|• Total||14,850 km2 (5,730 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1,100 m (3,600 ft)|
|Time zone||PST (UTC+5)|
Chitral (Urdu: چترال, Khowar: چھترار; also known as Chetrar), translated as field in the native language Khowar, is the capital of the Chitral District, situated on the western bank of the Kunar River (also called Chitral River), in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. It also served as the capital of the former princely state of Chitral. The town is at the foot of Tirich Mir, the highest peak of the Hindu Kush, which is 25,289 ft (7,708 m) high. It has a population of 20,000. The altitude of the valley is 3,700 ft (1,100 m).
Chitral is situated on the west bank of the Chitral River (or Kunar River) at the foot of Tirich Mir which at 7,708 m (25,289 ft) is the highest peak of the Hindu Kush. Until 1969, it served as the capital of the princely state of Chitral.
Geography and access
The easiest access to Chitral, other than by air, is in the southwest along the Kunar Valley from Jalalabad. This route is open all year and provides direct access to Kabul. However the Pakistan–Afghanistan border (Durand Line) prevents this from being used as an internal route to the south. The other routes are over high mountain passes. To the south, the 3,200 metres (10,500 ft) Lowari Pass leads 365 kilometres (227 mi)) to Peshawar. In the north, the easiest route during summer runs over the 3,798 metres (12,461 ft) Broghol Pass to Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor. To the east, there is a 405 kilometres (252 mi) route to Gilgit over the 3,719 metres (12,201 ft) Shandur Pass. In the west, the 4,300 metres (14,100 ft) Dorah Pass provides an additional route to Afghanistan. The territory is cut off by snow from the rest of the country for up to six months a year, a problem soon to be relieved by the completion of the Lowari Tunnel.
Nothing definitive is recorded about the town’s first settlers. In the 3rd century AD, Kanishka, the Buddhist ruler of the Kushan empire, occupied Chitral. In the 4th century AD, the Chinese overran the valley. Raees rule over Chitral began in 1320 and came to an end in the 15th century. From 1571 onwards Chitral was the capital of the princely state of Chitral under the rule of the Katur Dynasty.
In contrast to more southerly valleys of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Chitral has a dry Mediterranean climate (Köppen Csa) with almost no rainfall during summers. Precipitation occurs mainly from spring thunderstorms brought about by western frontal systems. In the winter the night time temperature occasionally drops to −10 C. Winter snowfall in the town can be quite heavy with an accumulation of up to two feet being quite common, at higher elevations snowfall can reach as high as 20 metres (70 ft).
The general population is mainly of the Kho people, who speak the Khowar language (or Chitrali), which is also spoken in parts of Yasin, Gilgit and Swat. The Norwegian linguist Georg Morgenstierne wrote that Chitral is the area of the greatest linguistic diversity in the world. Although Khowar is the predominant language of Chitral, more than ten other languages are spoken here.
The main tribe, the Khow, speak Khowar. The Chitral culture is Islamic and contrasts considerably with the urban cities of Pakistan as well as the adjacent district of Gilgit. Women are nearly invisible except to their male relatives and other women. They avoid walking the streets of the town, so men or children do most of the shopping. Travel requires the company of a close male relative and sometimes the wearing of a burqa. There is also a small population of Nuristanis, Tajiks and Uzbeks most of whom arrive from Afghanistan seasonally for trading.
Unlike the rest of Pakistan where cricket dominates, polo and soccer are more popular in Chitral. A number of sport festivals and tournaments are held throughout the year. Chitral has also produced some national players such as Muhammad Rasool who plays for the national football team.
- Chitral Times
- Chitral News
- The Kalasha Times
- Chitral Vision
- Weekly Chitral
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (February 2013)|
Abdul Wali Khan Univesity Chitral Campus Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University
- Qutaiba Public School Chitral Denin
- Chitral Model College Chitral
- Government Commerce College, Shahi Masjid Road, Chitral, affiliated with University of Malakand
- Government Technical and Vocational College, Garum Chassma Road, Chitral
- Government Degree College, affiliated with University of Malakand
- Government Girls Degree College, affiliated with University of Malakand
- Government Centennial Model High School
- Government Centennial Model School for Girls
- Frontier Corp Public School (chitral)
- Chitral Public School & College (Chitral's first English Medium School)
- Langlands School and College, formerly known as Sayurj Public School
- Pamir Public School
- Iqra Model School
- Islamia Model School Bombagh
- AFAQ model school and college danin chitral
- Aga Khan School
- Terichmir Model School
- Al-Nasir Community Based School, Garam Chashma
- Chamber of Commerce College, Garam Chashma
- Al-Nasir Cbs School and Degree College, Garam Chashma
- Aga Khan Higher Secondary School (Chitral and Kuragh)
- Injigan Ideal Public school (Garum chashma)
- Islamia Model School Rayeen Torkhow
- Hasan ul bana Model School Warijun Mullkhow
- Govt High School for boys Warijun Mullkhow
- Drosh Public School Drosh
- Muslim Model School Jughoor Chitral
- Jinnah Public School Drosh
|Climate data for Chitral|
|Record high °C (°F)||16.9
|Average high °C (°F)||8.8
|Daily mean °C (°F)||4.1
|Average low °C (°F)||−0.6
|Record low °C (°F)||−11.0
|Precipitation mm (inches)||38.4
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||134.0||133.7||150.4||188.6||247.0||286.3||285.4||258.6||231.0||214.0||182.5||130.7||2,442.2|
|Source: NOAA (1971-1990) |
- Gupta, Om. Encyclopaedia of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
- "Chitral, a Study in Statecraft". IUCN.
- "KHOWAR IN THE COMMUNITY OF WORLD LANGUAGES".
- Constituencies and MPAs - Website of the Provincial Assembly of the NWFP[dead link]
- "Crossing the Great Divide What could an American teaching and living in a remote Pakistani village learn from her students and neighbors? Plenty.", Cara Anna, Special to The Plain Dealer. The Plain Dealer. Cleveland, Ohio, 23 January 2005. pg. 11
- Bandara S.,Jayatilleke, Butt Shoaib, M.(2009). Trade liberalisation and regional disparity in pakistan (routledge studies in the growth economies of asia). Routledge.
- "Chitral Climate Normals 1971-1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved January 16, 2013.
- Decker, D. Kendall (1992). Languages of Chitral.
- Durand, Col. A. (1899). The Making of a frontier.
- Leitner, G. W. (First Reprint 1978). Dardistan in 1866, 1886 and 1893: Being An Account of the History, Religions, Customs, Legends, Fables and Songs of Gilgit, Chilas, Kandia (Gabrial) Yasin, Chitral, Hunza, Nagyr and other parts of the Hindukush, as also a supplement to the second edition of The Hunza and Nagyr Handbook. And An Epitome of Part III of the author’s The Languages and Races of Dardistan. New Delhi: Manjusri Publishing House.
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Chitral.|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Chitral.|