The tourism related businesses including hotels and transport sectors have witnessed great boom in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa by registering record Rs66 billion revenue during vacations of Eidul Azha. Known as home to lush green valleys, mesmerizing natural beauty and Ghandara Civilization, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has served base-camp for tourism related businesses with record Rs66 billion revenue generated only in three days of holidays of Eidul Azha. Latifur Rehman, Spokesperson of KP Tourism Department told APP on Tuesday that tourism became a great income generating source in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa where hefty Rs66 billion business have been generated during July 22-25 vacations of Eid having positive impact on rural economy especially of people of Malakand and Hazara divisions. He said an economic turnaround was witnessed in wake of massive influx of domestic and foreign tourists besides adventurers, hikers, sportsmen and mountaineers with a record Rs27 billion business to rural economy during these three days in KP. The spokesman said local people and businessmen related to hotel and transport industries, tour operators, local vendors, horse and camel riders have earned substantial profit in Malakand and Hazara divisions. He said over 27,70,000 tourists, hikers and adventure sports lovers visited different scenic areas of Swat, Chitral, Nathiagali Abbottabad, Kaghan and Naran in Mansehra. From a single room to a five star hotel, motels and rest houses besides camping pods, cottages and zigzag hiking to mountainous trails at Nathia Gali, Ayubia, Changagali, Thandyani, Kanspor and Bagnotar were flooded with tourists mostly arrived from plain areas of Punjab and KP to beat scorching heat. The spokesman said Swat had attracted over 1.5 million tourists and adventure sports lovers followed by one million by Galiyat, 120,000 by Kumrat Dir Upper, 720,000 by Kaghan, Naran, Saiful Malook, Anso Lakes and 50,000 Chitral including famous Kalash valley through about 720,000 vehicles to explore natural beauty of these areas and sites of Ghandara civilization. He said anti corona vaccinations of hotels employees at Kaghan and Galiyat besides others tourists’ areas immensely helped restored confidence of tourists. To bolster income of people, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has planned a “Stay Home” project under which loans on easy terms and conditions from Bank of Khyber would be provided to people of tourist’s areas for construction of at least one quality room as per Government design to be equipped with all basic facilities to ensure comfortable stay of tourists. The beneficiaries would be required to construct one guest room having an entrance and exit gate outside of their house for accommodation of tourists. The tourists would pay rent and meal charges to the room owner. The project would bring revolution in tourism sector in KP. The official said camping pods’ experience at Bamborat Kalash Velley in Chitral, Shaheed Sir, Allai Batagram, Mahban and Malka in Buner district remained highly successful where tourists were provided comfortable stay in remote scenic areas especially in Hazara and Malakand divisions. Lateefur Rehman said 10 new tourists’ sites have been identified in KP where camping pods would be setup at Jarogo waterfall, Solatar and Kalam in Swat, Lashkargaz Broghal and Sorlaspor in Chitral, Kumrat in Dir Upper, Alpuri in Shangla, Samana Top in Hangu, Larum Top and Bin Shahi in Dir Lower. He said a substantial revenue could be generated following completion of three new ski resorts to be setup at Kaghan, Chitral and Swat to promote winter and adventure tourism. Four new hilly stations including two in Kaghan, one each in Chitral and Abbottabad would be developed to reduce visitors load on the existing tourists destinations. Under KP Integrated Tourism Development Project, a container based facilitation centre was being established at Chitral, Abbottabad, Mansehra and Dir Upper to provide emergency assistance to tourists, mountaineers, hikers and adventure sports lovers. Besides improvement of colonial-era walking tracks including Nathiyagali-Thandiyani, Thandiyani-Satto- Mahnoor and Kaghan-Saiful Malook-Anso in Mansehra, he said trout jumping out of water and then vanishing back into green waters of River Kunhar were planned to promote adventure sports in Naran Manshera. Tulip gardening are being promoted at Naran and Kaghan where growers are likely to earn Rs 60,000 from one kanal produce. He said Battakundi-Lalazar chairlift project is also under consideration with a potential of generating huge revenue from it. To fully tapped Malakand Division’s adventure sports potential, he said 14 kilometers world’s longest and highest Cable Car Project (CCP) with a proposed cost of Rs32 billion has been planned to connect Kumrat Valley of Dir Upper with Madaklasht valley of Lower Chitral. The project on completion would attract around 10 million tourists every year to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. To bolster tourism and roads connectivity, he said Chakdara-Rabat expressway amounting Rs10.5 billion has been approved that would open up entire Dir Lower, Dir Upper, Chitral and Bajaur districts for tourism and generate employment opportunities for thousands of people.