HomeDomesticMalam Jabba's snow blanketed as tourists throng hilly stations in Pakhtunkhwa

Malam Jabba’s snow blanketed as tourists throng hilly stations in Pakhtunkhwa

MALAM JABBA, Mar 01 (APP): Malam Jabba, the famous skiing resort of Swat was snow blanketed on Friday after receiving heavy snowfall that attracted tourists and adventure sports lovers in droves.

Besides Kalam, Madain and Bahrain, the upper Swat has received moderate to heavy snowfall that continued lashing the hilly stations turning the weather cold and muggy due to torrential rains continued since last night.

Following the Met Office’s forecast report of rains and snowfalls over the hills in upper/central parts of Khyber Pakthunkhwa including Swat, Dir, Chitral, Abbottabad and Mansehra, the snowfall and skiing lovers from across the country especially Northern Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa thronged to Kalam, Bahrain and Malam Jabba on weekend.

Besides Kalam and Malam Jabba, the snowy mountains peaks of Gabin Jabba, Miandam, Matiltan, Kalam, Utror, Gabral, Matiltan, Mahodand and Loye Sar resorts also drew influx of snowfall lovers along with families amid great fun and laughter despite muggy weather.

“I came from Nowshera to my favorite tourists’ destination Swat for snowfall following MET’s Office predictions besides enjoying its brown trout fish available at reasonable rate,” said Qaiser Khan of Wapda Town Peshawar while taking to APP.

Advising tourists to bring warm clothes, he said the the cold breeze along with snowfall have increased chill in Upper Swat forcing tourists to wear additional cloths and wollen sweaters.

Tourists from Peshawar, Nowshera, Mardan, Charsadda, Lahore, Rawalpindi and Islamabad were seen in large numbers at Kalam, Malam Jabba and Bahrian on Sunday to get pleasures from snowfall, trekking and brown trout fish found in abundance following Govt sucessful projects in fishery sector.

Known for a combination of its seven distinctive features including snowfall that was hard to find together in any tourist destination of Pakistan, Swat is also a home to primitive Gandhara civilization and ice skiing at Malam Jabba.

Besides river rafting, adventure sports, snow-clad mountain peaks and trout-fish, he said Swat motorway has made it an ideal destination for winter tourism and adventure sports in Pakistan.

‘I have visited many countries but could not find such a distinctive features togather as being found in Swat’ said Manzoorul Haq, former Ambassador while taking to APP.

He said the 150-kilometers long long freshwater of the river Swat originating from different glaciers and lakes including Mahodand and Gabral mountains offers unique opportunities for adventure and snow sports to explore in a single day trip.

Fazagut, Fatehpur, Barikot, and Chakdara are most suitable for water rafting in river Swat and if developed on modern lines could attract a large number of tourists during winter, he maintained.

Ambassador Manzoor said River Swat was ideal for ‘fish jumping and disappearing water sports’ and introduction of such sports would help bolster the rural economy and promote tourism and transport industries in KP.

Bestowed with more than 50 high-altitude small and big lakes, Swat’s Mahodand lake is an exceptional source of attraction for tourists enjoying its blue- waters and boats riding amid cold breezes and snowfalls.

With umbrella in hands, Misal Khan, a retired Govt employee, told APP on Sunday that he came from Nowshera to enjoy snowfall in Kalam, trout fish of River Swat and Mahudhand lake. “Mahudand and Gabrial lakes carried unique charm and clean air besides nearby birds chanting valleys take tourists into a lap of serenity.”

“I ordered 5 KG trout fish to enjoy it with my family members,” he said, adding green trout of Swat attract foodies at Kalam, Madain and other areas of the district in droves.

Besides its famous Deodar trees and precious wildlife, the Swat’s snow-clad tall mountain ranges of Falakser, Mankial and Elum peaks offer great challenges to mountaineers and trekkers to explore especially during winter. Likewise, its extensive plains and orchards that bear fruits and vegetables carried a unique comparative advantage than other tourists destination of the country.

Attracting Buddhists, monks and archaeologists from across the world throughout the year, the Swat’s archaeological treasures and ancient artifacts housed at Saidu Sharif Museum become a distinctive feature taking tourists to the glorious history of Swat.

He said the Buddhist sites of Swat including Saidu Sharif Museum and Stupa besides Buthkara Buddhist monastery attract tourists from accross the world.

Ambassador Manzoor said Swat was very important in terms of Buddhist history in Pakistan and should be showcased on digital media to attract followers of Bhuddism from all around the world.

“Another striking feature of Swat is skiing sports being played at Malam Jabba every year during winter and it should be promoted to bolster rural economy

KP tourism department officials told APP that a mega project was prepared for organizing different winter sports and tourism events in various districts including Swat.

Kalam’s winter gala and tour-de-cycle race would be organized in Swat while first-ever sports rafting at River Swat to be held besides an international paragliding event at Saidu Sharif.

To reduce tourists’ load at Kalam, Malam Jabba and Bahrian, new tourists spots would be developed at Sola Tanar, Puchar and Jargo valleys while walking tracks to promote ecotourism in Swat.

To maintain natural beauty and avoid pollution at tourist spots in Swat, he said camping pods would be established at new tourists’ destinations besides Kalash culture events in Chitral. To link new tourist destination with Swat Motorway, he said that huge amount were being spent on development and construction of new roads.

Work on the world bank’s assisted KP Integrated Tourism Project was underway in the province to promote tourism, he added.

The construction of 15 jeepable tracks was also proposed in Malakand and Hazara divisions while six tourist facilitation centers established and work on seven others started.

The ground breaking of 23 km long Mankyal-Bada Sarai Road has been performed for rehabilitation.

The project also includes the construction of four bridges and two rest areas. He said that an Integrated Tourism Zone at Mankyal Swat would be established where modern facilities would be provided to tourists under the KITE project.

He said a mega project for feasibility studies for identification of new tourist spots was planned. To promote ecotourism in southern districts of KP.

A road to Sheikh Badin tourist resort located at the confluence of DI Khan and Lakki Marwat districts would be constructed while a tourist wing for merged areas was established to monitor and oversee tourism-related activities there.

Director General, Galyat Development Authority, Shahrukh Ali Khan inaugurated Galyat Snow Festival at Abbottabad.

Shahrukh Ali Khan said that the event was aimed to attract tourists and inform people about the tourism potential of Galyat.

The festival would also impact socio-economic conditions of area people by creating growth opportunities.

The festival would include various snow sports events, musical concerts, hiking, horse riding, zip lining and tracking.

Tourism police was made operational at Malakand and Hazara divisions to facilitate tourists. He said Tourism police were deployed on key places of Swat to facilitate tourists and snowfall lovers during winter season.

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