Pakistan

Swat valley, Pakistan

Hotel Sarfaraz, Madyan, Swat, Pakistan. Well, after all the humming and haaring over where to go we’ve ended up in Swat – the accommodation in Gilgit, we found out, would be too expensive, coupled with the cost of getting there – and back, probably by plane, which is highly dependent on local weather and we might be stuck for many days, eventually put us off. 

Also, although the mountain scenery would be spectacular, the valley floors would be very bare at this time of year, and very, very cold. The alternative we came up with was to take the bus to Swat, costing a mere 80 Rupees (about £4.50) for a pretty interesting journey of some five hours or so from Rawalpindi.

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Swat, Pakistan

We arrived at Saidu Sharif which was the terminus, because it was the local office of the PTDC – (Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation), also the poshest hotel in Swat. Despite the manager offering us discounts, saying breakfast and heating free, it was still Rs 220 – three times the price we wanted to pay. Read more . .



Quetta New Years Day – Ceri

New Year’s day walk to Chiltan Hill, Quetta – Ceri’s story… Diary entry 3 January… The people at the PTDC (Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation have all been very nice and helpful to us. We go there every day, have tea and talk and generally disrupt the smooth flow of business, although i don’t think they’re rushed off their feet at any time. Quetta isn’t really a massive tourist trap. Read more . .


Quetta train to Chaman – Ceri

Train to the Afghan border.  The big adventure, the first of 1985, began the next day, on Weds 2nd. We’d had the idea to go to Chaman, a small village about 70 miles away, very close to the Afghan border. We’d heard various exciting stories, including one from a young man we met in the shami kebab stall, about Afghan rebels, all kinds of guns, pistols, rifles, stenguns at very cheap prices, smugglers and thieves ! Read more . .


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