Shandur Polo Festival 2020 - 13 Days

The World’s Highest Polo Field

Shandur Polo Festival welcomes Polo lovers to experience the traditional Polo match between Gilgit and Chitral during the 2nd week of July every year. The tournament is held at the world heights Polo ground Shandur Pass at the altitude of 3,720 meters. The visitors will enjoy the folk music, cultural dancing and a camping village. The first Polo tournament took place in 1936 at Shandur by a British political agent major Cobb who was fond of playing polo under a full moon at night.

Legendary Status of Shandur polo Festival

This version of the game played at Shandur-Top has attained legendary status and is of great interest to international and domestic tourists alike. There are no umpires and no holds barred. The rules are: There are no rules. In “The Roof of the World” Amin/Willets/Tetley write: “by comparison, an American Wild West rodeo might pass for choir practice.”As one player once mentioned: “You can ride head-on into the opponent, if you dare. In order to decide the final teams to play at the Shandur Polo Festival preliminary matches play both in Chitral and Gilgit-Baltistan Region. The local juries choose the best horses and players for the final games.

More about the Shandur Polo Festival

Shandur Polo Festival, normally the festival begins on the 7th of July. During the course of the tournament A, B, C and D teams of Gilgit and Chitral battle it out on the polo field. Each team has six members with 2-4 reserve players in case of injury etc. The match duration is usually one hour. It has two halves, with a 10 minutes interval. During intervals the locals enthrall the audiences with traditional and cultural performances. The game decided in favour of the team scoring more goals. July 9th is a fix day for final match every year. As six players make up one side, the field can get fairly crowded. This has the advantage of slightly slowing down the pace, which, all things considered, is probably somewhat safety-enhancing. Players rarely wear helmets. The horses’ legs often have no bandages, and mallets often have no grips or straps.

Shandur Polo Festival

Islamabad-Gilgit-Hunza-Shandur-Chitral-Kailash-Peshawar-Islamabad

Festival dates: July 7-9 every year (please re-confirm dates)

Maximum Elevation: 3734 meters

Duration: 13 days (9 hotel nights & 3 camping nights)

Day 1
Islamabad arrival

Arrival Islamabad, a half day sightseeing of Rawalpindi/Islamabad.

Day 2
Drive for Chilas on KKH

Drive to Chilas via Besham on Karakorum Highway (12 hours).

Day 3
Drive to Gilgit/Hunza

Drive to Hunza (6 hours), in the afternoon visit Altit, Baltit Fort and Bazar.

Day 4
Explore Hunza, Drive for Khunnjurab Pass

Early morning visit Eagles Nest to see sun rise. We travel into the higher parts of Hunza valley to watch the famous sun rise over the 7000M+ Rakaposhi peak/Ultar-1/Ultar-2/Hunza Peak/Lady Finger/Diran/Golden (Spantik)/Barpu Glacier. We will have breakfast at Eagles Nest enjoying the beautiful glimpse of the mountains. After breakfast, drive on KKH alongside Attabad Lake and drive to Khunerab Pass . Return to Hunza for night.

Day 5
Drive to Shandur via Phundar valley

Drive to Shandur via Gilgit & Phandar (8-10 hours).

Day 6
Poloe Festival

Rest day at Shandur/Enjoy the polo Match at the world top polo ground

Day 7
Polo Festival

Spend the day watching the final polo match and caltural dance.

Day 8
Drive to Chitral

Drive to Chitral, late afternoon at leisure.

Day 9
Explore Bumburet Velly

Full day tour of Bumburet and Rumbur.

Day 10
Drive for Swat

Drive to Mingora Swat (7 hours). Visit Buddh Kara.

Day 11
Drive to Peshawsr

In the morning visit Swat Museum and drive to Peshawar via Takht-e-Bhai.

In the morning visit Peshawar Museum and bazaar, afternoon drive to Islamabad.

Homebound flight

Day 12
Drive to Islamabad

In the morning visit Peshawar Museum and bazaar, afternoon drive to Islamabad.

Day 13
Home Fight

International flight, Fly back to your home

The Trip Cost Includes

  • • All accommodation and meal described in the trip dossier
  • • All land transport involved in the itinerary

The Trip cost Excludes

  • • Travel insurance
  • • Pakistan’s Visa
  • • Tips for local guides and support staff
  • • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc

You can send your enquiry via the form below.

Shandur Polo Festival 2020

Trip Facts

  • 4-8
  • Chitral KPK
  • Islamabad
  • Breakfast, lunch, Dinner
  • Hotel and Camping
  • 3737m/4600 optional