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Altit Fort is an ancient fort at Altit town in the Hunza valley in Gilgit Baltistan, Pakistan. It was originally home to the hereditary rulers of the Hunza state who carried the title Mir, although they moved to the somewhat younger Baltit fort nearby three centuries later.

Altit Fort and in particular the Shikari tower is around 1100 years old, which makes it the oldest monument in the Gilgit–Baltistan.

The word Altit means this side down and the area around the fort is inhabited by Burusho people. The people of Altit are said to belong to the white Huns, although not much research has gone into the matter. There are several theories about their origin but local indigenous origin holds much value among the people. It is also said that the present language Bruchiski was brought here by the white Huns in 47 A.D but there is no link between burushaski and any other language of today. According to the legend the first name for Altit village was Hunukushal, meaning the village of Huns. The Huns came from the Huang-Ho valley in China. The name later changed to Broshal, translated as a village of Bruchiski speakers. They were spirit worshipers as Shamanism was in practice and also followed Buddhism and Hinduism. In the 15th century Islam was introduced. Around 1830 in turn many converted to Ismailism.

The Altit Fort was in great disrepair, but has recently been restored by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture Historic Cities Support Programme and the Government of Norway. It is characterized by small rooms and low portals with exquisite wood carvings. Japan has contributed to the renovation of the surrounding old village. Altit Fort is a tourist site which has been open to the public since 2007.

Baltit Fort is an ancient fort in the Hunza valley in Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan. Founded in the 1st CE, it has been on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative list since 2004. In the past, the survival of the feudal regime of Hunza was ensured by the impressive fort, which overlooks Karimabad.

The foundations of the fort date back to 700 years ago, with rebuilds and alterations over the centuries. In the 16th century the local prince married a princess from Baltistan who brought master Balti craftsmen to renovate the building as part of her dowry.

The Mirs of Hunza abandoned the fort in 1945, and moved to a new palace down the hill. The fort started to decay which caused concern that it might possibly fall into ruin. Following a survey by the Royal Geographical Society of London a restoration programme was initiated and supported by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture Historic Cities Support Programme. The programme was completed in 1996 and the fort is now a museum run by the Baltit Heritage Trust.

In the past several small independent states formed part of the history of the Northern Areas of Pakistan. Among them Hunza and Nager were traditional rival states, situated on opposite sides of the Hunza (Kanjut) river. The rulers of these two states,Mirs known as Thum (also Tham, Thom or Thámo), built various strongholds to consolidate their power. According to historical sources, the Hunza rulers initially resided in nearby Altit Fort, but after a conflict between the two sons of the ruler Sultan, Shah Abbas (Shάboos) and Ali Khan (Aliqhάn), Shaboos moved to Baltit Fort, making it the capital seat of Hunza. The power struggle between the two brothers eventually resulted in the death of younger one, and so Baltit Fort became the prime seat of power in the Hunza state.

Ayasho II, Thum/Mir of Hunza in the early 15th fifteenth century married Princess Shah Khatoon (Sha Qhatun) from Baltistan (inMoghul history Baltistan is called Tibet Khurd, which means Little Tibet), and was the first to modify the face of Altit and, subsequently Baltit Fort. Baltistan had a very strong cultural and ethnical relation with the Ladakh territory to the east. Not surprisingly, the structure of Baltit Fort was influenced by Ladakhi/Tibetan architecture, with some resemblance to the Potala Palace in Lhasa. Then additions, renovations and changes to the building were being made through the centuries by a long line of following rulers of Hunza.

Home of many ancient forts, the Northern Areas of Pakistan lost some of its heritage around the 19th century as a result of attacks by the Maharaja of Kashmir. However, one of the biggest changes in the structure of the Baltit Fort came with the invasion of the British in December 1891. Safdarali Khan, ruler of Hunza and his wazir Dadu (Thara Baig III), fled to befriended Kashgar (China) to seek 'political asylum' with their fellows and families. With the conquest of Hunza and Nager states the fortified wall and watch towers of the old Baltit village and watch towers of the Baltit Fort on its north-western end were demolished as required by the British. They installed his younger brother, Sir Muhammad Nazim Khan K.C.I.E, as the ruler of Hunza state in September 1892.

During his reign, Nazeem Khan made several major alterations to the Baltit Fort. He demolished a number of rooms of third floor and added a few rooms in the British colonial style on the front elevation, using lime wash and colour glass panel windows.

Baltit Fort remained officially inhabited until 1945, when the last ruler of Hunza, Mir Muhammad Jamal Khan, moved to a new palatial house further down the hill, where the present Mir of Hunza, Mir Ghazanfar Ali Khan, and his family are still residing.

With no proper authority entrusted the Fort was exposed to the ravages of time and over the years its structure weakened and began to deteriorate. His Highness Aga Khan IV initiated the restoration efforts for Baltit Fort in 1990, when Mir Ghazanfar Ali Khan and his family generously transferred the Fort to the Baltit Heritage Trust, a public charity formed for the explicit purpose of owning and maintaining the Fort. The restoration undertaken by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture in Geneva in association with the Aga Khan Cultural Service Pakistan (Pakistan), took six years to complete. The project was supported by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture as the main donor through its Historic Cities Support Programme, as well as by the Getty Grant Program (USA), the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation and the French Government.

The restored Fort, resplendent in its formal regal glory, was inaugurated on September 29, 1996 in the presence of His Highness the Aga Khan IV and the president of Pakistan Farooq Ahmad Khan Laghari. It is now operated and maintained by the Baltit Heritage Trust and is open to visitors. The Baltit Fort serves as a good example of culture restored and preserved for future generations.

The Hunza is a mountainous valley in the Gilgit–Baltistan region of Pakistan. The Hunza is situated in the extreme northern part of Pakistan. Hunza was formerly a princely state bordering Uyghurstan also called Xinjiang 

(autonomous region of China) to the northeast and Pamir to the northwest, which survived until 1974, when it was finally dissolved by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. The state bordered the Gilgit Agency to the south and the former princely state of Nagar to the east. The state capital was the town of Baltit (also known as Karimabad); another old settlement is Ganish Village. Hunza was an independent principality for more than 900 years. The British gained control of Hunza and the neighbouring valley of Nagar between 1889 and 1892 through a military conquest. The then Mir/Tham (ruler) Mir Safdar Ali Khan of Hunza fled to Kashghar in China and sought what would now be called political asylum.

An account wrote by John Bidulf in his book 'Tribes of Hindukush'

The ruling family of Hunza is called Ayeshe (heavenly). The two states of Hunza and Nagar were formerly one, ruled by a branch of the Shahreis, the ruling family of Gilgit, whose seat of government was Nager. First muslim came to Hunza-Nagar Valley some 1000 years (At the time of Imam Islām Shāh 30th Imam Ismaili Muslims). After the introduction of Islam to Gilgit, married a daughter of Trakhan of Gilgit, who bore him twin sons, named Moghlot and Girkis. From the former the present ruling family of Nager is descended. The twins are said to have shown hostility to one another from birth. Thereupon their father, unable to settle the question of succession, divided his state between them, giving Girkis the north/west, and to Moghlot the south/east bank of the river.

The traditional name for the ruler or Prince in Hunza was Tham (also Thom or Thum), which is also a respectful greeting used by the people of both Hunza and Nager who belong to the clan of Boorish. The Shin use the term Yeshkun for the Boorish.

Both Thams are also addressed as Soori, a title of respect. This appears to be the same [in meaning] as Sri, commonly prefixed to the names of Hindu princes in India, to denote their honour and prosperity. The Tham's wives are styled ghenish which is almost identical with the original Sanskrit word for mother, and their sons are calledgushpoor.

In 2010, a landslide blocked the river and created Attabad Lake, which threatened 15,000 people in the valley below and has effectively blocked 27 km of the Karakoram Highway.

The first seat of power of the formerly Hunza State was Altit. Later it shifted to Baltit (modern-day Karimabad). Until the fall of princely state in 1974, Baltit served as political center of Hunza and hence its capital. Today, Baltit is one of the major tourist destinations in Hunza. The center of activities has however shifted to the nearby Aliabad, which is a commercial hub in the region and has most of the governmental infrastructure.

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Tolipeer is a hilltop area situated in Tehsil Rawalakot in the Poonch District of Azad Kashmir. Its approximate elevation is about 8800 ft above sea level. It is about 30 km, or a 45-minute drive, from Rawalakot in Azad Kashmir.[1] Abbaspur, Bagh and Poonch River can be viewed from Toli Pir.Tolipeer is a hilltop area situated in Tehsil Rawalakot in the Poonch District of Azad Kashmir. Its approximate elevation is about 8800 ft above sea level. It is about 30 km, or a 45-minute drive, from Rawalakot in Azad Kashmir.[1] Abbaspur, Bagh and Poonch River can be viewed from Toli Pir.

Tolipeer is the highest mountainous location in the northeastern area of Rawalakot; it is the point of origin of three different mountain ridges. The tourist rest house on the way to Toli Pir is also situated in a scenic location.[citation needed] There are some remains of an old mazar on the highest hilltop.

Tolipeer is most accessible during the summer months; the weather generally becomes colder from October through March.

It is situated 20 kilometers from Rawalakot at an altitude of 1981 meters. Its picturesque beauty and impressive surrounding is compelling and attract tourists to reach here and enjoy the nature. Amidst the captivating beauty of Banjosa, the artificial lake reflects the dense forests standing along the surroundings of the resting calm waters of Banjosa Lake.

The nearby worth-seeing areas of Banjosa are Jandali, Hussain Kot (The native town of the great freedom fighter Captain Hassan Khan) and Devil Gali which can not be simply bypassed for a pleasure trip. The distance parting these destinations from Banjosa are 3 Kms, 4Kms and 12 Kms respectively.

These places portray rich inherent natural beauty encompassing all other while awaiting visitors for a comfortable stay. There are a few private rest houses on the way to Banjosa from Rawlakot. Also Ghorimar is situated 20 Kms from Khaigala awaiting ones arrival to explore the fascinating beauty over-looking the sub-valleys of Rawlakot and Bagh.

Climate

The weather in the area remains cool in summers, and cold in winter. In December and January snowfall also occurs here, and the temperature falls to -5 °C.

Transportation

The Banjosa Lake is accessible by a metallic road from Rawalakot. Public transport vans run daily between Rawalakot and Banjosa.

Accommodation

Some rest houses and huts of AJK Tourism and Archeology Department, Pakistan Public Works Department and Pearl Development Authority are located here. A few hotels, guest houses and tuck shops also exist near the lake.

A market is located 1 kilometer (0.62 mi) away in Chotta Gala town where all the basic necessities of life are available. A few hotels and rest houses are also located in this town.


Communication
The area around the lake is covered by all GSM operators.

Red Fort - also known as the Muzaffarabad Fort was built by the Chak rulers of Kashmir. The current locality us called Center Plate Locally, it is known as the "Rutta Qila" or just "qila". Chak rulers of Kashmir anticipated threat to the city from the Mughals.

Construction was initiated in 1559 at a strategic location. The Mughal Empire annexed Kashmir in 1587, and the fort lost its importance. Finally, the construction of the fort was completed in 1646 in the reign of Sultan Muzaffar Khan of the Bomba Dynasty — the founder of Muzaffarabad

The architecture of the fort shows that great experts in design and structure participated in its construction. It is surrounded on three sides by the Neelum River formerly known as the Kishenganga River. The northern part of the fort had terraces with steps leading to the bank of the river. The eastern side was very well protected from the hazards of flood waters, but some parts on the north side have suffered damage. There used to be an inn at the entrance to the fort, but only traces of that structure remain now.

In 1846, Maharaja Gulab Singh of the Dogra dynasty began reconstruction and extension of the fort for political and military operations and his successor Maharaja Ranbeer Singh completed the work. The Dogra military then used the fort till 1926, after which a new cantonment was built, leaving the red fort abandoned once again. Towards the middle of 1947, the Dogra forces left, leaving the fort abandoned.

Miranjani is a lofty peak located in Abbottabad district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Pakistan. Miranjani track is quite famous among the hikers. It takes almost four hours to reach the peak through a steep track of about 8 km from Nathia Gali.

This is a 3 hours safe hill trek to Mushkpuri Top and is the second highest hill of Galiyat at 9452 feet/3150 meters above sea level approximately. This trek starts from the Pines Hotel in Nathigali spiraling upwards through the beautiful green pine

Swat Museum is located on main Mingora-Saidu Sharif road. This museum has a huge collection of Gandhara sculptures from the Buddhist sites in Swat. The original museum was constructed by DOAM with the contribution of the Wali Swat and the Italian Mission in 1958,

Pharwala is a historic fort located about 40 km from Rawalpindi in Punjab, Pakistan. It is naturally defended by one side by a small Himalayan range and the other by the Swaan River. It is a Gakhar fort built in the 15th century on the ruins of a 10th-century Shahi Fort.

Narar, also called Narh, is a small village located in Tehsil Kahuta, District Rawalpindi, Punjab. The village is almost 60 KM from Capital Islamabad in southeast. It takes nearly 2.5 hours to reach Narar from Islamabad or Rawalpindi.

Lyallpur Museum is a heritage museum in Faisalabad, Pakistan ( the old and original name for the city of Faisalabad is Lyallpur). It has 10 galleries which show the ancient and modern history and culture of Lyallpur/Faisalabad. It was established in 2011 by the Chief

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Swat Museum is located on main Mingora-Saidu Sharif road. This museum has a huge collection of Gandhara sculptures from the Buddhist sites in Swat. The original museum was constructed by DOAM with the contribution of the Wali Swat and the Italian Mission in 1958, when a twin Museum was inaugurated in Rome (Museo Naziolae d’Arte Orientale). The present building of the museum was constructed in various phases. The structure was severely damaged both by the 2005 earthquake and by a huge tragic bomb blast that occurred in February 2009.

The museum was reconstructed under a project funded by Pakistan- Italian Debt Swap Agreement (FIDSA). The scheme was executed by Archaeology Community- Tourism/Field School Project while the University of Engineering and Technology, Peshawar extended technical support to it.

The museum has been designed by Italian architects Ivano Marati and Candida Vassallo, and set up in collaboration with an engineer from the University of Naples Federico II and engineers from the University of Engineering and Technology, Peshawar.

The Italian ambassador said that Swat and Italy had a longstanding relation that would be strengthened further after the reconstruction of the museum. Italian Archaeological Mission in Pakistan had been working on different archaeological sites since 1955 that started work under the guidance of Prof Giuseppe Tucci. During the last 60 years, the Italian mission successfully worked on many projects to preserve the archaeological sites in Pakistan, particularly in district Swat.

Swat Museum was one of the best museums in the country that had a large number of collections of Gandhara civilization.

After a gap of about seven years, scores of people made their way to the newly-reconstructed Swat Archaeological Museum

The visitors were excited to not only see a massive collection of artefacts from the Gandhara civilization but also the building’s state-of-the-art design.This new building is so spacious and wide that one feels a great delight in walking among ancient civilizations.

The opening of the museum will boost economy as more and more tourists will visit Swat

Kundol Lake also known as Kundol Dand, is a lake in Swat Valley, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan, which is located in the north of Utror valley at a distance of 19 km away from kalam. Similarly, there is a well-known story about the lake which is that every night in a month, a golden bowl appears in the center of the lake and glistens like moon but no one has ever touched that bowl due to magical powers inside it.

Location & Trail to the lake

Kundol Lake lies in the lap of Hindu kush mountains at an elevation of (9,950 ft), in the north of Utror, encompassed by snow clad mountains and towering trees. Similarly, the trail to the lake from Ladu is easy to follow as a large stream flows down from the lake, which merges with River Swat in Kalam valley. It leads beside the stream and takes you to the lake. On the way, lush green forests, picturesque spots and gushing waterfalls welcome one's to the region. The mountains around the lake are covered by thick blanket of vegetation that enhances the beauty of the lake very much. The margins of kundol lake serve as the camping site during the summer season for the trekkers.
Kundol lake is fed by melting glaciers and springs of the Mount Hindu kush. It gives rise to utror Khwar, the major right tributary of the Swat River.

Access

Kundol Lake is accessible only during the summer; during the winter, the roads are closed due to heavy snowfall. It can be accessed by unmetalled road from Kalam up to Utror in a four-wheel automotive where a link road ends in a green valley called Ladu in the foothills of the mountain. Earlier, jeeps used to go till a higher village called Ladu but now bridge and jeep track is destroyed due to floods and rains so total trek time has increased from 3-4 hrs to 6-8 hrs till the lake. There are also small refreshment huts in Ladu valley where one can take tea and get something for eating. From Ladu it takes almost four to six hours to reach the lake. The mountains around this small valley are covered with tall cedar and pine trees.

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Following his defeat of the Mughal emperor Humayun in 1541, Sher Shah Suri built a strong fortified complex at Rohtas, a strategic site in the north of what is now Pakistan. It was never taken by storm and has survived intact to the present day.

Within the city of Multan, Pakistan there is a shrine of Hazrat Muhammad Shah Yusaf Gardezi, commonly known as Shah Gardez, just inside the Bohar Gate. It is a rectangular domeless building decorated with glazed tiles, a work of considerable beauty.

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