Islamabad is a quiet place, which is surprising for a capital city. The streets are organised in a modern, grid pattern and there are peaceful parks and green spaces to enjoy everywhere. For a lively city with markets, noise and old-fashioned chaos, head to Rawalpindi which is only 15km away.
The weather and holidays in Islamabad
The hottest month of the year is June when the temperature averages 38°C. Monsoon season arrives in July. The best time to visit Islamabad is from November to April when the weather is milder. Pakistan public bank holidays include two or three days to mark the end of Ramadan, called Eid el Fitr, and a couple of days to celebrate Eid el Adzha. These dates vary each year.
Things to know before travelling to Islamabad
A visa is needed for British Citizens, and passports must have at least six months left before they expire. Visit a GP eight weeks before travelling to Islamabad to make sure all vaccinations are up to date including Typhoid, Polio, Hepatitis A and B.
Cost of living, transport and accommodation
The cost of eating out here is cheap compared to the UK, but visit the rest of Pakistan, and food is even less expensive. As an example, a budget meal will cost around 200Rs.
To get from Islamabad airport to the city centre costs roughly 400Rs by taxi. There aren't any buses, but a cheaper way to travel is by shared Suzuki car. To get around the city itself, minibuses are the cheapest option. When taking a taxi the fare should be agreed before setting off. For accommodation in Islamabad, expect to pay approximately 1000 Rs a night for a budget hotel room and 2200 Rs for a 4 Star hotel.