“On your journey to your dream, be ready to face oasis and deserts. In both cases don’t stop”
“On your journey to your dream, be ready to face oasis and deserts. In both cases don’t stop.”
One of the distinguishing features of Skardu Valley in Gilgit Baltistan is its diverse flora and fauna. Katpana desert, among many natural attractions near Skardu Valley, is the best place to visit while on a quest to explore beautiful Pakistan.
Sprawling from Khaplu Valley to Nubra in Ladakh, the white sand dunes of Katpana desert are no less than a marvel. In contrast to its white sands, “Biama Nakpo” in the local language means “Black sand”.
The Cold Desert, also known as the Katpana Desert, or Biama Nakpo, is a high-altitude desert at a distance of 16 Kms from Skardu. It is a 30 minutes drive on scenic Shigar road. Located at an altitude of 2226 meters, the Katpana desert of Skardu and Shigar is ranked as the world’s highest cold desert.
The cold desert sketched alongside River Indus, embodies enigma in its true spirit. Its topography comprises of vast white desert alongside River Indus bank, asphalted Shigar Road running amidst the sand dunes and ice-capped mountains in the backdrop.
The crystal clear water of the Indus River across the desert highlights the diversity of landscape within sight. The sand dunes covered with snow in the winter season and moving with strong winds seize the attention of visitors. It seems more like a moonscape than a landscape.
Temperature in Katpana desert cold and vary between 8°C to 24°C maximum in the summer season, whereas it can drop to -17°C in winter. It is recommended to have a pair of extra warm clothing even if you are traveling in summer.
Exploring the Katpana Cold desert is a unique sightseeing experience that only Skardu valley offers. Go Glamping in the cold desert; enjoy the reflection of multicolored trees in the Indus river, mesmerizing sunset over white sand dunes, and witness Milky Way sighting at night. Most visitors traveling in groups cherish listening to the folklores, circling around a bonfire, enjoying Trout, and Yak for dinner. People also like motor biking in the desert as this is the site to host eminent Jeep Rally events every year.
The Katpana Desert Jeep rally has become the second-largest motorsport event over the years, after Cholistan Desert Jeep Rally. The splendor of racing in the Sarfaranga desert lies in an assortment of terrains it has; from soft white sand to gravel and the water crossings. Thousands of motor enthusiasts from all over the world gather to participate or witness the most organized Sarfaranga desert Jeep rally in Gilgit Baltistan region.
Occasionally held cultural nights, Zakh Competition, and Mayphan festival breach the mystery of desert and make it an amazing place to visit.Share this tour