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Cheap Flights to Islamabad

Islamabad is a popular destination to travel to. Having been the capital of Pakistan since 1960, it has quickly become one of the most urbanized areas in the country, attracting many visitors from around Pakistan and beyond.

In contrast to the usual hustle and bustle of a city, Islamabad is very much quiet and green; and is the chosen location for residence of the President and Prime Minister, alongside the Federal Government offices and Parliament house.

Known very much for its national parks, Islamabad really is a place to relax and enjoy the tranquil surroundings.

And with the greenery, you can also expect a subtropical climate. The hottest month to travel here is June, with temperatures reaching highs of 38 ⁰C; so try and avoid this time if you don’t like the hotter climate.

Alongside the typical seasons, Islamabad also has a monsoon season which runs through the months of July and August, so don’t be shocked by a humid downpour if you visit during these months.

Attractions and things to do in Islamabad

If you like to be outdoors, then there’s plenty to enjoy when visiting Islamabad. So when it comes to planning your itinerary, consider adding some of the below destinations to your trip.

Faisal Mosque: This stands as Pakistan’s largest mosque and is a truly stunning piece of architecture which is a fusion of both traditional and uber-modern design. Costing almost $120 million, the majority of this was paid for as a gift from King Faisal of Saudi Arabia.

Shakarparian: This consists of hills and a park for you to explore, which is situated near zero point in Islamabad.

The shakaparian hills offer stunning views of the whole city of Islamabad. The park offers both an east and west view point, so it’s worthwhile taking some time out to explore the beautiful sights on offer. It’s also the perfect spot for a picnic, whilst you admire the surroundings.

Pakistan Monument: The national monument of Pakistan, this was built as a tribute to those who sacrificed their lives for Pakistan’s independence.

Shaped like a blossoming flower, with the murals decorated with Islamic art, this is worth visiting whilst exploring Shakarparian.

Margalla Hills: Located within the Margalla Hills national park, these hills are a continuation of the Himalayan mountains, and are filled with trees, rocks and herbaceous plants.

There are a range of hiking trails for all abilities, which will allow you to cover the national park, so if you love to go walking this is definitely for you.

Eating out in Islamabad

Name: Monal Islamabad

Type: Grill, traditional food

Budget: Medium

Awarded with a TripAdvisor certificate of excellence, this is a real popular restaurant to visit. Located in the mountains, this restaurant features an outdoor terrace over a few levels, and the views from here are magnificent. Sitting outside is a must as the view out to Islamabad is breath taking; you can even spot the Faisal mosque. Serving a range of delicious traditional food, and grilled meats, this is a must visit.

Name: Tuscany Courtyard

Type: Fine Dining – Italian Cuisine

Budget: Medium – High

Tuscany Courtyard Is a great place to go for a nice meal, or to celebrate a special occasion. Serving foods such as pizza’s, pasta’s and steaks, the extensive menu caters for a range of preferences. They also serve from breakfast through to late evening, so worth a visit regardless of the time of day.

Name: La Montana Restaurant

Type: Late-night food • All you can eat

Budget: Medium

Located at the top of the Margalla hills, and a neighbour to Monal Islamabad, this restaurant offers a buffet style of catering, featuring a lot off barbecued meats and sides. So if you are looking for a quicker style of catering with the same stunning views, try visiting here one evening.

Hotels in Islamabad

When it comes to securing your accommodation in Islamabad, you will be happy to know there is a great selection of hotels and apartments to choose from. With popular hotel chains such as Crown Plaza and Marriot having hotels here, you are sure to find the right hotel for you.

Islamabad Marriot Hotel (5 stars)

And if you’d like any more travel guidance just visit our travel guide page. This should help provide you with further inspiration for your trip.

Price: 675 SAR - 3676 SAR ($180 - $980, £140 - £761)

One of the top rated hotels to stay at in Islamabad (on TripAdvisor) you a sure to have an enjoyable stay here. And its location at the bottom of the Margalla Hills means you are in the perfect place to explore some of Islamabad’s top attractions. The hotel features a restaurant, bar, gymnasium, an indoor and outdoor pool and a spa, plus much more. All rooms are equipped with air conditioning, a mini fridge and Wi-Fi for that added convenience.

Islamabad Serena Hotel (5 stars)

Price: 1125 SAR - 9379 SAR ($300 - $2500, £232 - £1941)

Awarded with a certificate of excellence from TripAdvisor you are guaranteed to have a quality experience when you stay at the 5 star Islamabad Serena Hotel. This hotel has six restaurants on site, alongside a gym, spa and salon; so there’s plenty to explore before you even get into the city of Islamabad. All rooms are finished to a high standard, with all hotel guests being offered a welcome drink on arrival and complimentary buffet breakfast.

Gofas Lodge (4 stars)

Price: 160 SAR – 213 SAR ($43- $57, £33 - £44)

Gofas lodge offers affordable accommodation for guests. Each room features free Wi-Fi, air conditioning and an LCD flat panel TV. On site there is also a restaurant for added convenience. The hotel also offers bikes for you to use, offering a fun and alternative method of transport to explore the city. Extra facilities include an outdoor pool, Jacuzzi, library and sun terrace.

Events in Islamabad

If travelling for leisure it’s worth considering the events that take place in Islamabad, as this could influence when you choose to travel. Certain events take place across the year in this city, which we have outlined for you below:

Lok Virsa Folk Festival: This is by far the biggest cultural festival in Pakistan, which lasts a duration of 10 days. The festival is very much known for its colourful stalls selling crafts and gifts alongside lots of traditional foods and performances. Spend some time watching the folk dancers perform and immerse yourself in the buzz of this vibrant festival. The date the event starts varies year on year so keep an eye out when you start planning your trip.

Pakistan day:

This day is celebrated on March 23rd each year and is a public holiday in Pakistan. The date commemorates the Lahore Resolution of 1940. The day is commemorated by a 31-gun salute in Islamabad and you will see the national flag hoisted on public and government buildings. They day is very much filled with festivals and parties and really is when locals spend time with their friends and family. If you do happen to be visiting during this date, definitely watch the parade which takes place at Constitution Avenue.

Independence day: This occurs annually on 14th August. The day commemorates the date Pakistan gained independence from British rule in 1947. Again this day is filled with festivals and parties, so a chance for you to fully feel the culture and spirit of Pakistan. Many residents wear the flag colours to celebrate their independence.

The Weather in Islamabad

The weather in Islamabad is relatively warm throughout the year, with the hottest months being May and June. You can see temperatures on average reach between 36 and 38⁰C. Rain is minimal throughout the year; however, it is worth noting Islamabad does have a monsoon season where there’s around 8 days of rain. This occurs in the months of July and August, so it’s worth packing a lightweight waterproof if you are planning to travel during this season.

Transport in Islamabad

There are various methods of transport you can use whilst travelling around Islamabad so you don’t need to worry when it comes to getting around the city.

Islamabad has reliable rail and bus routes, alongside car hire and taxis, allowing you to make the most of your visit.

If you want to really want to see the best of the city, why not buy a ticket for the city tour bus which will allow you to explore some of Islamabad’s top attractions; including Faisal mosque and Pakistan Monument which we mentioned above.

Insider Tips

The official currency of Pakistan is Pakistani Rupees, and it is very much a cash economy when you visit; so make sure you bring enough cash with you for your trip. Many hotels have safes so you can securely store your currency.

Travelling to Islamabad in the summer months is very humid and hot, therefore ensure you take the necessary precautions in the warm weather. Visiting the mountainous areas tend to be cooler however.