Trek to K2 Base Camp


Considered one of the top 10 treks in the world, K2 Base Camp Trek is a strenuous and demanding but yet rewarding trek. K2 Base Camp Trek is also known as Baltoro Glacier Trek and Baltoro Concordia Trek by mountaineering and trekking enthusiasts from around the world. The trek mainly involves walking along the lengths of Baltoro Glacier (63 km - world’s 5th longest non-polar glacier) and Godwin Austin Glacier. Accessible from Pakistan, the trek offers once in a lifetime experience for walking wanderers and nature admirers to spend time with the mighty mountains.

K2 Base Camp Trek offers the chance to witness 8,000 m peaks including Gasherbrum 2 (8,035 m), Broad Peak (8,051 m) and K2 (8,611 m). It also presents an opportunity to witness several other beautiful peaks between 5,000 to 8,000 meters. These peaks include Gasherbrum 3 and 4, Masherbrum, Mustagh Tower, Mitre Peak, Crystal Peak, Marbel Peak, Biale Peak, Lobsang Spire, Trango Towers, Uli Biaho, Cathedral Peak, Urdukas Peak etc.
At different stages of the trek, one is surrounded by massive glaciers including Biafo (world’s 3rd longest non-polar glacier - 67 km), Vigne, Godwin-Austen, Liligo, Dunge, Muztagh, Biango, Yermanendu, Mandu etc. Our trail will intersect streams and rivers including Panma, Braldu and Indus at different points.


Day 1: Meet our guide(s) waiting at Benazir International Airport, Islamabad.

Day 2: Early morning air travel to Skardu town (2,500 m). Sightseeing during the day.

Day 3: Jeep Safari to Askole (3,000 m) via Shigar Valley

Day 4: First day of walk towards Korofong (3,075 m) via Biafo Glacier

Day 5: Trek via Panma Valley to Jhola Campsite (3,100 m)

Day 6: Trek to Paiju (3,420 m) through Braldu Valley

Day 7: Acclimatization and rest at Camp Paiju (3,420 m)

Day 8: Start of Baltoro Glacier Trek. Walk to Camp Khoburtse (3,795 m).

Day 9: Baltoro Glacier Trek. Views of Trango Towers. Camp at Urdukas (3,900 m).

Day 10: Baltoro Glacier Trek. Trek to Goro Camp (4,295 m). Sights of Masherbrum Peak.

Day 11: Baltoro Glacier Trek. Walk to Concordia (4,500 m).

Day 12: K2 Base Camp Trek (5,100 m) and Broad Peak Base Camp Trek (4,800 m)

Day 13: Start return journey on Baltoro Glacier towards Shachspong (4,100 m)

Day 14: Trek downstream towards Khoburtse. Grand views of Biale Peak (3,795 m).

Day 15: Trek to Paiju Camp (3,420 m) with great views of Trango Towers

Day 16: Walk to Korophong (3,075 m) through Panma Valley.

Day 17: Final trek to Askole (3,000 m) past Biafo Glacier

Day 18: Jeep ride to Skardu (2,500 m) through Shigar Valley

Day 19: Fly to Islamabad. Sightseeing during the afternoon.

Day 20: Contingency day for possible delays

Day 21: Departure from Islamabad. Airport transfer from hotel.

Is this Holiday for you?

The amazing trek to Concordia via Baltoro glacier is challenging and yet feasible for any healthy person with past experience of hiking or trekking. The terrain in this part of Pakistan is reasonably rugged for walking. The trekking area is isolated with no permanent human settlements. The extended valleys are enormously glaciated but the increase in altitude is gradual and the acclimatization process is reasonable. Even though a fair amount of time is spent walking on the glacier, our participants do not walk on ice and therefore crampons are not required.

The rugged trail is made of rubble and stones melted from the Baltoro Glacier. Participants will trek between 6 miles to 8 miles every day that can take between 5 hrs to 6 hours daily. Mountaineering equipments and skills are not required on this trek. The pre-requisite on this trek is the motivation and enthusiasm required to walk long distances every day and to make a contribution to the overall team spirit in this isolated area.

Holiday Information & FAQs

What does package include?

► Government licensed professional guide/leader (required for K2 Base Camp Trek)
► Airport transfers on first and last day from/to Benazir International Airport, Islamabad
► All domestic flights and transfers (according to itinerary)
► All road transport in Pakistan (according to itinerary above)
► All accommodation in Pakistan (hotels and camps) according to itinerary
► All meals in Pakistan (breakfast, lunch and dinner) at hotels and camps
► All trekking requirements on ground (including cook, support staff, porters, gears (excluding personal) etc
► Government trekking permit fees/paperwork for K2 Base Camp Trek

What does package not include?

► Travel insurance
► Visa to Pakistan (Letter of Invitation and other supporting documents will be offered by us for visa application)
► International flights (return tickets)
► Tips for guides, porters, staff etc
► Miscellaneous (drinks, telephone calls, laundry etc at hotels)
► Souvenirs

Food and Meal Plan

During K2 Base Camp Trek, participants will be served all three meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner). The food will include combination of Pakistani and foreign meals made of ingredients bought in Pakistan. Breakfasts will include coffee, tea, cereals, eggs, porridge/muesli, chappatti/bread. During trekking, lunches will be eaten during lunch breaks with options from tinned/canned meals (fish, meat), crackers, pickles, cheese, chapatti, pate etc. Depending on the weather, the lunches start with or sometimes end with soup, coffee or tea, juices etc. Dinner is always eaten in mess tent which is freshly prepared by our cooks travelling with us. During the initial days of trekking, fresh vegetables are also cooked until they remain fresh. Vegetarians must inform our office in advance if they want their entire meals to be vegetarian.

Iodine treated drinking water will be made available in the mornings, during breaks and while camping. Everyone will be drinking spring water when available but at other times, we don’t have options other than consuming glacial melt water that might consist of silt. Our kitchen uses a large container for water supply that helps in settling down the silt at the bottom. If you don’t like the odor of iodine, you might want to bring your own supply of bi-carbonate of soda. Conventional methods work well for everyone but we keep on experimenting new methods.

Arrival in Islamabad (Pakistan) and Airport Transfer

All our guests must arrive on day 1 at Benazir International Airport, Islamabad (Pakistan’s capital). Our guide/staff will be waiting for you outside the international arrivals gate in the airport premises who will take you to the hotel. All guests must notify us if they do not need transfers from airport. Guests must also submit their inbound and outbound flight details to our office two days before their arrival in Pakistan. Once you confirm your registration and make payment, more details including names and contacts numbers will be sent to you. Airport transfers will also be provided on the last day.


This holiday consists of 21 days and 20 nights. A total of 03 nights will be spent at a hotel in the capital city of Islamabad, 2 nights at one of the hotels in Skardu town, and 15 nights camping in tents in the beautiful mountains. We arrange stays at standard hotels in Islamabad and our hotel picks in Skardu are always one of the best in town. Rooms at our selected hotels will be provided on twin-sharing basis and will have en-suite amenities. During camping days, you will also be sharing a two-person tent. If you are traveling alone, you will be teamed with one of the other participants (of the same sex) for room and tent sharing. However you can get separate hotel rooms and separate tents for additional cost but both require booking in advance. Extended hotel reservations in Islamabad are possible.

A Typical day

On all trekking days, your guide will wake you up for warm tea or coffee followed by a good breakfast inside the mess tent(s). You will have time before breakfast to pack your bags again. Camp will be closed after breakfast and porters will get to work carrying supplies and luggage ahead of guests to arrive at the lunch site and prepare meals. Porters will repeat the same “trek-earlier” approach for dinner preparations. We will generally hike for 3-4 hours before lunch. Lunch normally takes at least one hour so it is a good time to gain your strength back, read, write etc.

Trekking after lunch break in the afternoon will generally be shorter than first half of the day. Once you reach the next camp, camps will be setup or in the process and kitchen crew would serve a hot beverage first and dinner will be served when it is ready. One can rest, socialize, read, write, and photograph etc upon reaching a camp. Temperature normally decreases at night and participants can get cozy in their personal sleeping bags before getting enough sleep for the next day.

Domestic flights

In order to reach Skardu (northern areas), we will be taking a flight which is subject to weather as the valley is surround by mountains and requires high visibility for any flight to operate. Due to the weather factor, no flights are guaranteed to operate. Flights to Skardu do operate often but there are always chances for cancellations and in that case we keep road transport as backup and on standby. We cannot take the risk of waiting for another day in Islamabad for another flight for good reasons including complex airline booking system, tourist traffic flow in flights etc. Please beware of other trekking companies offering K2 Base Camp Trek that might keep you waiting in Islamabad in hopes of flights and end up not completing your long-awaited trek on time.

Karakoram Highway (In case of Flight Cancellation)

We advise all our guests to read foreign travel advices on their respective country’s foreign office websites. Travel advice for EU residents from their home country to your destination country (Pakistan) can be found on the European Commission website here. Participants from other countries can look up on relevant websites or search “foreign office travel advice”. Most websites advice against travelling by road in Pakistan and some websites don’t seem updated. Please take note that incase one or both internal flights cancel, we will drive on Karakoram Highway and then via Gilgit-Skardu road to Skardu. This route is available on Google maps here.

Journey on Karakoram Highway is one of the best experiences in Pakistan for any foreign or domestic tourist, providing views of amazing natural environment and indigenous people throughout the road trip and never has any of our guest openly regretted traveling by KKH.

We strongly advise that you contact and gain more information from your travel insurance company regarding road traveling coverage. If your company does not offer full coverage for your trekking holiday, you might look for other companies. For example in UK, British Mountaineering Council offers good solutions.

Guide (leader) and Group Assistance Staff

All participants will be managed by our professional guide for the whole trekking holiday. They will be licensed and recognized from Pakistan’s Ministry of Tourism. Our guide will be the focal person for communication, assistance, help and complaints during K2 Base Camp Trek. Our guides have vast experience with foreign clients and can communicate in English. They have been trained to interact with participants in a professional manner and we will appreciate if you keep the relationship friendly and yet professional. If you are a big private group from one country speaking a different language (for example Spanish), we can try rescheduling our guides speaking your language (if available). You will also be accompanied by kitchen crew, assistant(s) depending on the group size and last but not the least, porters.

These tough local porters belong to different villages of the surrounding areas and are mostly small subsistence farmers. They wait for foreign tourists to arrive so that they can earn and compliment to their existing income while their kids look after their small farms. Naturally they are tourist-friendly people who also have fun during trekking by having laughs and dancing to local songs when they get a chance. These porters and their elders have been doing it for decades and watching the porters at work with such energy is another vital offering of this holiday.

Miscellaneous Expenses and Budgeting

For expenses other than your holiday cost, you can carry approximately 240 EUR/250 USD/200 GBP/1700 CNY (or equivalent in your own currency). This can be used for other expenses including tips for porters and supporting staff. You can purchase Pakistani Rupees (PKR) upon arrival at the airport at good rates. US Dollars, Euros and Pound Sterling can quickly be converted into the local currency at the airport.

The porters are paid in Pakistani Rupees, not to mention everything else you may want to purchase in Pakistan. US Dollars will have an advantage of being easily exchanged at even smaller towns but we recommend one-time exchange. Credit cards can come handy for shopping in Islamabad for souvenirs/gift items including rugs. Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) will be available in Islamabad and Skardu but using your debit/credit cards, you will only be able to withdraw Pakistani Rupees from ATMs.

Managing Tips

It is common that our participants at least tip the porters for their hard work carrying participant luggage and supplies. If you feel satisfied with the services of the guide, assistant(s), kitchen crew, you can contribute to the total tip. 95-120 Euros (or equivalent in your currency) would cover this element of the total expenses. The tour leader/guide helps all participants in deciding a tip for all crew members of K2 Base Camp Trek. These tips are then handed over as a group in a “thank you” ceremony organized at the conclusion of the trek.

Baggage Allowance

Porters discussed above will be carrying your baggage/luggage apart from supplies, equipments etc. The maximum weight limit for your packed trekking bag is 12.5 kilograms (20 pounds). The load of your sleeping mattress and sleeping bag is included in the maximum limit. Please only bring required items on the trek. It will be possible for you to leave parts of your luggage at the hotel in Skardu. The maximum limit (12.5 kgs) strictly followed is assigned by the local porters organization.


All our potential guests are advised to read carefully and know the different elevations mentioned above for each trekking day. This is a strenuous trek at very high altitudes. Although this shouldn’t worry you as humans are reasonably gifted to become accustomed to high elevations, we must acclimatize according to our well-planned itinerary. You may want to read our article on “How to get ready for K2 Base Camp Trek?”.
K2 Base Camp Elevation/Height: 5,100 meters

Equipment List

We are providing you with two lists for K2 Base Camp Trek. One list contains things you will need and the second is a list of things you might need on your trekking holiday. Based on your own judgment you can select things that you might need from the second list.

List 1 - Must Bring Items:
► First Aid Pack (Diamox (Altitude), Dioralite (re-hydration salts), antiseptic cream, blister treatment, throat lozenges, plasters, Imodium (diarrhea treatment), painkillers)
► Hiking Backpack (Day Pack) 32-42 Litres
► Fleece jacket with hood or a warm jumper
► Mittens or gloves
► Head torch with spare batteries
► Hiking boots
► Buff or scarf
► Sleeping bag (-16°C comfort rated)
► Small padlock (for locking your trek bag)
► Sandals (sports) or old shoes (to cross rivers)
► Sun protection cream (including total block for nose, lips etc.)
► Sunglasses
► Sunhat
► Thermarest or similar mat/pad for sleeping
► Warm hat
► Warm jacket (example: down)
► Water bottles 1litre (x2)
► Waterproof jacket
► Waterproof over-trousers

List 2 – Optional Items:
► Antibacterial hand wash
► Base layer shirts
► Camera
► Insect repellant
► Pen-knife (important: pack sharp tools in hold luggage)
► Repair kit (e.g. thread, needle, duct tape)
► Shirts/T-shirts
► Liner (for sleeping bag)
► Small towel
► Socks
► Spare laces
► Swim wear
► Thermal underwear
► Trainers (for use in camp)
► Travel clothes
► Trekking poles (highly recommended)
► Underwear
► Trekking trousers
► Wash kit
► Wash-bag and toiletries

Equipment Purchase Options:
Gear Express
Mountain Gear
Trekk INN

Minimum Group Participants and Holiday Status

The required number of participant bookings i.e. six (6) registrations are required to conduct the “Fixed Departures”. Although we receive several guests for each fixed departure, we feel that it is important to mention it. You can make sure of the trip status on this page. Status “available” means we are registering guests and “guaranteed” means we have crossed the required number of participants and the trip will commence on the given dates. We will constantly be in touch with all our guests who register. We will timely guide you step by step regarding visa applications and flight reservations to Pakistan etc.

Travel Documents & Visa

In order to apply for visas to Pakistan, you generally need a passport expiring later than (6) months. For more reliable and updated information, we suggest you to contact the nearest Pakistani consulate or embassy in your country. We expect that you will take full responsibility for ensuring you have the right travel documents. Normally if you are visiting non-EU countries, you must check for 2 vacant pages in your travel document (passport) for every country you plan to travel.

A tourist visa (visit visa) is required to come to Pakistan for trekking. People on work visas (already in Pakistan/abroad) require a No-Objection Certificate (NOC) which normally takes up to 6 weeks. The requirements and fee for tourist visas to Pakistan is normally around 200 USD but for accurate information you should consult Pakistani consulates nearby. To apply for a tourist visa, you will need a Letter of Invitation from our company and sometimes a duplicate (copy) of the “government trekking permit” for the group, processed by us. We will help you with all necessary documents to obtain the visa once you register with us.


We advise you to get in touch with a relevant doctor before leaving for Pakistan. Inform your doctor of your plans, check for any necessary vaccinations and list down prevention measures. Participants must be protected with the recommended vaccines and boosters in your country and also consider discretionary vaccine shots for example Malaria prophylaxis. Malaria does exist in parts of Islamabad.

You will be staying in clean areas and have minimal chances of getting malaria. However hospitals in Islamabad report cases of Malaria and even Dengue especially during the rainy days. In Skardu and other cities and towns of northern areas, there is also a risk of malaria, even if a little. Long sleeves, long pants and mosquito repellents almost wipe out any chances or getting the relevant vaccine would be the best you can do to avoid the disease during your holiday. We also recommend a visit to your dentist before you start your holiday into the remote mountains.

All those guests who want to extend their stay in Pakistan after K2 Base Camp Trek up to four (4) weeks or further must be aware that on exit, a proof of vaccination of polio will be important. Proof of yellow fewer vaccinations will be necessary if you are coming from countries (more than 12 hours transit country also included) with threats of transmission of yellow fever. You might want to check out more information on health here.

Batteries and Accessories

You may require portable chargers, extra batteries and storage cards etc during your holiday in the mountains. We suggest you start making a relevant list of sockets, adapters and other electrical items you might need to keep your devices last as long as possible. Click here to find out the best portable battery chargers.

Preparations for Trekking

Before your departure, it would be reasonable to spend time preparing. You can consult a professional trainer for professional advice or you can simply follow basic rules (long walks, hikes or other cardio exercises building stamina) knowing that you should be healthy enough to walk and ascend for hours mentioned above on rugged terrain from dirt to boulders, from glacier ice to sometimes snow. Read our blog on this topic here for further details.

Know Before You Go – Travel Safety

We support all travel and health safety campaigns by countries around the world and therefore advise our guests to take out time and read official travel advisory on their home country’s Foreign Office websites. We consider safety of our guests our top priority. We will only commence with trips when we are reasonably satisfied with security. Should we feel dissatisfied regarding security, we will be in touch with all our guests booked for Pakistan and have a two-way communication.


During your holiday, you can experience maximum temperatures of up to 45 °C in Islamabad, 30 °C in Skardu and 26 °C in Askoli. The days will be warm (unless clouds take over) until we arrive at camp in Concordia where temperatures during the day will decrease to less than 10 °C. Slopes leading towards Gondogoro La Pass will be covered in snow until early July.

We might walk on snow on Baltoro glacier’s higher part in June and this snow normally melts by mid July. In August and September, you might experience snowfall depending on how the weather turns out. Temperatures in the Karakoram Range are unpredictable. Temperature might decrease down to -10 °C during any time of all trekking periods while camping anywhere between Paiju and Concordia. Fixed departures in September can go even lower than -10 °C. Monsoon does not fully affect the Karakoram Range making summers the best time for K2 Base Camp Trek, providing bright skies. However due to past experience with unpredictable weather, we must be prepared for unfavorable weather conditions.


In case you want to read more about the two treks we are offering on this website, you might like the following books:
► Trekking in Pakistan by Isobel Shaw
► Top Treks of the World by Steve Razzetti
► Throne Room of Mountain Gods by Galen Rowell

Baltoro Glacier Map (K2 Base Camp Trek Map)

K2 Base Camp Trek Map must be viewed once before departing on the trip. We have used Google satellite maps to highlight the route for K2 Base Camp Trek. You can explore, find and zoom in the location of all camps and navigate around mountains. The direction towards Concordia from Askoli is highlighted in yellow. The changing terrain of the route in Karakoram Mountains will be clearly visible to you on this map. You will also be able to find pictures for each camp (by clicking on the place marks). Calculating distances on the map from one camp to another will also be easy. A hard copy of Baltoro Glacier Map will be provided to you at the start of your trek.