On the north side of the famous Khyber Pass rises the towering, snow-covered mountains to the Hindu Kush. Conquering armies have used the Khyber Pass as a point of entry or their invasions; in fact it has witnessed countless invasions.
British troops defended the Khyber Pass on the British – Indian side. Particularly well known is the battle of January 1842, in which about 16,000 British and Indian troops were killed. One cannot talk of the Khyber Pass without also mentioning the Khyber Rifles, during the British rule the Khyber rifles was one of the eight ‘Frontier Corps” or para-military units recruited from tribesmen of the North West Frontier. The headquarters of the Khyber Rifles was at Landi Koltal and their prime role was to guard the Khyber Pass.
For hundreds of years, great camel trains traveled through the Khyber Pass, bringing goods to trade. These merchants brought luxury silks and fine porcelain objects from China to the Middle East.The Khyber Pass today has two highways one for motor traffic and the other for the traditional caravans. A railway line also travels to the head of the pass. This was built in the 1920s. Whilst we are touring the Khyber Pass we will visit Peshawer and stay at one of the cities excellent hotels. Peshawar is the gateway to Afghanistan, which is situated at the mouth of the Khyber Pass.
Peshawar is the capital of the North-West Frontier Province. The name Peshawar means High Fort in Persian. During its history, the city was one of the main trading routes on the ancient Silk Road. A trip to Peshawar is not complete without visiting The Khan Club , which is a hotel from a by-gone era. The hotel has been fully restored and the result is magnificent. It is located in the oldest and most historic part of Peshawar. Each room has its own ‘jeweled’ theme. Wherever you meet the famous Pathans of the North West Frontier region they will greet you with their overwhelming hospitality.