An old Buddhist center in the disputed Northwest Frontier Province, Gilgit is surrounded by mountains. It offers beautiful scenery, traditional music, trout fishing, polo matches (usually with a traditional music group providing a soundtrack), and excellent mountain and trekking trips (possibly to nearby Nanga Parbat). You can also drive across a 600-ft-/185-m-long suspension bridge (one of the longest in Asia). Be sure to visit Chinar Bagh to see 300-year-old trees along the banks of the Gilgit River. We also recommend taking a half-day trip to nearby Kargha, 6 mi/10 km away—you'll have to endure a bumpy road through a beautiful rocky landscape. In Kargha, a small village, see the fish hatchery and the Buddhist rock carving in the side of a mountain. You can visit Gilgit with a guide, but travel permits are difficult to obtain. Two nights in Gilgit will be ample for most visitors. 175 mi/280 km northeast of Islamabad.

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