Swat Valley. Known as ‘Mini Switzerland of Pakistan’ because of its unmatched natural beauty.
Swat Valley is known as the Switzerland of Pakistan. This name was given by Queen Elizabeth II in the 1960s when she visited this beautiful valley in Pakistan. Swat Valley is located in the Malakand Division of Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Swat Valley is in the northeastern part of the province. The largest city in Swat Valley is Mingora, which is about 4 hours away from Islamabad via the new Swat Motorway. As far as historical places in Pakistan go, Swat Valley is pretty ancient- Buddhism flourished here in the 2nd Century. It was a princely state until it was dissolved in 1969. The valley is almost entirely populated by ethnic Afghans/Pashtuns. The main language spoken in the valley is Pashto. Swat Valley is surrounded by high mountains, lush green meadows, and clear lakes, it is a place of great natural beauty and is popular with tourists all seasons.
Traveling to Swat is much easy, quick, and smooth now after the opening of the new Swat Motorway. People planning to travel to Swat Valley in their own car can reach Fizaghat, Swat Valley from Islamabad in 5 hours. From Fizaghat it further takes 1 hour to reach Bahrain, and further 2 hours to reach Kalam. This route is open for all kinds of traffic throughout the year.
For those preferring public transport to visit Swat, traveling in air-conditioned bus service is an option. There are several bus companies with regular direct service to Mingora from Lahore, Islamabad, and Peshawar. The Daewoo Bus Service operates the most comfortable and reliable air-conditioned bus service to Mingora from Lahore, Islamabad, and Peshawar and also provides connecting bus services to the passengers of other major cities such as Karachi, Hyderabad, Bahawalpur, Multan, Faisalabad, Sargodha, Abbottabad, Mianwali, etc.
Swat offers many tourist attractions from lush green meadows, thick pine forest, rivers, lakes to the best architecture and ancient buddha sites such as Marghazar White Palace and Jahanabad Buddha.
One of the more interesting places to visit in Swat Valley is the Jehanabad Buddha. The sculpture, a massive cliff-face carving, was widely hailed as one of the most important pieces of Buddhist art in the region. The ancient carving is located about 15 km from Mingora and 5 km from Manglor Village.
The White Palace at Marghazar hill is at an altitude of 7,136 feet above sea level, was built in 1941 to serve as a summer residence for the King of Swat State. A masterpiece of local history. A palace built with white marble stones and used to be a home of wali-e-swat. Back in history, it was situated in a calm and isolated place of Swat Valley in Marghazar.
The jewel of Swat, Kalam. It’s the most famous hill station of Swat Valley, weather and altitude almost same as Naran, Kalam remains open in winter season as well making this hill station a prime winter tourist attraction in Pakistan.
Kandol lake is situated somewhere between 9,950ft above sea level in the Swat Valley. Recently a jeep track is complete from Gabral to reach Kandol Lake so it’s easy to access the lake in Swat Valley now.
The most popular tourist place in Swat Valley without any doubt and the list of best tourist places in Swat would be complete without mentioning majestic Mahodand Lake. Mahodand Lake is located at an altitude of 9,400 feet and is stunning with bright green meadows and some of the bluest water you’ll ever see. From Kalam a jeepable road leads towards Mahodand Lake and it takes around 2 hours to reach Mahodand Lake from Kalam.
The famous Ushu Forest, also known as Kalam Forest is just within walking distance from Kalam main city. The thick forest of deodar trees is quiet and poetic and the best spot to feel as close to nature as you ever will be.
Known as Pakistan’s highest waterfall. The mesmerizing Jarogo Waterfall is around 53 km from Mingora. At 120 meters, the fall is one of the must-visit places in Swat Valley. Jarogo was named after an esteemed Hindu woman called Jarogai who used to live in the area many years ago. Jarogo waterfall is less crowded because to reach the waterfall, you’ll have to hike for about 2 hours from the end of the road.
Bahrain is a riverside small town 36 km before Kalam in Swat Valley. Bahrain is famous for its busy bazaar (market) and riverside view. It also serves as a base camp for Upper Swat Valley both in the winter and summer seasons. In winter season tourist prefer to stay in Bahrain due to extreme cold weather of Kalam and in summer season when Kalam is fully packed then Bahrain is the nearest option to stay.
Malam Jabba is the most visited tourist place in Swat Valley, known for its Ski resort for the winter adventure, this place is also a summer season’s hot spot because it offers other attractions as well i.e. Chair Lift and Zipline activity. Also, the views are stunning and super from Malam Jabba.
Gabeen Jabba is less explored yet most beautiful meadows in Swat Valley which literally means “Honey Marshes” in Pashto. The picturesque meadow is over 8,000 feet above sea level and is the perfect place to camp in pure, untouched nature. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Tourism Department also installed camping pods in Gabeen Jabba for a comfortable stay, also there are many local campsites as well.
Badogai Pass connects Swat Valley with Kumrat in Upper Dir, while this pass is not in Swat Valley but it’s worth visiting. Badogai Pass is accessible only by a 4×4 jeep, if you have extra days then you should definitely visit Kumrat Valley which is another most famous tourist place in Pakistan.Share this tour
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