Shandur Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 3.700m (12,200ft) above the sea level which is located in Chitral, Pakistan. The road to the pass is extreme. The distance from Chitral is 168 Km and from Gilgit is about 211Km.
Shandur Pass connects Ghizer District of Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
These areas remains snow covered in winter and turn into the green heaven during summer season. There is a big lake in the area. The traditional polo tournament played between Chitral and Gilgit teams in the month of hot July. Foreign tourist and native came to see the festival. The first recorded polo tournament played at this ground was in 1936, since then every year in July a grand polo tournament takes place at Shandur pass.
In 1935 UK Administrator for Evelyn Hey Cobb ordered Niat Qabool Hayat Kakakhel nambardar of Ghizer to make a huge polo ground in Shandur. The polo ground was named “Mas Junali“, because in the Khowar language ‘mas’ is the word for ‘moon’ and ‘junali’ is the word for ‘pologround’, and Cobb was fond of playing polo in the moonlight.
Shandur polo festival
A polo tournament is held on Shandur Top annually. The festival also includes Folk music, dancing and a camping village is set up.Various teams of Chitral and Gilgit-Baltistan have always played the game of polo closest to its original form.
It is also known as Roof of the world (which is a metaphoric description of the high region)