Place to Visit in Azad Jammu & Kashmir

Azad Jammu & Kashmir is very rich in natural beauty. Its snow-covered peaks, dense forests, winding rivers, turbulent foaming streams, wheat-scented valleys, velvet green plateaus and climate varying from arctic to tropical, all join together to make it an excellent tourist attraction. Valleys like Neelum, Jhelum, Leepa, Rawalakot, Banjosa, Samahni& Baghser unfold delight full scenic beauty and provide a feast of pleasure to a discerning tourist's eyes.

Azad Jammu & Kashmir is a fascinating land of people, languages & culture. The texture of present population is composed of races claiming their descent from Semitic, Mongoloid, Aryans, Persians, Turks& Arabs. The people of districts Kotli, Mirpur & Bhimber are sturdy, simple, truthful and deeply attached to their land. The culture of this area resembles to that of the adjoining area of Punjab. The people of districts Poonch, Bagh & Sudhanoti are adventure loving and there are numerous anecdotes of their matchless valor as well as inspiring sacrifices for freedom, while Muzaffarabad & Neelum district has its own distinctive culture. The people of the state are intelligent ingenious, hardworking & dynamic.

Azad Kashmir is bestowed by nature with exquisite natural beauty and has great potential for development of tourism. The picturesque beauty

 of its valleys, dense forests, winding rivers, turbulent foaming streams, majestic towering mountains, bracing climate, historical & cultural heritage, holistic shrines & festivals and diversity of flora and fauna all go together to make it an excellent tourist resort.. The area is full with variety of landscapes. Hiking and tracking sites, trout fishing in the frozen waters of the Neelum River and the remains of the Buddhist civilization in the Sharda Valley are other areas of tourist attraction. The beautiful wood work, the famous Kashmiri handicrafts, traditional Kashmiri foods and above all a clean and pristine environment presents other areas of delight for the tourists on this ‘heaven on earth’. The custom rich and traditional society of AJK is also a subject of anthropological value.

The State of Azad Jammu & Kashmir contributes a distinctive cultural entity developed by its people, which is profoundly different from the rest of the Sub-Continent. Its mountain terrain and wide valleys decanted harsh terms on the development of its culture. This is why the people of Azad Jammu & Kashmir have developed into a persistent hard-working, non aggressive race which leads a simple & frugal life. Their dances, music, dress, traditions, jewelry, handicrafts and performing arts all are windows to their character.

 

Tourist  from all parts of the State of Pakistan can visit Azad Jammu & Kashmir without any restriction. However, they are advised to keep their identity with them.

Foreign tourists can visit Azad Kashmir except the areas situated within 16 kilometers along the Line of Control (LoC). Before planning their visit foreigners should contact Interior Ministry Government of Pakistan Islamabad for  issuance of NOC before visiting Azad Kashmir.

 

Main Entry Points

Kohala

(108 Km from lslamabad)

Bararkot

(60 Km from Abbottabad)

Azad Pattan

(80 Km from Islamabad)

Mangla

(116 Km from Islamabad)

Dhalkot

(53 Km from Islamabad)

Karote

(76 Km from Islamabad)

Bhimber

(196 Km from lslamabad)

 

District Sudhnutti

 

From the end of the 17th century up to 1837 A.D Poonch was ruled by different Muslim Rajas of Loran. It then fell in to the hands of Raja Falz Talab Khan of Rajori. In 1846, this area was handed over to Maharaja Ghulab Singh under the Treaty of Amritsar. Before this transfer, Poonch was considered a district of Lahore. Maharaja Ghulab Singh handed over Poonch and some other areas to his nephews, Jawahar Singh and Moti Singh, with the condition that they would not make any administrative change without the consent of the Maharaja of Kashmir.



Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/sudhnutti.jpg

Poonch was annexed and converted Into Jagir by Maharaja Han Singh in 1935-36 by the deposing Raja of Poonch the Dogras always found it difficult to establish their rule in Poonch. In 1947 when Pakistan came into being, the people of Poonch started an armed struggle against the Dogra and Indian forces and got the area liberated which now administratively stands divided into three districts namely Poonch Sudhanoti and Bagh.

  • Pullandri
  • Tarakhal
  • Aliabad

Pullandri

Pullandri Is the headquarter of district Sudharioti, It is at an elevation of 1372 meters and is at a distance of 97 kilometers from Rawalpindi via And Pattari, and is also connected with Rawalakot by 64 kilometers long road. There is a PWO Rest House located at the hilltop, giving a wonderful view of the picturesque landscape and green mountains all round. All the basic facilities of lire are available.

 

Tararkhal

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/thrarkhal.jpg

With an altitude of 1982 meters, Tararkhal Is situated at distance of 211 kilometers from Rawalpindi via Kohala and 129 kilometers via Azad Pattan. It is a nice small station for tourists. Here PWD Rest House provides Spartan accommodation facilities. Essential commodities of daily use are also available from local bazaar.

 

 

Aliabad

Aliabad, situated at an altitude of about 2134 meters, is at a distance of 50 kilometers from Pullandri and 112 kilometers from Rawalakot. This place is surrounded by thick, mixed forests of Deodar, blue pine and Fir. Bus service is available both from Rawalakot to Abbasspur and Rawalpindi to Kahuta, from Kahuta onwards journey by jeep is advisable.

District Bhimber

Bhirnber, administratively declared as an Independent district in 1996, was a sub division of district Mirpur. This district is very rich in Archaeology arid wildlife, whereas, it’s enchanting valleys present panoramic views to the visitors.

  • Bhimber
  • Baghsar
  • Jandi Chontra

 

 

 

 

Bhimber

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/grounds-of-baba-shadi-shaheed.jpg

Bhimher, the district headquarter is an old historical town, discussed by Mughal Emperor, “Jahangir” In his book “Tuzh-eJaharigiri”. It fails on the route that was followed by the Mughal Emperors for their frequent visits to the Kashmir Valley. Bhimber town is located at a distance of 50 kilometers from Mirpur and 166 kilometers from Rawalpindi. This town is connected both with Mirpur & Gujrat through all weather black top roads. All the basic amenities of life are available in Bhimber.

 

Baghsar

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/baghsar.jpg

Baghsar, 975 meters in elevation is an ideal tourist resort in the Samahni Valley. The Sar, local name for a lake is nearly half kilometer long sheet of crystal-clear water that soothes the senses of a visitor after traveling 64 kilometers journey from Gujrat via Bhimber. On the top of hill is a famous Mughal fort overlooking the lake that acids grandeur to the whole area. This four-storied massive structure of granite is a feat of Mughal engineering that has stood the ravages of time. It has also played important roles in the history during the times of Ahmad Shah Abdali, Ranjeet Sing and Gulab Sing. It is said that Emperor Jahangir on his way back from Kashmir fell Ill and ultimately expired in this Fort.

 

Jandi Chontra

This scenic spot is situated at 17 kilometers from Bhimber and 67 kilometers from Mirpur. Despite its panoramic views, this area is well- known due to the Shrine of Baba Shadi Shaheed nearby Jandi Chontra that values the importance of the area. A Tourist Rest House serves the tourists by providing accommodation facilities.

District Poonch

From the end of the 17th century up to 1837 A.D Poonch was ruled by different Muslim Rajas of Loran. It then fell in to the hands of Raja Falz Talab Khan of Rajori. In 1846, this area was handed over to Maharaja Ghulab Singh under the Treaty of Amritsar. Before this transfer, Poonch was considered a district of Lahore. Maharaja Ghulab Singh handed over Poonch and some other areas to his nephews, Jawahar Singh and Moti Singh, with the condition that they would not make any administrative change without the consent of the Maharaja of Kashmir.

Poonch was annexed and converted Into Jagir by Maharaja Han Singh in 1935-36 by the deposing Raja of Poonch the Dogras always found it difficult to establish their rule in Poonch. In 1947 when Pakistan came into being, the people of Poonch started an armed struggle against the Dogra and Indian forces and got the area liberated which now administratively stands divided into three districts namely Poonch Sudhnutti and Bagh

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/rawalakot.jpg

  • Rawalakot
  • Kot Muttay Khan
  • Chape-ni-Dahar(Gulshan-eShuhda)
  • Banjosa
  • Koian
  • Ghori Maar & Tolipir
  • Hot springs (Tatta Pani)

 

Rawalakot

Rawalakot the district headquarters is situated in the heart of district Poonch. The altitude of this beautiful saucer-shaped valley is 1615 meters. Situated at a distance of 76 kilometers from Kohalla and 110 kms from Rawalpindi. It Is linked with Rawalpindi, Islamabad via Azad pattan and Dhalkot and with Muzaffarabad via Kohalla by black top roads.

 

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/rawalakot1.jpg

The construction of Guoien Nullah road between Rawalakot and Azad pattan has reduced the distance and journey time considerably During summer the place becomes full of green grass and beautiful flowers including many varieties of roses. Rawalakot offers very pleasant climate during the summer. In Rawalakot, some good hotels and private guest houses provide comfortable accommodation. Here the tourism industry is growing with the increasing collaboration of public-private efforts.The central location of Rawalakot in AJ&K, its pleasant climate and easy access from other regions makes it a favorite tourist destination. The improvement of transportation arid telecommunication sectors have further contributed to its potential for tourism.

 

Kot Muttay Khan

It is situated on the main Rawalakot -Mang road near Topa, The site is located at a high altitude and allows visitors to enjoy cool and comfortable atmosphere during summer. One can have a nice over view of the adjoining valleys from this point.

 

Chape-ni-Dahar(Gulshan-eShuhda)

The place is located on the outskirts of Rawalakot (4 kms) on the main Rawalakot-Banjosa road. The site offers comfortable climate arid tranquil atmosphere during the summer. It also possesses historical archaeological importance as an abandoned old temple exists here. The renovation and preservation of the said temple can increase the interest of the visiting researchers and tourist.

Banjosa

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/banjosa.jpg

It is situated 20 kilometers from Rawalakot, at an altitude of 1981 meters. Its scenic beauty and impressive surrounding is compelling and attracts tourists to reach here to enjoy the nature amidst the captivating beauty of Banjosa, the artificial lake reflects the dense forest standing along the surroundings of the resting calm waters of Banjosa Lake. The nearby worth-seeing areas of Banjosa are Jandall, Hussain Kot (the native town of the great freedom fighter Captain Hussnain Khari) and Devi Gali which cannot be simply by passed for a pleasure trip. The distance parting these destinations from Banjosa are 3 kms, 4kms and 12 kms respectively.

 

These places portray rich inherent natural beauty encompassing all others while awaiting visitors for a comfortable stay. There are of a few private rest houses on the way to Banjosa from Rawalakot also Ghorimar is situated 20 kms from Khaigala awaiting ones arrival to explore the fascinating beauty over-looking the sub-valley of Rawalakot and Bagh Accommodation on reasonable rates is available here in Tourism, PWD and Pearl Development Authority’s rest houses.


Koian
From Rawalakot 17 kilometers ahead this place is surrounded by dense forests, which makes It charming and pleasant A Tourist Lodge has been constructed by AJ&K Tourism Department for the tourists. The place enables the tourist to have an easy access to Banjosa which is 5 kms ahead.

 

Ghori Maar & Tolipir

Ghori Maar is situated at a distance of 30 kilometers ahead of Rawalakot. A fair weather road via Khaigala leads to this place. On reaching Ghori Mar, one can explore the fascinating beauty over-looking the sub valleys of Rawalakot & Bagh. AJ&K Tourism Department provides accommodation facilities to visitors.

The road from Ghori Maar leads to Tolipir a place that offers calm atmosphere with vast green meadows stretching over a big area a big area. The place holds the potential to mesmerize visitors.


Hot springs (Tatta Pani)


Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/hot-springs.jpg

Tatta Pani is situated on the right bank of the river Poonch, at a distance of 29 kilometers from Hajeera and is connected with two fair weather roads i.e. via Hajeera-Mandol & Balouch-Pakhonar road. It can also be reached from Kotli, the district headquarter of Kotli district, by covering a distance of 26 kilometers. Tatta Pan is famous for is sulphur 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.

AJ&K Tourism Dept. has constructed Tourist Lodge arid bathrooms for the convenience of the visitors here. Transport services for Tatta Pan are available in good number from all important points of the Poonch, Mirpur & Kotii districts of Azad Kashmir.

District Mirpur

District Mirpur is located at the extreme South of the State and is linked with Pakistan and the districts of Azad Kashmir through several routes. District Mirpur comprises partly plain and partly hilly areas Its hot climate and other geographical conditions intensely resemble to those of Jhotum and Gujrat, the adjoining districts of Pakistan. The people of this area are basically agriculturists. During the last four decades a large number of people from this district have gone abroad, especially to United Kingdom Today they are the major foreign exchange earning recourse for Pakistan As it adjoins the industrial cities of Pakistan, the Government of Azad Jammu & Kashmir has successfully’ endeavored to develop It as an industrial place and promote private Investment for establishing Textile, vegetable ghee garments scooters, cosmetics and many other industries.

  • Mirpur
  • Mangla
  • Ramkot Fort
  • Khari Shareef

 

 

 

Mirpur

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/mirpur1.jpg

Mirpur, the district headquarter is situated at an elevation of 459 meters A.S.L. It is linked with the main Peshawar-Karachi Grand Trunk Road at Dina. A small town about 15 kilometers short of Jhelum city. The construction of Mangla Darn converted the old Mirpur town into a big artificial lake and effected a population of about 50,000. But it paved the way for existing new Mirpur town situated on the bank of Mangla Lake. The city is well planned and buildings are mostly of modern design. Mirpur has developed into an industrial city very rapidly; all the basic amenities of life are available in Mirpur Colleges, hospitals, banks, shopping centers, hotels, telephone & telegraph units, Forest. PWD, Industries and Tourist rest houses exist in the city. Bus and wagon transport services are also available.

 

Mangla

Mangla is a small beautiful modem town. It is situated at a distance of 110 kilometers from Islamabad and is 15 kilometers short of Mirpur City. The construction of Mangla reservoir having perimeter of 100 kilometers and presence of Mangla and Ramkot Forts of Mughal period have turned this place into an attractive tourist spot. Mangla has special attraction for the tourists coming on short visits because of its proximity to Jhelum, Lahore and Rawalpindi) Islamabad.

 

Ramkot Fort

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/ramkot-fort.jpg

Picturesquely located on the summit of a hill, Ramkot Fort is built over the site of an old Hindu Shiva temple, 3 sides of this hill top are surrounded by River Jhelum (ancient “Vitasta”), during excavations relics of the 5th & 9th century AD have been discovered near one of the temples. In the 16th 17th century AD “the Muslim rulers of Kashmir” while safe guarding their boundaries built numerous forts. Ramkot. Sitting on top of the confluence of the river Jhelum & Poonch is one of them. The Sikh Maharaja or Kashmir further fortified Ramkot. Ramkot Fort is located on the opposite side of the Mirpur Town and one has to cross Mangla Lake on boat to reach there. A 10 minutes travel by road from Mirpur leads to Sukhian and nearby Army Water Sports Club from where boats are available for access to Ramkot Fort. It takes 45 minutes to reach there.

 

Khari Shareef

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/khari-shareef.jpg

8 kilometers from Mirpur, a black top road runs to Khari Shareef, a place of religious importance. This place is well known due to the shrines of Baba Peer-e-Shah Ghazi arid Mian Mohammad Buksh (the author of famous “Saif-ul-Malook”) based on mystic poetry. Thousands of devotees visit this sacred place to rejuvenate their adjust hearts daily. Hajiabad, located on Holar- Roth road, is a midway point for the travelers coming from Rawalpindi Islamabad. A cafeteria for refreshments has been provided by the Tourism Department.

District Bagh

 

Before getting the status of an independent district in 1988, Bagh was a part of District Poonch, This district almost resembles district Poonch in its history, culture, customs and traditions. District Bagh, as a whole is rich in variegated natural beauty. Topographically, this district falls into mountainous zone. Bagh, Dheerkot, Sudhan gali. Hanse Chowki, Neela Butt, Las Danna, Mahmood Gali, Kahuta, Havaily and Ganga Choti are the main locations of tourists Interest in this region.

  • Bagh
  • Dheerkot
  • Neela Butt
  • Lasdanna
  • Sudden Gali

 

 

 

Bagh


Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/neela-butt.jpg

Bagh, the district headquarter of district Bagh is 100 Kilometers from Muzaffarabad via Kohallah & 80 Kilometers. via Suddhen Gali, 205 Kilometers from “Islamabad” and 48 Kilometers from Rawalakot This town Is situated on the confluence of two mini nullahs-Malwani & Mall, which flow all the year round. The people of Bag) are brave, courageous and skilled, especially the artificers in the field of bakery & confectionery. The well recognized “Haji Peer Pass’ is about 32 kilometers from Bagh City linked with metalled road. Middle standard hotels, PWD and Forest rest houses are available for visitors.


Dheerkot


Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/dheerkot.jpg

The fascinating and charming place of District Bagh is 25 Kilometers from Kohalla, the gateway of Azad Jammu &Kashmir and 132 kilometers from Islamabad, Located at an altitude of 1676 meters. Dheerkot possesses an extremely pleasant arid healthy climate. This place is very popular among the visitors as a tourist resort mainly due to easy access. Suitable altitude and beautiful landscape. In the heart of the calm & quite Deodar and Kail mixed forest, there is a posh Forest rest house, three Tourist Huts and a Log Hut, which are greatly sought after by tourists in the summer. Dheerkot is linked with other parts of Azad Kashmir by black top roads and direct transport services are also available.

 

 

 

Neela Butt


From Dheerkot towards southeast 6 Km ahead, this spot is situated at an altitude of 2000 meters. Besides its scenic beauty, this place Is well-known for its historic background. On August 23, 1947 the Mujahideen-e-Azadi assembled at this place and started an armed struggle for accession to Pakistan. Sufficient accommodation facilities are available here for visitors.


Lasdanna
From Bagh, a 15 Kilometers long metalled road leads to Las Danna which is a place of captivating scenes and natural beauty, From Lasdanna, three roads branch off the main road i.e. Mahmood gali-Palangi, Haji pir- Aliabad and Abbasspur-Hajira respectively. A tourist rest house is available here for accommodation.


Sudden Gali


Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/sudden-gali.jpg

Sudhangali, located at a height of 2134 meters, links Chikkar with Bagh, a town in the Bagh district. This scenic spot also serves as a base camp for those interested in hiking/ rekking to the nearby 3045 meters high mountain “Ganga Choti”. It is also linked with Chikkar. Buses & vans ply daily from Bagh, Chikkar & Muzaffarabad to this place, A tourist rest house & PWD rest house provide reasonable accommodation facilities here.

District Kotli

The area now comprising district Kotli was a sub-division of Mirpur district up to the year 1975. District Kotli is a hilly area rising gradually towards the high mountains of Poonch district. Its climate is more moderate than that of Mirpur due to the sub- mountainous topography.

  • Kotli
  • Khoiratta
  • Fatehpur
  • Teenda
  • Hajiabad (Sehnsa)

 

Kotli

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/throchi.jpg

Kotli, the District Headquarter, is at a distance of 141 kilometers from Rawalpindi/ Islamabad via Sensa, Holar and Kahuta. It is linked with Mirpur by two metallic roads, one via Rajdhani (90 Kilometers) and the other via Charhoi. It is also directly linked with Rawalakot via Tarkhal (82 Kilometers). A PWD Rest House, Tourist Rest House at Sarda and middle standard hotels in the town provide accommodation facilities to the visitors. Developed into an Industrial city very rapidly. All the basic amenities of lire are available In Roth Town. Bus and wagon transport services are also available.

 

Khoiratta

38 kilometers from Kotli ahead, a road leads to Khoiratta. Khoiratta and the nearby area provide remarkable attraction to tourists because of the remains of gardens and fountains of the older times From 4 kilometers ahead of Khoiratta is famous shrine of “ Mai Totti Sahiha” which is visited by hundreds of people daily. A rest house by Tourism Department at Khoiratta is available for tourist accommodation.

 

Fatehpur

Description: http://tourism.ajk.gov.pk/images/stories/fatepur.jpg

Fatehpur was a part of tehsil Mahnder before independence, It Is located at a distance of 40 kilometers from Kotli and 181 kilometers from Islamabad Due to high altitude (1524 meters) Fatehpur is comparatively a cold place then the rest of the district. A Tourist Rest House provides accommodation facilities to the tourists/ visitors.

 

 

Teenda

Teenda is a place of viewpoint linked with metallic road, 6 kilometers from Kotli, One can have a wonderful view of “Kotli “ City and surrounding areas from this place. To make it an attractive tourist spot, AJ&K Tourism Department has constructed a Tourist Rest House here to provide accommodation facilities.

 

Hajiabad (Sehnsa)

Hajiabad, located on Holar- Roth road, is a midway point for the travelers coming from Rawalpindi Islamabad. A cafeteria for refreshments has been provided by the Tourism Department.


 
Key Information
 
Area of operation Based Islamabad,
Pakistan, with a focus on Kashmir

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Website www.kashmirwatch.com
 
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