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Thursday, February 15, 2024

Tourists throng Kaghan, Swat valley despite surge in COVID-19 cases

The viral video shows hundreds of cars stuck amid extreme traffic jams in the Mansehra district.

Record number of tourists rushed the Kaghan and Swat Valley during the vacations of Eid-ul-Azha. This led to the extreme rush with tourists getting stuck in long queues, show the viral video.

The viral video show hundreds of cars stuck amid extreme traffic jams in the Mansehra district. Tourists complained of facing fuel shortage as petrol pumps ran out of stock to meet the huge demand. Long queues of vehicles were reported at every fuel station in the area.

“Around 0.7 million vehicles carrying tourists have entered the valley so far and more motorists are on the way to this picturesque destination,” District Police Officer (DPO) Asif Bahadur said.

Read more:French photographers promote tourism in Pakistan

The influx began on the first day of Eid-ul-Adha and they are still arriving. “We have never seen such a huge number of vehicles entering the valley but we are doing our best to manage the traffic flow within the available resources,” the police officer said.

Among the major attraction for tourists were Dodi Pat Sar, Lake Saif-ul-Mulook, Babusar Top, and Lulusar Lake.

According to the local hotel owners, all the hotels are running at full capacity in the area. Whereas, tourists believe better infrastructure and roads have made the traveling easy hence a large number of local and foreign tourists are visiting the northern areas of Pakistan.

Similar situation happened in the Swat area as well where tourists waiting in long queues to enter the valley.

Read more: Pakistan, Uzbekistan to build railway line to promote tourism, trade

The tourist influx continues to soar in these regions despite the growing numbers of coronavirus cases in Pakistan. Health experts believe Pakistan has entered its fifth wave with the threats of deadly delta variant spreading in the society. The government and health officials have been repeatedly pleading people to strictly adhere to the COVID-19 SOPs that includes wearing face masks, avoid crowded places, and using hand sanitizers.