2018: The Happening Year for Pakistan Tourism

Pakistan is the World No.1 Destination for Adventure Tourism According to British Backpacker Society!

The British Backpacker Society was founded by Adam Sloper, Micheal Worall and Samuel Joynson. They venture into relatively unknown territories in developing countries to present an insight on different cultures and people to the world. In the past few years they have visited over a 100 countries, and announced their Top Twenty just last month, in which they claimed Pakistan to be the No.1 destination for 2018. This has given Pakistan Tourism a much needed boost. According to Samuel it got the top spot because it was “home to some of the world’s friendliest and most hospitable people, and offers some of the world’s most dramatic mountain scenery.” While Adam was of the opinion that the Karakoram Highway was possibly the most extraordinary road trip in the world, he said. “It links Islamabad with the mythical Hunza Valley … through peaks, valleys and glaciers so dramatic that your camera will inevitably run out of film. If you love mountains, there is just nowhere on earth like it”

They visited in 2016, stopping over at Islamabad, Rawalpindi and then travelling from Lahore to Gilgit- Baltistan through the Kaghan Valley.Their end point was Hunza Valley where they climbed atop the Hon Pass which is above 4000 meters and has a breathtaking view of the valley. This year they will be returning to visit the basecamp of K2 as well as Skardu.

Five Reasons to Visit Pakistan

Dutch tourist Nora visited Pakistan last year in the summers, and traveled through the country on her motorbike for 40 days. She was completely enamored by what she saw. As a result she posted a video entitled ‘Why You Should Visit Pakistan’ in which she states 5 reasons: 1) the glorious landscapes i.e. mountains, glaciers, valleys 2) the food 3) the people 4) peaceful tourist sights 5) safety.

The video was viewed by some 277, 605 people, liked by 14,000 and shared 13,000 times. She highly recommends people to travel to Pakistan in 2018.

Renewed Visa-on-Arrival Policy to Aid Pakistan Tourism

Pakistan Tourism will be further facilitated by the renewed ‘visa-on-arrival’ policy, which came in the wake of Pakistan’s ranking by the British Backpacker Society. Based on their own experience of the lengthy and tedious process of obtaining a tourist visa for Pakistan, they had advised that we should revive the ‘visa-on-arrival’ policy.

The policy was first issued with consent of all stakeholders in 2007, but due to the circumstances of the country it was discontinued. However PTDC had been pursuing its renewal for many years now and really welcomed this timely action.

So just last week the Ministry of Interior notified FIA (Federal Investigation Agency) whose immigration wing will be granting the visas after assessment of the documents.  Now tourist groups and individuals from 24 tourist friendly countries will be issued a multiple 30 day visa, provided that they arrange the tour through our designated tour operators.

So with all these positive happenings, 2018 will hopefully see a much higher number of visitors!

 

Hajra Saeed

Hajra Saeed has been writing for the past 21 years. During her career she has contributed to various leading newspapers and magazines, but currently writes for the special supplements of 'The Nation'. She has written on a wide array of topics; however areas of interest are social issues, religion, philosophy and presenting a positive image of Pakistan. Has experience in content writing, technical writing, screenwriting and teaching. Likes to read, do online courses as well as social work.