Chilam Joshi Festival Kalash/ Chitral

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Chilam Joshi Festival Kalash/Chitral

Known to have descended from the Greeks, many historians believe that Kalaasha were part of the raging armies of Alexander of Macedonia who decided to settle in this part of the world.

These tribes are pagans and have retained their culture and traditions through thousands of years. The open Graveyard, Kalash Museum, old Mosque and the beautiful lush green valleys of Hindukush are a treat for the visitors. Tirich Mir at 7708m- one of the highest peaks of Hindukush Range standing tall in the background of mesmerizing Karakul valley.

One of the world renowned festivals celebrated in Kalash is the Chilam Joshi festival during the month of May. The Kalasha believe that the pastoral god Sorizan protects their herds during autumn and winter, and so they host a winter festival to thank the God, Sorizon. Their other God, Goshidai protects the herds during summer and spring seasons and is thanked at the Chilam Joshi festival.

Quick Facts:

There are two possible ways of reaching Chitral valley from Islamabad.

  • Fly from ISB to Chitral (subject to flight availability/cancellation/bad-weather)
  • By road via Swat/Lowari Tunnel

Tour duration: 13 days (12 Days & 13 Nights)
Route : Chose from Routes A/B with slight variation in cost and Tour duration 

Difficulty level: Evening walks                       
Min Age limit: 12 years

Chilam Joshi Festival : May 11th-17th

Cost Per Pax: 900USD (for group of 10- Detailed costs below)

Advance Deposit: 200USD

Tour Itinerary:
Day- 1

  • Arrival at Islamabad International
  • Airport Transfer
  • Overnight Stay at Explorers Lounge Islamabad

Day- 2 (ISB-Swat : travel duration 04 hours)

  • Departure for Swat Valley via Swat Motorway @0700hrs       
  • Arrival in Swat
  • Hotel Check-in
  • Sightseeing in Swat/Kalam

Day- 3 (Swat-Chitral/Ayun : travel duration 08hours)

  • Breakfast at 0700hrs
  • Departure for Chitral Valley via Lowari Tunnel
  • Arrival in Ayun Valley Chitral
  • Lunch enroute
  • Hotel Check-in

Day- 4 (Ayun-Kalasha/Rumbur/Bumburet Village via 4×4 Jeeps)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Departure for Rumbur Village, the first of many Kalasha villages where the festival is held in all its splendor. Walk towards the town center, experience the local food and cuisines, experience the culture and living habits of the local People)
  • Departure for Bumburet (our second Kalasha Festival Village on the tour) in the evening
  • Arrival in Bumburet
  • Hotel Check-in

Day- 5 (Bumburet-Chitral Mega : Festival Day)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Town Center where the Mega festival event takes place with all Kalasha tribes gathering in Bumburet.
  • Nightlife, cultural dances, local cuisine, local music, festival rituals, photography etc
  • Visit the Historic Kalasha Graveyard
  • Departure for Chitral in the evening
  • Hotel Check-in

Day- 6 ( A Day in Chitral)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Visit of historic sights in Chitral including Chitral Fort, Shahi Mosque, Birmoglasht, Chitral Bazaar etc
  • Overnight Stay in Chitral

Day- 7 (Chitral-Mastuj : border town between Afghanistan and Pakistan)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Drive to Mastuj- a central town in Yarkhund Valley in the heart of Hindukush Mountain Ranges enroute to Shandur Pass
  • Overnight Stay in Mastuj

Day- 8 (Mastuj-Ghizer via Shandur Pass)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Drive to Ghizer through the legendary Shandur Pass (old Silk Road)
  • Witness the beauty of Ghizer, Phandur, Gupis, Phander Lake, Khalti Lake, Shandur Polo Ground-the highest Polo Ground in the world and much more
  • Overnight Stay in Ghizer

Day- 9 (Ghizer-Gilgit)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Departure for Gilgit
  • Arrival in Gilgit
  • Visit of Kargah Buddha-ancient Buddha rock statue, Gilgit Bazaar, Local cuisine for lunch
  • Hotel Check-in
  • Overnight Stay in Gilgit

Day- 10 (Gilgit-Hunza)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Departure for Hunza
  • Lunch at the stunning Rakaposhi View Point
  • Visit of the Junction Point-confluence of three highest mountain ranges in the world, Nanga Parbat View Point near Jaglot and much more
  • Arrival in Hunza
  • Hotel Check-in
  • Visit of Baltit Fort/Ganesh Village
  • Overnight Stay in Hunza

Day- 11 (Hunza-Khunjerab Pass-Passu)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Departure for Khunjerab Pass-Pakistan-China Border, also the highest border crossing in the world at 4800m ASL
  • Lunch near the stunning Passu Cones aka Cathedral/Topopdan Peaks
  • Spotting wildlife in the beautiful Khunjerab National Park
  • Return to Hunza
  • Hotel Check-in
  • Overnight Stay in Hunza

Day- 12 (Hunza-Islamabad via Karakorum Highway)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Departure for Islamabad
  • Lunch Enroute
  • Arrival in Islamabad
  • Overnight Stay in Explorers Lounge Islamabad

Day- 13 (Fly Out)

  • Breakfast @0700hrs
  • Airport Transfer
  • Fly out

*********************End of Itinerary***************

Terms & Conditions


For 02 persons: 2000 USD per person (Independent Group)
For 04 persons: 1700 USD per person (Independent Group)
For 06 persons: 1500 USD per person (Independent Group)
For 08 persons: 1200 USD per person (Independent Group)
For 10 persons: 900 USD per person (Independent Group)

Cost Includes:

  • Visa invitation letter/permits/NOC’s/Briefing/De-Briefing at Alpine Club etc
  • All meals Breakfast/lunch/dinner (Continental/Desi 2-course) throughout the tour
  • Air-conditioned luxury Coaster (22-seater/09-seater)/Airport Transfers
  • All 4×4 Jeep travel
  • All hotel accommodation (double/triple sharing)
  • On-board snacks and drinks (ice box) during long travels
  • Licensed Tour Guide from Ministry of Tourism
  • All entry tickets including forts and National Parks
  • Satellite phone for incoming & outgoing on payment

Cost does not include:

  • Air tickets (national or International)
  • Visa fee
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal clothing
  • Laundry
  • Rescue/evacuation

Essentials to bring along:

  • Warm clothing, fleece, jackets, headgear. Gloves
  • Sunglasses UV protective
  • Sunblock SPF 60+

Pakistan Explorer disciplinary policy:

  • In wake of unexpected and incidental scenarios e.g. heavy rains/landslide/road blockage/security concerns, PE management will take appropriate measures to continue or disengage the tour (cancellation/refund rules applicable)
  • Hotel rooms on double sharing
  • Camps on double sharing
  • While Guests are encouraged to photograph and record places during their visit, they must respect the local community/houses and their privacy
  • Guests are strictly advised to use life jackets while swimming or engaging in water sports. PE will not be responsible for any accident encountered in such a scenario 
  • Guests are bound to follow the instructions of the team leader/guide/HAP while crossing dangerous routes or else he/she will not be allowed to proceed further 


All cancellations must be notified in writing to Pakistan Explorer.  Cancellation charges will be levied as follows:-

If canceled by the client;

  • Whenever canceled by the client, the bank charges for both sides from the advance will be paid by the client
  • If canceled by the client any time after the commencement of the trip, or after deposit of advance due to any reason whatsoever, No refund will be given on any unutilized services other than hotels, meals which are subject to cancellation charges accordingly
  • If the trekking/expedition is cancelled by the client, government rules will be applied for the refund of Trekking Fee/climbing permits etc.

If canceled by Pakistan Explorer;

  • If the tour is canceled by Pakistan Explorer citing unfavorable conditions e.g. accident, landslide, flooding, incident of terrorism, wide spread epidemic and other such happenings which are truly incidental and has no participation of either client or Pakistan Explorer, and no alternate destination/arrangement/tour has not been mutually agreed upon by both client and Pakistan Explorer, client will be refunded for whatever unutilized service like hotel accommodation, meals, transportation etc. however, charges for trekking fee/climbing permits and other nonrefundable government charges will not be refunded

Liabilities and Responsibilities of Pakistan Explorer:

Pakistan Explorer, its agents, employees or any of the affiliates or subsidiary companies shall neither be responsible nor liable for any loss, damage, injury, sickness or death caused to any member or the property of the group directly or indirectly due to any delay, accident, acts of God, dangers, fire, landslide, avalanche, machinery failure, declared or undeclared hostilities, civil disturbances, strikes, riots, theft, pilferage, epidemics, quarantines, medical or customs regulations, delays, cancellations or changes in itinerary or schedules, Govt. restrictions or due to any causes beyond the control of Pakistan Explorer.

Reservations and Advance Payment:

  • All provisional reservation must reach us in writing well in advance before your arrival in Pakistan. No deposits are necessary for making any provisional reservations.
  • All provisional reservations are subject to confirmation on deposit of USD 300/= per pax advance payment into our account before arrival of the group/client in Pakistan. The balance amount must be paid on arrival in Pakistan.
  • Scan/copy of passport along with two passport size photographs will be required to issue invitation letter for Pakistan Visa application
  • Signed/scanned copy of the tour itinerary along with terms and conditions mentioned above, separately by each member of the group shall be sent via e-mail to Pakistan Explorer in order to dispatch Visa Invitation Letters
  • Pakistan Explorer is a registered Travel company bearing National Taxation Number (NTN: 7187922-0) and is registered with Ministry of Tourism, Department of Tourist Services (DTS-2117) providing complete assistance to tourist and climbing expeditions from across the world.

Note: one or more than one tour itineraries can be combined for an extended sight-seeing visit to Pakistan. Please send us your query so we can quote accordingly

Confirmation and Payment Mode: For Online Deposits:
Account Title: Pakistan Explorer
A/c #: 001005077804
Branch Code: 0131
IBAN: PK75ALFH0131001005077804
Bank Alfalah F-10 Markaz, Islamabad

For more queries and info Contact:
Pakistan Explorer House
287, Main Sumbal Road F-10/4 Islamabad, 44000
Ph: 0092-51-2370284 (working hours: 0900HRS -1800Hrs GMT+5)
Cell: 0092-301 5323962

Note: Pakistan Explorer is a registered Travel & Media Company based in Islamabad, Pakistan (NTN: 7187922-0 DTS: 2117)

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