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Community-Based Socioeco Tourism (CBST) Chitral Pakistan. Organized and management by the local people in a local perspective

Promotes and localize tourism at the community level for sustainable resilience building.

The development of tourism at the community level and the involvement of local people in tourism can promote several important national objectives. These include faster economic growth in the regions, improved welfare and equity, economic empowerment of local people, improved resource conservation by local people, and finally, diversification of the Hindukush tourism product, particularly the higher paying "eco-tourism" market.

This concept assesses different approaches to community-based tourism in order to evaluate the extent to which they can contribute to these objectives, and how the government can promote greater benefits.

1 > Why community are concern about the tourism policy of the Government!!!!!

  The present Government’s tourism policy is public friendly and the community is committed to supplementing the Prime Minister vision on tourism development. We the people of Chitral are committed to contributing towards achieving the goals and objectives of the present Government.

2 > What and how to do!!!

  To explore and manage the hidden secret of marvellous, amazing, astonishing, awesome, breathtaking and sensational natural beauty, uniqueness, hospitality, multiculturalism and emerging future potentials the region is still holding up.
The unique and unexplored beauty of nature, culture heritage, ecosystem, geology, ecology, history, tradition and culture is offering much more-the community is interested to offer through community-based socio-eco tourism in Chitral.
The culture tourism explored and managed through community-based socio-eco tourism will unlock the potentials and support the community efforts for conservation of culture and sustainable development of long-lasting tourism opportunities in the climate and culture-sensitive mountain environment.

3 > The hidden treasure of the region, it is offering:

3.1 The meandering brooks, the lush green pasture, the straggly chinar trees, the snow covered majestic Hindukush/Hindu-Raj highest peaks, the tumbling down of cataracts, the gushing forth of hot and cold Natural springs, the mesmerizing lakes and rivers, the velvety lush greenery are some of the objects of beauty in Chitral that cast a magic spell on the sightseers. Spring heralds the appearance of beauty in all these objects of nature.
3.2 Physical and external beauty is one source of joy manifested by the object of nature, when spring is at its full bloom, and on the other hand Chitral/mountain regions are offering unique and universal intangible culture heritage trace back the diverse ecosystem of centuries, still living civilization and previous heritage Chitral’s are practicing, including;
3.2.1 Kalasha is the intangible and unique culture in the world which exists in Chitral. It is said to be much closer to Greek culture.
3.2.2 Chitral remained the hub of oldest trade and pilgrim’s Caravan route between Hindu-Pak sub-continents and Afghanistan, Central Asia, Turkey, China and Magnolia. The olds culture traces of over 4000 years are still visible, practised and traceable in Chitral.
3.2.3 Accessible to many countries including the above mention use to be the shortest, easiest and, safest land route for trade Caravans, pilgrims travellers from Russia/central Asia, Afghanistan into China, Magnolia and Tibet, crossing over the famous Shandur Pass into northern area, and on the southern route to Peshawar till Bombay in India via Lawari top or Kunar valley passing through Jalalabad Afghanistan.
3.2.4 Mountain regions of Pakistan including Chitral is offering tremendous and unexplored potentials of natural environment, culture, music, history wilderness, wildlife, biodiversity, ecology, environment, adventure, rivers lakes, falls, sky speaking mountains, trekking, expedition, jeep safaris, unique and universal events/festivals, diversified landscaping, socio-eco tourism, sports tourism, business/research and pleasure tourism.

4 > Introduction to community-based socio-eco tourism(CBST):

4.1 What is Community Based Socioeco tourism:
Systematic and meaningful engagement, participation and advocacy of local indigenous families in promoting community-based culture tourism strengthened Micro-entrepreneurship by women and girls and contributing towards achieving SDGs- 1, 2, 3,4, 5,8, 11, 13 and 16.
4.2 The Mission
CBST supports Indigenous communities’ self-determination, cultures and environment conservation, multi-resilience building and institution development.
4.3 The Vision
To envision a future that respects and honours Indigenous Peoples' inherent rights and dynamic cultures, deeply and richly interwoven in lands, languages, spiritual traditions, and artistic expression, rooted in self-determination, self-governance and resource generation on a sustainable basis by the local families.

5 > How our work support to the mountain communities towards achieving SDGs

5.1 M/S Chitral Travel Bureau a local Social Enterprise, since its inception in 1997 in the tourism business has partnered with local communities to advance Indigenous Peoples' rights, multi-resilience building and conservations in the mountain region. The core principles of our efforts rest on awareness, capacity building and self-sustaining through a participatory, rights-based approach to our relationships that respects and strengthens sustainable community development while honouring traditional Indigenous culture. With the inclusive and rights-based approaches, our sister organizations work to inform, create resources for reducing disaster and climate risks, supporting income generation, ensuring livelihood & food security, reducing poverty and strengthening social services assisting indigenous communities
5.2 We publicize indigenous Peoples' issues through our humanitarian, research and development organizations; we mount on the ground campaigns and other advocacy efforts to stop environmental destruction and abuses of Indigenous Peoples' rights, always at the community’s invitation. Headquartered in the mountain of Hindukush and Hindu Raj, we are well aware of the rural and urban development challenges, the communities are encountering in extreme changing the ecological and political environment.
5.3 Economic, financial and social analysis indicates that homestay program will boost local jobs and growth but a revenue-sharing mechanism will do more to enhance welfare, and a joint venture can achieve much greater increases in community incomes, skills and empowerment.
5.4 Community-Based Socio-eco Tourism (CBST) is a concept, approach and mechanism developed by M/S Chitral Travel Bureau (CTB), a social enterprise and Tourism Consultancy Service provider in collaboration of local communities in the most remote and isolated wilderness and mountain regions of Chitral Pakistan.
5.5 The CBST arrangement promotes homestay tourism the travellers, tourists and organization officials are staying with a local host family in a room or some parts of a complete house for a short period, days or weeks payment of reasonable and competitive charges against the services provided by the host family.
5.6 Community-based socio-eco tourism (CBST)’s aim is to create a forum that afford communities grappling with tourism challenges work with one voice and purpose by empowering them to mobilize their own capacities, learn from each other, effectively manage their resources and thereby make informed decisions to control activities that affect their lives, culture and their environment to integrating community concerns into national tourism industry.
5.7 The additional income the host family generates on account of rental and food services from the host is contributing towards Sustainable Development goals including poverty reduction, hunger, quality education, good health, general equality, decent work and economic growth, industry, innovation and infrastructure and oval wellbeing of women of the host family.
5.8 The CBST mechanism is cost-effective, flexible, friendly and informal where both the guests and host family excited to understand each other, learn about their cultural, tradition, lifestyles, language, food, beverages, clothing, behavior, arts (music, dance and drama), social events, customs and history which has a strong influence on the political and organizational structure in peacebuilding, interfaith and intercultural harmony and conflict transformation.
5.9 The growing cultural tourism, if promoted through the concept of homestay, an emerging tourism type, recognized regionally and globally, and validated as a viable alternative to allow vulnerable communities to reduce poverty, enhance economic opportunities, conserve biodiversity, and facilitate sustainable long-lasting change to the lives. The network wishes to create proper mechanisms and incentives to open-up opportunities for rural communities to enhance their participation in the tourism industry especially in planning and running of enterprises on their land and property as micro-entrepreneurs.

6 > The purpose and objectives

6.1 To promote and increase the number of community-based homestay tourism in mountain region towards achieving the goals of poverty reduction; employment and income generation and culture prevention.
6.2 To develop minimum standard and operating procedures (SoP) for effective and efficient home stay tourist facilitation and services delivery by the community based home-stay operators and their staff/families
6.3 To enhance home-based tourism related knowledge, skills/competencies on safety, security, privacy, professionalism, globalization, interfaith and inter-culture harmony, strengthening global citizenry responsibilities and enhancing collaborative partnership with governments/ organizations.
6.4 To become the first and unique national network of community-based homestay tourism in Pakistan, recognized and supported by government and international organizations.
6.5 To standardize and consolidate the socio-cultural, environmental and economic criteria that community home-based tourism should meet to operate.
6.6 To generate technical and financial support from Government and other organizations to improve community-based home-stay tourism facilities on one hand, and on the other hand promote, coordinate community based home-stay concept among tourists.

7 > Our Values

  Bridging local, national and global networking
Our mission at CTB is focused on establishing a network of communities in Chitral and other parts of the country who are involved in socially and environmentally responsible tourism in different local settings in the regional and national level. In developing community-based home stay tourism, we at Chitral Travel Bureau (CTB) increase the demand for community tourism destinations, making it competitive in the national and global tourism market. The CTB Network’s website takes advantage of the internet’s ability to organize and connect the fragmented marketplace of the community-based accommodation and tourism program into a searchable database that is easy to use for reservation and booking by the tourists. The pilot project on its successful implementation in Chitral will be replicated in other parts of the country.

8 > Promoting the other side

  CBST is a network, managed and organized by Chitral Travel Bureau (CTB) under its corporate social responsibility (CSR) and provides a marketing platform for the communities located on the “other side” of a tourism destination.
Tourism destinations are dived into two: the front region where mainstream tourism activities are located: leisure, relaxation, amusement, while on the back region which remains unnoticed: social interaction, volunteering, training and immersion in the local’s daily life. As a social enterprise, we at Chitral Travel Bureau (CTB) promote responsible tourism that creates mutual benefits for hosts and tourists through unique and meaningful experiences.

Under this arrangement memorandum of understanding (MoU) is signed between two parties- 1) the owner/operator of the paying guest house and 2) M/S Chitral Travel Bureau, the marketing tourism consultant and tour operator, subject to full enforcement/adaptation of “Minimum Standard” and SoPs as an integral part of the MoU- Annex-A

Initially, 30 paying guest houses will be identified, renovated, furnished according to the “minimum Standard” in different tourist destinations/ villages across the District Chitral.

The homestay operators will be provided training on essential knowledge and skills about group/tourist handling, delivery of quality services, basic facilitation, cooking, room services, organization development, financial management and monitoring and evaluation of homestay facilities.
Provincial Government KPK, Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation and provincial organizations will be requested to provide start-up funding for renovation and purchase of furniture and fixture.
Tourist department KPK will be requested to train homestay operators and their staff regarding housekeeping, room’s services, front office management and financial management etc.

9 > Characteristics for homestay programs

9.1 Residential location: The location should be in the strategic area in terms of transportation and free from pollution. Have a suitable environment besides displaying the lifestyle of the local community.
9.2 Basic facilities: The guest bedroom is separated from the other bedrooms in the house. To ensure the comfort of the host’s family members and guests, the maximum number of rooms permitted for visitors is limited to four decent sized bedrooms. Usually, one bathroom is attached inside the guest room. The visitors’ comfort should be prioritized and the premises must have proper bathrooms with towels, soap, shampoo, toilet facilities, dining and living room as well as other basic amenities. Hygienic and healthy food preparation and supply of meals- local and organic and continental are subject to the selection of the guest. Basic facilities should be well maintained to ensure the cleanliness of the premises and the comfort of the visitors.
9.3 Cleanliness: The home area should be clean and clear of rubbish. Efficient waste disposal and drainage should be ensured to avoid unpleasant odours.
9.4 Guidelines for food preparation: The storage and handling of food and running of food premises must be paid close attention. The cleanliness of these premises needs to be maintained and all unused containers (boxes, bottles, etc.) which can become a breeding ground for 'vermin' such as mice and insects should be disposed of properly. Garbage must also be collected and disposed of off frequently while waste disposal areas and containers must be cleaned regularly.
9.5 Equipment and appliances: All equipment and appliances used in the preparation and handling of food should be appropriate to prevent food poisoning. Equipment and appliances should be washed after use and kept in sanitary conditions.
9.6 Other requirements:
9.6.1 Have a minimum number of two Homestay attendants including male and female attended and service providers
9.6.2. Be accessible to any mode of transportation and communication;
9.6.3 Embrace thinks and acts tourism mindset;
9.6.4. Maintain a high level of security, safety, privacy and cleanliness;
9.6.5 Participation in a homestay program would gain knowledge of external culture, acquire skills in reefing and receiving guests and be able to expand participation in their Small Medium Enterprise (SME) business as witnessed during ground truth survey and field study visits.

10 > Issues and Problems

  The Homestay operators/owner will be trained and necessary knowledge, skills and basic competency in the hospitality industry will be transferred. Such as, the updating of the existing facilities to meet the requirement of tourist arrivals which could generate additional income as expected or sustains Homestay operation. Based on the current scenario of the abundance of accommodation, the majority of them are satisfied with the operating under Chitral Travel Bureau a local tour operator who will ensure the reservation and booking and also ensure the services structure of the homestay operators.

During interview sessions with the 30 owners and operators of homestay, the research team has discovered numbers of problems faced by them in updating of the existing facilities to meet the requirement of tourists. Based on the current scenario of the abundance of accommodation, the majority of them are satisfied with the mechanism, and operating system developed by Chitral Travel Bureau a local tour operator and Travel management consultant, who will ensure homestay tourism marketing, reservation, booking, skills and knowledge enhancement, procurements, record keeping, reporting etc. CTB will extend the monitoring and evaluation of homestay standards and support for microenterprise development and effective service delivery through this arrangement.

To upgrade the existing facilities to meet the homestay standard each house required minimum spport for renovation, furniture, fixture, crockery, printing of stationery and provision of other basic facilities.
Comprehensive training on homestay standard also required on a quarterly basis and regular promotion through social marketing at national and international level.

Another issue, which required urgent action, is language enhancement training to avoid miscommunication between owners and visitors. Failure in good communication would cause difficulties in interaction with foreign tourists. Good communication between both parties increases the intensity and enjoyment of the homestay experience. Whenever both parties are impeded by a lack of communication skills or mastering of an international.

11 > Support and recommendations:

11.1 Tourist Serviced Department, Government of KPK should be engaged and involved to patronage and regularize the new system in the Province, which will be replicated in other provinces.
11.2 Six million Grant required for updating 30 homestay owners on the basis of their requirement.
11.3 One million funding for capacity building homestay owners for training and capacity building required for one year
11.4 One facilitator/monitoring and evaluation officer salary support for one year is required from Tourism Development Corporation KPK and PTDC.
11.5 One time grant 3-4 hundred thousand for web development, documentation/broachers and stationery for homestay program.
11.6 Chitral Travel Bureau (CTB), Tour Operators and Travel consultant will provide technical support to CBST and its effective implementation.
11.7 Chitral Travel Bureau will provide office facilities, utilities and other support to the operational staff and homestay operators for one year.
11.8 Chitral Travel Bureau will be responsible to coordinate the function of the program with Ministry of Tourism KPK, Tourism Service Department, Tourism Corporation KPK(TCKP) and concern security agencies for reporting and regularization/up-scaling of CBST
11.9 CTB will coordinate with other concerned organizations at national and international level for promotion of the program and reporting of its functioning.
11.10 CTB will ensure the funds provided to homeowners for Homestay purpose is transparently utilized for the purpose granted for.
11.11 CTB will provide technical support for financial, narrative reporting and operational management to the homestay owners for one year.

M/S Chitral Travel Bureau, Shahi Masjid Road, Chitral Pakistan

The network of Community Based Socioeco Tourism (CBST) is established on 1st January 2019 to supplement the tourism policy of the government of Pakistan in the country and to shift the cost-benefit of the tourism potentials to the local community through an organized and systematic way that will promote organized tourism and shift the benefit to the community at village level. The network will organize and maintained the minimum quality standard to meet the basic requirement of the tourists and promote / facilitate the homeowners and homestay operators to ensure that safety, security and privacy of the tourists are well maintained. The Members of the network will coordinate with the Social Enterprises M/s Chitral travel Bureau who will be providing guest to the homestay owners and also ensure that the homestay owners are providing minimum standardized services to the guest.

For inquiries, contact:
M/s Chitral Travel Bureau
Shahi Masjid Road Chitral
and its partner’s organizations across Pakistan.
Phone: 92-943-412461
Mobile# +923015056433 +923489163100
E-mail: info@chitraltravel.com

Initially, 30 homestay arrangement made in 24 different villages/location for homestay in Chitral:

01) Garumchashma- Main 02) Unchu- Garumchashma 03) Hasanabad 04) Bashgram
05) Lasht/Susoom 06) Parsan/Bokhtuli 07) Madaklashat 08) Naghar
09) Baranis 10) Reshun 11) Kuragh 12) Bunni
13) Tarich-Zondrangram 14) Buzund-Torkoh 15) Rich- Torkoh 16) Mustuj-main
17) Sore Laspure 18) Brep 19) Yarkhun lasht 20) Garumchashma- Burogul
21) Burogul main. 22) Golen 23) Parwak 24) Sonoghor


Community Based Services

  • We are sensitive to Community Based SocioEco Tourism Management  (CBSTM) Organization promoting community based sustainable tourism transfer the benefits to community.
  • All our packages are promoting CBSTM based. Additional services if required could be arranged by Chitral Travel Bureau (CTB).
  • Experience a unique stay, live with community as a paid guest and enjoy local guests. For further information/bookings please contact our office

Other Services

  • Transport Services
  • Guides/ porters / Cook
  • Camping services
  • Tools, gears and kits could be hired

News & Events

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Kalash Festival - Chilimjusht
13-16 May-2019
Click Here

Annual Shandur Festival
7-9th July 2019
Click Here

Our Address

Chitral Travel Bureau
Shahi Masjid Road,
Chitral, Pakistan.