Don’t Regret your Tour, Correct it – Is Hunza’s Nature and peace at stake?

Safar Wasila-e-Zafar Hain, it says “Travelling is key to success.” Everyone wants to travel once in life time and its mostly preferred by everyone around the globe, but sometimes it can be harmful when you are not a true explorer and as a result you effect the environment and the people of the region which you travel to.

Every year in summer I go to my birthplace Gojal, Hunza, a beautiful valley in Gilgit Balistan to spend some time with my parents, grant parents and relatives and also live a moment of peace with no WiFi and the rush of city. This year I packed my backpack and started my journey. I am very disappointed to write it and tell the world that this time I didn’t find peace of mind in my heaven. I am afraid for one thing I feel I would be asking myself that, “My Gojal used to be the most peaceful place 5 or 10 years ago.”

No doubt, tourism may have positively impact my area in terms of economic advantages, employment opportunities and many more. However, it may also start negatively impacting the peaceful environment, especially when there’re numbers of domestic visitors in the regions.

With a great grief in my heart I personally observed the local people feel threats to a lot of natural beauty of the region and also their traditions and culture from the domestic tourists in the area. The local people are worried that these tourists could totally harm the environment in form of increased pollution and more. I feel it would never be a great idea to have limits when it comes to tourism, particularly if the nature, peace of the area and culture and traditions are at risk.

The impact of domestic tourism are attributed to the ignorant and overzealous local tourists who blatantly ignore the environmental rules in the region and are disrespectful to the cultural and traditional norms of the region.

The disturbances created by the outsiders in the area have disturbed the local culture and create unrest among the people. The local people are no more at peace with the unethical behaviors of the local tourists.

There are five things you need to practice and know about and keep in view while travelling to Hunza if you are a real explorer:

1. 3Rs: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.

2. Be less harmful to the natural beauty and peace of the area.

3. Visit and learn the peaceful culture instead showing how good you are at staring and teasing people.

4. Have some respect for your fellow travelers.

5. If you can’t do all the 4 above, don’t travel anywhere.

Zar Nigor Tojik

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