Pakistan Hindu Kush holiday

Travel Team

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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Pakistan Hindu Kush holiday

Environment

On the tour you will go on several walks including Fairy Meadows, Hunza and Chitral. Walking through a country provides a unique insight and reduces the environmental impact of driving. It also allows a slower pace so you can really connect with the local guides and people of the region.

In Skardu you will visit the first organic village in Pakistan. The village is designed to preserve a traditional way of life and the outstanding natural beauty of the area. The village has been visited by Prince Charles due to its importance.

We attempt to reduce plastic bottle use wherever possible by promoting use of reusable and filtered water bottles. Our partnership with Water-To-Go provides a discount on filtered water bottles to our clients. We do not provide water from plastic bottles to our clients in country but always ensure there is regular access to drinking water on our tours.
We are promoting the natural and ancient heritage of Pakistan through visiting Deosai Plateau National Park, as well as the site of Baltit Fort and Amburiq Mosque (UNESCO have recently restored the fort to a fantastic standard and awarded the mosque for its fantastic restoration process). UNESCO Sites are chosen by the UNESCO committee and must "bear a unique or at least exceptional testimony to a cultural tradition or to civilisation", "an important interchange of human values" or be outstanding examples of major stages of Earth's history or ecological and biological processes in evolution. Visiting such sites helps sustain the ancient traditions and history of Pakistan.
To reduce the environmental impact of the tour, we ensure to use minibuses whenever we can. Some roads require jeeps for the group to travel in, but we want to reduce our carbon footprint whenever possible.

Community

On this tour you will stay with the Kalash people in the village of Balanguru. You will stay in basic accommodation and get to know the community during your stay. The Kalash see little visitors and they are happy to accommodate guests. We have a special relationship with the Kalash and have contributed to disaster relief and funding for a new school. You can visit the school on the trip to see the value the school has to the community.

Travelling with us to Pakistan, you will be contributing our foundation, which has supported the Kalash during environmental crisis. In 2013 and 2015 the Kalash Valleys in northern Pakistan saw huge floods that washed away homes, village buildings and the local primary school. In the village of Balanguru – one of three villages in the Kalash Valleys – five luckless houses, close to the river’s edge were destroyed along with the bridge that connected the village to the road. Thousands of tons on mud spewed into other buildings – including the temple of the family, Justak Khan.
Concerned that the situation was getting worse with the annual floodwater eating away at the riverbank, Saifullah Jan, the chief spokesperson for the Kalash and friend of our tour company owner for over 20 years, approached us to see if we could help. He felt if something wasn’t done soon the village of Balanguru could be swept away. We started a Kalash Wall Fund and dedicated our annual ‘Evening of Adventure’ at the Royal Geographical Society in March 2017 to the cause. With guest speakers, including the legendary writer, actor and traveller Michael Palin, who visited the Kalash during his Himalayan series, we raised over £7000 on the night. With further generous donations after the event we met out £9000 target and the construction work on a new flood defence wall could begin.
With the funds raised and the wall built all in a matter of seven months, it was a fantastic result! The Kalash are a vulnerable people that live in a vulnerable world. Over the years they have done so much for us, welcoming our tour company and our travellers into their community and homes. It seems only right we could continue to do something positive for them and help protect a community and its environment brick by brick.

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