Historically Chitral was known as an independent princely state. After the independence, Chitral was the first state to declare the accession to Pakistan. In 1970, it was declared as district of Pakistan and attached to the Malakand Division.
One of the major attractions of Chitral are the Kalash valleys-the home of the Kafir-Kalash or “Wearers of the Black Robe”, a primitive pagan tribe. Their ancestry is enveloped in mystery and is the subject of controversy. A legend says that five soldiers of the legions of Alexander of Macedon settled in Chitral and are the progenitors of the Kafir-Kalash.
The 3,000 strong Kafir-Kalash live in the valley of Birir, Bumburet and Rambur in the South. Bamburet, the largest and the most picturesque valley of the Kafir-Kalash, is 40km from Chitral and is connected by a jeep able road. Birir, 34km away is accessible by a jeep able road. Rumbur is 32km from Chitral. Their picturesque headgear is made of woolen black material decked out with cowrie shells, buttons and crowned with a large colored feather. In parts of Greece even today some women sport a similar head covering. The Kalash people love music and dancing particularly on occasions of their religious festivals like Joshi Chilimjusht (14th & 15th May – spring), Phool (20th – 25th September) and Chowas (18th to 21st December)
Situated on the main crossroad to Central Asia, Chitral has a long and fascinating history. In fact, it is this strategic location that compelled invaders to capture it before any other area in the region. The recorded history of Chitral begins with the Tibetans invading Yasin Valley in early 8th century AD, followed by the Chinese 7M) AD and the Buddhists in 900 AD. Later, the Kalash also ruled Chitral for decades. In the 14th centry Chitral became a unified independent under the rde of Shah Nasir Rais. In 1570, the Rais dynasty was replaced by the Katoor dynasty. The famous mehtar of Chitral Aman-ul-Mulk ruled from 1857 to 1892 In 1895, the siege of Chitral Fort took place and lasted a month, after which Chitral an independent state under British rule. Finally, in 1969 it was merged into Pakistan.Today, Chitral hosts ancient Chitrali Tribes as well as nomads who ‘Vere invited by the mehtars to settle in the state. Chitral is also home to the ancient pagan tribe of the Kalash who are now confined to the three valleys of Bamburat, Rambur and Birir. The original state of Chitral covered a greater area, with its borders reaching as far as Badakhshan and Bashqal in the north-west and Kunar Valley in the south (these areas are now part of.In addition, the state extended to Sherqilla on its north- eastern front and which lies in Gilgit today.