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Baltit or Karimabad Hunza

Baltit or the new and official name Karimabad is the capital of Hunza District, in the Gilgit-Baltistan province of Pakistan.

The name Karimabad is named after the Ismaili spritual leader Prince Karim Aga Khan,, though Baltit is still the popular name for the village around the Baltit fort

Karimabad is located on the west bank of the Hunza River, in a valley which is at 8,200 feet (2,500 m) elevation. The town is made up of stone walled steep sloping large terraces. The town was a caravan halting place for people who were traveling through the Hindu Kush mountains to the Vale of Kashmir. It is set amidst snow clad mountain peaks of Rakaposhi (altitude of about 25,000 feet (7,600 m)), and glaciers like the Ulter Nala as a backdrop, and deep gorges. Access is by hill road from Gilgit

Karimabad, previously known as Baltit, was originally ruled by a monarch, the Mir of Hunza. The Baltit Fort was built at that time to function as the Mir's palace.[3][4] The location was known as a caravan resting stop, and for its slave trade.

Baltit served as the capital of Hunza valley for over 750 years, until the middle of the 20th century. After Pakistan became an independent country in 1947, the Hunza province controlled by the Mir voluntarily joined Pakistan.[1][4] Earlier, the capital had been shifted from the area around Balit down to the lower part of the hills where new buildings were erected, which became the new capital, Karimabad. The new town has developed into a tourist place, following the development of the Karakoram Highway, with a number of shopping complexes dealing in handicrafts, hotels, restaurants, and travel agencies.

Both Baltit Fort and Karimabad village received the World Award of Tourism in 2000 when Indonesia, Australia, India, and Britain and other countries competed

Baltit Fort

Baltit fort is a 400 years old fort built by Tibatan massons whome came as dowery for the princes of Tibet who married the prince of Hunza 400 years ago. It was restored in 1992 and was converted into a guided museum by the Aga Khan Heritage foundation. An expanssive fees of Rs. 1200 is charged for the foreigners visiting the fort.

Queen Victoria Monument

The Queen Victoria Monument is erected on a rock face at the rear end of Karimabad. It can be accessed only by trekking for about an hour passing through irrigation channels, a polo ground, an old watch tower, and a narrow passage strewn with rocks. It is at the base of the rock face and was built by Nazim Khan; in the local Burushaski language it is known "Malikamu Shikari" (ma-li-ka-mu shi-ka-ri).

Pictures of Baltit Fort




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