The Closest Airport to K2 Base Camp
The closest airport to K2 Base Camp is the Skardu airport in Skardu. This airport is a national airport, but,
there are now few direct flights from Karachi, Lahore, Multan, Faisalabad and Sialkot to here, and even those are limited.
Also, flying in and out of this airport can be hair-raising, due to its geographical location high in the mountains.
Flights can only depart during the day when visibility is clear and the weather is favorable, so flight delays
and cancellations are common.
Fly to Islamabad
Flights to Islamabad International Airport in Islamabad operate regularly from many around the world
and it is easy to find direct flights. You will need to go through Immigration and Customs and will need to
retrieve your luggage even if your flight to Skardu is immediately afterwards.
Though travelers can fly into Karachi, Lahore, Multan, Faisalabad and Sialkot as well but flight from these cities to Skardu is irregular and in case of flight cancellation, travelers need to travel to longer distance and hours compared to Islamabad. From there you will join your group and either fly to Skardu or make the journey overland by road, which takes two days with an overnight stay in between.
On the flight from Islamabad to Skardu, if you sit on the right-hand side of the plane, you may glimpse Nanga Parbat, the ninth highest mountain in the world.
If your flight lands in Islamabad after 9 AM , you will need to spend the evening in Islamabad. We recommend
heading to the Islamabad city which takes about 35 minutes by taxi as there is no hotel close to airport.
From Islamabad to Skardu
Nonstop flights from Islamabad to Skardu cost anywhere from $100 to $200 and run every day
of the week. The flight is only 50 minutes long. We do recommend booking few weeks before departure as there is
a high demand and low supply. They seem to cancel flights less often and have more options if you need to move
Another way to get to Skardu from Islamabad is by the road.
Hop on a bus from Rawalpindi Pirwadah Bus station to Skardu, There are many buses leaving to Skardu each day on Karakoram Highway (KKH).
Crossing Khunjerab Pass from Tashkurgan, China to Pakistan (From April to November –
Monday -Friday except Holidays)
To do this crossing from China, you have to have your visa for Pakistan in advance by online or through the
embassy consulate in your country. https://vepakistan.com/pakistan-visa-information/ you cannot get a Visa
in Tashkurgan or Kashgar for Pakistan.
Also, there is no stop to purchase food/snacks/drinks along the way (Tashkurgan to Sost); so ensure that you
take enough snacks /food/drink with you to last you this 4+hr drive You can to take a local bus to make this
crossing. You can take a private car, higher in prices to bus but smoother and quicker. The bus that goes from
China to Pakistan is run by the Xinjiang Province Govt; whereas the bus from Pakistan to China is run by
NATCO, a Pakistani govt service. The bus tickets cannot be bought in advance. You can only purchase them on the
day of travel. The purchase of the bus ticket and the start of the bus route for this border crossing bus is NOT at the
bus stop in Tashkurgan town. Instead, go to the Customs/ Immigration building on the outskirts of Tashkurgan
(towards Pakistan, about 2km outside Tashkurgan downtown); and buy the tickets (RMB 225 each, cash) at the
small building at the far end of the parking lot of the Customs/Immigration building.
The Bus is supposed to leave at 11:30AM Beijing time (9:30AM Uyghur time). However, the departure time can
be late as all travelers have to clear through Chinese Customs and Immigration.. you need to keep your luggage
with you, as the bus is not allowed to be loaded until it is cleared by Chinese Customs.
Note, There is a bathroom on the edge of the parking lot of the Customs building. Once you are
through Customs/Immigration formalities, you cannot go anywhere unescorted (since you have
officially left China). So bathroom visit here once you have cleared Customs/Immigration has to
be escorted to the bathroom at edge of the parking lot. No other restrooms are provided/
Once you board the bus and leave, there is one Chinese soldier will join the bus and escort it all the way to the
Khunjerab Pass Police border post. Along the way, there are multiple Chinese police posts where your passport
/visa will be checked. There are NO bathroom facilities on the way; jungle bathrooms are your only choice.
At the border, the bus simply crosses over into Pakistan without stopping on the Chinese side, crosses over from
right hand drive to left hand drive, and stops on the Pakistani side for a jungle bathroom break, and to take pictures.
In Pakistan, the Pakistan Customs/Immigration is in Sost, which is another 60+kms away. Along the way, you
have to cross a Khunjerab National Park; for which foreigners are required to pay US$6 each (cash only, US$’s
only). Pakistani and Chinese nationals don’t pay anything. So make sure you have the cash on hand.
In Sost you need get clear through Pakistani Customs and Immigration. Foreigners have a separate line, and takes
much longer than Pakistanis and Chinese nationals. Make sure your Passport+ Visa are totally in order as they check
everything very carefully. We can arranged your pick up from here for the rest of trip in Pakistan.
If you want to travel your own, you can take a mini bus/van during the day time to Hunza Aliabad, (approximately
takes 2 hours travel time) and from there another bus onward to Gilgit ((approximately takes 3 hours travel time)).
From Gilgit you can catch a van to reach Skardu during day time only which takes 5+ hours.
Cross Wahga Border to Lahore and Islamabad by Bus:-
Take a taxi, rickshaw from Amritsar to Wahga Border. The ride takes 45 minutes to 1 hour to reach Wahga Indian
side. Cross the border by foot. (open from 10 am to 5 pm daily) Walk across the Border, After immigration at
Pakistan side Take a bus or Rickshaw on to Lahore city which takes around 1 hour. From Lahore there are many
buses leave for Islamabad after every 30 minutes. From Lahore one can also fly to Skardu. There is also train service from Lahore to Islamabad. From
Islamabad you can fly to Skardu or take a bus to reach Skardu.