Pakistan travel guide is featuring Pakistan tourism & travel information about hotels, tourist attractions, restaurants, food, culture, history, things to do, and Pakistan travel tips and advice.
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Pakistan Travel Guide


Overview

Warning: Parts of Pakistan are extremely unsafe to travel right now due to political upheavals and violence. These are the areas most affected: Islamabad, Peshawar, Rawalpindi, Karachi, Lahore. Also, stay away from all of western and northern Balochistan, the FATA (Federally-Administered Tribal Areas) and the NWFP (the North West Frontier Province.) Do not enter Pakistan at all before being debriefed on its current political situation.

Many people in the past believed that Pakistan would be tourism's next big destination. The country does, after all, have a lot going for it. For example, the Karakoram Highway meanders through the snowcapped Karakoram Mountains and has spectacular views the entire way. There are also architectural wonders in Lahore, which was once the capital. In Quetta you'll find narrow cobblestoned alleys, bazaars selling souvenirs, and camels and goats right in the city. Karachi, despite the turmoil of the country, is modern and cosmopolitan.

It seems unlikely, however, due to the country's political instability, that tourists will be coming here in droves any time soon. In fact, tourism in Pakistan has always been touch and go. Peruse any map of the country and you'll see how difficult life must be for Pakistanis with Afghanistan to the north, Iran to the west, and the politically volatile Kashmir in India to the south. And to make it all much worse, since 9/11, Pakistan has really been kicked off the world traveler's map because of their association with and harboring of terrorists.

Still, there are some who are curious and will come anyway, and often, they're most interested in coming to the Kalasha Valleys. The Kalasha Valleys have a fascinating history. The people, the Kalasha, who still practice ancient customs, date their ancestry back to Alexander the Great who once fought here. They believe in earthly spirits and a god named Dezau, and also adhere to a great many superstitions. It's important not to break any of their various taboos, so do a lot of reading beforehand to ensure you're treating their culture with respect.

The valleys themselves are filled with oak trees and conifers and are stunning when viewed from above. The valleys of Birir and Rumbur are long and thin with all the houses made of stone, wood and mud. The people grow millet, maze, lentils and wheat, grapes for wine, and also herd goats. The rest of Pakistan sadly doesn't seem very interested in preserving the culture of the Kalahsa Valleys, so it's important for outsiders to go and witness this dying culture for themselves, and hopefully, spread the word about these lovely people.

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