French, Belgian tourists visit Takht Bhai
PESHAWAR: The Tourism Corporation Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (TCKP) arranged a visit for the local and foreign tourists including French and Belgian and motorcycle rally to mark the International Mountain Day on Friday.
The tourists and bike-riders started their journey from Islamabad and reached Takht Bhai where they visited the Buddhist ruins. The tourists evinced keen interest in the Buddhist heritage and relics of the past era.
French tourist Babra Daileri said that Pakistan was a peaceful country and the people were hospitable. “I will never forget the love and respect shown by the people here,” Daileri said.
She said that four women and five men tourists had come from France to visit scenic, historic and archeological sites in Pakistan particularly Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Daileri said that a woman tourist from Belgium was also accompanying them. “After Takht Bhai, we will soon visit scenic Swat valley and Chitral to study indigenous Kalash culture,” the foreign tourist added.
In her message to the tourists, she said Pakistan was a loving and beautiful country having vast tourism potential and people were hospitable.
The tourists can now visit any place in Pakistan without any fear, Daileri said.
On this occasion, General Manager Tourist Information Centres (TICs) Muhammad Ali Syed and Archeological Conservator Amir Umar welcomed the foreign tourists and briefed them about the archaeological sites, heritage and Buddhist statues.
They said that there were over 6,000 archaeological and heritage sites in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where research was being carried out to revive these sites properly.
GM TICs Muhammad Ali Syed said that the visit of foreign tourists was meant to highlight the importance of heritage and archaeological sites related to Buddhism in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the world besides promoting religious tourism in the province.
He said the government had taken a number of steps for attracting foreign tourists, scholars and researchers to the province.
The official said a comprehensive policy had been evolved for preserving and protecting the archeological sites and places in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He said that initiatives were being taken to carry out excavation on archeological sites along modern techniques and methods.
He also mentioned the latest discoveries and the rich Gandhara heritage in various parts of the province.
The official said that the government was giving top priority to repair, renovation and preservation of archaeological heritage, and historical buildings in the province.
Muhammad Ali Syed said that a plan had been chalked out to protect and preserve all ancient places and building in a proper manner.
He later gave books relating to tourism and scenic sites in Pakistan to the foreign tourists.
Meanwhile, leader of Club 46 Mani Iftikhar said that arranging a bike rally was meant to highlight the importance of mountains in the promotion of tourism.
The tourists visited various places at the Takh Bhai Buddhist Complex and later left for Swat. They visited camping pods in Bashigram and the recently introduced tourist attraction – Gabeen Jabba.
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