The need for sustainable tourism


Pakistan is blessed with a breath-taking natural beauty that is diverse and rich. Indeed, the serenity and tranquility of its beauty cannot be captured in words and can only be felt and experienced by visiting it’s most preferred tourist destinations, especially the northern areas of Pakistan, including Gilgit-Baltistan. Unsurprisingly, the country has long been a preferred destination for international tourists. However, due to the incident of 9/11 leading to the subsequent US-led war against terrorism and the volatile security situation of Pakistan, the international tourist inflow was to some extent affected and declined. Nonetheless, as Pakistan’s emerges out of the chaos and is poised to receive foreign tourists, it needs to ensure that the tourism sector is founded on sustainable grounds framed within an all-rounded tourism policy in line with the consideration of eco-tourism to avoid any adverse implications for the local cultural sensitivities and environment. While the incumbent government appears cognizant of this, it needs to harness all available resources to facilitate international tourism and remove the cumbersome security and bureaucratic hurdles to ensure a steady inflow of tourists. Moreover, it also needs to establish viable and responsive tourist facilitation centers in all major tourist destinations to avoid future tragedies like the one in the Murree.

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