Azad Jammu and Kashmir (آزاد جموں و کشمیر Āzād Jammū̃ o Kaśmīr, translation: Free Jammu and Kashmir), abbreviated as AJK and commonly known as Azad Kashmir, is a nominally self-governing jurisdiction administered by Pakistan. The territory lies west of the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir, and was part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir.The 2005 earthquake killed 100,000 people and left another three million people displaced, with widespread devastation. Since then, with help from the Government of Pakistan and foreign donors, reconstruction of infrastructure is underway. Azad Kashmir’s economy largely depends on agriculture, services, tourism, and remittances sent by members of the British Mirpuri community. Nearly 87% of the households own farms in Azad Kashmir,while the region has a literacy rate of approximately 72% and has the highest school enrollment in Pakistan.
Nice people and fertile, green and scenic mountain valleys are characteristics of Azad Kashmir, making it one of the most beautiful regions on the Subcontinent. While Kashmir as a whole is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful regions in the world, Azad Kashmir is as well rich in natural beauty and often dubbed “Heaven on Earth” by tourists for its scenic natural beauty and stunning landscapes. Its snow-covered peaks, forests, rivers, streams, valleys, velvet green plateaus and climate varying from arctic to tropical combine to make it an excellent and popular tourist destination both for domestic and foreign tourists throughout the year.
According to the mid-12th century text Rajatarangini the Kashmir Valley was formerly a lake. Hindu mythology relates that the lake was drained by the sage Kashyapa, by cutting a gap in the hills at Baramulla (Varaha-mula), and invited Brahmans to settle there. This remains the local tradition and Kashyapa is connected with the draining of the lake in traditional histories. The chief town or collection of dwellings in the valley is called Kashyapa-pura, which has been identified as Ancient Greek: Κασπάπυρος Kaspapyros in Hecataeus (Apud Stephanus of Byzantium) and the Kaspatyros of Herodotus (3.102, 4.44). Kashmir is also believed to be the country indicated by Ptolemy’s Kaspeiria.The Pashtun Durrani Empire ruled Kashmir in the 18th century until its 1819 conquest by the Sikh ruler Ranjit Singh. The Raja of Jammu Gulab Singh, who was a vassal of the Sikh Empire and an influential noble in the Sikh court, sent expeditions to various border kingdoms and ended up encircling Kashmir by 1840.
Things to do in Azad Kashmir:
The popular and traditional cuisines of Azad Kashmir are Kashmiri Raan (Fried leg of lamb in Kashmiri style), Rogan Josh, Balti Gosht, Kashmiri Dal Chawal (A mixture of split peas, split red lentils, and boiled rice), and Dam Aloo (Fried Potatoes in Kashmiri style).
Kashmiri tea (Kashmiri chai) is a traditional tea beverage of Azad Kashmir. It is slow-steeped milk tea of a creamy pink complexion made from special tea leaves, milk, salt, pistachios, almonds, and cardamom and sometimes cinnamon is also added for flavour.
Where to stay:
You will find plenty of offers, depends on the budget or the location you pick. We suggest some places and best hotels in Azad Kashmir that is quite famous for its spectacular view and scenery This village, surrounded by peaks and forests. Many private 5 star hotels in Azad Kashmir ,houses or motels can be found at a reasonable price. Or you can forget all that and sleep a couple of days in a tent, captive in an amazing landscape.
Here we provide a list of Hotels which are the best hotels in Azad Kashmir.
- Muzaffarabad View Motel
- Summer Retreat Hotel
- Hotel Orash Lodges
- Green Retreat Hotel
- Alaf Laila Guest House
- Hotel One Abbottabad
- Stargaze Hotel & Apartments
- West End Guest House
- Kashmir Cottage
- Grandeur Hotel Muzaffarabad