Pakistan International Mountain Film Festival or PIMFF is a positive initiative for a country like Pakistan, which holds immense tourism potential.
This first Film Festival of its kind will be held in Lahore, on June 13-14, 2015. Where the Himalayas meet the Karakorams and the Hindukush, Pakistan is home to one of the most beautiful clusters of mountainous lands that inhabit any of the surrounding lands. Mesmerizing Glaciers glue countless sets of eyes to its contents and doesn’t seem to let them go anytime soon. In recent years, however, Pakistan has not enjoyed the tourism it once had, and with the development of the festival the region looks to regain those glory days. Pakistan International Mountain Film Festival is in fact an effort to remind the world about tourism potential of Pakistan.
Pakistan International Mountain Film Festival, also known as PIMFF, is the event which will accomplish such a rise in tourism very quickly. To be held at Alhamra Arts Council Lahore the film festival will look to enjoy a massive crowd of people who support tourism. Put into action by Eyebex Films along with Punjab Government, the festival will attract the crowds Pakistan once had in the past. This event will be the first annual festival in existence. Such an event garners attention worldwide and will be recognized by a multitude of entertainment groups.
In all, 80 countries have submitted well over 500 entries for the screening. Selected entries are to be featured at the festival. With over 32 of these entries selected to participate the outcome has already been labeled a huge success. Before the event is screened, it is widely known that sellout crowds are expected on ground. Also featured at the festival will be countless discussion forums, non-commercial but related films, and an unimaginable selection of photographic exhibition proportions.
Established by Eyebex Films out of Islamabad, the festival will include a variety of different features to grace the big screen. These include tourism films of the ages, travel documentaries of very high quality and adventure shots which will imprint the beauty of Pakistan. Wajahat Malik, Managing Director of Eyebex Films and Maryam Cheema the Festival Director, form an all important team whose goal is to bring in the well deserved travel attention from across the world.
The International Mountain Film Festival is of the purpose of generating tourism to the area which has seen little of late. The festival looks to make those aware of the past struggles as well as the beautiful land that still captivates the masses. Tour operators will be on site to take select few through the travels of the ages. Photographers look to capture an image of the land previously not captured.
Pakistan International Mountain Film Festival is one of the few festivals in existence presently. The only other significant competition is that of Kathmandu International Mountain Film Festival residing out of Asia. The festival already operating for years has been successful in bringing in countless crowds to its many showings for the purpose of growing awareness of their own mountainous plots and inspiring film adaptations. Pakistan has now taken the leverage of the standings bringing such a development to the mountain cliffs. Pakistan International Mountain Film Festival looks to gain the spotlight from which past successes have been available, and the stage is set.
The charming city of Quetta in Pakistan attracts tourists because of its unique features. One of the best things about Quetta is that accommodation for all price ranges is available here. Serena Hotel Quetta is the most expensive place to stay but the service and amenities are worth every penny. Lourdes Hotel is the second best option in high end hotels. There are many moderately priced hotels which provide clean rooms and good service such as Qasr-e-Naz, Fab’s Hotel, Marina Hotel, Shees Hotel, Hotel Al=Naem, Islamabad Hotel, Hotel Maryton, Deluxe Hotel, Qasr-e-Gul and Zulfiqar Hotel. Hotel Bloom Star and Gardenia Resort also provide decent service and accommodation at a mid-price range and are located in a bit of a secluded place so if you are looking for some solitude, these hotels are definitely for you. Those on a budget can stay at the Azad Muslim Hotel.
There are two museums worth visiting in Quetta; the Geological Museum and the Archaeological Museum. A great collection of rocks, gems, minerals and even meteorites is on display in the Museum of Geological History. An interesting collection of fossils of prehistoric animals and plants have also been put up for exhibition some of them dating back to 500 million years. A comprehensive history of the place can be studied from the wide variety of historic items exhibited in the Archaeological Museum. Pottery, coins, weapons and other items belonging to the early Islamic era are also found here.
The main attractions of Quetta are Hanna Lake and the Chilton Hazar Gangi National Park. Hanna Lake is located five miles from Quetta. The beautiful man-made lake is a striking contrast to the rugged mountains that surround it. Hanna Lake is one of the most picturesque picnic spots of Pakistan. There are activities such as chairlift rides and boating and people can also go for hiking.
Hazarganji Chiltan National Park is located 20 km outside Quetta; it is a must see place if you are a nature lover. This place is a sanctuary for wildlife species and some rare trees are found here.
Some great places to shop in Quetta are the Kandhar Bazar, Suraj Ganj Bazar and the Liaquat Bazar. Yu can buy traditional handicrafts, clothes and shoes for men, women and children and a host of other items.
The amazing Pakistani city of Peshawar is known for its traditional Pashtun hospitality. Guests are treated with reverence and respect and this spirit is found everywhere whether you stay in a five star hotel or in a low priced one. The high end hotel in Peshawar is the Pearl Continental Hotel and is obviously expensive. Other places where you can experience the awesome Pashtun hospitality are Khan Club Hotel, Green’s Hotel, Rose Hotel, Emaraat Hotel, Hotel Grand Peshawar and Tourist Inn Motel. Hidayat Hotel is a budget Hotel but the service and general ambience is excellent. Other budget hotels are Hotel Spogamy and Khani’s Hotel Peshawar are reasonable other budget hotels. A number of decent bed and breakfast and inns are also available in Peshawar with Shiraz Inn being the most recommended.
The old city of Peshawar has retained its charm and feel of old times. The narrow lanes of Kissa Khawani Bazar bring up images of travellers sitting around the fire and telling kissas (tales) of travels. The Bazar-e-Kalan, Ghanta Ghar (clock tower), Chowk Yadgar, Tehsil Gorghatri are some interesting places in the old ciy that you must visit. You must also visit the Sunehri Masjid and Masjid Mahabat Khan. Masjid Mahabat Khan is worth the visit as it is one of the best examples of Mughal architecture.
The main attractions of Peshawar however remain the Bala Hisar Fort and the Khyber Pass. Bala Hisar Fort was built in the 16th century and has seen the rise and fall of the Mughals, Sikhs and the British. It is a heavily guarded place. Bab-e-Khyber is the imposing gateway to Khyber Pass. Khyber Pass is situated 20 km from Peshawar and is the passage through which invaders, travellers and traders entered South Asia. Jamrud Fort and Kohat Pass are other historical places located outside Peshawar city.
If you want to go shopping in a fancy area, then Hayatabad is the place for you. Otherwise best shopping (both items and price wise) can be done at Saddar Bazar, Khyber Bazar, Namak Mandi and Bazar Shah Qabool Olia.
Nathiagali is a hill station in Pakistan; aptly described as “pretty as a picture” the place looks right out of a postcard from a European country. There are some good hotels in this small hill station such as the Hotel Amore, Hotel Elites, Red Onion and Kashmir View are some good hotels with neat and tidy rooms, excellent service and impressive food. These hotels are suitable for families. Summer Retreat Hotel and Green’s Retreat Hotel are other hotels which come with strong recommendations. All these hotels are set in the most beautiful and scenic surroundings.
Nathiagali and its adjoining hill resorts are interconnected through treks and so trekking is the most common activity in the area. Tourists can trek from Nathiagali to Mushkpuri and Miranjani Peaks. The striking scenery makes hiking most enjoyable and you can also help yourself to the wild strawberries growing there. Horse riding is done extensively in Nathiagali; you can go for a short ride or for a long one. Horse riding and trekking are not the only activities you can enjoy in Nathiagali, skiing can also be done at Green Spot situated at a distance from Nathiagali.
There is also an old church in Nathiagali that you can visit. The church was made by the British and is made of timber. It is quite well maintained and the lush green park in its vicinity adds to its beauty. The Governor House in Nathiagali is also worth seeing. You can buy local handicrafts from the mini bazar in the hill resort.
Two things you must bear in mind when visiting Nathiagali; first the weather is extremely unpredictable, there can be sudden cloud bursts and the weather is mostly foggy and the second thing is the monkeys that are in a habit of dropping by to pick up any leftover snacks.
The historical city of Lahore is an ideal place to visit especially if you are a history buff. The city is full of historical buildings, gardens and scores of interesting places waiting to be explored. Some fabulous hotels where you can stay are Avari Hotel Lahore, Pearl Continental Lahore, Holiday Inn Hotel, Bravo Suites, The Residency and Lahore Country Club. Mirage Hotel and Hospitality Inn are moderate price hotels while National Hotel and Hotel One are budget hotels.
Lahore is known for the rich Mughal legacy left behind in the form of Shahi Fort Lahore, Shalimar Gardens, Badshahi Mosque, Anarkali’s Tomb, Kamran’s Baradari, Jehangir’s Tomb and Masjid Wazir Khan are some tourist attractions from the Mughal era. Hiran Minar and Mubarak Haveli are other historical places not to be missed. Wagah Border, Minar-e-Pakistan and Lahore Museum are other must see places in Lahore. Lahore Museum is especially highly recommended for those interested in history as its four walls contain centuries of history. Besides gems from history, Lahore city is full of beautiful parks such as X Park, Sozo Water Park, Bagh-e-Jinnah and Jallo Park. While the rest are amusement parks, Bagh-e-Jinnah is the place to visit if you are looking for some time with nature. The tomb of Data Gang Baksh is a very inspiring and a spiritual place to visit.
Shopping in Lahore is an experience not to be missed; souvenirs can be bought inside the Shahi Fort. Anarkali Bazar is a popular shopping place among people on budget. Women and children’s clothes and accessories can also be bought from the Fortress Stadium at moderate prices. Men’s apparel, leather items and carpets are available at Panorama Center. Liberty Market, Pace and Defence Colony are also good places to visit for shopping. While in Lahore do visit the Fort Road Food Court it has been recently inaugurated and is reputed to be the best place to eat in Lahore.
Karachi is one of the most diverse cities not only in Pakistan but also in the world. Nowhere will you find so much diversity in lifestyle and entertainment. Karachi is full of options; those who can afford to stay in a five star hotel can choose between the Pearl Continental Karachi, Sheraton Hotel, Avari Towers or the Marriot Hotel. As these high end hotels are quite costly, a less expensive option would be Carlton Hotel, Hotel Mehran, Reagent Plaza, Embassy Inn Hotel, Hotel Days Inn and Beach Luxury Hotel. If you happen to be on a budget then you can try any of these hotels; Hotel Sarawan, Gulf Hotel, Hotel Jabees Hotel and Hotel Sky Tower, Hotel Crown Inn and Hotel Midway House. These hotels are clean and respectable where you can stay with your family; however if you a male and travelling alone and in mood of an adventure, follow the taxi driver’s advice at your own risk.
The first place people head for in Karachi is the beach. You can go for Clifton beach which has been developed by the city government and is frequented by the locals and the tourists. Sand’s pit, Hawkes Bay, Paradise Point and French Beach are other beaches you can go. Here you can rent a “hut” fo a day or night or more. The rent of the hut depends upon the amenities it comes with. Another interesting way to spend an enjoyable day at the beach is to take a boat from Kemari to Manora Island. Karachi has a number of parks but they are not as fascinating as those in other cities apart from Safari Park. National Museum and PIA Planetarium re two most interesting museums especially the planetarium which is an observatory set up in an aeroplane. Trip to Karachi is incomplete without visiting the Quaid’s mausoleum. You can also visit Mohatta Palace but check the visiting hours before you go.
Budget shopping can be done in Saddar and Paposhnagar Nazimabad, while Ashiyana, Hyderi, Bhadurabad and Tariq Road are some of the most amazing places to shop. Those rolling in money can go to Zamzama, Dolmen Mall Clifton, Forum and Park Towers.
Islamabad the capital of Pakistan is a fairly modern, beautiful and well-planned city. There is no dearth of accommodations which would suit ever pocket. The high and mighty can stay at five star hotels such as the Serena Hotel, Marriot Hotel and the Raddisson SAS Hotel. The Best Western Hotel and the Envoy Continental Hotel, Crowne Plaza, Margalla Hotel and Ambassador Hotel are some mid-priced range hotels. Islamabad Regency, Cape Grace House, Four Seasons Hotel and Pak Palace Hotel also provide clean and tidy accommodation with decent service. Islamabad also has guest houses where people on budget can stay; Riviera, Royal Manor and Jasmine Guest House are recommended to tourists.
There is never a dull moment in Islamabad; the nature lovers can head for parks such as Japanese Garden and Rose and Jasmine Garden. Those who seek physical activities will find many hiking spots right in the lap of nature such as Margalla Hills; para-gilding can also be done here. The Fatima Jinnah Park is especially known for recreational and sports activities. Chattar Park and Shakar Padiyan are other parks worth mentioning. Daman-e-Koh is located in the hills of Islamabad and gives a beautiful bird eye view of the city. There is golf course nearby and a restaurant which serves excellent food. Further from Daman-e-Koh is another picturesque and peaceful spot Pir Sahawa. Faisal Mosque is one of the biggest mosques in the world and is a beautiful specimen of architecture. Rawal Lake situated in the outskirts of Islamabad is a major tourist attraction in Islamabad. It is a hub of various activities such as boating, kayaking, sailing, fishing and bird watching.
To get acquainted with the culture and history of the place you can visit the various museums. Lok Virsa and the Pakistan Museum of Natural History are highly recommended. Islamabad also has majestic government buildings such as the Aiwan-i-Sadr.
A park is a way of providing recreational facilities to a number of people. Not only it acts as a tourist point but also it helps the person to enjoy himself of the greenery prevalent in the surroundings of national parks. Pakistan is abundant in terms of possessing beautiful national parks that are a source of constant attraction for a large segment of people living inside and outside of Pakistan. The national parks in Pakistan are preserving natural beauty and also at the same time protecting the wild life living in these national parks of Pakistan. The significance of national parks increases in terms of securing the animals from becoming vanished entirely. It is because of the fact that many animal species are endangered in Pakistan and national parks provide a home for these animals. There are many national parks in Pakistan but here only quite a few are mentioned. A list of the famous national parks of Pakistan with the top ten names is given below:
1) Kirthar National Park
2) Lal Suhanra National Park
3) Khunjerab National Park
4) Hazarganji Chilton National Park
5) Deosai National Park
6) Margalla Hill National Park
7) Hingol National Park
8) Chitral Gol National Park
9) Ayubia National Park
10) Machiara National Park
Pakistan has a rich cultural heritage and it is depicted in the form of marvelous structure built for the defense of a state or a country. There are many forts located all around the world that are of historical significance. The main purpose behind the construction of forts was to protect a country from invaders and enemies. However, they serve another purpose also which involves making a display of one’s architecture as depicted by its significance in a culture. Pakistan is proud to have enormous forts with beautiful architecture and rich cultural significance.Ranikot, the largest fort of the world is also situated in Pakistan. The reason behind the accumulation of forts in Pakistan lies in its history. As Pakistan initially was a part of Indo-Pak sub-continent, it had been ruled over by various monarchs including Mughals who were fond of art and architecture. Here a list of the famous forts of Pakistan has been presented naming only the top ten forts of Pakistan with their respective locations. These forts are a place of frequent local visits along with being famous tourist attractions
1) Ranikot Fort located in the province of Sindh.
2) Baltit Fort situated in Hunza Valley
3) Royal Fort located in Lahore
4) Rohtas Fort situated in Dina
5) Multan Fort located in Multan
6) Rawat Fort in Rawalpindi
7) Phrasal Fort in Rawalpindi
8) Red Fort of Muzaffarabad
9) Attock Fort of Rawalpindi
10) Giri Fort in Taxila