Pakistán: Tribus remotas y reinos medievales

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Trip Duration Days - 15 Days

Pakistán: Tribus remotas y reinos medievales

Price Starts from € 4200

Ruta apta para todo tipo de viajero ya que no requiere gran esfuerzo físico. Es importante saber que se visitarán regiones remotas donde las pistas o carreteras están en mal estado y el alojamiento es sencillo. Durante la estancia en ciudades optaremos por alojamientos con encanto y bien situados. Ruta diseñada para convivir con diferentes etnias tradicionales, recorrer valles perdidos donde el turismo todavía es escaso, explorar centros urbanos históricos y ver interesantes Patrimonios de la Humanidad.
Fechas
Sábado 29 Agosto – Sábado 12 septiembre 2020
 
Duración y Grupo
15 días / 13 noches
9 Plazas
 
Guía
Joan Riera, antropólogo
 
Puntos destacados del viaje
Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, Qila Rohtas, Takht-i-Baji, Gandhara, Valle de Swat, Reino de Chitral, Montes Hindukush, Valles Kalash, Tribus Pashtun, Kalash y Pueblo Romaní.

Estilo del viaje
Ruta apta para todo tipo de viajero ya que no requiere gran esfuerzo físico. Es importante saber que se visitarán regiones remotas donde las pistas o carreteras están en mal estado y el alojamiento es sencillo. Durante la estancia en ciudades optaremos por alojamientos con encanto y bien situados. Ruta diseñada para convivir con diferentes etnias tradicionales, recorrer valles perdidos donde el turismo todavía es escaso, explorar centros urbanos históricos y ver interesantes Patrimonios de la Humanidad.
 
Información Clave
Visado obligatorio. Las regiones que visitaremos son seguras aunque en algunos puntos el acompañamiento de policía armado es requerido. La aplicación de la Sharia (Ley Islámica) en todo el país, aplica la prohibición de venta pública de alcohol. En el caso de las mujeres es recomendable cubrir cabeza (pañuelo), piernas y brazos. Para los hombres se recomienda pantalón largo. La temperatura, a principios de septiembre, será agradable, aunque en las montañas, se recomienda algo de ropa de abrigo, pues las alturas van de 2.000 a 2.500 mts.
 
Vuelos Recomendados
Qatar Airways Barcelona/Doha/Lahore Sábado 29 Agosto 16:40/07:50
Qatar Airways Peshawar/Doha/Barcelona Sábado 12 Septiembre 10:00/21:10
 
Dia 1 y 2 Sábado 29 /Domingo 30 Agosto
EUROPA – LAHORE
Vuelo Barcelona/Doha/Lahore Qatar Airways 16:40/07:50. Llegada al aeropuerto de Lahore donde estará esperando el guía. Traslado al Hotel. Explicación sobre el plan de viaje (ruta, distancias, actividades) y charla introducción sobre Lahore, su legado cultural y monumentalidad. La ciudad más bella de Pakistan, centro cultural y artístico y antigua capital del Punjab antes de la partición entre India y Pakistan en 1947, cuando India llegaba hasta Peshawar. Visitaremos el Fuerte de Lahore (Patrimonio de la Humanidad), la Mezquita Badshahi (1674) y nos perderemos por la ciudad amurallada.
Alojamiento: Faletti,s Hotel (Pensión Completa).
 
Día 3 Lunes 31 Agosto
LAHORE
Visita al Museo de Lahore y a los jardines mogoles Shalimar Bagh (Patrimonio de la Humanidad). Traslado a Wagah Border, frontera con India, para participar en la colorida ceremonia “Lowering of the Flags”, cierre diario de fronteras entre los dos países a las 16:00 h.  (35km/1h). Vuelta a Lahore, visita a la Mezquita Badshahi iluminada y al Bazar Anarkali.
Alojamiento : Faletti,s Hotel(Pensión Completa)

 
Día 4 Martes 1 Septiembre
LAHORE – ISLAMABAD – TAXILA (300km/5h)
Desayuno. Traslado por carretera a Taxila. Parada en ruta para visitar el Fuerte de Rohtas (Patrimonio de la Humanidad). Extraordinario ejemplo de la arquitectura militar, construido por el rey pashtun Sher Shah Suri para proteger la vía de comunicación entre Calcuta y Peshawar de los ataques mogoles. Continuación a Islamabad, actual capital de Pakistan, construida en 1960 con fondos del rey Faisal de Arabia Saudita, para sustituir a Karachi. Ciudad moderna, planificada e impersonal, centro político del país. Continuación hasta nuestro hotel en Taxila, base para explorar Gandhara.
Alojamiento : Hotel Royalson (Pensión Completa)
 
Día 5 Miércoles 2 Septiembre
iSLAMABAD – VALLE DE SWAT (250KM/4h)
Desayuno. Charla sobre Gandhara y el Valle de Swat (naturaleza, etnografía e historia). Tras la charla, ruta hacia Saidu Sharif, capital del valle y base para explorarlo. La región está habitada por la etnia pashtun, pueblo clánico de profundas raíces tribales que ni la administración colonial británica ni el Gobierno Central de Islamabad han podido modificar. Ahora el valle está islamizado y sus habitantes viven de la agricultura y la ganadería de subsistencia, con el comercio a pie de carretera. En ruta visita a las ruinas greco budistas de Gandhara  y Tahkt-i-Bahi S I-VI (Patrimonio de la Humanidad). Paradas en pueblos y mercados. Tras cruzar el Malakand Pass llegada de tarde a Saidu Sharif y acomodación en el hotel.
Alojamiento: Motel Swat (Pensión Completa)
 

 
Día 6 Jueves 3 Septiembre
VALLE DE SWAT
Desayuno. Charla sobre la sociedad y cultura pashtun. Día entero para explorar el Valle de Swat y conocer la realidad social, cultural y económica de sus habitantes, los pashtun. Visita de pueblos apartados de las vías principales para poder apreciar mejor la vida rural tradicional. Uno de los elementos a destacar es la arquitectura vernácula de Swat, hecha en adobe y piedra con bellos interiores decorados. Este tipo de viviendas están actualmente en fase de desaparición debido a los cambios socio económicos, a la entrada de nuevas influencias en Swat, y a la emigración de los jóvenes a las grandes ciudades y a los países de Golfo Pérsico (trabajos poco remunerados en obra pública y privada generalmente). Charla con los habitantes de las casas a través del intérprete local y disfrute del paisaje. Según el día de la semana visitaremos uno u otro mercado para ver el ambiente y como interaccionan los habitantes de Swat. De tarde regresaremos a Saidu Sharif para pasar la noche.
Alojamiento : Motel Swat (Pensión Completa)
 
 
Día 7 Viernes 4 Septiembre
VALLE DE SWAT – REINO DE CHITRAL (260km/7h)
Desayuno. Larga ruta por paisajes de gran belleza. Bosques de coníferas centenarias, poblados de adobe encaramados en las montañas y en los pequeños valles por donde discurre el río Hindus. Parada en los bulliciosos mercados de Upper y Lower Dir y tras atravesar el recientemente inaugurado túnel de Lowari, llegaremos al Reino montañés de Chitral.
Alojamiento : Hotel Terichmir (Pensión Completa)
 

 
Día 8 Sábado 5 Septiembre
CHITRAL – AYUN  (25KM/1h)
Desayuno. Charla sobre el Reino de Chitral (naturaleza, etnografía, historia…). Mañana burocrática en la comisaría de policía de Chitral. Las autoridades locales nos expedirán un permiso para explorar el Reino y los remotos Valles Kalash (fronterizos con Afganistán). En la mayoría de los casos suelen proponer el acompañamiento de uno o dos policías. Tras el papeleo, visita de la mezquita real, el palacio y el mercado central de Chitral. Ruta hasta Ayun para almorzar con la familia real de Chitral en su palacio de verano. Las monarquías pakistaníes perdieron su antiguo poder (mantenido durante el régimen colonial británico) a partir de 1965 bajo el gobierno de Butho, padre de Benazir Butho, que también gobernó el país en la década de 1990. A pesar del ocaso del poder feudal, el actual monarca de Chitral sigue influyendo en la sociedad y ha creado un lobby de presión con dirigentes locales, ecologistas y tour operadores para abrir el antiguo Reino de Chitral y los Valles Kalash al Mundo. La idea es valorizar el ecosistema, el patrimonio cultural, y la gran diversidad étnica de esta remota región de Pakistán, olvidada por Islamabad. Visita de tarde de los jardines reales y del pueblo de Ayun.
Alojamiento : Hotel Royal Fort Ayun (Pensión Completa)
 

 
Día 9 Domingo 6 Septiembre
AYUN – VALLES KALASH (20km/1h)
Desayuno. Charla sobre la cultura kalash, último pueblo de religión himalaica en el Hindukush. Ruta por pista sinuosa hasta los Valles Kalash, un lugar mágico que ha preservado su identidad a pesar de las presiones del mundo exterior (islamización, escolarización forzosa, conflicto afgano, inmigración de gente del Valle de Chitral, y el turismo que cada vez llega con más fuerza a estos, hasta hace poco, olvidados valles de montaña). Durante dos días exploraremos los tres valles Rumbur, Bumburet y Birir, para conocer la realidad de este pueblo único y fascinante. Sorprende el aspecto físico de hombres y mujeres (piel clara, ojos verdes, azules, muchos rubios y rubias…). Existe la teoría de que son descendientes de soldados de origen centro-europeo que formaban parte de las tropas de Alejandro Magno que pasó por esta región en su camino hacia India. Aspecto físico aparte, los kalash son muy hospitalarios y les gusta explicar cosas de su cultura. Tienen diferentes tabúes, tradiciones muy particulares y sobretodo, una vestimenta única (sólo mujeres) que vale la pena descubrir.
Alojamiento : Casa de Huéspedes Kalash (Pensión Completa)
 
 
Día 10 Lunes 7 Septiembre
VALLES KALASH
Desayuno. Charla sobre la religión kalash y los templos de culto. Visita de los pueblos más interesantes para admirar una arquitectura vernácula fascinante y una forma de vida muy apegada al territorio y a las viejas costumbres. Las mujeres suelen tener bastante poder en esta sociedad patriarcal pero bastante igualitaria si la comparamos con los vecinos musulmanes (están literalmente rodeados). De los 5.000 kalash que viven entre Pakistán y Afganistán (en el país vecino están todos islamizados y han perdido casi todas las costumbres animistas) unos 3.000 son adeptos a los antiguos dioses y honran a los animales de las montañas y a la naturaleza que les rodea. Caminatas por los valles, disfrute del ambiente, de la gente…y de la gastronomía kalash!. El guía local nos abrirá las puertas de un mundo que se resiste a desaparecer y que gracias al turismo responsable tiene el futuro algo más asegurado.
Alojamiento : Casa de Huéspedes Kalash (Pensión Completa)
 

 
Día 11 Martes 8 Septiembre
VALLES KALASH – RABAAT (170km/6h)
Desayuno. Despedida de nuestros anfitriones los kalash y adiós a esta tierra indómita. Larga ruta disfrutando del paisaje por desfiladeros al lado del rio Panjkora, hasta los fértiles valles del Hindus. Charla resumen del viaje y los elementos destacables hasta el momento.
Alojamiento: Shangrila Resort   (Pensión Completa)
 
Día 12 Miércoles 9 Septiembre
RABAAT PESHAWAR (180km/4h)
Objetivo: Peshawar. Ciudad mítica milenaria fronteriza, ubicada en la carretera Karakorum, punto estratégico en la Ruta de la Seda, al este del Khyber Pass por donde pasaron el Imperio Persa, Alejandro Magno, los Mogoles, Marco Polo y hasta Churchil!. Encrucijada cultural y hervidero de intrigas y confabulaciones, donde se respira historia por doquier. Llegada y acomodación en el hotel. Charla sobre Peshawar (mapa urbano para entender los periodos históricos y la realidad socio-económica). Exploración a pie del barrio viejo; mezquitas, monumentos de diferentes periodos, el ambiente popular de los mercados, de las calles comerciales… La ciudad ha acogido miles de refugiados afganos, se nota por la gran cantidad de mujeres cubiertas con burka; impacta.
Alojamiento: Hotel Emaraat o Shelton Rezidor (Pensión Completa)
 

 
Día 13 Jueves 10 Septiembre
PESHAWAR
Desayuno. Visita al Museo de Peshawar, a los Bazares Khyber y Khawani con su antigua calle Cuentacuentos,  la Mezquita Mahabat Khan , la plaza comercial Shinwar , la Universidad, el  Islamia College, el Club Peshawar, Khyber House, la Fortaleza Bala Hisar, Sethi St. y el Caravanserai Gor Khatri. Con el guía local podremos penetrar en las entrañas del Peshawar más auténtico y entender la esencia de la urbe más mágica de Pakistán.
Alojamiento: Hotel Emaraat o Shelton Rezidor (Pensión Completa)
 
Dia 14 Viernes 11 Septiembre
PESHAWAR
Desayuno. Charla sobre la etnia gitana en Pakistán. Mañana para visitar uno de los varios campamentos de gitanos semi-nómadas que viven en las afueras de Peshawar. Nos interesaremos por su forma de vida, su realidad económica y su posición social en el Pakistán actual. Este pueblo es según los antropólogos originario precisamente del valle del Río Hindus, y desde aquí se expandieron hacia la actual India y sobre todo hacia el oeste, llegando hasta la Península Ibérica en el SXV donde han creado una cultura con mirada única que los sigue conectando con sus parientes nómadas de Oriente. Pasaremos unas horas con este pueblo y regresaremos a Peshawar para hacer las últimas visitas y compras. Visita al Dean,s Mall construido en el solar donde se ubicaba el mitico Dean,s hotel, demolido en 2016.
Alojamiento : Hotel Emaraat o Shelton Rezidor (Pensión Completa)
 

 
Dia 15 Sábado 12 Septiembre
PESHAWAR – EUROPA
Salida del vuelo Qatar Airways Peshawar/Doha/Barcelona 10:00/21:10
 
FINAL DE NUESTROS SERVICIOS

Servicios incluidos:

-Todos los traslados
-Guía fotógrafo español especializado en cultura pakistaní
-Guías locales de habla inglesa (traductores en zonas tribales)
-Alojamiento en hoteles y albergues (en zonas remotas)
-Pensión completa (desayuno, almuerzo y cena)
-Visitas y excursiones
-Entradas museos
-Seguro médico de asistencia en viaje
-Minibús climatizado y vehículos 4x4 para zonas de montaña
 
Servicios No incluidos:
-Vuelo internacional
-Visado
-Bebidas
-Propinas

Kalash

Also known as Kalasha or Kafir.

Population & Ecosystem
3.000 Kalash live in 3 valleys of Chitral namely, Rumbur, Brumbret and Birir. The valleys are surrounded by the Hindu Kush mountain range.

Economy & Society
Historically a goat herding and subsistence farming people, the Kalash are moving towards a cash-based economy whereas previously wealth was measured in livestock and crops. Tourism now makes up a large portion of the economic activities of the Kalash. To cater to these new visitors, small stores and guest houses have been erected, providing new luxury for visitors of the valleys. People attempting to enter the valleys have to pay a toll to the Pakistani government, which is used to preserve and care for the Kalash people and their culture. After building the first jeepable road in the Kalasha valleys in mid 1970s the people are engaged in other professions like tourism and also joining services like military, police and border force etc.

Besides their unique culture and Animistic rituals the Kalash people outstand for their physical appearance. Surrounded by dark hair, dark skinned and brown eye Pashtuns and Khos, most people of Kalash Valleys are white skinned with golden brown hair and blue eyes. Up to nowadays, the origins of Kalash still remain unresolved as their history is shrouded behind a number of theories, mysteries and controversies. Of these many theories, three carry with them great significance and are considered closest to reality.                                          

The grandest of all is that the Kalashas carry a romantic view of being the descendants of Alexander the Great. On the other hand, many historians believe that they are indigenous tribe of the neighboring area of Nuristan also called Kafiristan (the land of Kafirs). It is believed that in 1895 Amir Abdul Rahman, the king of Afghanistan, conquered the area of Nursitan and forced the inhabitants of the area to convert to Islam. It was during that time that many people fled to Chitral to avoid conversion. The third theory claims that the ancestors of Kalashas migrated from a distant place in South Asia called Tsiam. The Tsiam is considered to be the traditional home of these people. The Kalasha folk songs and fables hint the existence of Tsiam and that their roots belong in that region.                                                                                                     

The people of Kalash are extremely particular about their religion and break ties with anyone of them who converts to Islam. The converts are not allowed after the conversion to be a part of their community. They keep their identity strong.

The people of Kalash differ from the people of the surrounding areas in a number of ways. There is no separation between males and females in Kalash and are allowed to keep contact and communicate without any fingers being raised at them. Moreover, the females of Kalash are sent to live in a bashaleni when they are considered to be impure for e.g. during the child birth period and other occasions. These women are only able to live this place after they regain their purity and have undergone the ritual of restoring purity.

The people of Kalash march to a different drummer. Their customs and traditions are as different as day and night, especially vis–à–vis the concept of marriage. Marriage by elopement is more frequent in the Kalash valley and is also common amongst women who are already married to another man. In fact, wife elopement is considered to be one of the great customs of the people of Kalash.
 
When a man and woman get married the man pays the woman’s family a certain amount in order to have her. When a woman wants to leave her current husband and marry some other man, she offers herself to that man and informs him of how much her current husband had paid for her. In order for the man to marry an already married woman he has to pay double the amount to have her.
 
Culture & Religion
The women of Kalash wear long black loose robes with colourful embroideries and cowrie shells. These women are also found wearing colourful beads and necklaces that further distinguish them from the other women of the Chitral region. They accessorize their black robes by making use of colorful long braided head wears. The males of the Kalash on the contrary have adopted the Pakistani national dress i.e. the shalwar kameez and are often found wearing waistcoats over them. They also wear hats common to the northern area of Pakistan.

The Kalash are polytheistic believing in 12 Gods and Goddesses. A renowned linguist Richard strand, is of the view that the people of Kalash practice an ancient form of Hinduism which gradually developed locally and got influenced by the neighboring areas of pre Islamic Nuristan.
They believe in a number of Gods e.g. Yama Raja also called Dezau and Khodai who is the creator deity. Another god is the Balumain who is the cultural hero and taught the people of Kalash how to celebrate the winter festival. Other gods include Destak, Munjem, Dezalik. Like all the other religions, the Kalasha also have different religious rituals and practices. In Kalash the rituals are the means of generating economic activity and are gift giving festivals. The numerous Gods and Goddesses have shrines and altars all over the valley where goat sacrifices are offered regularly.  Crows that are considered to be their ancestors are frequently fed with their left hand at a number of places including tombs. Moreover, the people of Kalash do not bury their dead under the ground rather their coffins are left out in the open. They believe that the soul was excited to leave the human body and reunite with the already departed souls. It is for this reason that they celebrate the funeral of a dead person by singing and dancing rather than mourning over their bodies.
 

Bakarwal

Also known as Gujjar, Gujar or Gurjar.

Population & Ecosystem
300.000 Bakarwal nomads live in cold and desolated pastures of Deosai Plateau, in the Himalayas.

Economy & Society
As sheep and goat rearing transhumants, the Bakarwal alternate with the seasons between high and low altitudes in the hills of the Himalayas. The economy of Bakerwal tribe is primarily based on the rearing of sheep and goats. To fulfil day to day needs a Bakerwal tribe to trade sheep and goats with the Mutton traders in the local areas and to the sheep and goats traders in bulk during the season of Eid-ul-Zuha. Bakerwals used skins of sheep and goats to store foodstuffs during their migration and transport this on the back of their Mules, horses. Although they are now part of the mainstream economy, they continue to practice the ancient barter system as the supply of food and essential items is restricted in the hamlets located in the upper ridges of the Himalayas.                                                                                                                  

The Bakarwals are the scholars of nature. They know the seasonal flowering, grasses and medicinal herbs of various kinds. They are the doctors of their herd and apply the medicinal herbs to the cattle’s whenever they are sick. Some of the Bakarwals collect medicinal herbs during their travels which are sold in the market at handsome price. Milk, curd, butter, ghee, etc are the ingredients sold by these nomads to make their both ends meet. They also sell raw wool.                                                                                                       

Nomadic communities of Bakarwals are struggling to continue with their centuries-old migratory lifestyle. In recent decades, urbanisation and environmental conservation efforts have put pressure on their livestock based subsistence economy- like never before. Still, some Bakarwals possess the spirit to undertake a long and arduous journey from the winter pastures in the Potohar region of Punjab to the Deosai plains in the Gilgit Baltistan region, accompanied by their livestock. The Bariyankhel clan undertakes the longest annual migration of 400 kilometres, cross four administrative units of the country and which covers at least seven ecological zones. Their roaming region is marked with extremes, both in gradient and temperature. Their happiest time is spent in the far north in their summer pastures where they have the comfort of companionship of their kinsmen, abundant grass to feed their herds and the least amount of interference from the state functionaries.                                   

Bakarwals always move in groups. A single kabila may consist of several families together. Each family used to have a head of the family and all of these heads combine together to elect their leader. Generally it is unanimously decided and the most active one or the most powerful and rich is elected to perform the duties of a leader. This headman of the herds is popularly known as Mukadam. These Mukadams were, once upon a time, the most powerful persons who used to decide the fates of the feudal lords. Even now they play an important role in deciding the trend in the general elections in the area. All the quarrels of the families are settled by these headmen of the clan. Even the major disputes between the clans are solved mutually among themselves. The deciding person used to be the Mukadam whose verdict is supposed to be final. Bakarwals seldom go to courts for getting justice. It is only when they are forced that they knock the doors of the courts.                                                                

Nowadays, at least 16 out of 24 clans of Bakarwals have permanently sedentarised and left their annual migration temporarily for good. These Bakarwals have forsaken their traditional dress code, food habits and specific cultural traits and have adapted themselves in order to enjoy education, health and job opportunities in cities.
 
Culture & Religion
Bakarwal men wear long shirts and salwars of dark colours. Jackets of black or dark colour are always in use but pattu coat is in vogue during winter only. They use white turban in the style of Turks. Big leather shoes are in vogue which are nailed heavily at the soles. The females are thin and tall. Their attire is almost similar to that of their male counterparts. They are very fond of braiding their hair. Numerous small braids divergently appear from the upper part of the forehead and convergently slide down to a single braid of hair at the back. They usually wear a dark coloured cap on their head covering the turning point of the braids. They carry their younger kids on their back in cloth cradles fastened around their backs. Sometimes young lambs are also cradled. Newly born lambs are always carried on the backs to lure the sheep mothers. The free hands are always busy.                                                                                       

Bakarwals are Sunni Muslims but preserve some pre-Islamic rituals. The rituals and other celebrations are very simple. Almost every celebration starts with the distribution of ghee and shakkar among the poor and the kith and kin’s followed by the chanting of the folk songs. At the time of new births and also during marriage ceremonies hilarious folk songs are chanted. They are generally the love epics popularly known as Masnavis. Thus Masnavis like Saifal Malook, Heer Ranja, Laila Majnu, etc. are recited accompanied by folk music instruments like bag pipe, algoja, mattian, flute and drums.
 

Pawindha

Also known as Povindah or Kohistan Gujjar.

Population & Ecosystem
50.000 Pawindha nomads live in the mountain plains of Kohistan and travel every season towards the plains on Punjab on a centuries old route on foot, near Taxila.

Economy & Society
Their main source of income is their livestock, which travels with them and serves as transport for the elderly, women as they travel through the countryside, and pitch tents wherever they stop. The Pawindha clans live in makeshift dwellings and own few possessions. They migrate during each season, heading from Kohistan in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa carrying household items and accompanied by hordes of animals, such as goats, sheep, mules and horses, down the Silk Road to the plains of Punjab in the winter, and back to the mountains in the summer.                                                                                         

The Pawindha have their own customs, culture and language, although they also speak the language of their traditional wintering places too. So those spending the winter in Punjab speak Punjabi as a second language as this is necessary for them to conduct business plus, as some of them are appointed as agricultural labourers, it is a must that they can converse with their employers in order to understand the jobs to be done.

Surprisingly enough, these people rarely eat meat as they consider their animals far too valuable to kill. Their diet largely consists of milk, cheese, yoghurt, edible wild plants which they gather from their surroundings while keeping in mind never to harvest too much from one place as this would mean that there may not be a crop the next time they are passing through. They also eat lots of roti — buying sacks of flour from the income they make by selling animals now and then, and they wash everything down with endless cups of tea, tasting of smoke from the campfires over which they cook.

Culture & Religion
Pawhinda ladies are in the habit of plaiting their hair in hundreds of tiny plaits from which they hang a variety of highly decorative hair ornaments. When in camp, they also spend hours on end embroidering their clothes with traditional designs, echoing these intricate patterns on the cushions, blankets and mats with which they furnish their tents and also on the bridles, saddle cloths and ornaments used on their ponies and mules which are a colourful site to see as, fully loaded with goods, they traverse the roads from one place to another.                     

The Pawhinda nomads are Sunni Muslims thought some pre-Islamic customs and believes survive among them.
 

Kochi

Also known as Kuchi, Pawanda or Kadwal.

Population & Ecosystem
2 million Kochis live in the mountains and dry plains between Pakistan and Afghanistan and migrate with their animals every year from Damaan to Khurasan.

Economy & Society
Given that they are herders, the Kochi’s main source of income is their livestock. All their basic needs — such as milk, cheese, yoghurt, ghee, meat and wool — come from their goats and sheep. Though they contribute immensely to the local market in terms of dairy items, meat and wool during their semi-annual migration, the people of nearby villages do not allow them to set camps on their grazing land though they stay everywhere temporarily.                

The word Kochi is a derivative of the Pashto word ‘Koch’ meaning migration.

The Kochi people are always on the move, migrating to Pakistan in the autumn and returning to Afghanistan in the spring and follow the historical caravan routes during their semi-annual migrations. Accompanied by their herds of cattle and carrying items of daily use, they travel on foot using the same route as their ancestors did for hundreds of years. The Kochis speak a rustic dialect of the Pashto language and live on the margins of main cities.

During their travels, the Kochis are accompanied by fierce dogs that protect the caravans, the camps and people. These dogs are often colloquially referred to as the Kochi breed as well. Children and the elderly, travel the thousands of kilometres on camels and donkeys. Kochi people always say that their destination depends on weather and season. While life may be harsh for Kochi women, their nomadic existence means they are able to lead a more liberal lifestyle — Kochi women don’t use the veil as conservative Pashtun woman traditionally do. The women are often busy contributing to the community — collecting water, making dairy products and cooking food. They spend their free time embroidering traditional designs on clothes and weaving rugs. The newly-wed brides can easily be spotted as they wear brightly coloured dresses which are heavily embroidered and decorated with traditional mirrors and sequins that clink as they move.

Culture & Religion
Kochi women still tattoo their cheeks, forehead, and chin with green natural ink, and wear silver saucers in their ears, bangles up and down their arms, and dress in red and green velvet clothes.                                                                  
Kochis are Sunni Muslims but practice several pre-Islamic rituals related with their animals and the surrounding nature. 

 

Khana Badosh

Also known as Punjab Gypsies, Pakhiwa, or Ghonpar Patti.

Population & Ecosystem
22.000 nomadic or semi-nomadic Khana Badosh live in various districts of southern Punjab. Every one or two years, communities of Khana Badosh migrate from one location to another depending upon the availability of work, livelihoods, and places to set up their huts. They choose places which are near the banks of rivers or outside urban localities. Most live around major cities like Lahore.

Economy & Society
The main occupations of the Khana Badosh of Pakistan are: Begging, Singing and Dancing, Garbage Collectors, Labor, Bangle Makers and Sellers, Snake Charmers, Acrobats, Making Mud Toys, Hunting, Cane-Makers, Cattle Keepers. Khana Badosh keep moving from one place to another because they have no proper homes, that’s why they are also called Ghonpar Patti (house on your shoulders). They tend to stay put for a few weeks, months, or sometimes even years in Lahore.                                                                                                                    

They usually live in temporary huts made with cloth, straw and bamboo (wooden pillars support the structure of the cloth made hut). Thus, they make these handmade temporary huts which consist of 25-50 in each colony and live in small or large groups where they have to live according to their norms and principals. They bear the hardships of cold winters and very hot summers in these huts and also strong winds, thunder storms, and rainy seasons as well. Normally, a family consists of a man and wife and their 5 to 10 children. Children are married at an early age (12-15 years). Because of early age marriage the number of children increases and the family is unable to fulfil their basic needs, and the children are always at risk of dying at an early age or being disabled.

Culture & Religion
Khana Badosh Gypsies preserve a distinct look from the surrounding Punjabi people. Both women and men pierce their earlobes and many women also pierce their nostrils with metal rings. They like make up and dress Rajasthan-style clothing. Singing and dancing is an essential part of Khana Badosh culture.

The primary religion practiced by the Khana Badosh is a light informal form of Sunni Islam. Many pre-Islamic rituals are still practiced among the nomadic groups.
 

Baluch

Also known as Baloch or Baluchi.

Population & Ecosystem
50.000 Baluch still spend most of their year in tents or other temporary dwellings with their families and flocks rather than opting for jobs in the booming Gulf Emirates. Baluchistan is a semi-desert, sparsely populated area comprising some 350,000 km² of western Pakistan and a further 400,000 km² in south-eastern Iran and southwestern Afghanistan. It is probably the poorest and least developed area of each of the three countries.

Economy & Society
The Baluch are important for the economy of the area. They provide valuable milk products and are an indispensable source of labour for the date harvest which coincides with the slack season in the pastoral cycle. They are also agricultural producers themselves: much of the agricultural production of the area depends on unpredictable river flow and runoff, which only the Baluch understand. Small pockets of soil scattered throughout the area produce crops when a downpour happens to bring water, but only if a nomad is there to apply it. In addition to their economic role, the nomads are even more important for the morale of the total population. Their way of life embodies the values to which the rest of the population subscribes. Baluch values derive from the conditions of the nomadic life. Their moral code encompasses the major rules of honour, hospitality, asylum and compensation for homicide, governing relations with strangers, refugees and criminals, and between men and women. The contribution of the nomads to Baluch society cannot be quantified as it is not so much economic as cultural. The nomads generate the Baluch view of the world, which is the cultural basis of the whole society, nomadic and settled. Without the nomads, Baluch society as a whole will lose the cultural glue that holds it together. In Makran especially (the southwestern Division of the Province, approximately 38,000 km², continuing westward across the border into Iran), but to some extent throughout Baluchistan and even beyond, these Baluch nomads are considered a people apart. It was they who somewhere between 500 and 1,000 years ago brought into the area the language, the identity and - most importantly - the values which have come to constitute the culture of Baluchistan.

The decline of the Baluch, which now threatens Baluch society, is due to a syndrome familiar in other pastoral areas of the world. Changes in the larger political economy as well as changes in dominant values in the larger consumer-oriented society have altered the day-to-day economic and political balance between farmers and nomads. Nomadism, as a way of life, is rarely explicable simply as ecological adaptation. In modern conditions, seasonal movement could in many cases be accomplished by commuting shepherds as well as by migrating families. But the intimacy and commitment nomadism forges between the family and the range in marginal conditions is probably unattainable by any other means and more promising ecologically in the long run than any other feasible use strategy. Moreover, the nomads' knowledge and understanding of the total territory is an important support for other sectors of the economy and for the society's general conception of nature, the relationship between the total society and its environment.

Culture & Religion
Gold ornaments such as necklaces and bracelets are an important aspect of Baluch women's traditions and among their most favoured items of jewellery are dorr, heavy earrings that are fastened to the head with gold chains so that the heavy weight will not cause harm to the ears. They usually wear a gold brooch that is made by local jewellers in different shapes and sizes and is used to fasten the two parts of the dress together over the chest. Traditional clothing for the Baluch man is a long, loose shirt that reaches below the knees, worn with baggy trousers, and a turban. The turban is a long cloth wound around a turban cap on the head. Leather shoes or palm-leaf sandals are worn. A shawl or wrap provides extra warmth in winter but can also be used as a towel, sash, or head cloth; it can be used to carry things. Women wear a long shift reaching to the ankles, with a wrap used to cover the head, shoulders, and upper body. The wearing of trousers under the shift has been restricted to women of high status. Bright colours are usually avoided, but scarlet is popular among girls of marriageable age. Widows wear black.

Music plays a role in all ceremonies except death rituals. Dancing accompanies many events, such as weddings and other festivals. Men's dances reflect the warrior traditions of the Baluch i. The drum, the lute, and the shepherd's flute are the most common instruments for accompanying the singing and dancing.

The Baluch are Muslim, mostly Sunni, but also including members of the Zikr sect. Zikr live mostly in southern Pakistan. They are followers of a fifteenth-century Islamic messiah Nur Pak (Pure Light).
 

Bhil

Also known as Thari.

Population & Ecosystem
480.000 Bhil live in desert but fertile plains of Thar in Tharparkar District of Sindh Province. More than 10 million Bhir live scattered throughout neighbouring India.

Economy & Society
The Bhils live mostly in rural areas, where many are migrant farm workers who follow the seasonal crops to bring extra income to their families. In Pakistan many work for Muslim landowners. Wheat and millet are staple food crops, followed by rice, cotton lint, and corn. For the farmers, the arid land requires irrigation. Monsoon rains are the key to their existence.            

The Bhil peoples are low on the social totem pole in Hindu society of Pakistan where the caste system is still in effect despite Islam being the dominant religion.

Culture & Religion
Bhils have rich and unique culture. The Bhilala sub-division is known for its Pithora painting. Ghoomar is a traditional folk dance of Bhil tribe. Ghoomar is the symbol of womanhood. Young girls take part in this dance and declare that they are stepping into the shoes of women. Bhil painting is characterised by the use of multi-coloured dots as in-filling.                                                                       
In India most Bhils are Hindu or animistic, but in Pakistan they mix Islam with traditional religion. There are many Hindus among the Bhil people in Pakistan. Some Bhil in isolated communities near the Indian border continue to worship tribal deities such as Dev Mogra Mata and Sitla Mata.
 
Banjara
Also known as Lambadi, Mareecha, Marrecha, Rohi or Cholistani nomads.

Population & Ecosystem
200.000 Banjara live in Cholistan Desert. The majority of Banjara live in Thar Desert across the border in India and number several millions.

Economy & Society
Living off the land and raising cattle (mainly camels), the Banjara also are skilled craftsmen. Historically they were nomadic and kept camels, goats, and cows, traded salt, and transported goods. Now, most of them have settled down to farming and raising cattle or grain. Others still trade in salt and other commodities. In some regions, a few hold white collar positions or work as government servants. Not only do the Banjara usually have more than one occupation, they also use additional skills to supplement their incomes, depending on the societies needs at the time. Some specialize in making items such as broomsticks, iron tools, and needles. They may also repair tools or work with stone. Others believe that one does not have to work for a living and gain income by "religious begging." They sing and wear special make-up while begging in the name of a specific deity. Many live in grass huts, often with extended families. The Banjara families are closely knit, having minimal relationships with other castes. The role of leader of the community is passed down to the leader's son. All biological sons get an equal share from parental property. Marriages may be arranged, especially to avoid the union of relatives to three generations back. In some groups, however, cousins are allowed to marry.

Culture & Religion
The brightly coloured, detailed designed clothing embellished with bright beads, coins, and discs that many of the Banjara women wear is made by their own hands. Many of them can fashion tools that their society needs, anything from needles to broomsticks. The Banjara delight in music, dancing, and stories, and their love for art can be seen in their paintings, tattoos, and embroidery. They are known throughout India for their work sewing mirrors, animal bones, silver, gold, plastic, beads, disks, coins, and more onto their merchandise and clothing. The Banjara love music, playing folk instruments, and dancing. The Banjar are also acrobats, magicians, tricksters, story-tellers, and fortune-tellers.

The majority of Banjara are Hindu; some have combined Hindu practices with their own Animistic beliefs. Other groups follow Islam. Banjara often follow folk beliefs, and mixed with these religious beliefs are many taboos (things one must never do.) One Hindu taboo is that a woman's hair must not be combed or let down long in the presence of men. Another is that a woman should not pass in front of a man who is sitting, but rather behind him. Even though Banjara are unreserved in speech, many have high moral standards. For example, chastity is very important. In the past, some girls who were involved in prostitution were buried alive. Unmarried girls are still discouraged from going into the cities, and they usually wear veils over their hands and feet while sitting with strangers.
 

Shinwari

Also known as Kasi or Tribal Pashtun.

Population & Ecosystem
400.000 Shinwari live in the mountains valleys between Landi Kotal (Pakistan) and Jalalabad (Afghanistan), as well as in Parwan province of Afghanistan where they are concentrated in Shinwari.  

Economy & Society
The most important resource for this tribal society is land. Everything is organized around land ownership. The landowners are one of the highest-esteemed castes and they are the richest people from the tribes. Being a Pashtun is in a sense synonymous with being a landowner. The caste of Pashtun – or the landowners, in translation – is higher than even the caste of the priests and it is overcome in hierarchy only by the caste of Saints. Only the castes of Pashtuns and Saints maintain a wide range organization. But the statuses and rights from castes are defined contractually, not patrilineal. Patrilineal descent, as mentioned above, functions as a first order relationship for the division of labour. The castes limit only the range of positions for a man to aspire to, otherwise, they are free to choose their profession and tribe. And there can be labour turnover within the system of castes and of patrilineal kin once there is an increasing demand for a certain service and shortage of labour supply. This was the example of the herders turned into muleteers.                                                                                                   

Pashtunwali refers to an ancient self-governing tribal system that regulates nearly all aspects of Pashtun life ranging from community to personal level. One of the better known tenets is Melmastia, hospitality and asylum to all guests seeking help. Perceived injustice calls for Badal, swift revenge. Many aspects promote peaceful co-existence, such as Nanawati, the humble admission of guilt for a wrong committed, which should result in automatic forgiveness from the wronged party. These and other basic precepts of Pashtunwali continue to be followed by many Pashtuns, especially in rural areas. Another prominent Pashtun institution is the loya jirga or 'grand council' of elected elders. Most decisions in tribal life are made by members of the jirga, which has been the main institution of authority that the largely egalitarian Pashtuns willingly acknowledge as a viable governing body.

Culture & Religion
As a chiefly rural and tribal population, the Pashtun dress of Pakistan is typically made from light linens, and are loose fitting for ease of movement. The Pashtun  dress includes local forms of the shalwar kameez. The traditional male dress includes the Khet partug and Perahan wa tunban. Males usually wear kufiPeshawari capturbansindhi cap or pakul as traditional headgear. Pashtun Leaders sometimes wear a karakul hat, like former monarchs of Afghanistan. The traditional female dress is the Firaq part?g. Women typically wear solid-coloured trousers, a long kam?s shirt with a belt. Sometimes they will wear an encompassing burqa over this outfit. More elaborate and fancier dresses are detailed with gold threading, gold beads, and come in many different colours on silk fabrics. These dresses are usually worn to special occasions and weddings.

The overwhelming majority of Pashtuns follow Sunni Islam, belonging to the Hanafi school of thought. There are some Shia Pashtun communities in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan. Pre-Islamic traditions, dating back to Alexander's defeat of the Persian Empire in 330 BC, have survived in the form of traditional dances, while literary styles and music reflect influence from the Persian tradition and regional musical instruments fused with localised variants and interpretation. Pashtun culture is a unique blend of native customs with some influences from South and Western Asia. Like other Muslims, Pashtuns celebrate Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr. Some also celebrate Nouruz, which is the Persian new year dating to pre-Islamic period.
 

Brokpa

Also known as Brogba, Drokpa, Dard, Shin, or Minaro.

Population & Ecosystem
2000 Brokpa live in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir. They are found in Chechethang mountain valleys in Baltistan.

Economy & Society
The Brokpa economy has shifted from agro pastoralism to wage labour, and the division of labour that relied on stratifications of age and gender is now obsolete. The Brokpa transition to private property, monogamy, nuclear families, formal education, wage labour, and their incorporation into a highly militarized economy of soldiering and portering illuminates the complex workings of modernity in their mountains.                                                                         

Despite the over 2000 years long tradition of veganism, recent developments have forced the Brokpa to take up alternative diets, comprising milk, eggs and meat. Even high up on the Himalayas, climate change has made summers longer and winters warmer, bringing on pests and jeopardizing the health of the soil. Crops are not as prosperous as they used to be, potatoes or barley don’t grow as well above certain temperatures, causing the introduction of more fruits and less carbs into their diets. The shortages caused by this are more and more often complimented by cow meat, butter and milk. Changes within the culture are also propelled by the influx of tourists, emphasizing the importance of their identity over spirituality or social structures.

Culture & Religion
For centuries, the Brokpas have been indulging in public kissing and partner swapping without inhibitions. Their cultural exuberance is reflected in exquisite dresses and ornaments. Their features are pure Indo Aryan and they have preserved their racial purity down the centuries.                                                     
Their culture and religious practices are very similar to ancient pre- Buddhist religion known as Bon-Chos. Both the men and women folk adorn headgears made with handpicked fresh flowers, every single day.