The country’s first double-decker tourist buses will reach Lahore over the next couple of days. Tourism Development Corporation of Punjab (TDCP) Managing Director Ahmar Malik told The Express Tribune, on Tuesday, that the buses were in transit after customs clearance in Karachi.
He disclosed that the corporation had decided to delay the Sightseeing Lahore tourist bus service on account of Muharram-ul-Haram. TDCP had originally planned to introduce the service in mid-October.
The TDCP has imported two tailor-made double-decker Volvo buses from China for a sum of $376,000. Each bus can accommodate 67 passengers. The vehicles are equipped with a public address system that would allow tour guides to tell tourists about the city’s history and places of interest along the route.
Malik said the corporation had examined the standards of similar services in cities like London, Dubai and Budapest. “It will be a great addition to recreation facilities in the city,” he added.
Malik said that initially the corporation had intended to run the service in the evening, but later it would increase frequency. He said that the corporation was building two terminals, one near Punjab Stadium and other in the vicinity of the Fort Road Food Street. He said there were various places of interest and countless eateries near both sites. He said initially only two terminals were being built, but later more terminals would be constructed and new routes would be added with the induction of more buses.
He said that the Walled City of Lahore Authority (WCLA) had also agreed to extend its cooperation for the initiative. He said the authority would provide a tonga, rickshaw and guides at the Fort Road Food Street to showcase the city’s heritage. Malik said tourists would have the opportunity to sample Pakistani cuisine at one of the many eateries in Gaddafi Stadium and shop in the many commercial areas nearby including Liberty Market.
Responding to a question, TDCP managing director said that the corporation was finalising route and fare for the Sightseeing Lahore tourist bus service.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 15th, 2015.