In 2007, the local Public Organization ASDP NAU and the German NGO Welt Hunger Hilfe lunched a Community Based Project in the Zarafshan Valley, with financial support from the European Commission. The project aims to strengthen the tourism sector in the valley and to establish an alternative source of income in this picturesque land. The mountainous landscape is simultaneously the biggest challenge and the main opportunity. Tourism is an under developed economic activity here, but has good potential. The Zarafshan Valley was a famous tourist destination in Soviet times and thousands of tourists visited the area every year. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the civil war resulted in the complete decline of this economic sector. At present, very few tourists visit the area, although it possesses exceptional natural beauty and is home to an ancient culture.