local food, the spectacular to the famous Fasial Mosque, not without a stop at Daman-e-Joh viewpoint. Islamabad as you never thought it could be.
If our local coordinator can source a non-local declaration, we may even try Pakistani beers from the Murree Brewery. Leave it with us!
Day 7: Off to the airport, awe-inspiring Kashmir awaits. We’re proud to be the only company in the world to offer these crazy adventure tours with a social conscience, and to have the opportunity to visit Kashmir is one of those adventures indeed. We’ll fly into the heart of Gilgit Baltistan, and the next 5 days we’ll be lost amidst the snow capped Himalayas as we hike, and drive through the Skardu and Hunza Valleys, just off the Karakoram highway.
Day 8: We’ll explore the Giligit area today, checking out the Kargah Buddha, the Gilgit bridge (hope you’re not scared of heights, the largest suspension bridge in Asia!) over the fast flowing Gilgit river, at the end of its trditional bazaar and the Monument of Taj Mughal.
Day 9: Moving onto Skardu, the capital of Baltistan. Perched 2,438 metres above sea level in the backdrop of the great peaks of the Karakorams. Balti people are a mixture of Tibetan and Caucasian stock and speak Balti, an ancient form of Tibetan. Due to the similarity of its culture, lifestyle and architecture with Tibet, Baltistan is also known as the “Tibet-e-Khurd” (Little Tibet).
Expect the Skardu sand dunes, Shangrila lake, Shigar Valley and the epic Manthokha Waterfall.
Day 10: Onto the mountainous area of Hanza, where the fair skinned and light-eyed Hunzakuts claim to be descendants of soldiers lost from Alexander’s army as he invaded India. Hunza Valley is the inspiration for the mythical valley of Shangri-la in James Hilton’s 1933 novel Lost Horizo and time permitting, we’ll get to see spectacular Rakaposhi pass, and the ancient Baltit fort.
Day 11: We’ll begin to make our way back through the mountains, down the Karakoram highway, slowly back to Gilgit. 3 of the world’s longest glaciers in the regiong, so we’ll check one of them before home along with the epic Borith Lake. Surrounded in 6000m peaks, the landscape is breathtaking, you won’t want to leave, but back to Gilgit we go.
Day 12: We’ll have brekkie together at the hotel, and then back to Gilgit airport, for our transfer back to Islamabad, where the trip officially ends. That is, unless, you’re going us on THE most epic overland adventure there is. Through the Karakoram highway, through the Himalayas, all the way to 5000m, and into China and beyond. Come join us!
Day 12: We told you you wouldn’t want to go! So don’t. While the rest of the volunteers jet back to Islamabad, we have more the adventure to end all adventures ahead. We’ll make our way north on the Karakoram highway to Sost, via Karimabad and lunch spot at the Eagles nest with views unmatched around the world. Then we’ll visit the Alti fort, and maybe even pick up some a cheap ruby from the nearby ruby mines
Day 13: Today is one of the highest border crossings in the world, right along the Silk Route, to the Khunjareb pass. After completing the extensive border formalities, getting stamped out of Pakistan, and into China we finally move north. Karakol lake is awaiting us, via the Stone Fort of Tashkurgan, where we’ll sleep in a nomadic yurt for the night.
Day 14: A morning lake side, with some option trekking or chilling that morning. Soon we’re make our way to Kashgar, back to civilization. We earned a beer tonight I think!
Day 15: Exploring Kashgar today, including the old town and all its Uyghur architecture, along with some of their most famous Tombs and Mosques.
Day 16: Epic travel alert once more. We all stock-up on our cheap snacks and whisky and hop onboard the ‘fast train’ (all 24 hours of it) to Urumqi, perhaps the most interesting city in all of China.
Day 17: Depending on delays, we’ll arrive in Urumqi sometime after lunch and check-in to our hotel. Spend the evening relaxing and recovering from the train journey.
DAY 18: A lazy morning, a walk around Urumqi old city, marveling at the Islamic architecture and culture, it’s hard to believe this is China. In the afternoon, we’ll go for a dip in the Shuimugou Hot Springs.
Day 19: After breakfast, we’re off out for the day – People’s Square, Hongshan (red mountain), the Erdaqiao Market, and a host of famous temples are all in store today as we explore Urumqi’s unique atmosphere.Finishing up in the Heart of Asia’ – Asia’s geographical centre!
Day 20: That’s all folks. We’re off to the Urumqi airport, they have connections both internationally, and via Beijing to get to any corner of the planet you need. What a trip eh?!
Our partner community in Pakistan is about 5 hours south of Islamabad, in an impoverised region of Sialkol. After discussing with their leaders and elders due to various outbreaks, they’ve decided both water pumps and toilets in the village areas are their pressing concern.
We’re aware that perhaps this isn’t the attractive prospect of a classroom but it’s absolutely vital to the progress of the community on so many levels, hygiene first of foremost, but also to allow women to wash safely and in private and of course to enable families to maintain a certain level of dignity.
With that in mind, we are building 10 Public Toilets in different villages in the City of Sialkot . Along with 10 villages obtaining new water pumps. Around the world, children from infancy to five years of age have the highest mortality rate due to water-borne diseases, with the equivalent of nine busloads of kindergarten children dying every day in Pakistan. It doesn’t need to happen. It shouldn’t happen any more. When people don’t have access to clean, potable water, they experience a lack of education, jobs, and opportunities. This forms a vicious cycle that perpetuates poverty. So our GBGA team have stepped in to fund and install water pumps in 10 different locations.
Finally, the community has asked to help at the local school. There are a group of kids who study every day, but are struggling with the means of education. No school bags, no pencils, no pens, so our volunteers will spend the morning at the school, replenishing the school and the kids with everything they need to continue their studies.
All Accommodations in comfortable hotels usually with wifi, air-con and hot water as a minimum
All breakfast included on tour.
All group day trips, group excursions and group entrance fees into temples and forts.
All group in country transportation.
Feel good know 100% goes directly to our project partner.
Two experienced guides that will be there for you 24/7.