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Sialkot

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T
he city is located in the Punjab province of Pakistan. The population of Sialkot is around 600,000. On the population list, it is ranked number 13th as a metropolitan urban center. The foot of Kashmir hills near the river Chanab is the location where Sialkot city is situated. The climate of Sialkot city is rather hot during the summer and freezing cold during winters. The history of Sialkot covers the prospects of thousands of years. Many battles were fought over the land of Sialkot. The historians associate the history of Sialkot with the rules of Hindus, Buddhist, Persian, Greek, Afghan, Turk, Sikh, Mughal and British people. During British rule the foundations of Sialkot were laid down in the region. The railway network was laid, extending toward Sialkot-Jammu, and Sialkot-Narowal.

Later on the independence of Pakistan in 1947, the Muslims migrated to Sialkot and settled in that location. Since then the Sialkot city has become the major industrial, trade and manufacturing hub of Pakistan. Sialkot is being the industrial hub of Pakistan. So, people from other cities come here to work. The languages spoken in this region include Majhi, Dogri or Darhab, and Pashto. Urdu is spoken as a home language. Where as English is spoken in the offices, schools, collages and as a trade language.

Attraction for the visitor:
Since the time of the Mughals, the Sialkot city has always been the place of interest for the traders and businessmen. The people of this region are skilled in handicraft making, smithery, Paper manufacturing, Construction items and more. These people set out their commercial enterprise at a very low scale, and with the passing of time they have achieved the manufacturing excellence in sports goods, Surgical items, small tools, small sized machinery, leather garments, Leather tanneries, musical instruments, cutlery, air guns, Wooden and steel furnitures, Shotguns, hunting knives and much more. Sialkot city is the second after Karachi, who brings in foreign exchange for Pakistan.

The Sialkot lack tourism, but there are few places where people roam around with their kids to pass time and for entertainment. Some of the places are;

1. The shrine of Hazrat Imam Ali-UL-Haq (Imam Sahib).
2. The Muslim complex, It is corridors extended towards several shrines of famous saints.
3. The remaining of Sialkot Fort is in the center of the city.
4. Puran’s Well is a historic place, associated with Punjabi folklore ‘Bhagat Puran’.
5. Iqbal Manzil, the birth place of Pakistan national poet, Dr Muhammad Iqbal. The place has been turned into a small museum.
6. The Seerat Study Center is the well known center for conducting the research on the life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
7. Sialkot Cathedral church, which was built in 1852.
8. Sikh Gurdwara Beri Sahib. Every many Sikh pilgrims visit here.
9. Clock Tower, which is more than a century old.
10. Jinnah Stadium, it has the fastest pitch in the world. It was constructed by the British deputy commissioner of Sialkot in 1979.
11. Khyaban-e-Iqbal Park.
12. Gulshan-I-Iqbal Park.
13. Garrison Park.
14. The Marala Headworks, is located on the Chenab river and lake around is a picnic spot.
15. The Bajwat Wildlife Sanctuary, situated along the Chenab river. The sanctuary is the home for many species of waterfowl, mammals like Hog Deer and Nilgai.

Hotels and Guesthouses:
There are not too many hotels in the city. Visitors mostly book guest house instead of hotels. Rooms can be rented easily. Hotel One (3-star), Hotel Taj (3-star) and Royal Guest House are reliable place, where visitors can enjoy their visits.

Transportation:
The city has a well defined Road network and railway network. These networks connect Sialkot with all the major cities of Pakistan. Since, Sialkot has been an industrial area and owns a dry port. The Sialkot airport facilitate the city to raise the consignment for local cities and international states. There are many international airlines operating from this airport.

Transportation, within the city is a bit problematic. It is better to hire a car on rent. The facility is readily available in the city.