Hotel booking should be done before leaving home. There are many online services where there is no fear of fraud, such as Airbnb.
Remember that the more you book a hotel at a tourist destination near the city center, the more expensive it will get. In Murree, for example, hotel rent is higher in hotels near Mall Road and GPO Chowk.
Now I give you a wonderful tip through which you can book a good and cheap hotel.
For example, you want to book a hotel in Naran. So here in the main bazaar you will find hotels at high-cost. You can check out the hotel on the other road parallel to and behind this main bazaar. You can also find hotels here on Lake Saif al-Muluk Road. But the best strategy is to go to any back alley where you can find a hotel at a reasonable rate. Take this as just an example.
If you are staying in a hotel in Murree or Naran, turn off the gas heater and take it out of the room before going to bed.
Watch Video:How to Book Cheap Hotel in Murree and Naran?
Dangerous landslides can occur suddenly in mountainous areas.
This is difficult to avoid, but as a precautionary measure, check the weather report before leaving for the trip. If there is a report of rain for several consecutive days in the respective tourist spot or on its way, it is better to delay your journey or reach the tourist spot before the rain starts.
Because of the constant rain, the soil erodes between the rocks, which causes the rocks to suddenly start falling on the road.
As you drive, keep an eye on the mountain. The risk of landslides is higher on slopy sedimentary mountains than on rocky hills. If some small pebbles have fallen on the road, it means that landslides are going to happen in this area very soon. Either move backward or quickly move forward your vehicle from the area.
During the summer season, sudden floods occur in mountainous areas, which is called flash flooding. To avoid this, whenever you cross a dry stream, be careful and cross with speed and go on high ground.
Rivers in mountainous areas are very beautiful but also deadly. Never go into the river or stand on the shore. Mountain rivers are not usually deep, but their water speeds are very high. If engulfed, the human body hits the rocks with speed, which proves to be fatal.
Leopards, venomous snakes and other dangerous animals are also present in the mountainous areas of Pakistan, so do not stop for pictures on the deserted road.
In mountainous areas, there are no remote tire shops, so keep an emergency toolkit in your car. If you do not have a toolkit, you can rent a toolkit from Wondroz in Islamabad for a few days. It includes tire inflatable compressor, automatic jack, tow chain and other items.
You can also rent a tire chain from a Wondroz Store, which is essential for safe driving in the snow.
In mountainous areas, local people's animals are roaming free which causes accidents. If a cow is crossing the road, your horn will have no effect on it. So do not try to drive at speed from the front of the animal. And give the animal a chance to cross the road first.
Remember that high altitude mountain areas have lower air pressure and oxygen levels. If you are obese then you may have a breathing problem or acute mountain sickness. Go after consulting your doctor.
Don't go at high altitudes straight away. Instead go while adapting your body to the environment. For example, if obese people want to go to Naran or Hunza from a plain area, then they should first stay in Islamabad for two or four days, then stay in Murree or Abbottabad for a few days and then go to Naran or Hunza. This way your body will gradually acclimatize to the height.
Another thing to keep in mind is that if you need medical care at Naran or Babusar Top, you will find the nearest suitable hospital in Abbottabad or Mansehra which is three or four hours away.
So if you are sick, it is best to go after consulting your doctor and take the necessary life-saving medicines with you.
Never take a baby under six months to a high altitude.
Due to the difference in air pressure at higher altitudes, the ears of people coming from the plains are often blocked. This condition is called barotrauma in medical parlance. To avoid this, it is best to gossip with other people in the car or chew bubble gum.
Once the ears are closed, there are some tried and tested ways to normalize them. Telling here will make the video longer so you can see their details in the comments below this video.
Watch Video: See some more tested ways to prevent from barotrauma, in comments beneath video on YouTube.
Most of the people going to Gilgit-Baltistan or Naran are perplexed about which route to take from Islamabad to Abbottabad.
Google Map gives us three options to go from Islamabad to Abbottabad. The road on the right passes through Pir Sohawa. From Serena Hotel, it is a 104 km journey from Islamabad to Abbottabad and takes about three hours.
The center road option passes through Khanpur Dam. Both roads have steep ascent and descent.
In my opinion, these two roads are not suitable for a driver from the plains. The best left for you is through the motorway M1 and M15 option. The distance from Islamabad Serena Hotel to Abbottabad is 141 km and at two hours and fifteen minutes drive.
However, if you want to experience the beautiful scenery along with the trip, you can also go to Abbottabad via Murree and Nathia Gali. It is 23 km shorter than M15 but takes more time of an hour and a half.
The distance from Serena Hotel Islamabad to Abbottabad is 118 km and takes about four hours.
If you want to reach Abbottabad in less time, take M15 or Hazara Motorway route from Burhan Interchange via M1.
Watch Video: You should watch this part of video to understand Best Route from Islamabad to Abbottabad.
At a distance of about fifteen kilometers from the Serena Hotel, this 17 Mile roundabout comes from where you find two ways to go to Murree. If you follow the old Murree Road route, keep left and head towards Toll Plaza in front.
To use the Murree Expressway, turn right onto this roundabout. The journey to Murree on the expressway is ten kilometers longer than the old road but it is safer and easy.
If you are going to Murree via the expressway, it is better to fill fuel tank of your car from any fuel pump of Bharakahu or 17 Mile, because you will not find any other pump on the way to Murree.
If your vehicle breaks down on the Murree Expressway, there is a free mobile workshop and free recovery truck from the NHA. Don't make any payment to them. Their service is completely free and they work under supervision of Motorway Police. So you can call the Motorway Police at 130 to get their service.
In this video, I have shared the best experience of my police service. If any point needs further clarification you can write in the comments below.
Our another similar video has already gone viral which gives tips for safe driving on ice. You can watch if you want.
Please Share this video if you think it's appropriate. This video might be useful for someone else. Thank you so much.
Best wishes from Wondroz for your joyful trip.
Watch Video: See live demo video of Best Road from Islamabad to Murree.
Vehicles can get hot on climbing mountain areas. Never turn off the engine in this situation. Turn off the car's AC and pour water on the radiator. Keep an extra bottle of water in the car.
Do not stop the car on the steep slope, for example while returning from Shogran. If it is necessary to stop the vehicle on the slope, turn the tires towards the mountain, apply the handbrake and place stones in front of the tires. Never leave children in the car. Children may release handbrakes that could lead to a serious accident in a mountainous area.
Watch Video: How to Safely Park Vehicle on Steep Decent of Mountain Road?
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According to my own experience, the hills are more peaceful than the plains and there are almost no incidents of robbery and looting. But still, as a precaution, avoid traveling at night. Use the Murree Expressway to reach Murree from Islamabad at night, where the Motorway Police is there to protect and assist you.
Steep descent in mountainous areas such as Shogran or Murree are more dangerous. Always drive in low gear when descending. Keep the speed low so that the brakes are used sparingly. Repeated braking causes the brake pads to overheat and stop functioning. It is better to stop the vehicle on a smooth road for a while after covering some distance so that the brake pads of the vehicle get cool. This way the brakes of the vehicle will not fail while descending. When brake pads get hot, never pour water on them.
Do not switch off the car engine at all while driving. Because switching off causes jamming of steering wheel and brakes. Now you may say that this is not a matter of telling but believe me I myself had attended an accident on Murree Expressway in which a person from plain area had switched off the car to save petrol, which resulted in serious accident.
Click above link to watch video on YouTube (Urdu language) of necessary guidelines before traveling to the hills and mountains of Pakistan.
Sharp curvy turns are very dangerous in mountainous areas. On single (two way) roads, such as the old Murree Road, some inexperienced people put their car into an overtake at a turn, causing head-on accidents. For this, in my own experience, it is better that you drive your car behind another car with proper distance, as I am currently driving behind this single cabin Hilux because its speed is according to my desired speed.
God forbid, if another vehicle suddenly appears in front of the next vehicle at a blind turn, you will find enough time and distance to apply the brakes. This way you can not only be safe from accidents but also avoid robbery to a great extent.
How to book a good and cheap hotel at a tourist destination? See detail later in this video.
Watch Video: Strategy of Safe Driving on Blind Deadly Sharp Turns of Mountain Roads
In winter, from late night to ten or eleven o'clock in the morning, in Murree and northern areas, there is usually an invisible layer of Kora (black ice) on the road on which the vehicle can easily slip.
So, keep the speed very low on icy and slippery road and keep proper distance from the next vehicle.
Try to drive behind a heavy vehicle such as a truck. Because of the weight, the truck's tires break the ice layer.
Avoid sudden and hard brakes.
Slow down enough before the turn.
Do not apply the brakes at the exact turn.
If your car is slipping on ice, lower the air pressure in the tires a little.
For example, if the normal tire pressure is thirty pounds, reduce it to between fifteen and twenty pounds.
After getting out of the snow, keep a compressor in the car to inflate the tires again.
Watch Video: How to Drive Safely on Ice and Snowy Road?
If your car gets trapped in a snow blizzard, it is better to leave the car and take shelter in a nearby hotel or someone's house.
If it is necessary to stay in the car, keep the window slightly open and make sure that the smoky tail pipe is not blocked by ice. Otherwise, carbon monoxide can accumulate in the car which has no odor and it can be fatal. At least don't let snow accumulate in front of the driver's seat door. Fresh snow is soft which is very easy to remove.
Take a couple of extra blankets and boiled eggs or packaged food with you when you go for a tour. In case you can't find a hotel or in case of an emergency, you have a safe backup plan to spend the night in the car.
Watch Video: Strategy When Stuck in Snow Blizzard
Practical tips and measures to drive safely on hilly roads in Pakistan. See More Details Below.