Our People
  • Amy Waters snow biking Our Team

    Steppes Travel is made by the people who work here. Incredible holidays are made possible because of their vast travel experience and the great enthusiasm they bring to their work.

  • William Dalrymple Our Tour Experts

    We carefully select our experts based on their knowledge, companionship and influence, ensuring that you can travel with the most knowledgeable leaders in the field.

  • Liz Bonnin Heroes and Heroines

    The people who lead the way when it comes to those things which matter to us: exploration, the environment, women’s empowerment and education.

Autumn scene on Gilgit river, Gilgit, Pakistan

Journey beyond the Karakoram Highway

Start dateEnd dateDays
Prices from
Single SupplementTour ExpertGroup SizeStatus
23/09/21 07/10/2115 days £3,995 ex. flights £725Diana Driscoll15 Max AVAILABLE Reserve place

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Karakorum highway, Pakistan 1

Stunning landscapes

Cross soaring mountain plateaus driving along the famous Karakoram Highway.

The Emperor's Mosque, Badshahi Masjid, Lahore, Pakistan 2

Fascinating history

Soak up the Mughal, Sikh and British history in Lahore, Multan and Sukkur.

Civilized Society of Mohenjo Daro, Pakistan 3

Heritage sites

Explore the UNESCO sites of Lahore, Taxila, Mohenjo Daro and Harappa.

Decorated Truck with Local Man, Sindh, Pakistan 4

Friendly people

Populated by an immensely hospitable people, it somehow exudes an air of polite sophistication.

Explore our suggested itinerary

  • Day 1


  • Day 2

    Islamabad to Taxila

  • Day 3

    Islamabad to Gilgit

  • Day 4

    Gilgit to Hunza

  • Day 5


  • Day 6

    Hunza to Chilas

  • Day 7

    Chilas to Abbottabad

  • Day 8

    Abbottabad to Lahore

  • Day 9


  • Day 10


  • Day 11

    Lahore to Harrapa and Multan

  • Day 12


  • Day 13

    Multan to Uch Sharif and onto Sukkur

  • Day 14

    Sukkur to Mohenjo-Daro and onto Islamabad

  • Day 15

    Depart Islamabad

Day 1


Pakistan Monument, Islamabad, Pakistan

On arrival into Islamabad, you will be met by our local guide, and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon enjoy a city tour of Islamabad.

Day 2

Islamabad to Taxila

Visit Taxila (UNESCO) seeing a number of archaeological remains including the First and Second cities of the Gandharan period, a Buddhist monastery and the Taxila Museum.

Day 3

Islamabad to Gilgit

Old man, Hossaini village, Gilgit Baltistan, Pakistan

Travel to Gilgit. Visit the polo grounds, the mountain bazaar, with free time for shopping. Afterwards, continue onto the Buddha rock carving near Kargah.

Day 4

Gilgit to Hunza

Drive through the Karakoram Range and stop in villages on your way to Karimabad, capital of the Hunza Valley. Visit the spectacular Altit and Baltit forts.

Day 5


Khunjerab Pass, Chinese border gate, China Pakistan border, Pakistan

Explore the Nagar valley, visit the point where glaciers meet with beautiful mountain scenery and villages return to Karimabad.

Day 6

Hunza to Chilas

Makran Coastal Highway, Pakistan

Drive to Chilas with many beautiful stops on the Karakoram Highway.

Day 7

Chilas to Abbottabad

Attabad Lake on the Karakorum Highway, Gilgit, Pakistan

The drive to Abbottabad is full of scenery and culture on the way.

Day 8

Abbottabad to Lahore

Shopkeeper, Lahore, Pakistan

Drive to Lahore and en route visit The Katas Raj Hindu Temples, a complex surrounding a pond named Katas which is regarded as sacred by Hindus.

Day 9


Full day tour of Lahore including a visit to the historic Lahore Fort, the only place where one can see different phases of Mogul architecture

Day 10


The Emperor's Mosque, Badshahi Masjid, Lahore, Pakistan

Another full day exploring Lahore. Visit Shalimar garden and Emperor Jehangir’s mausoleum that was built in the 1630s and is another example of the talented Mogul architecture.

Day 11

Lahore to Harrapa and Multan

Tray Painting, Multan, Punjab, Pakistan

Depart for Multan, stopping en route to visit Harappa archaeological site, the oldest Indus Valley site dating from 2500BC.

Day 12


Tomb of shah Rukn e alam, Multan, Pakistan

A full day exploring Multan. Visit the Mausoleum of Shah RukneAlam. This colossal building is of great interest in architecture and design in basic Central Asian and Persian character belongs to famous Sufi Saint dates from 14th AD.

Day 13

Multan to Uch Sharif and onto Sukkur

Visit Uch Sharif, a very ancient and historical place which still has some beautiful mosques and tombs.

Day 14

Sukkur to Mohenjo-Daro and onto Islamabad

Drive from Sukkur to Mohenjo Daro an Indus Civilisation archaeological site which flourished here some 5000 years ago. Continue to Islamabad.

Day 15

Depart Islamabad

Transfer to the airport for your departure flight.

Pakistan Monument, Islamabad, Pakistan
Islamabad, Pakistan
Shah Faisal Mosque, Islamabad, Pakistan
Islamabad, Pakistan
Lorry art on hoods, Islamabad, Pakistan
Islamabad, Pakistan
Dharmarajika, Buddhist stupa, Taxila, Islamabad, Pakistan
Islamabad, Pakistan


Islamabad is the modern capital of Pakistan, which was built alongside the old city of Rawalpindi. Whilst the former is laid out on a grand scale, the latter is what one might traditionally think many of Pakistan’s cities to be like – narrow bustling lanes and markets interspersed with historic sites.

View from Altit Fort towards Hunza River, Karakorum Mountains, Pakistan
Altit, Pakistan
Karakorum highway, Pakistan
Karakorum highway, Pakistan
Decorated Pink Lorry, Sindh, Pakistan
Sindh, Paskistan
Autumn scene on Gilgit river, Gilgit, Pakistan
Gilgit, Pakistan

Karakoram Highway

Completed in 1979 and opened to the public in 1985, the Karakoram Highway, formally known as the China-Pakistan Friendship Highway, is a 1,300 kilometre road which links Hasan Abdal (located a few kilometres beyond Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan) with Kashgar, the second most important city in Xinjiang province, China. This route, once an important Silk Road route which used to link the Indian sub-continent with China, is today considered the 8th wonder of the world. It is a drive with spectacular mountain scenery alongside the mighty Indus river.

Badshahi masjid, Lahore, Pakistan
Lahore, Pakistan
Wooden Houses with Balconies, Old Town, Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan
Old Town Lahore, Pakistan
Badshadhi Mosque, Lahore, Pakistan
Main prayer hall and court of Badshahi Mosque, Lahore, Pakistan
Lahore, Pakistan


A favourite for many travellers, Lahore is steeped in history but is also the most liberal and cosmopolitan of Pakistan’s cities. Although it was ruled over by many different empires, it is the Mughal Empire, late 16th and early 18th centuries, which contributed to most of todays visited sites. It fell into decay whilst being fought over by different rulers but regained its grandeur during the Sikh Empire in the 19th century, going on to become the capital of British Punjab when it was annexed by the British.

Group Tour FAQs

Why travel to Pakistan with Steppes Travel?

Our Pakistan expert Paul has travelled throughout the country, spending time among the soaring 7,000 metre peaks and alpine meadows of the north as well as the bustling cities, desert forts and tombs of the less visited south. In his words “Pakistan is a secret jewel in the Sub-Continent, a myriad of colours, amazing sites and curious people. It is different and refreshing, having had little tourism for the last decade or so – a whole generation has missed out on seeing tourists in many locations”.

What is the standard of accommodation on this tour?

Accommodation is varied in this region. Where possible, we have carefully selected a range of small comfortable hotels and three to four-star guest houses.

Is it safe to travel to Pakistan?

When it comes to the safety of tourists, the Pakistani people are extremely friendly and will do their best to make foreigners feel safe and welcome.

What will the weather be like in Pakistan in September?

As a general rule, the best time to visit the north is between May and October and the south between October and March. Outside of these times temperatures can be extremely cold or very hot.

What is the food like in Pakistan?

Pakistani cuisine is very tasty and varies from region to region. Flavours combine ingredients and spices from neighbouring countries using lots of vegetables so great for vegetarians, plus chicken and mutton for meat eaters.

Is this tour suitable for solo travellers?

Our group tours are perfect for solo travellers, as travelling as part of an organised group in faraway places does provide security and peace of mind. We handle all of the arrangements for you and there will be a local tour guide on hand throughout to provide advice and help if needed, as well as the expertise of a Tour expert.

If you are willing to share, we will always do our best to match you up with another solo traveller of the same sex so that you do not have to pay for a single room.

If you would prefer the privacy of your own room and would like this guaranteed, then the single room price supplement will apply.

Will altitude be a problem on this tour in Pakistan?

Gilgit and Karimabad, further north, are located at altitudes of 1,500 and 2,500 metres respectively. An day excursion to the Khunjerab Pass will take you up to 4,693 metres visiting on the same day the Nagar valley at 2,688 metres. If you suffer from Altitude sickness you may wish to opt out of this day trip.

Haven’t found what you’re looking for?


Why a Steppes expert-led group tour

1.Experience Matters

We have been running insightful and groundbreaking group tours since our inception in 1989. We have worked with institutions such as the British Museum and Victoria & Albert Museum and run wildlife tours in conjunction with conservation agencies such as Fauna & Flora International, Wildlife Conservation Society, the Orangutan Foundation, Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund and the Jane Goodall Institute.

2.Size Matters

Our average group size is typically eight to ten people, smaller than other group tours typically offered – a factor which many of our clients appreciate. Travelling as part of a smaller group provides a more intimate, personalised and relaxed atmosphere.

4.It’s about who you know

We have developed an enviable pool of expertise from which to choose our tour experts, who we carefully select based on their knowledge, companionship and personality. Often, these experts can use their influence to facilitate private access to sites not typically open to the public.

3.Like-Minded People

Steppes Travellers are like-minded people – interesting, interested and curious. Our group tours aim to create an easy and informal atmosphere – we have a lot of fun on our tours and many friendships have been formed.

5.Value for money

Our tours are well-priced to ensure you get real value for money. We include gratuities on the majority of our tours and do not pass on currency surcharges. We strive to look after single travellers as well as we can, keeping single supplements to a minimum.

6.Peace of Mind

When you travel on one of our group tours, you will be looked after by our local agents and your tour expert with the back-up of our 24-hour emergency number and duty manager. All our holidays are fully bonded and protected – our ATOL number is ATOL 6495.

Includes / Excludes

Important Information

Activity Level
Moderate Activity
Single Supplement

Travelling on your own? Our group tours are perfect for solo travellers, as travelling as part of an organised group in faraway places provides security and peace of mind. We handle all of the arrangements for you and there will be a local tour guide on hand throughout to provide advice and help if needed, as well as the expertise of a Tour expert.


To allow flexibility, our group tours do not include international flights as standard. We can arrange international flights on your behalf, please get in touch with our travel experts for a quote. All international flights from the UK are ATOL protected.

What is included

  • Accompanied by Diana Driscoll throughout
  • Accompanied by English speaking local guides
  • Airport transfers
  • All accommodation as detailed in the itinerary
  • All meals mentioned in the itinerary
  • Transport as detailed in the itinerary
  • Entrance fees to sites visited
  • Gratuities for local guides, drivers and porters
  • £25 to help fund the communities, conservation agencies and NGOs that we work with
  • £25 contribution to ‘Trees and Science’ in mitigation of your carbon emissions

What is excluded

  • International flights
  • Visa
  • Drinks with meals
  • Meals not mentioned
  • Travel insurance
  • Items of a personal nature

Our future tour dates

For further information about any of these tours please call 01285 880 980

Start dateEnd dateDays
Prices from
Single SupplementTour ExpertGroup SizeStatus
23/09/21 07/10/2115 days £3,995 ex. flights £725Diana Driscoll15 Max AVAILABLE Reserve place

Reserve your place on this group tour

Our travel experts have a wealth of first-hand knowledge, so if you have any questions about this expert-led group tour, please get in touch. They would love to help. We hope you can join us on this tour.

01285 880 980

Send us an enquiry

Send us a message and one of our travel experts
will get right back to you.

Enquire Today

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise set us apart. So too our curiosity. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you, all the while ensuring we travel and operate sustainably.

Are you ready to discover extraordinary once again?

More about Steppes

Get in touch

  • This page is attached to this enquiry

  • By sending your enquiry you are stating that you agree to our T&C

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.