Travel vlogger Eva zu Beck has more than 382,000 followers on Instagram thanks to the content she develops around traveling to places that most other tourists don’t visit.Eva zu Beck
Pakistan. It’s not exactly on every solo female traveler’s bucket list. But that doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be. Especially if you ask vlogger and content creator Eva zu Beck, who thinks Pakistan could be the world’s #1 tourism destination.
And she doesn’t say this lightly. Having visited 60 countries and with more than 381,000 followers on Instagram, 421,000 followers on Facebook, and 324,000 YouTube channel subscribers as a result of the incredible travel content she creates – from videos exploring forgotten islands in Yemen to exploring Aleppo, Syria alone – she knows a thing or two about the world’s most under-the-radar destinations.
But it wasn’t just her fearlessness that caught my eye, it was her content on Pakistan that really pulled me in. Because she didn’t just visit for a week or two, she lived there for an extended period of time (10 months to be exact), taking her time to really dig into what Pakistani culture, and it’s people, are truly like, creating videos and telling stories on her experiences there that are unlike anything else I’ve seen out there.
She head straight into “Taliban Territory” to live with a local family. She trekked to the base camp of the world’s second tallest mountain. She traveled to the world’s highest paved international border crossing. She met with female carpenters to hear their stories. She took on Karachi alone. And she’s appeared on Pakistani TV.
And while she developed her content independently of the government and tourism board, they took notice. Even inviting her to meet Prime Minister Imran Khan at a tourism conference, presenting to him her impressions of Pakistan as a travel destination from a foreign visitor’s perspective (and where she originally shared her thoughts on Pakistan having the potential to be the #1 tourism destination in the world).
So, being curious about what lead Eva to Pakistan originally and for more insight into what it’s really like to travel through the country alone as a solo female traveler, I asked her about these experiences and more. Here’s what she had to say.
Breanna Wilson (BW): What initially attracted you to explore and travel to Pakistan alone? It isn’t your typical travel destination.
Eva zu Beck (EZB): I’ve never been one for “easy” travel. The trips that brought me the most satisfaction were always the ones that were difficult to organize or involved traveling to places you wouldn’t find on a typical bucket list.
So, when I started traveling full-time, I knew that Bali or Thailand would not be part of my itinerary – I wanted to make videos about places that people around me knew very little about.
The opportunity to visit Pakistan came very early on, as soon as I started my travel adventure. A friend whom I hadn’t seen in 14 years got in touch with me, saying she’d been living in Islamabad for a few years, and that I must come visit her. What started as a bit of a personal gamble and a joke between two old friends, eventually began to develop into a more tangible idea, as my Pakistan Google searches revealed a land of tall peaks, lush valleys, and rich heritage. And when I eventually got my visa, the deal was done. I knew this was the beginning of an incredible adventure.
The Margalla Hills is a hill range part of the foothills Himalayas located within the Margalla Hills National Park, north of Islamabad Pakistan. Margalla Range has an area of 12,605 hectares. The hills are a part of Murree hills.Getty
I could have never predicted, however, that I would spend over 10 months traveling across Pakistan full-time, making films and vlogs about the country, working with local creatives and helping people consider it as a very real travel destination.
Nobody had ever asked me to start promoting Pakistan as a travel destination; nor was this part of my plan at all. But while traveling and creating content about everything I saw, I guess this is what ended up happening – du lich quang binh, but in a pretty wonderful and life-changing turn of events.