Khunjerab Pass is one the highest border in the world lies between Pakistan and China on a Karakoram Highway. It is located at the height of 4,693 meters from the sea level on the Northern border of Pakistan and on the South West Border of China.It comes in the Gilgit Baltistan region in the Hunza and Nagar destrict in Pakistan and comes in Xinjiang region in China. Khunjerab pass is considered to be the highest paved border at the top level of Karakoram highway.
The roadways of khunjerab pass was constructed in 1982. Before Khunjerab pass there was two other passes named as Mintaka and kilik which were unpaved borders.The development of the pass was decided in 1966 because China wants a steeper pass which had to be protected from air strikes.
Pakistan’s Administered Side
The Khunjerab pass is approx. 870 km from Islamabad, 270 km from Gilgit, 75 km from the immigration and custom post, and 42 km from the National Park Station and the checkpoint in Dih
China’s Administered Side
Chinese port entry is located 3.5 km along the pass in Tashkurgan County, approx. 1890 km from the Urumqi, 420 km from Kashgar, 130 km from Tashkurgan. The pass is located at the southwest station of China National Highway 314
The Khunjerab pass used to be close in the winters, the pass is closed for heavy traffics from November 30 to May 1 and it used to be close from all kind of vehicles from December 30 to 1st of April. The karakoram moutain regions are mostly covered with snow due to the significant height from sea level contributing it to be one of the highest border in the world.
The idea of bus service came into reality at June 1, 2006, a daily bus service was started from Gilgit, Baltistan region to the Kashgar, Xinjiang region. The unique specialty of Khunjerab Pass is that it is one of the borders in the world where right hand traffic changes into left hand traffic after passing the pass in China’s Xinjiang region, starting from Gilgit, Baltistan region in Pakistan.
Railway Across the Border
It is really unfortunate that there is no railway line connecting the countries Pakistan and China. However, consultants were engaged in an idea of having a railway line in 2007. For this purpose, a feasibility study begun in November 2009 to connect Havelian which is 750 km in Pakistan and Kashgar which is 350 km in China’s Xinjiang region. But no development was made and its shocking that the railway line project is still not one of the plans in current CPEC plan. May be in the future this project will be initiated again, which will be the crucial attraction to tourist for one of the highest border in the world
Interesting Facts About Khunjerab Pass
There is a highest ATM Machine Cabin near to Khunjerab Pass. The ATM is of National Bank of Pakistan. It is an honor for Pakistan that one of the leading bank set the world record to install the highest ATM machine anywhere in this world. The ATM is about 16,007 feet above the sea level.
Khunjerab National Park
Khunjerab National Park is the world’s third largest National Park in Gilgit Baltistan region in Pakistan. It is located next to the Taxkorgan National Reserve in China. Khunjerab National Park is an internationally recognized national park in the world covering approx.10,000 sq. km area. It possesses some of the world’s largest glaciers and mountains peaks. Ideal and most feasible for climbing and hiking.
Yes, snow leopards do exist in Pakistan. Snow leopards are found in the mountain ranges of Central and South Asia. They are the biggest or somehow scariest attraction for tourist, specially who are interested in hiking and mountain climbing.
There is a great chance that you will meet one. Unfortunately, these animals are in endangered zone, means that their population is dangerously decreasing which can lead to the extinction of these animals if no further steps are taken.