"Faiza-Ifrah's women's Pakistan off the beaten path" Top 5 Page for this destination Pakistan by Faiza-Ifrah

Pakistan Travel Guide: 3,806 reviews and 8,449 photos

True democracy in Pakistan will encourage tourism.

Why call these pages Women's Pakistan off the beaten path?

Well, first of all, I wanted to show the women power in Pakistan that is not appreciated internationally. Please read tips under 'General Tips' and see for yourself.

The picture above shows Pakistan's cricket world cup winner turned politician Imran Khan with his former wife and still a good friend Jemima Goldburg. Imran and Jemima are well respected by Pakistanis for their principled stand on all issues.

Although winning more than its share of negative publicity in the west, Pakistan is a hidden treasure of touristic resources. Pakistan is the confluence of 3 great cultures - South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. It boasts of 3 great mountain ranges of the world - Himalaya, Karakorams and the Hindu Kush (3 of the tallest 10 and 10 of the tallest 25 peaks of the world are located in this country, including the 2nd tallest K2). Historically, it was home of 4 great ancient civilizations - the Mehrgarh Civilization that spread between 900BC to 5000 BC, the Indus Valley Civilization that flourished between 5000 BC to 1500 BC, Aryan civilization and Gandhara civilization. Its architectural resources show masterpieces of 3 great periods - Islamic Mughal, British and post-idependence.

Top 5 things to do in Pakistan:

1. Trekking in the mountain ranges of northern areas

2. Observing flora and fauna in the 18 national parks, lakes of international importance, and wildlife sanctuaries

3. Studying archaeological finds of Indus Valley Civilization, Gandhara Civilization, and early Muslim period

4. Observing culture – weddings, farming, arts and crafts, and indegenous sports

5. Observing Mughal, Islamic, British and modern architecture

Get an idea of how big is the country?

Polo - Sport of the kings and King of the sports:

Polo is a popular sports in Pakistan. Two versions are played in the country. The international version is played in all the major cities of Pakistan and the country has qualified to participate in the Polo World Cup to be held in France in 2004. The local, more fierce version is played in the Northern Areas of Pakistan. See more coverage in sports section.

Pakistan is a medium sized country spanning over 810,000 square kilometers. The size makes it slightly smaller than Germany, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Holland and Belgium put together at 846,000 sq. kms.

For the USA, Pakistan would cover all the New England and mid-Atlantic States plus Virginia, West Virginia and North Carolina.

In a comparison with US' southern states, it would be slightly smaller than Texas and Louisiana combined.

In yet another comparison with US' western states, it would be bigger than California, Washington and Oregon put together.

Buddhism in Pakistan

Our academic interest in Buddha took us to the valley of Swat in the North West Frontier Province of Pakistan (locally known as Pakhtunkhwa province). While the carved statues of Buddha were disfigured in the neighboring Afghanistan, there is at least one that we were able to see at Saidu Sharif, the capital of Swat Valley. Following are the excerpts from PTDC website:

"Swat Valley region is known throughout the world as the holy land of Buddhist learning and piety. Swat acquired fame as a place of Buddhist pilgrimage. Buddhist tradition holds that the Buddha himself came to Swat during his last reincarnation as the Guatama Buddha and preached to the people here. It is said that the Swat was filled with fourteen hundred imposing and beautiful stupas and monasteries, which housed as many as 6,000 gold images of the Buddhist pantheon for worship and education. There are now more than 400 Buddhist sites covering and area of 160 Km in Swat valley only. Among the important Buddhist excavation in swat an important one is Butkarha-I, containing the original relics of the Buddha. "

The picture is a statue of the Fasting Buddha found from the excavated sites of Taxila in Northern Punjab rather than Swat.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Friendly people, cultural diversity, nature, archaelogical sites, historic resources, economical tour
  • Cons:Bad image due to incorrect reporting in the western media
  • In a nutshell:A traveler will be pleasantly surprised at touristic resources of this country.
  • Last visit to Pakistan: Aug 2003
  • Intro Updated Feb 7, 2009
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Reviews (29)

Comments (96)

  • travelinxs's Profile Photo
    Feb 6, 2011 at 9:47 AM

    Fascinating information! When is the spring festival in Lahore with the kite flying this year? Thanks.

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Sep 20, 2010 at 2:03 AM

    This is an interesting page. Lucky you are fit, as a 3 hour trek turning into an 8 hour trek could be a problem for a lot of people. Like the sound of all the animal's that may be possible to see on these hikes.

  • mvtouring's Profile Photo
    Jul 31, 2010 at 12:47 PM

    Excellent tips, thanks for sharing.Hope you do not mind me asking, but if you want to return ratings, please visit my Prague page? The link is Hlavni Mesto Praha Things to Do Tips by mvtouring. Thanks ;-)

  • marvelous_girl's Profile Photo
    Jun 19, 2010 at 7:49 AM

    Very nice Page about Pakistan.

  • goutammitra's Profile Photo
    Jun 17, 2010 at 6:40 PM

    Brilliant Women's page. Why not a few more additions on this page?

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Feb 20, 2010 at 5:20 AM

    Thanks for showing us aspects of Pakistan that we don't hear about so often. I especially liked your General Tips on Pakistani women in various professions.

  • picek's Profile Photo
    Jan 31, 2010 at 4:24 AM

    Very nice and helpful page. PK is high on my wish list, and would love to visit sufi shrines and Buddhist sites... and of course national parks. So much history and nature in that place. Best wishes from slovenia, vesna

  • jumpingnorman's Profile Photo
    Feb 21, 2009 at 9:58 PM

    There's the kite tip! The one we went to was called Basant Mela -- they had nice music and my daughter ddanced to it (video still encoding on VT) and lots of ethnic food!

  • freddie18's Profile Photo
    Dec 13, 2008 at 3:44 PM

    It was indeed very pleasant stay I had in Karachi though it was too short. I have plans of going back to Pakistan and visit its capital city and its national park and that inlcudes Karachi. Thanks for sharing the information.

  • Ewingjr98's Profile Photo
    May 31, 2008 at 2:26 PM

    Thanks for stopping by my Pennsylvania page. Real nice work and interesting tips here!

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