Passionate for Polo? Shandur invites you to experience the highest level of Polo on the world’s highest Polo ground – The Shandur-Top (3,700 meters). Since 1936 Polo tournament is being held at Shandur Pass annually in the first week of July between the local teams of Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral.
The version of the game played at Shandur-Top has attained legendary status and is of great interest to both international and domestic tourists. There are no umpires, no holds barred, no rules! Players rarely wear helmets, the horses’ legs often have no bandages, and mallets often have no grips or straps. In “The Roof of the World”, you can even ride head-on into the opponent, if can you dare to.
The festival begins on the 7th of July with pool matches between the local teams of Gilgit-Baltistan and the guest teams coming from Chitral. The final is held on 9 July.
The festival offers some supplementary attractions and treats for the visitors including a camping village set up at the Pass, a festival of folk music and dancing reminiscent of Northern Pakistan culture, activities such as fishing, horseback riding, mountaineering, hiking and exploring. The highlight of the festival is the final match; a colorful spectacle and extraordinary extravaganza never to be forgotten.
Now that I have managed to lure all the polo fans out there, here comes the good news – tournament had been postponed this year. Now it is scheduled in mid August. Waiting for you backpackers, is the only free-styled Polo of the world!