Islamabad to Lake Saif-ul-Muluk
Lake Saif-ul-Muluk is a remote lake located in Naran Valley. There is a long 6-8 hour drive from Islamabad to Naran. We recommend taking Islamabad > Abbottabad > Mansehra > Kagan > Naran route. Distance is around 300 Km.
Before starting your journey you must ensure that you have following things.
- Boots. Preferably hiking boots (with good traction on ice and mud)
- Warm cloths
- Cash (night stay varies between 4000-5000 depending on location and season)
- Medicine if you have any problem
- Vehicle diagnostics (It is a long and difficult journey, if you are planning to visit Lake Saif-ul-Muluk on your own vehicle, it must be healthy in all aspects)
There are two paths to reach Kagan-Naran. One is through Abbottabad, which most of the people take. The other is through Muzzaffarabad. Abbottabad route is around 290 Kms while Muzzaffarabad route is around 250 Kms.
If you want to take Muzzaffarabad route, from Islamabad to Kohola, we suggest you go through Murree via Motorway (N75). However, at the end of motorway, where double road ends and single road starts, we suggest you go left on Muzaffarabad road and take Khakan Abbasi road through Bhurban, because express way is not in very good condition and we find Bhurban road very short and comfortable.
After crossing Kohala bridge, turn left towards Muzaffarabad and head straight till you reach Muzaffarabad city. Before the city, turn left toward Lohar Gali taking the road to Bisian.
Bisian can also be reached from Abbottabad. From Islamabad, take Kashmir Highway towards Peshawar Motorway. Using Peshawar Motorway you can reach Havailian and then Abbottabad. Next major city is Mansehra before Bisian.
Kunhar river flows along side N-15 throughout the way. There are many trout fish farms along the way facing the river with a beautiful view.
Naran city is a small tourist stop. It has many hotels and rest points. Cellular reception is very bad. Telenor has the best reception here.
From Naran, Lake Saif-ul-Muluk is just 9Kms away. The path is very difficult and mostly inaccessible. Most of the road is normally blocked by glaciers. Only jeeps and horses are used for transportation.
However car can be taken to around 4.5Kms. If you really want to enjoy, start in the early morning as later the area is full of tourists and natural beauty cannot be fully enjoyed. Take your car to around 4.5Kms and lock it there. From there you can walk for next 4.5Kms. It took us 40 minutes. The walk will be exhausting and difficult if you don’t walk much but it is the best option. You will be free to stop and embrace natural beauty and take photos etc.
From this point on wards, road is not suitable for cars. There are glaciers, ice and mud on the road which can only be crossed using jeeps, horses or feet.
If you want to walk, you must have good shoes, walking sticks, water and something to eat (sweet if your sugar level drops).
Lake saif-ul-Muluk remains frozen for most of the year. It is surrounded by Snow and Glaciers. If you have not borrowed proper shoes or don’t have already, a small trick is to take a piece of rope (light rope) and tie it around your shoes. It will give you enough traction to avoid slippage.
Stay safe and don’t take selfies standing on unstable rocks around lake.Tags: Kagan, Lake, Lake Saif-ul-Muluk, Naran, Northern Areas