Sunday, 30 August 2015

APDP commemorates Event On the International Day of Disappeared in Kashmir

APDP commemorates Event On the International Day of Disappeared in Kashmir

Press Release

30th August, 2015

Today, on 30th August 2015, The International Day of the Disappeared, Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons [APDP] assemble to commemorate the more than 8000 disappeared persons of Jammu and Kashmir who were subjected to enforced or involuntary disappearances since the outbreak of conflict in 1989.Moreover, APDP also memorializes hundreds and thousands of disappeared from Punjab (between 1984-1992), Assam, Manipur, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra and other states of India.

In Jammu and Kashmir, the government has failed to hold investigations into 8000+ cases of enforced disappearances and 7000+ unmarked and mass graves. Besides this, the survivor family members particularly half widows and half orphans have never been provided with relief or reparations with the result they continue to suffer. The perpetrators of enforced disappearances have never been prosecuted.

The Government of India has easily got away with crimes against humanity and war crimes in the Punjab state between 1984- 1992 and now it stabs to escape the responsibility of over more than 8000 cases of disappearances in Jammu and Kashmir. In December 1996 Central Bureau of Investigation [CBI] produced an investigation report on enforced disappearances and secret cremations carried out by the security forces in Punjab before the Supreme Court of India. The investigation was based on examination of three crematoria in Amritsar which disclosed 2097 illegal cremations. Despite Supreme Court directed National Human Rights Commission to examine and determine the issue, including compensation that arises from the disclosure of flagrant violation of human rights at a mass scale. The CBI was to continue its investigation into the culpability of officials responsible, but so far none of perpetrators involved such a heinous crime has ever been prosecuted or brought to justice.

Before acclaiming Indian State and its democracy, the international community must question Indian state over its worst record of human rights violation, systematic institutional denial and continued impunity. Indian government signed the UN Convention against Disappearances in February 2007 but never ratified it.In spite of this, the government does not allow the United Nations Working Groups on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances and on Arbitrary Detentions to visit the country. India has still not ratified the Convention against Torture, and ignored the requests by the U.N. Special Rapporteurs on torture. There is no development in relation to enact a domestic law for criminalizing enforced disappearances. Further, In Jammu and Kashmir the government of India exposedits complete indifference towards investigating more 7000 unmarked and mass graves despite the State Human Rights Commission recommended for a comprehensive forensic examination of such grave sites in Jammu and Kashmir. The Indian state has still kept all impunity laws in force for its armed forces, in all conflict areas, which results into the persistent atrocities to the innocent people.

The Indian government even after signing the Convention refuses to acknowledge the phenomenon of disappearances in Jammu and Kashmir and persists to block the International human rights groups and institutions campaigning for the prevention of enforced disappearance.

The family members of the disappeared are concerned about the growing isolation from the international community, which further compounds the problems of the relatives of the disappeared persons particularly the children who are in thousands. It is their future, which is at stake and for which the International intervention is required, as has been done in other conflict areas. The international disengagement in Kashmir on human rights issue has only helped the government of India for continuation of human rights abuses.

International community cannot escape the responsibilityand must hold the Government of India accountable for human rights violations particularly enforced disappearances and complete institutional denial in Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of India.

As a part of ongoing campaigns APDP reiterates that it will always stand against India's claim of permanent seat in the UN Security Council. The association reaffirms that it is our belief that the relatives of the disappeared who are fighting collectively against the phenomenon of disappearances are more than just survivors but warriors in the face of repression. Our struggle against impunity, for Truth and Justice and for the world without disappearances will continue vigorously until we achieve the success.

Tahira Begum

Spokesperson APDP

Friday, 28 August 2015

The Million-Man-March” on Kashmir announced in Washington, D.C.

The Million-Man-March" on Kashmir announced in Washington, D.C.
Springfield, Virginia. August 27, 2015. "The Million-Man-March (MMM) will focus on the political climate of the region of South Asia and the role of the United Nations & the United States in facilitating a lasting peace and stability in the region and will provide an opportunity for a peaceful settlement of the Kashmir dispute," said Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhary, former Prime Minister of Azad Kashmir. MMM will take place on Sunday, October 25th, 2015 at 12.00 p.m. in front of the United Nations in New York. It will be a joint platform of all Kashmiri American expatriates and friends of Kashmir, irrespective of their political beliefs, religious affiliations and linguistic limitations, Barrister Sultan added.
Barrister Sultan informed the audience that the leadership of All Parties Hurriyet Conference (APHC) from Indian-Occupied Kashmir would be invited to participate in the march. "we want the United Nations and the United States to know that a political leadership exists in Jammu & Kashmir, with broad popular support, which seeks a peaceful and negotiated settlement. That leadership is APHC. APHC is ready to negotiate the final settlement of Jammu and Kashmir with the Governments of India and Pakistan. The Government of Pakistan has shown eagerness to accept APHC as an equal partner. The only question is whether the Government of India will join them at the peace table or opt for repression over dialogue, Barrister Sultan warned.
Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary General, World Kashmir Awareness said "We firmly believe that the only way to achieve a peaceful and lasting solution to the Kashmir crisis in through dialogue and negotiations. There can be no solution to the conflict without the participation of the leadership of the people of Jammu & Kashmir." The Million-Man-March will help the efforts of the Kashmiri expatriates to educate policy makers regarding the current situation in Kashmir and to focus attention on efforts to bring all parties concerned – Government of India, Government of Pakistan and Kashmiri leadership -- to the negotiating table to explore all possible options to settle the dispute once and for all," Fai added. Dr. Fai hoped that the Government of India will facilitate the travel document of Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Mohammad Yasin Malik and Shabir Ahmed Shah to participate in this important event.
Dr. Fai reiterated that it is but a statement of fact that Jammu & Kashmir is not the integral part of any member state of the United Nations. In this regard, we appreciate the statement of Mr. Peter R. Lavoy, Special Assistant to the President Obama on South Asian Affairs who said on August 20, 2015 that "Jammu and Kashmir is a disputed territory. I think, it's up to them to address these issues together. I expect that they probably will." "The time has come for the world powers and in particular the United States to recognize the people of Jammu & Kashmir as the central party to the dispute," Dr. Fai emphasized.
Junaid Bashir welcomed the audience for taking trouble to come from distances to attend this important event. Kashmir deserves the attention of the world powers and we will mobilize the public opinion to make it happen, Junaid Bashir added.
Sardar Gulfaraz Inqilabi said, "We will seek the support of the United States to help the people of Jammu & Kashmir end the destruction in their nation and begin a dialogue with Indian and Pakistan authorities"
Sardar Zulfiqar Khan said, "The people of Kashmir are a peace loving people. They are not the problem – they are the solution. They are looking to the United States for moral and political leadership – to help them persuade India and Pakistan to engage in serious negotiations."
Rana Saadat said that India is responding to the efforts of Kashmiri leaders by trying to silence them. The leadership in Kashmir has been placed under house detention for months and they are not allowed to move outside their houses.
Mr. Iqbal Chand Dody said that the support of the United States is persuading India to join APHC and Pakistan at the peace table and seek a peaceful settlement will be critical.
Mr. Sharafat Shah moderated the event.
Other speakers included Mr. Zahoor Galyati; Mr. Sheikh Waqas and Mr. Yasir Buhter.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Rawlakot - The Pearl Valley

  • Location:
Rawlakot is situated in the heart of district Poonch of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK). The altitude of this beautiful Saucer–Shaped Valley is 1615 Meters. It is situated at a distance of 76 Kilometers from Kohala is also linked with Rawalpindi/Islamabad via Azad Pattan and Dhalkot and with Muzafarabad Kohala by black top roads. The construction of Guoien Nullah road between Rawlakot and Azad Pattan has considerably reduced the distance and journey time.

It is a three-and-a-half-hour drive from Islamabad to Rawalakot, as the roads are narrow, mostly single-lane, and always under some type of construction.

  • Surroundings:
Surrounding villages include: Singola, Khaigala, Rairbun, Topa Soon (aka Soon Topa or just Topa), Kaimon, Thithrot, Motialmara, Trar Dewan, Chare, Chuck, Tranni, Dahmni, Parat, Pothi Bala/Makwalan, Kharek, Pakgali, Khayt Chrian, Mohri Furman Shah, Dreak, Banjosa, Hussainkot, Hurnamaira, Thorar, Rehara, Bangoin, Jandala, Timrota, Thala Tain and Pachiot. Bagh District lies to the north and Sudhnuti District lies to the south.

The road passing through (Jalooth) Paniola connects Rawalakot to Bagh and Muzaffarabad. Toward the west are Murree, Islamabad and Rawalpindi regions of Pakistan. Rawalakot is linked with Kotli via Mandhole and Tattapani. Mandhole, located beside the Poonch River, was part of Mehnder before 1947.

  • Climate:
Rawalakot weather is quite erratic. Average temperature during the summer varies from 60 °F (16 °C) to 75 °F (24 °C). During the winter snowfall starts during the month of December and lasts through January. The rainy season lasts from April through June.

The climate of Rawalakot can be divided into four seasons, namely spring, summer, autumn and winter.

  • Spring:
The spring season starts in March and lasts up to early May. The average temperature during spring season ranges from 23° C to 6° C. Brief showers, light winds and blossoming flowers characterize this season. Along with that, the whole of Rawalakot stands blanketed in the hues of green. For spring and autumn seasons, light woolens are the perfect clothes to wear. This is because in spring as well as autumn, cool breeze blows in the valley.

  • Summer:
Starting from May, the summer season extends up to the end of August. During summer the place is full of green grass and beautiful flowers including many varieties of roses. The climatic conditions of Rawalakot in summers are not quite hot. In Pearl valley, you may even require to put on light woolens in summers. The average temperature in the daytime falls in the range of 25° C to 35° C. Rawalakot is the most sought after hill station during summers.>

  • Autumn:
With the onset of September comes the time for the autumn season. The whole region gets covered in the hues of first gold, then russet and then red. The average temperature during autumn hovers around 23° C (max) to 10° C (min). The season lasts till late November, by which time the need for heavy woolens starts mounting.

  • Winter:
Stretching from December to early March is the winter season in Rawalakot . Covered with snow throughout, Rawalakot looks like a picture straight out of a fairytale. The winters in Rawalakot are cold and chilly. So, in this season heavy woolens is the answer to the question of "how to dress up" in Rawalakot.

  • Description:
It is one of the most beautifull city of kashmir. With its breathtaking view and enchanting waterfalls, it is truely a paradise on earth.
Rawalakot is also known as the "Pearl Valley". Rawalakot is one of the many beautiful valleys of Kashmir. The town has bazaars where all essential commodities of life are easily available.

  • Transportation:
Construction of the Guoien Nalla road between Rawalakot and Azad Pattan has considerably reduced travel times. Rawalakot Airport is non-operational, as there is no demand for the air service provided by Pakistan International Airlines. The airport has been closed since 1998. This airport is situated near Chuck Bazar, approximately 1 km from Chare and approximately 3 km from the main city of Rawalakot.

  • Communications:
Cell phone service is available through five private cell phone operators: Zong, Mobilink, Ufone, Warid, Telenor and SCOM. PTCL Wireless is also available.

The local phone company is operated by the Pakistan Army. The SCO provides the main landline telephone network with minority shares of other perators. All major mobile phone companies operating in Pakistan provide service in Rawalakot. Broadband internet access is available from DSL, and WiFi hotspots, available in Rawalakot Dehra Khrike.
  • Education:
Rawlakot has an Agriculture University Azad Kashmir, a Government College, a Polytechic College, numerous Higher Secondary Schools and a number of Private Schools.

  • Tourism:
Lodges, government-owned and private guest houses, and hotels are available in different parts of Rawalakot. Attractions include: mountain-based adventure tourism, rock climbing, mountaineering, trekking, summer camping and hiking, water-based adventure tourism, and paragliding.

Places to See:
Paniola is situated 17 KMs from Rawlakot towards Kohala and 52 Kilometers from Kohala its calm and charming characteristics, the Tourism Department has constructed a rest house for tourist.

Banjosa Lake:
The site is located on Banjosa Road, 20 Kilometers from Rawlakot, at an attitude of 1981 meters. Its scenic beauty impress surrounding is compelling and attracts tourists to reach here to enjoy the nature. Admist the captivation beauty of Banjosa the artificial Lake reflects the forest standing along the surrounding of the resting calm water of Banjosa Lake.

This is the only planned tourist resort in the area. Bnjosa is a beautiful lake surrounded by lush green mountains offering spectacular views. A few rest houses are constructed in the surroundings of this lake. Some tuck shops are also present at the lake but not properly managed and arranged. Weather is pleasant in summer and occasional snowfall in winter.

The nearby worth seeing areas of Banjosa are Jandali, Hussain Kot and Devi gali which can’t be simply bypassed for a pleasure trip. Ghorimar is situated 20 Kms from khaigala awaiting ones arrival to explore the fascinating beauty over-looking the sub-valley of Rawlakot and Bagh.

Ghori mar:
Ghori mar is situated at a distance of 30 Kilometers, ahead of Rawlakot. A fair weather Khaigala leads to this place. At reaching Ghori Mar one can explore the fascinating beauty looking the sub valleys of Rawlakot and Bagh. AJK Tourism Department provides accommodation facilities to visitors.

Toli Peer:
Tolipir is the highest mountainous location and the most attractive point in the north-eastern area of Rawalakot. It is one of the most beautiful and fascinating tourist spot in Rawlakot which is almost 15 km ahead from the top of Toli Peer hills one can see city. It is all covered with green and paved grass land. It is almost 800 feet above from the sea level. The temperature remains very down in spring and gentle Breezes make the environment very healthy and happy. One who visits this spot can never forget it.

Tolipir offers outback time on wide spread grassy fields and aspiring views as it is the origin point of three different mountainous ridges. The tourism rest-house on the way to tolipir is also located on a very scenic location. There are some old remains of a Mazaar at the highest top of Tolipir. Weather is pleasant in summer and snowfall in winter.

From Rawlakot 17 Kms ahead this place is surrounded by dense forest, which charming and pleasant. A tourist rest house has been constructed by AJK Tourism department.

Poonch River:
The site is located on Hajira-Kotli Road, at a distance of 35 km. from Rawalakot City at an elevation of 886m above mean sea level.

There are quite many spots along this route presenting exquisite views of water front. The water passage is quite wide at locations and hence has the potential which may be exploited in developing water based recreation. Moreover, flat and wide land is available next to the river for development. Weather is hot in summer and cold in winter.
Hot Spring (Tatta Pani):
Tatta Pani is situated on the right bank of the river Poonch, at a distance of 20 kilometers from Hajeera and is connected with two fair weather roads i.e. via Hajeera-Mandol & Balouch-Pakhonar road. It can be also reached from Kotli, the district headquarter of Kotli district, by covering a distance of 26 kilometers. Tatta Pani is famous for its Sulpher water springs. During winter season a large number of people visit this place daily to have hot water bath for the cure of Skin & rheumatic ailments.

AJK Tourism Department has constructed here a Tourist Rest House and bathrooms for the convenience of the visitors. Transport Services for Tatta Pani are available in good number from all important point Poonch, Mirpur & Kotli districts of Azad Kashmir.

The Shaeed Galla/Toli Pir and Singola East are famous places in Rawalakot District; they are about 20 km from Rawalakot and contain beautiful natural scenery and forests.

  • Where to Stay:
Accommodation on reasonable rates is available in Tourism AJK, PWD and Pearl Development Authority’s rest houses.

Small hotels with living accommodations are also available in and around the city. Government-owned cabins are available in Rawalakot and Banjosa. Advance reservations are recommended as most of these accommodations are used by government officials on their tours.

There are various guest houses, rest houses, motels and hotels at most of the tourist spots which can be booked in advance from their offices in Rawalakot.

  • Where to Eat:
Hospitality With Open Arms Our Aim To provide guests a home away from home with the highest standard of services.

  • Where to Buy:
Rawalakot has a downtown area. The town has few good bazaars where all essential commodities of life from groceries to electronic goods are easily available.

Handicrafts: Carpets, silk woolen clothing, woolen shawls, wood carving, Papier Mashie, rugs.

Other products and fruits: mushrooms, honey, walnuts, apples, cherry, medicinal herbs & plants, resin, Deodar, Kail, Chir, Fir, Maple and Ash Timbers etc.

How to Reach:
By car:
Rawalakot is connected with Islamabad and other big cities by Guoien Nalla road that runs between Rawalakot and Azad pattan,Also you can travel Goin Nalla to Mong to Rawalakot.

It is located 80 km away from Islamabad. By Road It takes three and half hour to Rawalakot.

By bus:
  • Rawalkot has regular connections with major cities

Monday, 24 August 2015

Muzaffarabad - Capital City of Azad Kashmir

  • Location:
Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK) extends from the plains of Punjab near Jhelum up through Mangla Lake to the foot hills of the Himalayas, and north to the mountains 6000-20000 feet above sea level. It is drained by three major rivers the Jhelum, the Neelum and the Poonch. The valleys are green and wooded.
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Azad Kashmir, Pakistan, situated at the confluence of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers. This city  is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers. It is 138 kilometres from Rawalpindi and Islamabad and about 76 kilometres from Abbottabad.

The Muzaffarabad  district is bounded by North-West Frontier Province in the west, by the Kupwara and Baramulla districts of on the Indian side of the Line of Control in the east, and the Neelum District of Azad Kashmir in the north.

  • Description:
Muzaffarabad city is one of the major cities in Pakistan. It is a hilly area and consists of wonderful cliffs. It is located in the Muzaffarabad district and ranks among the major tourist destinations in Pakistan. Thousands of tourists and travelers visit Muzaffarabad from all over the world. The scenic beauty and diverse culture of the place makes it a popular holiday spot.  Rice and maize are widely grown. Varoius plants like resin, Deodar, Kail, Chir, Fir, Maple and Ash Timbers etc are exist.

Muzaffarabad is also well known for its beautiful gardens, forests, valleys, rivers and mountains. It is a popular holiday spot in the country. The idyllic landscape of the city makes it popular to both local people and foreign tourists. Muzaffarabad is a scenic tourist destination. Administrative capital of Kashmir, Muzaffarabad offers tourists stunning views and exciting trekking trails.

The name "Muzaffarabad" (meaning Muzaffar's Town) comes from the name of Sultan Raja Muzaffar Khan (a Muslim ruler of Khandan-e-Bomba). After the 1948-49 war, Muzaffarabad was made the capital of Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

Muzaffarabad is a wonderful destination for trekking enthusiasts. There are a number of trekking trails that pass thorough some spectacular scenic spots in Muzaffarabad. Muzaffarabad has a number of beautiful monuments, farms and parks.

The city is a combination of old monuments and new buildings and a blend of different cultures and languages. It has besides official buildings, farms, parks and the historic forts standing on the banks of the Neelum, Muzaffarabad, Mirpur, Rawlakot and Kotli are connected with Pakistan by the Micro-weave system of telephone.

The population of the district, according to the 1998 Census, was 725,000, and according to a 1999 projection, the population had risen to almost 741,000. The district comprises three tehsils, and the city of Muzaffarabad serves as the capital of Azad Kashmir. Cradled by lofty mountains, Muzaffarabad reflects a blend of various cultures and languages. The main language is a form of Hindko.

The Neelum river streams, proudly through the hub of the town, joins river Jhelum at Domel, Muzaffarabad also serves as a base camp for the tourist intending to visit tourist spots and other historical and cultural & traditional aspects of AJ&K.

The climate of Muzaffarabad is mostly pleasant. The summers are mild while the winters are chilly with snowfall. The ideal time to visit the city is during the autumn season when the skies are clear and the weather condition excellent. Muzaffarabad is full of idyllic areas which add to the charm of the place. The Neelum river plays a dominant role in the microclimate of Muzaffarabad which joins Jehlum River near Domail.

  • Tourism:

Being the capital city Muzaffarabad is not only the hub of political and cultural activities but it also serves as a base camp for the tourists. It has various spots of leisure. View point Sathra, a public place, unravels the panorama of the entire city before a beholder. The junction point of the river Neelum and Jhelum presents a majic beauty from here. Lohar Gali, situated 9 kilometers from Muzaffarabad on Abbottabad road. The Red fort is a witness to the ancient history of this great city. The local market in Muzaffarabad can be explored for walnut carvings, kashmiri shawls and other traditional handicrafts. It is always possible to get a good bargain. It has besides official buildings; farms, parks and historic fort standing on the bank of the Neelum. Shopping is an exciting activity in Muzaffarabad and you can shop for Kashmiri shawls and walnut carvings.

Touring in the city is also easy and convenient as there are wide modes of transportation available. Travelers who wish to tour Muzaffarabad should have proper information about the city and keep the travel tips in mind for a safe and enjoyable tour. 

Past the Red fort, crossing Neelum river at Ghori, a few km way is 'Makra mountain' 3,890 meters which is visible from Muzaffarabad and continues on to Shogran in the Kaghan Valley. This is a superb short trek, although you need to camp overnight halfway.

The upper Jhelum valley makes another interesting scenic excursion from Muzaffarabad. follow the Jhelum upstream, taking the road beneath the Domel bridge. This was the old route to Srinagar. The valley is broad with raised terraces above the river.

Places to See:
Muzaffarabad is not only the hub of political and cultural activities, but also has various spots for leisure. Domel, the junction point of Neelum & Jhelum Rivers, presents a magic beauty from here. At the right bank of River Jhelum near this site, an established “Food Point” offers the delicacy of the famous “Kashmiri Cuisine” and other varieties of local traditional dishes of Kashmiri origin. "Lohaar Gali" situated 9 kilometers from the city on Abbottabad road, offers a bird eye view of the capital city. At night, the lights of the city present an unforgettable scene from this point.

  • Muzaffarabad's Forts: 
There are two historical forts, the Red Fort and the Black fort situated at the opposite side of the Neelum river.

  • Black Fort: 
The Mughals built this fort above the river junction but it's used by the army and is off limits to visitors

  • Red Fort:
During the year 1549 the construction of the red fort was undertaken. The red fort was finally completed by Sultan Muzaffar Khan, the founder of Muzaffarabad city during 1646. When the Mughals overtook the Kahsmir rule, this fort lost its importance. The Mughals were more interested in Kabul, Bokhara and Badakshan. During the Durrani rule the fort again came into limelight and its importance was rediscovred.

Maharaja Gulab Signh and Ranbir Singh, the Dogra rulers, reconstructed and extended the fort for political and military operations. Towards the end of 1947 the Dogra forces filed away leaving the fort wide open to anybody.

The architectonics of the fort show that great experts in design and structure participated in its construction. It is surrounded on three sides by Neelum river formally known as Kishan Ganga. The northern part had terraces with steps leading to the bank of the river. The Eastern side of the fort was very well protected from the hazards of flood waters but some parts in the north were slightly damaged. There was an inn at the entry of the fort which has traces left now. It has been in the bad shape for quite some time and wears deserted look. The structure still stands with all its inherent glory, grandeur and its historical background.

  • Pir Chanasi:

Pir Chinasi is a large mountain with an altitude of 2924 meters above the sea level located on 32 km east of Muzaffarabad city overlooking vast expanses of Azad Kashmir. Due to its tremendous scenic beauty, velvet green plateaus and wonderful climate, it wins admiration of nature lovers. This place is also visited by tourists who can get a great view of Muzaffarabad and rural areas around the hidden city. Adjacent to Pirchinassi is Pirassimaar, so beautiful yet unexplored!

The views of the summit of the neighboring mountain peaks spell bounds a tourist.  The adjacent Pir Asimar, phawna da Danna and the areas in the bottom of pir chinassi, i.e. Saran, Sud Bun, Muskhi, Sakki and Jarran phirran are also worth seen and ideal for hiking, trekking and camping activities. AJK Tourism Department has also constructed a tourist lodge at Saran to provide accommodation facilities to the tourists.

  • Machiara National Park:

Machiara National Pak is Situated in Lower Neelum Valley, Azad Kashmir and covering an area of 13532 ha. The park is reached via Patika. In 1996 the southern slopes were brought within a new protected area management plan, and a small game reserve there grew into the 135-sq-km Machiara National Park.

Machiara National Park consists of montane mixed broadleaf-coniferous forest and contains a significant number of bird species. The forested Ganga Mountains, a branch of the Himalayan foothills, separate the Neelam and Kaghan Valleys and provide a fragile home to brown bear, ibex, Himalayan griffon vulture, western tragopan, lammergeier and, allegedly, snow leopard. It is home to a variety of wildlife including leopards, monkeys, wolves as well as many other species. The most endangered specie of the area is the Western Tragopan Pheasant. The park provides a breeding ground to the birds whose number was fast dwindling in the past. The Himalayan griffon vulture and lammergeyer (large vulture) are also found here. The park also provides sanctuary to the Himalayan Brown Bear, Ibex and Snow Leopard.

Machiara National Park is one of three globally significant national parks selected for a Global Environment Facility sponsored project. The overall goal is to set up management models demonstrating effective natural resource conservation and make a significant contribution to the development of Pakistan's capacity. The local community is very protective towards the past and is trying its utmost to save the threatened animals as well as their natural habitat.

  • Shaheed Gali:
The comely beauty of the place attracts a restive mind to prolong his stay. This picturesque Shaheed Gali is situated at the height of about 1640 meters above sea level at a distance of about 16 kilometer westward from Muzaffarabad. From Shaheed Gali is a trek of 4 Kms leads towards a wholesome spot namely “Sri Kot”. A tourist is bound to be fascinated by the serenity for the backdrop of the area. A Tourist Rest House is available for accommodation at Shaheed Gali.

  • Patika:
Patika is located at a distance of 19 Km from Muzaffarabad, is a gateway to Neelum valley. There is also A mini zoo and a fish hatchery. Tourism Department has constructed a Tourist Rest House here, which is very popular among tourists. 

  • Subri Lake (Langarpura):

Some 10 kms out of Muzaffarabad the river widens to from a small lake. This was created by a landslip some years ago. There is a small Angler's Hut here, which makes a pleasant picnic spot. It is possible to take boats out on the river. Book through the Tourist Department in Muzaffarabad. There are rest houses, good hotels and guest houses in Muzaffarabad city where the tourists can stay.

  • Danna:

Amidst Muzaffarabad to Kohala, a road bifurcates the highway and leads to Danna, crossing the labyrinthine roads. Dann is known for its healthy climate and alluring scenic beauty. A tourist rest house is available for accommodation. From here one can go to Dheerkot, a known hill station in District Bagh.
What to Do:
You can indulge in different activities like hiking, trekking and camping at the foothill regions of the Pir Chinassi, Saran, Sun Bun, Muskhi, Sakki and Jarran.

  • Where to Stay:
Pleasant lodging facilities are also available in Muzaffarabad. The hotels in the city range from luxury hotels to budget hotels. There are various guest houses, rest houses and good motels at most of the tourist spots which can be booked in advance from their offices in Muzaffarabad.

  • Where to Eat:
The dining spots serve delicious local and international delicacies. Pakistani and Kashmiri foods are available everywhere. Many restaurents offer chinese and italian dishes as well. If you are tourist here, plz go to some reputed restaurent and ask what is freshly cooked. Chicken Karahi is dish recommended for Pakistanis and Kashmiris as it can be cooked easily and once can see this being cooked. Kashmiri Nan are wonderful in taste. Try kashmiri Pink Tea. You can take Kashmiri Kulcha as snack. Kashmiri Kulcha is different from Kulcha sold in Lahore or Gujranwala. If you have time and money, try typical Kashmri Dishes like Goshtawa etc but its hard to find real one.

  • Where to Buy:
The rather sleazy bazaar in Muzaffarabad can be explored for its walnut carvings and its Kashmiri shawls. It is sometimes possible to get a good bargain. The best time to shop is during the festive season when huge discounts are offered. Handicrafts: Carpets, silk woolen clothing, woolen shawls, wood carving, Papier Mashie, rugs. Other products and fruits like mushrooms, honey, walnuts, apples, cherry, medicinal herbs are also available.

How to Reach:
  • By Plan:
The small domestic airport is currently not receiving flights.

  • By Road:
This city can be reached easily by road from Rawalpindi and Islamabad. During this pleasant trip one can get to view and admire the natural surroundings of the region. Buses and minibuses make the scenic journey regularly from Islamabad (4-5 hours). If you're self-driving, the route via Murree is probably the quickest. Kohala is the entry point into Azad Kashmir, where you'll need to get through a checkpoint. On own transport you need 40-50 minutes to reach Murree. Then 2 hours to reach Koala Bridge and 30 minutes to reach Muzaffarabad. Approximately its 3 and half hours on you own car. You can adopt the route Islamabad - Abbottabad - Mansehra - Gari Habibullah - Muzaffabad as well. It is at a distance of about 76 kilometers from Abbottabad.

MURREE - Queen of Hills

  • Location:

Pakistan's most popular hill station Murree is located along Islamabad-Kohala highway N75, some 30 km (19 mi) northeast of Pakistan's capital Islamabad in the Himalayan foothills at 33 54' 30" north latitude and 73 26 east longitude as they ascend to the northeast towards Kashmir. During British Rule in the nineteenth century, its altitude was established at 7,000 feet (2,100 m), but its actual altitude has now been determined as 2,300 m (7,500 ft) above sea level.
River Jehlum lies to the east of Tehsil Murree and separates it from Azad Kashmir, Abbottabad district lies to the North and north west of Murree, Islamabad, the national capital to the south west and sister tehsil Kotli Sattian of Rawalpindi district lies to the South.
Adjacent to Murree is the Galliat region of North West Frontier Province which includes Nathiagalli, Ayubia, Khanspur, Dunga Galli, Khairagalli and Changla Galli.

  • Description:

Murree is One of the most visiting hill station of Pakistan. For those who live downwards to it Murree is like a fantasy city. People from all over the country visit this beautiful hill resort to escape from the sweltering heat. Mountains covered with lush green trees, cold atmosphere, fresh air, beautiful valleys and most importantly clouds on the roads hugging you with full of happiness.
Murree town itself, built by the British colonial government soon after it captured this part of then India in 1850. Until 1876, Murree was the summer headquarters of the Punjab local government; after 1876 the headquarters were moved to Simla.

The name Murree is derived from 'marhi', "high place" although there is a popular belief it is named after the virgin Mary. Murree is one of the largest resort towns in the Galyat area of Pakistan, and is the capital city of Murree Tehsil (which is an administrative division of the Rawalpindi District). Murree is accessible by road from the centre of the Islamabad and Rawalpindi areas.

Murree lies between Kashmir Point and Pindi Point. As the names suggest Kashmir point gives a panoramic view of snow laden Himalaya and Pir Panjal ranges in Kashmir while the Pindi point overlooks national capital Islamabad and sister city Rawalpindi. At Pindi Point one can enjoy ride on a Chairlift to three kilometers down to Bansragalli and enjoy a panoramic view of Hazara mountains as well as Rawalpindi Islamabad. The city of Murree lies in seven kilometer area between these two points. The most popular area in the hill station is the Mall road spanning over about two kilometer in beautiful settings.
  • Development:
In recent years Bhurban and New Murree (Patriata), have also developed as a tourist centre. The whole Murree Galliat region is known throughout South Asia for its scenic beauty and fascinating greenery. Mountains overhung with pines and oaks, bubbling with gurgling springs, crisscrossed by rivulets, dotted with sprawling lawns and orchards overloaded with fruits present spectacle of Paradise on earth.

  • Health and medication:
There are many well equipped medical centres in Murree and surrounding which can always provide you with basic medical treatement,like Abbasi hospital at Suny Bank, Tariq medical centre Bhurban, Al-shifa clinic Murree and many more. Along with these medical centres there is a military hospital "CMH" situated on Murree mallroad. So you do not need to worry for medical treatement in case of any emergency while visiting Murree and surroundings.
  • Climate:
Weather plays an important part in life and economy of Murree. Murree remains charming all year round. It has four distinguishable seasons.
  • Spring:
Spring in Murree starts in March and ends in middle of May. Maximum temperature during this period hovers between twelve to twenty and minimum between four and ten. The area receives heavy rain and hail storms during this season. The fruit trees laden with flowers give a spectacular view. 
  • Summer:
Summer spans from may to end of August. June and July is the peak tourist season in Murree. In summer it is cool even chilly in the evening while light rain is common. In this season Everything and Anything can happen in Murree. This is the best season in the area and it receives most number of visitors during this season.
To some Murree may be a tacky and over-crowded hill-station in Pakistan but for many Murree is a heaven in summer. Some people may have experienced 45-50 degrees Celsius so therefore Murree’s cooler high altitude climate provides much needed relief from the sweltering heat.
  • Autumn:
With the advent of September autumn creeps in and last till the starts of winter in early December. This is the seasons of clear sky in the region when one can enjoy full view of mountains around without cloud hindrance. Temperatures are mild.
  • Winter:
Winter starts in December and normally brings heavy snowfall. Murree and its surrounding areas are covered with thick layer of snow during most part of the season. Temperature mostly hovers around the freezing point.

  • Animals:
Many rare animals can be found in Murree. One example is the leopard, which inhabits the neighboring Galiyat region. More common animals include the Rhesus Monkey, foxes and various species of pheasant including the chir and kalij.
  • Places to See:
  1. The Mall Road:
Mall road is the famous market place in Murree. A road full of life, hotels, restaurants, handicraft shops and happy faces. People who visit Murree, get their rooms on Mall road. This is the place where people just walk till 2am or 3am in morning and enjoy the beautiful weather.

It has bazaar downstairs, like 10 feet below the main Mall road. This is a place of shopping for visitors. Mall road is used to walk around and to have food.

It can be best visited after the sunset. if you want to save time visit hills at day time and Mall Road at night when you have to just shop or dine. It is a slope starting from General Post Office. Food & misc. sovenier shops are situated on the both sides of Road. It is open till midnight. You can buy everything at Mall and dine a variety of Pakistani dishes.
  • Pindi Point:
Pindi point is one of the prime points to visit in Murree. It is 15 minutes walk from mall road. It has a beautiful view of vallies and mountains. You can see Pindi city from there. Chairlift rides go down 1.5 km from Pindi Point to Bansara Gali are really enjoyable. Scenary from chair lift is magnificent. Zigzag road passes below. Great pine trees stand throughout the journey. When go down the valley there is a stop point. You can enjoy a lot there. There is a coffee shop & children play land. Hills of Patriata can be seen there. A great jungle starts there. You can enjoy tracking. Chair lift is open from 9am till 6 pm.

  • Kashmir Point:
eave Mall road from other end, going up GPO and walk for fifteen minutes, about 1 km it will leads to Kashmir point. You may hike up the Kashmir point. The way passing by the Cadet College Murree goes towards the Murree Residence of the President of Pakistan.

It has a beautiful sight seeing. You can see Kashmir mountains from this point. It is the highest spot in Murree and due to increasing rush on Mall road, this point is taking visitor’s attention day by day.

Now it has a long bazaar, a joy land and lots of eating places. Most of the visitors came to ease down and relax in Murree and need a quite place to live so they prefer to book a room in Kashmir point instead of Mall road.

  • Patriata (New Murree):
New Murree is about 15 kilometer away from main Murree hills on the Lower Topa side. It is a well developed hill station with great high rised trees, beautiful hills.
This is famous due to chair lift, which worth a ride. A world class chair lift & cable car system takes you from New Murree to Patriata. Total ride is about 7 km long. New Murree is on ground level between the hills. Here you have to buy the ticket for Chair Lift + Cable Car which is Rs. 200/- then a chair lift ride takes you to a middle hill. You can watch Kashmir mountains from middle Hill where Chair Lift takes you. You may stay here for some time & enjoy Tea/Coffee or just walk around. From there Cable car takes you to Patriata Hill. where you have much stuff to do. Walk freely everywhere. Just walk in the direction where most of the tourists are going. Straight road takes you to the highest point of the hill. Where scenary is panoramic. On one side you can watch Murree Hills & on the other side snow covered Kashmir Hills.

The Chair Lift & Cable Car journey is memorable of life time. You can witness lots of great scenaries of near & far hills. In winter all hills are covered with snow while in summer lush green scenaris could be seen.
You may ride a horse but ASK/FIX CHARGES before leaving otherwise they will charge you too much. Similary don't hire a guide within patriata. People will come around you like they are helping you in taking pictures but then they ask huge amount for those services.

Private car from Murree charges about Rs. 800/- for return journey. Driver will leave you at the gate of TDCP PATRIATA RESORT at New Murree & then take you back to Murree when you've finished.

You can’t stay there for long. Last cable car is at 5 pm which take every visitor back. At that time a person goes all the way whistling to check if there is any one left and then take last cable car.

  • River Neelam:
It is a nice place to have a picnic. People use to have snack and lunch at the corner of this river or sometimes in it. One can feel the cold wind and cool water which tends to be the best thing in summer. Enjoy the journey to this river Neelam, Mountains covered with lush green trees and high slopes of mountains creates an eye catching view. One don’t get to know the time if enjoying this cool wind and water there.

  • Bhurban:
Bhurban, boosting with five star Pearl Continental Hotel owned by Pakistan's best hotel chain and a nine hole Golf course has cropped recently as another tourist attraction in Murree area. Lying at an altitude of 6000 ft, Bhurban is situated at a distance of 13 kilometers from Murree on one of main roads leading to Azad Kashmir.

People use to visit Pearl Continental Hotel Bhurban which is on beautiful location. It has rooms starting from Rs. 10,ooo/- per day which changes according to season. It has an entry fee of Rs. 300/- which you can spend in the hotel in any activity. There is a Helicopter Pad which has a beautiful valley view.

  • Kuldana:
Kuldana is the name of an extremely beautiful hill, which spreads over a lush green area of about five square kilometers. The area is densely populated by a large variety of trees and plants and inhabited by various kinds of wild life species specially birds, butterflies and monkeys. At times snow leopards, cheetahs and jackals can also be seen crossing roads and tracks.

  • Upper Topa and Lower Topa:
Upper Topa and Lower Topa comprise the Murree Hills in Murree. Established by the British during their rule of the subcontinent, it is located at an altitude of 7000 ft and provides a pleasant getaway for tourists in the scorching summer. The winter season often covers Upper Topa with a blanket of snow. Upper Topa and Lower Topa comprise the Murree Hills in Murree. Established by the British during their rule of the subcontinent, it is located at an altitude of 7000 ft and provides a pleasant getaway for tourists in the scorching summer. The winter season often covers Upper Topa with a blanket of snow.

  • Galiyat:
The Galiyat are popular due to the cool weather and beautiful scenery. They are also very closely located to areas with high population.
The mountains are covered by thick pine forests which give the Galiyat a unique character. It is one of the greenest areas of Pakistan and receives better rainfall than most areas. The resorts were developed by the British and you will see a lot of colonial influence there.

The natural beauty of the area lies in the pine forests which are a haven for wildlife and insects. Rhesus Monkeys wait to be fed by curious tourists who may have arrived from busy urban areas and have never seen wildlife so close and taking food from them. Other wild animals which occur here are Leopards, Red Fox, Porcupine, Wild Cats, Black Bear, Pheasants and a large diversity of small birds including Tits, Woodpeckers, Tree-creepers, Warblers and Parakeets. There are plenty of walking trails in the Galiyat and some lead to the highest peaks of Miranjani and Mukshpuri, both which can be done in a day.

  • Darya Gali :
Darya Gali is a village and union council of Murree Tehsil in the Rawalpindi District of Punjab. It is located in the north of the Murree and is bounded to the north by the North-West Frontier Province, to the south by Ghora Gali and Murree-and to the west by Rawat.

  • Rawat:
Rawat is a village and union council of Murree Tehsil in the Rawalpindi District of Punjab. It is located near to the border with North-West Frontier Province and Kashmir. The tourist resort of Bhurban is located here.

It is a very developed union council of Murree in terms of availability of facilities and basic needs which are essential to live and service in an effective manner. The basic facilities which are available here consists of many hotels, schools and colleges, medical centres, and well equipped markets. The famous Pearl Continental hotel lies in this union council. There are many well reputed schools and colleges in this union council and students from all other union council are studying in these schools and colleges to complete their education.

Rawat is very well known for having the facility of basic medical treatment in case of emergency as it has many medical clinics here which are attended by many professional doctors.

There are many famous villages for which Rawat is the commercial centre. Some of them are; Morha darogha, moori khambaal, sood gangaal, dhok amban and others. Morha darogha is famous in the whole region for its reputation and people. It is quite convenient to get to Morha darogha from Rawat.

  • Ghora Galli:
The visitors pass Samli sanatorium and the Ghora Gali (elevation 5,000 ft ),known as such because this place was used for the changing of horses used for carriages operating between Rawalpindi-Murree and further on to Srinagar (Kashmir)during the British period. TDCP construct a restaurant in-between the natural sceneries for tourist. The snake bar and all other facilities are available here.

  • Nathiagali:
The most centrally placed and the most well known of the Galis is Nathiagali. Nathiagali is situated at equidistance of 35 kilometers from Murree as well as Abbottabad at an attitude of 8400 feet. It provides splendid scenic views and commands a fine view of the snow-capped peaks of Kashmir and Kohistan on one side and the Pothwar Plain on the other. In the foreground, to the north-east rise the green slopes of Miran Jani Mountain. Nathiagali provides unspoiled natural beauty and breathtaking view of mountains. It is located at the doorsteps of 9779 feet Miranjani and 9258 feet Muskhpuri mountain. On a clear day, may be seen the towering heights of the Nanga Parbat, with all its snow-crowed majesty.

Hosting Governor House, Government (Chief Minister) House and offices of other departments of Government of North West Frontier Province, Nathiagali virtually serves as summer capital of the province. It is connected with Abbottabad on one hand and Murree and on wards to Islamabad onto the other with well constructed and beautifully laid highways. There is quite large number of hotels and restaurants of various categories in the town along with rest houses of different departments. Other facilities like Banks, internet cafe, hospital, fuel station and workshops are available.

  • Kala Bagh Point (Green Spot):
A little up from Nathia Gali bazar, at the top of the hill is situated "Green Spot". Actually this is a Pakistan Air Force reserved area, but it is open for tourists and families. You can enter Green Spot by paying Rs. 5/- as entrance fee. View of Nathiagali and neighbouring area is magnificent from here.

  • Baragali:
From Nathiagali to Abbottabad the road runs down from about 9000 ft. to 4500 ft. About three miles down there lies Baragali a small hill station, located at an altitude of 7,900 ft/2408 kms. The last of the chain of the Galis it is only 15 miles/24 kms. from Abbottabad on the road to Nathiagali.

  • Ayubia:
Ayubia has become the most important spot in the Galliat after Nathiagali. In 1984 an area of 1,684 hectares of mountain forest was declared as a national park, with the aim of preserving the beautiful forest and biodiversity. The park area was expanded through a northern extension in 1998 to 3,312 hectares. The elevation of "Ayubia National Park" ranges between 1,050 meters in the valleys to 3,027meters at the mountain tops within. These mountains are 40 million to 170 million years old.

Ayubia is a complex of four small hill stations. i) Ghora Daka. ii)Khanspur. iii)Changla Gali and iv)Khairagali. These four resorts scattered over an area of about 16miles/26 kms. It is named after late Field Marshal Mohammad Ayub Khan, President of Pakistan at that time.

i) Ghora Daka:
The chairlifts provided at Ghora Daka is a matter of great attraction. They take you above to the peak of forsted hills. There are Green, wooded mountains and steep precipices on one side and tall, majestic pines on the other. Wild life, including bear, cheetah, monkeys and a great variety of birds is known to be found in the thickly afforested slopes. Top point is called "Neelam View" because River Neelam of Kashmir can be viewed from here.

There is a spot on Murree-Nathiagali Road, near Ayubia Chair Lifts, called "Bander Point". In this area great number of monkeys live in the jungle. They are so friendly that they come on the road and take food items directly from a person's hand. They do not harm by any means.

  • ii) Khanus Pur:
Three kilometer down the road from Ayubia is old summer resort of Khanspur. Khanspur is a part of the Ayubia National Park and Reserve Forest. The area is a good example of moist (lesser) Himalayan temperate forest in Pakistan. Terraced agricultural fields are located mostly on valley bottoms. The holdings are very small. Grassland and forest occur on steeper slopes and are proportionally more widespread. Most if not all of the vegetation in and around the Ayubia National Park and Reserve Forest is heavily influenced by the human activities. Apart from collection by locals, firewood from the park is also gathered for use by the hotels and summerhouses. Situated between Murree and Nathia Gali, Khanspur is relatively quiet where one can find privacy as well as unmarred vistas of the green hills together.

  • iii) Khairagali:
The road from Murree to Nathiagali is like travel into paradise. Going through top of one of the most beautiful mountains in the world. There are lush green alpine forest all along the road. Throughout the journey one enjoys panoramic view of snow clad Pir Panjal and other ranges in Kashmir . There are a number of small dwellings all along, where one can stay and rest. First among them is Khairagali. It is situated at a distance of 16 kilometers from Murree at an elevation of 2346 meters. It commands a panoramic view on either side of the ridge.

  • iv) Changlagali:
Changla Gali is a hill station located in the Galiyat, are which borders NWFP and Punjab, starting at Murree and ending at Thandiani .About two miles further up and nine miles/14 kms. from Murree, on the main Abbottabad-Murree road, is Changla Gali, splendidly situated at an altitude of 8,400 f / 2560m amidst thick pine forest. The 9,000 f / 2743 m. Changle peak commands, on the one side a fine view of the Jhelum Valley, on the other side it presents a strikingly panoramic of the Murree hills, the southern portion of the Hazara district and the distant plains of Rawalpindi.

Changlagali is the highest point in the Murree Galliat area which is accessible by road. There is a rest house located in the most picturesque surroundings. A number of good hotels and restaurants are available at the spot. Changla Gali is one of the smaller resorts, most people preferring to stay at either Nathiagali or Murree.

Natural springs abound Changlagali on the slopes and their water is stored in reservoirs to provide water supply for Murree and adjoining areas.

  • Mushkpuri Top: 
Mushkpuri Hill, the second highest hill in Galiyat, above 9,000 feet sea level. This may be one of the closest places where you can gain such height. Starting from Pines Hotel NathiaGali or Dewan House DungaGali, the trek passes upward through lush green forests. Beautiful Daisies dance and swing to greet the hiker and sets the romantic charm, specially in the rainy weather with hide and seek of the scenery is all around you.

  • Dungagali:
From Ayubia visitors returns to Murree-Nathiagali Road and climb further for about three miles and then jumps in view Dunga Gali. Dungagali is a picturesque small resort situated on the slopes of the Mushkpuri hill (2376 m.). It commands a charming view of a series of wooded spurs projecting towards the river Jhelum on the western side. From Dungagali one can climb the 2813 meter peak of Mushkpuri, which is the highest point in the range. Natural springs abound on the slopes. It is 30 km from Murree.

At Dunga Gali a huge circular and open to the sky water tank of strong steel sheets was built, having a diameter of about 30 meters and a height of about 10 meters. Today it lies completely within the Ayubia National Park. In the mountainous heights behind Dunga Gali, run-offs from natural springs and rain-water channels were engineered and networked to flow into this steel water storage tank. A track about 3 meters wide on the average was carved out along a mountain slope, through thick forest, and a water pipeline was laid in the centre of the track, to carry the stored water to Ayubia, from where it was supplied to Murree at an elevation nearly a thousand meters below the starting point in Dunga Gali. The pipeline was covered over with earth and stones and the track now hiding the water pipeline came to be called the Pipeline Walk, at 2,499 meters above sea level, meandering along a mountain side, through still fairly thick coniferous forest, the Pipeline Walk is a ‘must experience’ for every visitor to the area who loves and respects nature and can walk for 4 kilometers without raising his or her voice. In fact there is really no need for any conversation on this trail, even if you are not alone. For it is divinely important to turn your ears to the sound of nature around as your eyes feast on a verdant valley on one side, and your nose picks up the heady mix of aromas of rain-soaked earth, dew-dampened undergrowth, pine cones and a green forest washed by heavy thunder-showers overnight.

It commands a charming view of a series of wooded spurs projecting towards the River Jhelum on the west. From Dunga Gali one can climb the 9,232 ft/2814 mtr peak of Mushkpuri which is the highest point in the range.

Khairagali, Changlagali and Dungagali are situated on a newly rebuilt beautiful Murree Nathiagali road. A few kilometers from Changlagali one reaches Kuzagali. From Kuzagali one can go either to Ayubia to the right or Nathiagali to the left.

  • Trekking In Galliat:
Galliat region provides excellent opportunities for tracking. Different tracks passing through lush green virgin forests are available for the tourists. NWFP Forest Department is doing a good work to keep these tracks in good condition. These tracks include:

  • Nathiagali to Mushkpuri:
Four kilometer track originating near Shangrila Hotel in Nathiagali passes through thick pines forests and goes to 9243 feet Mushkpuri top. on the way one can have splendid view of Lalazar Park. Lalazar Park is situated at one kilometer up the track from Nathiagali. Hikers on their way to Mushkpuri top are presented with colourful fairy fragmented carpet of flowers in the green Meadwos of Mushkpuri especially at the end of the rainy season.

  • Dungagali to Mushkpuri:
This second track available to go to Mushkpuri. It starts from Dungagali, a place four kilometer short of Nathiagali, on Murree-Nathiagali Highway. It equal in length to Nathiagali-Mushkpuri track. On the way one has the option to go to Lalazar Park, which of course increases the distance to the Mushkpuri top.

  • Dungagali to Ayubia:
Again a 4 kilometer long track which is laid on the pipeline supplying water from Dungagali to Murree. In contrast to Dungagali/Nathiagali to Mushkpuri tracks, it is plain track and does not have ay ups and downs but like the earlier mentioned tracks it passes through lush green pine forests.

From Ayubia one can follow the track for another four kilometer length to Changlagali and from there for approximately another length of same distance to Khiaragali.

  • Nathiagali to Miranjani:
Eight kilometer track starts near Governor House in Nathiagali and 9779 feet Miranjani top. From Miranjani one can follow the tack for a further distance of 10 kilometers to Dagri. on the way one passes through Chaniangali and Lamba Dhaka (long mountain) situated at an altitude of 9541 feet and 9545 feet respectively. Another patch of thirteen kilometer track takes one to Birangali.

From Birangali one can either take a 13 kilometer track down to Azizabad on Nathiagali-Abbottabad road or take another clime to 8831 feet Thandiani top.

  • Nightlife in Murree:
One could find an attractive thing to take a view from kashmir point at night, because lighting on nearby mountains and valleys look like stars on earth and gives a beautiful view from height,must see this also you will find people walking all night on mall road from gpo to pindi point and shops opened till late night,

  • Where to Stay:
Murree being a well established tourist destination has a wide variety of lodgings available to suit all pockets. There are various standard hotels are available in Murree. Another option is to hire summer houses. Murree also has a number of private and government owned rest houses or Dak bunglows. Generally the summer season rates are 5 to 6 times the winter off season rate.

  • Where to Eat:
There are many restaurants in Murree, mostly along The Mall.

  • Where to Buy:
Murree has a variety of handicraft shops selling curios for the tourist to remind them of their visit to this hill station. Traditional clothing items , head wear, carved walking sticks, jewelery items and leather goods are abundantly available.

  • How to reach:
Reason of being most visiting hill station is its approach. It is almost two hours drive from our capital city Islamabad. Roads are broad and safe.

Murree is situated at a distance of only thirty kilometers from Pakistani capital Islamabad. A well constructed all weather road network connects Murree with Islamabad, and areas in Punjab, North West Frontier Province and Azad Kashmir.

Islamabad Murree section of Islamabad-Muzaffarabad Expressway (N-75) was opened to traffic in 2008. A special link road has been constructed to link the city with the Expressway. Traffic will further ease up when the Expressway will be connected with the Rawalpindi-Srinagar Highway at Lower Topa some time this summer. Expressway has considerably reduced travel time between Islamabad/Rawalpindi and Murree and provided an hassle free link to New Murree as well Azad Kashmir. The road runs through virgin forests and is more safe and smooth to drive on as compared to historical Rawalpindi-Srinagar Highway which used to be the only link between Murree and Islamabad and still provides important link to Murree.

Taxis and buses run from Islamabad, and take about 1 hour. It is a picturesque drive and has a few well developed tourist spots at Charra Pani and Company Bagh. The Chattar water park is only 15 minutes outside Islamabad. There is also an alternate but longer route to Murree from Islamabad via Nilore and Simli Dam. The alternate route joins at Lower Topa. The mountain drive is refreshing and the scenery is breath-taking especially on the Nilore-Simli-Lower Topa route.

Another two way road is constructed from toll-plaza to Pataryata, the drive is very scenic and refreshing. An link road is available for those want to go to Murree.

Beware of the talkative Taxi drivers at the Islamabad Airport. Whenever you are hiring a Taxi to Murree fix the rates with them at the airport and don’t give them a penny more. Maximum charges for a taxi to Murree are Rs. 1000. These Taxi drivers though puzzle the tourists in the middle of the journey by asking them which route shall they take to Murree. They will say the motorway is a swift way to reach to murree in a time period of just one hour and they will charge rupees four hunderd more. They also get commission form the local hotels at Murree to bring the tourists and they posing as very helpful being will try to get you a nominal room at high charges. Make sure before coming to Murree that at which hotel you want to stay. A list of telephone numbers of almost every hotel in Murree is available on net. Contact the hotel yourself first and come straight to the place you want to stay.

  • Sight Seeing from Pindi to Murree:
  • Chattar:
The Chattar water park is only 15 minutes outside Islamabad. There is also an alternate but longer route to Murree from Islamabad via Nilore and Simli Dam. The alternate route joins at Lower Topa. The mountain drive is refreshing and the scenery is breath-taking especially on the Nilore-Simli-Lower Topa route.

This resort nestles at the base of Murree hills at a distance of 15 km on Islamabad-Murree road. This place offers scenic walks, gently flowing stream, waterfall and the surrounding hillside are a perfect attraction. The resort has a restaurant, barbecue and two air-conditioned tourist cottages. The Children's Park and playground are spread over an area of 12.5 acres.
  • Salgiraan:
It is 29km from Islamabad and 5 km from Chattar Bagh. TDCP develop this spot and make it attractive for picnic. Mostly people come to stay here for 15 to 20 minutes have a Cup of tea or cold drink take some rest and then start their journey towards Murree.

  • Chara Pani:
Chara Pani is about 38km from Rawalpindi. Charra Pani where cold water springs gush out of the hillside. People stop here for a cup of tea or a cold drink. Colorful buses, wagons and Cars are parked here for a wash. The atmosphere of this spot is good for health that's why the major sanatorium of TB is established here. Delicious snake bar is available.

  • Simli Dam:
Simli dam is one of those gems, hidden deep among the mountains, that this region is so famous for. About 30 km from Islamabad lies Simli Lake and the Dam. It can be reached via Lehtrar road or via Bhara Kahu. It is fed by the melting snow and natural springs of Murree hills. Angling and boating is also allowed in the lake. For fishing, you need to have license (permission)from CDA (Capital Development Authority), Islamabad. Best view of simli lake is from Ban Karor Road near Bassi. Best time to see the beauti of Lake is from April to September.
There is only one guest house in Simly Dam operated by CDA (Capital Development Authority), Islamabad. Before you plan to stay here, you need to have permission to stay & visit this beautiful guest house from CDA Head Office located in Islamabad.

The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has planned to increase the storage capacity of the Simli Dam from 2,305 square feet to 2,317 square feet by onstructing “auxiliary spillways. The water stored in the lake is supplied to Islamabad for drinking purposes..

  • Blog By: Ashfaq Sarwar Awan
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