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Default Tourism - A Safari trip through the Pashtun lands! - 06-17-2011, 02:11 PM

Khyber Train Safari




British in view of the building threat from the Russians, laid a 42 kilometres long Khyber Railway track in 1920s from Peshawar to Landi Kotal at an enormous cost of Rupees 6 million. The train coaches are pulled and pushed by two 1920s vintage oil fired steam engines ( HGS 2-8-OS ) – one in the rear and one up front, to climb 1200 meters through 34 tunnels and 92 bridges and culverts. At one point the track climbs to 130 meters after a journey of 1.4 kilometres, by means of the famous Shagai Spur, a section of the track shaped like a “W” with two reversing stations. A section of the track is shaped like a W and the train has to move in changing directions. The tribes people travel free as part of the contract agreed upon when they allowed the British to build the railway through their territory and this rule is still honoured. As can be seen from the sketch above, the railway track twists over the Kyber Pass with gradients as steep as 1 in 33 near the summit at Landi Kotal. And the steam engine really has to pull hard to take the coaches atop the summit as seen below (below).


The North West Frontier Province of Pakistan abounds relics of history from time immemorial to invasion of the Alexander the Great, then a chain of Muslim warriors and finally the British in their quest to subjugate Afghanistan and make it part of their Indian empire. After three Afghan Wars and loss of countless natives and the British, they finally decided to leave Afghanistan and much of the tribal area of present day Pakistan at its own. The railway line from Peshawar to just short of Landi Kotal near Pak-Afghan border is the last remembrance of the British. A road or railroad journey on this avenue reminds one with those grim days in the form of small, medium and large size forts, and the logos of British army regiments on blind turnings.

Those interested in history could not have had access to this difficult terrain but for the road and the innovative “Khyber Steam Safari” that not only has attraction for tourists but historians all over the world to see the once bloody battle grounds. This site is all about the Steam Safari, which is one of the most historical and interesting train journeys in the world today.

To keep the interest of the tourists alive, on each stop, the tour operator arranges band displays (bandsmen wearing British Raj day uniforms), the traditional “Khattak Dance”, group photos and perhaps hands shake with poor children anxiously gathered to see people from another world.

The best time to travel in this train is usually between the end of summers till October. The train leaves Peshawar at 0730 hours in the morning and brings back its load by 1700 hours in the evening. The package includes round trip train ride, refreshments en’ route, picnic lunch at Landikotal, sightseeing tour to Michni Check Post near Torkham viewpoint for the Pak-Afghan Border and all necessary permissions for traveling in the Tribal Territory.

The initial site seeing from Peshawar railway station onwards may not be heartening since area around the railway track is used as dumping ground for rubbish because of its inactivity. However, as soon as the train leaves the urban surroundings, an aroma of fresh air and lush green landscape captivates the tourists. The first stop at Jamrud brings bagpipers in view. Thereafter the train takes the tourists to the famous “Khyber Rifles” officers’ mess. The mess is a living legend of famous 19 and 20th century paintings, photographs and relics.

And the journey continues for five hours till the train reaches Landi Kotal, the end point of railway network. Many more things happen in between – but wouldn’t you want to come to Pakistan and ride the Steam Safari to enjoy it and seeing yourself?

For the Khyber Safari, the best time is during winters. Mellow sun shine, breath taking scenery, the rhythmic chugging of steam locomotive hauling a train up one of the steepest grades possible on 5′-6” track, all make journey an unforgettable experience. The hospitable Pushtoons in their traditional dresses and following their centuries old customs add to the flavor. For reservation of this train Divisional Superintendent, Pakistan Railways, Peshawar can be contacted on the telephone No. 091-9210687.


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*PEACE IS SOMETHING I WOULD REALLY ADORE, BUT WE ARE AT WAR, SO PASS ME A SWORD & IF YOU KILL ME THERE WILL BE A MILLION MORE*
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Default 04-20-2012, 01:27 AM

sounds interesting
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Default 04-20-2012, 01:32 AM

i have pepsi coming out of my nostrils. i can imagine a room full of middle aged abducted foreigners clinging on to each other with terrified expressions on their faces.
generally speaking, jokes shouldn't be eight paragraphs long.



I am no bird, and no nest ensnares me.

non commercial would cost less if he was in charge himself which he plans on doing. right now it's n herat but soon it will be in qanadahar.
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Kurmewal Kurmewal is offline
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Default 04-20-2012, 01:16 PM

i saw an ad for this in peshawar. it doesnt seem to safe for foreigners.
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haviZsultan haviZsultan is offline
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Default 04-21-2012, 08:43 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaZahroJaam. View Post
i have pepsi coming out of my nostrils. i can imagine a room full of middle aged abducted foreigners clinging on to each other with terrified expressions on their faces.
generally speaking, jokes shouldn't be eight paragraphs long.
You seem to criticize every article you see. Its like a tradition. Know that people look forward to your comments for entertainment purposes.

Off topic: Wheres roadrunner btw?


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Default 04-21-2012, 08:45 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by shadowgoverner View Post
she is just being herself (stewpid)bro.
yes Pukhtunlands have great potential for tourism.
i have studied toursim and I think Afghanistan and pukhtukhwa are exactly what people are looking for.
-mountian climbing
-skiing
-sightseeing
-culture

there are many possibilities
Lo and behold! You studied tourism? The other guy is an analyst. Amazing people really.

I heard in all the tourism and hospitality courses in the west they teach you about wines and how to test them? You tested wine amigo? :D


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