Historical Shandur Festival to kick off from July 7

The festival is going to be held from 7th to 9th July 2018, the annual three-day event could not be held on the old dates due to Ramadan in last a few years.

The grand gala of Polo at Shandur has become a popular game internationally, every year thousands of tourists from across the world visit the region.

Two traditional rivals Chitral and Gilgit-Baltistan polo teams will participate in the game of kings. In addition to other arrangements, the shuttle service will also be organized from Chitral to Shandur in order to facilitate the visitors. Local cultures, including the music and performing arts of Chitral and Gilgit-Baltistan will be exhibited in addition to the tent village and setting up of stalls. Pakistan International Air (PIA) will organize special flights from 5 to 12 July for Chitral.

The annual Shandur festival gives a great sense of harmony among the people of these neighborhoods. The festival is often adorned with cultural orientations of both GB and Chitral, which include their cultural dances, paragliding and popular music. Every year, Gilgit Baltistan and Chitral attract thousands of national and international tourists, and this year the number of domestic and foreign tourists is expected to be higher than in previous years.

The bad conditions of the roads leading to the Shandur are the biggest obstacle for tourists to reach the area. The 3700 meter Shandur top also serves as a bridge between the two opposing teams of Polo, Chitral and Gilgit Baltistan.

Polo’s roots at Shandur are quite deep, which often cause confusion. Some say that Skardu’s Balti Raja, Ali Sher Khan Anchan, was the one who laid the groundwork for the king’s polo match in the Shandur region. On the other hand, some argue that in 1935 the British occupants drove the polo into the Shandur region.

by Aurangzaib buzdar

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