Neelum Valley, Pakistan, Paradise on Earth

Covering a distance of 574 km was certainly a welcome to the lush green fields, fresh and juicy fruits, flourishing flowers and freshness in the air that Kashmir brought with it. Kashmir is one of the most beautiful and attractive wonders on the world known for its natural splendor and lovely aspects. Last summer, I decided to travel and explore the world of dreams!

Ataullah Kiani/

The disturbing stories of violence along the line of control has always been a unpleasant truth to all of us but the faith that no matter what our army is there to protect the beauty of Kashmir is an idea that calms the mind and soul.
With a journey of 5 days we decided to explore the maximum beauty and gasp the cleanness of the air there. We started our journey from Islamabad, capital of Pakistan and after four hours drive, we reached Muzaffarabad.

Sharda Neelum valley

There is only one five star hotel in Muzaffarabad but this hotel is made in a beautiful place. You can see the city from all sides of the hotel. From the windows, doors, and balconies of the hotel, Muzaffarabad looks amazing. I kept thinking of all the stories related to Kashmir and how we have been always living with the fact that the problem of Kashmir is the most disputed reality among Indians and Pakistanis. When we reached it was evening. Sun shines were there on the steel roofs and those roofs were shining.

Chitta Kitta Neelum Valley

Neelum Valley is situated in the north-east of Muzaffarabad, at an elevation of around 4000 meters (13,000 ft.) above sea level. The first most beautiful place we visited in Kashmir was Pir Chanasi which is a visitor spot located 30 km east of Muzaffarabad on the top of the hills at an elevation of 9500 ft.  It is famous for the zaiarat of a famous Saint. Located on top of the hills, it is a fascinating sight and people who love to climb up the mountains will enjoy the most. 

Next day we started our journey to Keran. We were in a Jeep and started our ride along the bank of river. When going to Neelum Valley there is a place called Tetwal. It has two parts. One part is with Pakistan occupied Kashmir and another is with Indian Occupied Kashmir. In between, there is a Neelum River. The noise of the waves of the water flowing among the both sides of the valley has a touch of calmness in it. We stopped there. Another side of the river was Indian occupied Tetwal. The school building was in front of us. The Indian flag was on the building. There is no phone service between both sides. So on festival days people sit in the mountains from both sides and talk to each other. This place moves the hearts of the people. Every year thousands of cases are coming when people jump in the river and die when they see their relatives in front of their eyes and they can’t meet them. People here tell the story of one mother and two sons. Mother was on the other side of Indian Occupied Kashmir and Sons were on Pakistan administrated Kashmir side. They came to see each other at the festival. When mother saw her two sons she couldn’t control herself and jumped into the river. This side sons also can’t control themselves and jumped into the river too. And then three of them died in this river.

There is also a small bridge in Tetwal, half is in Indian occupied Kashmir and half is in Pakistan administrated Kashmir, the bridge is divided with a white line in the center. Both governments allow crossing the bridge with the permit each year. But the process to get that permit is really tough. Kashmiris had a very straightforward and realistic attitude towards life, they never dream of more and are always satisfied with what they have trusting strongly in the philosophy of returning to the creator.  The road goes from Tetwal to Lawat along with the line of control.

Sardari Neelum Valley

From Tetwal, we went to keran. Keran is a lifetime experience. One should visit this place once in life. This valley is surrounded by beautiful mountains. When you stand near the bank of the river you can see the Indian occupied Kashmir in front of you. You can see crops on the other side as well as, people. You can also see the beautiful mosque made of wood. Azan called in that mosque and people pray on this side. One cannot disagree with the fact that Neelam Valley is a gift for the people of Kashmir as it takes you to another world where only love and happiness exist.

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