Chief Minister Mahmood Khan has approved the launch of the historic steam safari train service to boost tourism in the province.

This decision was made in a meeting chaired by the chief minister and attended by relevant officials, said a statement issued here.

According to the statement, the secretary of sports, tourism and culture department, Mohammad Abid Majeed, said that the steam safari train would chug on two rail routes to take tourists and passengers to the two historical destinations.

He said that on one route, the steam safari would take tourists from Peshawar to Attock Khurd while on the other route it would take passengers from the provincial capital to the historic sites in Takht Bhai.

Mr. Majeed said that work on the two rail routes would be carried out by the newly-established Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Culture and Tourism Authority in collaboration with the Pakistan Railways.

He said that tangible steps were being taken for the promotion of heritage tourism in the province to create employment opportunities for the youth and generate revenue.

Khyber steam safari to Landi Kotalwas one of the main attractions in the province and former Fata for foreign and domestic tourists for decades.

However, it was stopped many years ago and the track was never used since then. It could not be revived during the last many years due to terrorism in the region.

Later, the tourism department launched a steam safari train to Attock Khurd, located in the Attock district of Punjab province.

Attock Khurd houses the historical Attock Fort built by Mughal King Akbar in 1581.

Bahram Ki Baradari is another Mughal-era monument situated on the southern side of G T Road near Attock Khurd.

Currently, two bridges on the track in Khyber remained destroyed and authorities will have to reconstruct them before the revival of the steam safari to Landi Kotal.

Because of these reasons, the safari steam is now being introduced to Attock and Takht Bhai.

Peshawar to Attock Khurd trip`s distance is 184 kilometers from both sides and one side travel takes around 90 minutes. The second route round trip is around 162 kilometers.

Mr. Majeed said that the activity was aimed at reviving train trips to historical sites such as Attock Khurd, Attock Bridge, Attock Fort, Indus River, Takht Bhai Buddhist archaeological site, and raising awareness about tourism among the people and building a baseline for the domestic tourism.

He said that as part of the joyride, the tourists would be amused with live instrumental music on the joyful excursion.

Besides traditional rabab mangay, games, and traditional foods, a number of fun-filled recreational activities and competitions like kite flying, camel ride, tug-of-war, uphill race, archery, and taking selfies would also be arranged at the river bank.