Sunday, 28 September 2014

Pallandri, Azad Kashmir.








Let me take you on a road trip to Pallandri, District Sudhnoti Azad Kashmir from Islamabad , Pakistan. Actually, I have no intention to tell each detail of complete trip in just one post. Surely , you will be tired. You can imagine about the roads. I think , it’s just like a spiral helix. Hopefully, I am not exaggerating :) . I will just share few pictures from Kashmir when I was travelling from Islamabad, Pakistan. In above picture you can clearly see fog covering whole town. There is rain almost every day and when weather is clear we have this scene. I have joined few pictures of my trip that you can check here. 
This is Flag of Azad Kashmir. White strips represent four rivers of Kashmir and yellow part indicates occupied territory. 

Introduction:

Let me tell you something about Pallandri. Pallandri a small town of District Sudhnoti, Azad Kashmir. The name of district is because of majority of people in the district belong to Sudhan tribe. Pallandri was a Tehsil of district Poonch before 1995. Azad Kashmir is divided in eight districts. Pallandri is at the distance of 97 km from the capital Islamabad, Pakistan via Kahutta road. It takes two hours on local transport to reach Pallandri city but if you are driving yourself then you will be in Pallandri from Islamabad after 1 hour and 15 minutes. Total area of Pallandri is 569 km2. The total Population of district is 242,000. (70% of total population lives in rural areas and only 30% is living in urban areas. Percentage of male is about 51% whereas there are 49% females in the district. It is situated at the height of 4500 feet from sea level.

Climate:

The climate is moderate  with the temperature variation from 20-30 C in summer and -4 to 20 C in winter. We can also see some snow on nearby hills during winter. In my whole life whole Pallandri was covered with snow just twice. 

Landscape:


The district has hilly landscape stretching across from one end to the other. The boundary between Pakistan and district Sudhnoti is defined by the Jhelum River.Pallandri has soothing green scenery to offer to its visitors. Whole district is covered with green high mountains with tall and ever green pine and cedar trees. Unfortunately pine trees catch fire almost every year during summer. This fire breaks out just because of laziness or you can say because of irresponsibility of people. Sometimes people try to burn the needle like dried leaves of pines and ultimately the forest is set on fire or sometimes if someone throws a burning cigarette than trees have to pay the price. Each year the forest is damaged on large scale. So cigarette is injurious for plants as well. 

Coming back to beauty the view is alluring with its beautiful and blooming springs. If you get a chance then visit during spring. Whole district is colored by nature. Sides of the river are full of colors with so many wild bushes and flowering trees and plants. Many colorful mountains stand high above you. You can enjoy the music of flowing water from peaks. The natural scenery is enough to take you away from depression of this busy life. You will fall in love with water-falls and clear blue sky. All the year around the weather is very nice and pleasant. You can feel the freshness of cool breeze that below in the summer.

Historical Places:

You can check here the link of Baral Fort , Bawali , Afzalabad tower, Islampura Temple are among the few places to visit.

Water Resources:

Mostly people have hand pumps to pump water up to the surface. At some places there are natural streams and wells (small). Many women also carry water from far of places from natural springs for drinking. For household usage the rainy water is accumulated in large tanks.

River Jhelum:
We have to take this road in picture(left) named Kahutta road to reach our destination. The road is metalled. The bridge on River Jhelum is called Azad Pattan bridge that we have to cross to enter Pakistan or Azad Kashmir. The picture on the right  side is showing the river. During summer Glaciers and Ice on mountains melt and a lot of water comes in rivers and makes the water muddy. The water in river Jhelum is never clear but gray as it is full of sand that it brings with it from long distances. You can see many people collecting sand from both edges of river that is used for construction purposes. The rivers covers the length of 725 km. 
I took the picture on right from here to show the color of river. The picture (left) is taken from here to give you an idea about the road. The road is properly maintained and is in good condition.  
You can see few more pictures here of River Jhelum and the road that is travelling with the river on both sides. One side is Kashmir and the other is in Pakistan. You can check the details of the river here. You will be wondering why I have shared so many links and pictures of river. I love this river from my childhood as I have always seen it. You will not believe the moment I catch the sight of river near Azad Pattan, I do not turn around and continuously watch the beauty, calmness, smoothness of the river till the moment it disappears. 

Rest Houses:

There is just one rest house that was build long ago by Azad Kashmir government. Not even a single rest house was  built after that. Many think, what’s the reason that we can find so many resorts and rest houses in other cities of Kashmir but not in Pallandri? I believe that Pallandri is closest to Islamabad so people just go during day and prefer to stay in Islamabad. There are just a few hotels that are recently built  privately by people.

Unfortunately, I believe that District Sudhnoti is behind all others districts of Azad Kashmir. The reason is again the same as it is closed to Islamabad and mostly the families from Pallandri move to Islamabad when it comes to jobs or education of kids. It is in easy approach and no one thinks for the development of Pallandri. Mostly poor people are residing Pallandri. 

Education:

There is one military high school named Cadet College in Pallandri for Boys. Here you can check Cadet college website.  There are many government and private schools and colleges for both females and males. There is one private university in Trarkhal, you can check website of Mohi-ud-Din Islamic University. 

There are many websites that give details about different places and picnic spots in Kashmir. You can check Kashmir at a Glance here.

Another website from government of Azad Kashmir tourism department can be checked here.

There are details of livelihood , livestock and stuff on different websites but I do not want to go towards that.  People of Pallandri are very hospitable and helpful. The history of Indo-Pak  is familiar with the fact that the people of Pallandri are very brave. There are many names who sacrificed their lives for the freedom of Kashmir. From all parts of the Kashmir , largest number of soldiers in Pakistan army are from Pallandri. They are living peacefully and respect each other’s freedom. 

Famous Personalities:

Different personalities of Pallandri have gained respect through out the world. To name a few;General Aziz Khan, Dr. manzoor husain Khan, Sheikh-ul-Hadees Molauna Yousaf Khan, Khan Muhamamd Khan, Col. Sher Ahmad Khan, Gazi Sher Dil( Gazi-e-Kashmir), Captain Abdullah Khan  who struggled hard throughout their lives for betterment of the people. 

I love Pallandri as its my home town and I wish that it will be a prosperous city and many tourist will come to visit in future. Mostly people are coming from all over Pakistan who have admitted their children in military Cadet College Pallandri. 

I feel that you must have got some information about Pallandri with its beauty. That was my goal. Even if not fully accomplished but I tried. 



View during winter. 


Pallandri; it's green, refreshing, soothing, peaceful, safe and windy. I wish the peace, cool breeze of pine trees and beauty of Pallandri will be ever lasting. 

Now it's your turn to tell me; 
Is there any place that you want to visit and love the most? Why do you love that particular place???

Image of Flag and map is taken from: wikipedia.org
First and last picture of Pallandri is taken from a friend on facebook. 


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59 comments:

  1. I am learning so much about your part of the world from you Anna. With the current world situation, your information is very much needed. It gives us a different perspective. I love the picture of the parent with two children walking. That was such a peaceful scene.

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    1. Hello Lenie
      I am happy that still Kashmir is peaceful... there are no terrorist attacks nothing like Pakistan.
      The picture you are referring, its on back side of our house in Pallandri, this is my Grand father's jungle of pine trees. The three, who are walking in picture are cousins oldest is 12 years old, on right side is my daughter Dania.

      Delete
  2. I learned a lot from this post. It sounds like a lovely and safe place to visit - especially in the spring as you suggested. Thank you for the education, Anna.

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    1. Hello Beth
      Yes as spring all the trees are flowering and whole grass is covered with wild flowers , air is cool ... its amazing + mesmerizing, if ever u visited Kashmir you will feel

      Delete
  3. Actually made that trip from Islamabad to have a look at Kashmir once when I was visiting the Pakistani government. It's beautiful and we all felt it was almost unreal to imagine that Kashmir was not peaceful.

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    1. Thank you Catarina
      My father is in Government job and have always welcomed( received) many ambassadors and other official from throughout the world, and took them on trip of different places in Kashmir, who always tell him that it is more beautiful than Switzerland but need some development.

      Delete
  4. What an informative and well written blog. I always enjoy learning something new. Thanks for sharing this with us.

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    1. You are welcome William.
      I hope you have enjoyed pictures of natural beauty in Pallandri.

      Delete
  5. Pallandri looks like a beautiful place. My favorite picture was the one of the river winding through the hills. I live in an area with lots of forest fires too, and I'm always amazed how careless people can be. Thank you for sharing this magical place with us!

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    1. Hello Meredith
      That picture of Jhelum River is mine favorite too. I took this last year when I went there during summer.
      Yes mostly youngster sit in Jungle and enjoy music and picnic with friends and then Forest pays the price.
      Thank you.

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  6. I visited this are back in the late 90's when the area was still at war. I was on the India side however. It is a gorgeous region and have many fond memories as well as some sad ones regarding the problems associated with warfare and the consequences to the innocent. I could not believe how pristine the region was though. Am glad to see it still looks beautiful and glad to know that the troubled days are behind us.

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    1. Hello Tim
      Still in some parts of Indian Part there is problem but on Pakistan side , we are fine and at peace.
      Yes it is still beautiful , though the water, waterfalls and natural spring sites are shrinking or disappearing but still have a lot to offer.
      I hope you will visit again in the development will amaze you now.

      Delete
  7. Your post is showing us a different part of the world. Your images and descriptions are ones we do not see in travel guide. It is nice to see that the area is still rural and still untouched by the spoils of man. I love mountains and they did not disappoint.

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    1. Hello Arleen.
      I have not given detail of routes and stuff as there are many sites related to that. I just tried to bring the beauty and peace to all of you. I hope you like the pictures. Yes most of Kashmir is rural and people are enjoying natural to its fullest.
      Surely mountains never disappoint.
      Thank you.

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  8. Pallandri does indeed look like a beautiful place. I especially liked the picture of the clouds hovering down over the town.

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    1. Thank you Ken.
      Yes that scene is very common , we enjoy almost everyday. Clouds bring with them , cold and soft air and some moisture too.

      Delete
  9. Thank you for sharing and I enjoyed learning about your beloved river that has captivated you since childhood. Also, thank you for your kind words on the voting of King 5 magazine :)

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    1. Hello Christina
      You are most welcome , I always enjoy reading your post. What I have written , I believe it all. All the best to you.
      Yes I love the water and rivers even the view of sea makes me crazy.. I sit near sea till its dark.

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  10. Anna, you live in a world I can barely comprehend. Thank you for sharing the beauty of it.

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    1. Hello Kire.
      I admire natural beauty and value it more than anything. This is surely hard for many who enjoy many facilities they wonder how the people live in such rural areas. But to tell you apart from few problems it is amazing to be closer to nature. I am happy you like it.

      Delete
  11. Pallandri sounds like a beautiful place to live and the pictures of lovely. It is nice to see your perspective since every thing that we see on the news is negative.

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    1. Hello Dana
      I am living in Peaceful area and sometimes we are also wondering what is told in media about us.
      I am happy that you like the pictures.

      Delete
  12. Replies
    1. Thank you Siraj
      I also love and miss Pallandri a lot.

      Delete
  13. I simply love hearing about your part of the world! The pictures are beautiful! And I'm happy to know something different and positive than what we actually see and hear in the US. Those mountains take my breath! Wonderful!

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    1. Hello Jacquie

      I deem it necessary to bring true picture of Kashmir to world. I am happy that many like you are supporting me.
      Yes our feelings are not much different. We have blue sky , high mountains, cool breeze, springs everything that anyone long for peace of mind. When I go there this mesmerizing beauty helps me forget all the tensions and come out of depression.

      I am happy you like the place and pictures.
      Thank you.

      Delete
  14. I love learning about potential places I might be able to visit someday. The farthest from home i made it was Istanbul, but it was just for a 24-hour stopover when the cruise ship I was on docked overnight. I just got back from a two-week trip from Germany and surrounding countries. Next up, Barcelona!

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    1. Welcome Back Jeri.
      Wow you have long plans ahead, book and travel too. All the best.
      Yes Istanbul is nice place.
      I was wondering if you like the pictures of Pallandri as well, after visiting so many different and beautiful countries.

      Delete
  15. Why is the road metalled, Andleeb? Is there a specific reason?

    FYI, my favourite picture is the one beside the one of that road - with the beautiful mountains and valley and river running through it!

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    1. Hello Lorraine
      I am happy you like the picture.
      There are many gravel and dirt roads so I just thought to mention that this is metalled or concrete road. It is mostly done on country side because of heavy traffic on road. BTW our government do not afford to reconstruct it time and again.

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    2. Thanks for explaining that! It is interesting to learn about how people live on the other side of my world. Here we have paved roads everywhere except in the country.

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    3. You are most welcome Lorraine.
      Yes we have a lot of differences. People in my part can not even long for many things, that are taken for granted in west. These are some colors of the world I guess. Amazing!!!!

      Delete
  16. What a beautiful countryside. I really appreciate your explanation of what the terrain and country is like, and the people. My favorite picture is the one of the river running through it. Just beautiful!!!!

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    1. Thank you Don. The river and flowing water is my love from childhood.

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    2. Thank you for sharing your culture and religion with us, in particular the Haj journey. I can see where such a journey would be life changing. I enjoyed seeing where pilgrims stay and imagine the air-conditioned tents are greatly appreciated as for many years no amount of money would have given travellers this luxury. I also enjoyed seeing pictures of the countryside. It's beautiful.

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    3. Thank you Pat.

      Yes the tents are air conditioned. They are so cold that we are provided with big blankets as well. With separate mattress and a pillow. I am happy you like the pictures.

      Delete
  17. Thanks for transporting me Anna! Gorgeous photos. Rich history. There's something about visiting a place like this that forces us to live in the present. I was just asking myself why the ocean is so relaxing and I think it's because while we are there, we truly experience the moment. So many of us are in a hurry. We're living in the past or working toward the future without really enjoying today. Special places make us experience today and soak it in with all of our senses. Great job!

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    1. Hello Angela
      Yes you are right, nature always have soothing and relaxing effect on us.
      Thank you.

      Delete
  18. Hello Anna,

    Thank you for a refreshing view of your homeland through loving eyes. Many of the reports we hear just lump all the areas together, giving us a false view of other parts of the world. Your city is beautiful and the pictures are lovely. I lived in the mountains for a number of years (3333 feet, elevation was not quite as high as yours). I miss that so seeing your photos of the mountains above the river brought back fond memories.

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    1. Hello Vernessa
      I am happy that this post brought few nice memories back.
      It's nice to live close to nature, you lived at a high place. Yes we know about media, now I have thought to write few more posts about different places, we have peace and fun
      Thank you.

      Delete
  19. Your country is beautiful and deserves to be know for its history, beauty, nature, and majestic landscape.

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    1. Thank you Alice
      We also believe so but west thinks about it as a ruin , continuously hearing the sound of guns and bombs and marching army. It's not like that , its beautiful and amazing.
      Thank you.

      Delete
  20. How beautiful! Thank you for sharing I love hearing about other countries and cities. The pictures help me to visualize me being there.

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    1. Hello Niekka
      I also experience same feelings when I see pictures of other places.
      Thank you for appreciation.

      Delete
  21. Very beautiful place. Its surrounding areas are much more higher then Pallandri city. A nice camera is needed to capture its beauty

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    1. Hello Faisal
      I always have a camera with me , but I am not a photographer so never tried using it and go with my phone only :).

      Delete
  22. I love the climate as shown in the pictures. I have a spot for fog I don't know why. It makes any place look good for me. I know many people say it makes a place gloomy. Interesting that there is only one rest house, but at least private hotels are coming up and that helps to get the place visited by tourists.

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    1. Hello Welli
      The problem in my part is this , it is blessed with natural beauty but the nature of politicians is corrupt, they use funds for their luxury not for people , who deserve.
      The area is mostly foggy in rainy season and winter.
      It brings freshness I also believe.
      Thank you.

      Delete
  23. What a lovely place. Having lived through some pretty severe winters the idea of a place with a more temperate climate is very appealing. The picture of the river is especially beautiful.

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    1. Hello Debra

      Yes it brings a soothing effect to eyes as well. I also love the river.
      Thank you so much for your time and comment.

      Delete
  24. Thank you so much for reaching out on my blog, Anna. I am so happy to have found your blog. Its wonderful & I love learning about your life. Cheers! xo, Mary

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  25. ALl the pictures are pallandri are amazing and I hope that some day I will viist this beautiful place

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