China to Pakistan by road – From a traveler's diary (Part II)
This hub is the Part II of the journey from China to Pakistan by road. Part I can be found here!
KASHI to TASHKURGAN
Now we are heading towards ‘Tashkurgan’ on Pajero. They took 120 Yuan each from us for heading towards Tashkurgan.
I simply cannot express the views. You can just sit and stare and say ‘amazing’! Huge mountains of Himalayas still covered with snow seem to be welcoming us, with beautiful evergreen fields lying across the whole tracks; blue water from the lakes seems like beautiful crystals flowing. Stunning smooth roads leading ahead towards the sky, it is not easy to put it into words; I just felt like I was lived to witness these beauties of nature, my heart filled with gratitude and my eyes became numb.
It took us 4 hours to reach Tashkurgan. One the way, our driver started feeling sleepy and started shaking his head to make himself attentive. I started singing songs and made some noises so that he could not sleep.
And now we are at ‘Dost Luk Hotel’, they charged us 100 Yuan for 2 bedrooms for a night; beds are comfortable, the rooms are carpeted, water in the bathrooms is icy cold. We are going to spend the night here because NATCO (Northern Areas Transport Corporation) bus will take us towards the border of China and Pakistan and it departs at 09:00 every morning, so we need to stay here for a night. I am going to fetch some food and then going to have rest, so good night folks!
TASHKURGAN to BORDER
Good morning friends! It is a fresh morning and I had a sound sleep at night. I got fresh, and the water was icy cold, but it was refreshing as well.
Now we are heading towards immigration office and its 200 meters away and we have to walk along with our luggage. After some time, we reached at immigration office, and bought tickets for the bus for 225 Yuan and then started waiting to go for immigration.
At the immigration office they scanned my luggage, checked my passport, matched my face carefully with the one in passport, put exit stamp on it, and sent me towards the bus, where after waiting for all the passengers, they opened the door and we all got in.
The bus had small beds for every passenger inside, we got ourselves comfortable at our beds and started heading towards the border (SOST), and it is going to take us 5/6 hours to reach there.
Again, the exquisiteness of the scenery is beyond words; there is a river at one side of our road and giant mountains on the other. On our left, deep down, the cliff, there is a river with blue water flowing at fast speed with waterfalls coming from white mountains above. The road is as smooth as a carpet. At last we reached at the border and some army officers took us out of the bus, they checked our immigration stamps and then we went back into the bus. After further travelling of 10 to 15 minutes we came to the exit point. It was a big stone gate and was the final exit from China. We passed it and entered Pakistan.
I was very happy when I entered Pakistan, after 4 days of exploring China I was going to explore Pakistan.
After getting out of bus at the border we went to the immigration office, they checked our luggage and passport and stamped our entry to Pakistan and retuned our passports back to us. Then we had lunch and took a car to take us to ‘Gilbit’, the place where we had to cross a lake due to land sliding. The length of the lake is 12 to 15 km. After reaching at the lake, we loaded our luggage on a boat and started our journey towards the other end of the lake.
GILBIT to GILGIT
The water of the lake was really cold and of clear blue color, the cold breeze was blowing that made all of us feel fresh. After crossing the lake on boat, we landed on land and took a coaster towards Gilgit. It is going to take roughly 4 hours to reach there.
Wow! I got the chance to see the marvelous view from our coaster. River Hunza is flowing besides us, everyone in the bus is enjoying the nature. It is getting dark now and the nights are cold here. The air is fresh and the river is making horrible noises. I can see Gilgit city far away from us, it seems like colorful starts twinkling far away on the sky. Those are the lights of the roads and houses of Gilgit city. Everything is very beautiful. Finally we reached there at 22:00, everything went well. Now I will rent a room for night and tomorrow we’ll take a bus towards Rawalpindi. I’ll get some food and will sleep, see you tomorrow morning, good night!
GILGIT to RAWALPINDI
Hey! Good morning! I had a sound sleep at night, now its 07:30; buses are standing outside, nearly 100m away from my hotel. I will get ready and pack my stuffs and leave the hotel to continue my journey. My friend is not feeling well, so I am going to help him with his luggage.
Finally we’re all sitting in the bus that will lead us to ‘Rawalpindi’. We paid Rs.1300 each for the following journey, and the bus started. The day is really hot and it is dusty outside, the air conditioner is not working and the windows are closed due to dusty winds. The journey is uncomfortable and tiring. It took us almost 18 hours to reach Mansehra; we stopped at a post here and had some food, and then continued our ride towards Rawalpindi.
RAWALPINDI to LAHORE
It is nearly 05:00 in the morning and we have reached Rawalpindi. We took our luggage outside and made out way towards the next bus station, where we had to take our next bus towards ‘Lahore’, my hometown and my final destination of this amazing journey.
The bus started after an hour, it is 06:00 and finally I am going my home, it was supposed to take 5 hours to reach Lahore but we reached at 10:00. I was sleeping throughout the way, but when I opened my eyes, we were passing through the River Ravi bridge (entrance to Lahore), I was so happy that I could not put my feelings into words. The bus was also very comfortable and I managed to sleep for 4 hours without any disturbance.
We reached at the bus stop; very happy and excited to meet our families. My friends left for their homes and I stayed at the bus station waiting for my friend who was suppose to pick me up, I was giving a surprise to my family and so I contacted my friend to pick me up from station and drop me home. Finally he came and I left for home.
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After 7 days of travelling I was finally in my town. The journey was incredible and has left its marks on my heart.
In case anyone is interested to travel, below is a guide for those who wants to travel from China to Pakistan by road.
From to To (cities)
Mode of Transport
Time duration (hours)
Your city ---> Beijing
Beijing ---> Tulufan
Tulufan ---> Kashi
Kashi ---> Tashkurgan
Tashkurgan Exit-Extry ---> SOST Exit-Extry
SOST - Gilbit
Gilbit ---> Gilgit
Boat --> Bus
Gilgit ---> Mansehra ---> Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi ---> your city