Kumrat Valley: Pakistan’s Untouched Gem of Natural Beauty

Scenic views from Kumrat Valley

Kumrat Valley is located in the Upper Dir District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. It boasts dense forests, a winding river, and a peaceful atmosphere, making it a perfect escape from city life. Experience lush greenery, fresh mountain air, and untouched natural beauty in this serene valley.

Sunlight filters through lush pine trees, casting dappled shadows on the crystal-clear waters of the Kumrat Valley river

Travelers can reach Kumrat Valley with a scenic 45-minute drive from Thal town, located by the Panjkora River. Many tourists visit to see its beautiful forests, snowy mountains, and rural charm. The river runs through the valley, adding to its peaceful beauty.

Tourists visit Kumrat Valley for peace and adventure. They enjoy its green meadows, mountain lakes, and secret waterfalls, making it a great spot for photographers, hikers, and nature lovers. Visitors can also learn about the local customs and traditions, adding to the experience in this beautiful part of Pakistan.

Kumrat Valley Location

Kumrat Valley links to various regions. It’s east of Swat Valley, near places like Kalam, Utror, and Gabral. To the west, it borders Upper Dir, and northeast it connects to parts of Chitral Valley. You can reach the valley with a 45-minute drive from Thal town, by the Panjkora River. Its central location attracts tourists wanting to explore the natural beauty of these areas.

Accessibility

To reach Kumrat Valley, travelers have to drive through mountains to get there, so it’s something to consider when planning a trip.

Distance from Major Cities

City from TravelingDistance (kilometers)Estimated Drive Time (hours)
IslamabadApproximately 3708 to 10
LahoreRoughly 63012 to 14
KarachiAbout 1,49524 to 28
SwatNearly 2457 to 9

To reach Kumrat Valley from these cities, you’ll first take main roads and then smaller, less developed roads near the valley. It’s best to use a 4X4 vehicle for the last part because of rough roads and construction. The travel time can change based on road conditions and weather.

How To Get To Kumrat Valley?

From Islamabad to Kumrat

To get to Kumrat Valley from Islamabad by road, you can follow the N45 route. The total distance between Islamabad and Kumrat Valley is approximately 370 km (230 miles), which takes nearly 9 hours of driving time.

Islamabad to Kumrat Valley

Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Route from Islamabad to Chakdara via Motorways:

    • Start your journey from Islamabad and head towards the M1 (Islamabad-Peshawar Motorway).
    • Continue on M1 and take the exit at Colonel Sher Khan Interchange to merge onto M16 (Swat Motorway) towards Chakdara.
    • From Chakdara, you’ll connect to the N45 route (also known as Chakdara Road).
  2. Route from Chakdara to Kumrat Valley via N45:

    • From Chakdara, follow the N45 route towards Kumrat Valley, which is in the Lower Dir District of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
    • The total distance from Chakdara to Kumrat Valley is approximately 177 km (110 miles), taking roughly 6 hours and 30 minutes of driving time.
    • Most of this scenic journey is alongside the beautiful Panjkora River, which is a major attraction itself. The river runs at an elevation of 3,600 m (11,800 ft) and spans a length of 220 km (140 mi) through the lush green mountains of the Dir District and Kumrat Valley.
  3. Key Points and Attractions Along the Way:

    • First Part of the Journey: The initial part of the journey from Chakdara to Baabe-e-Kumrat at Chutiatan covers around 100 km (62 miles) and takes approximately 2 hours and 50 minutes. This part of the route passes through main towns and places such as Timergara, Barron, Toormang Wari, Shib Abad, Darora, before reaching Baabe-e-Kumrat at Chutiatan.
    • Second Part of the Journey: From Baab-e-Kumrat, the route diverges off the N45 onto Dir Road, leading towards Kumrat Valley. This stretch is approximately 78 km (48.5 miles) and adds roughly another 3 hours and 40 minutes to your journey. As you proceed, you’ll pass through places like Sheringal, Biar, and Tall, offering opportunities for short breaks and enjoying the natural beauty of the region.
Scenic view of Baab-e-Kumrat
Source: Pinterest

Travelers from Karachi and Lahore can also use this route to get to Kumrat Valley through Islamabad. People from Karachi can take the M9 Motorway and then the M1 to reach Islamabad. Those from Lahore can take the M2 Motorway straight to Islamabad. Once in Islamabad, they can follow the same route to reach Kumrat.

Islamabad to Kumrat Valley Via Local Transport

To get to Kumrat Valley from Islamabad using local transport, book a Daewoo bus ticket to Swat Mingora for about 1170 Rs. When you arrive in Mingora, take a local transport to Kalam. From Kalam, either catch another bus or hire a taxi to reach Kumrat Valley.

From Swat to Kumrat Valley

To reach Kumrat Valley from Swat, travelers have an alternative route available. The total distance between Mingora in Swat and Kumrat Valley is about 156 km (97 miles), which takes roughly 6 hours by car.

Here’s a step-by-step guide for the route from Swat to Kumrat Valley:

  1. Route from Mingora Swat to Kumrat

    • Start your journey from Mingora Swat and head towards the Airport Road.
    • From Airport Road, you can choose to go via Matta or take the N95 route through Khwazakhela to reach Kumrat Valley.
  2. Passing Through Tourist Attractions

    • This route offers the opportunity to pass through other tourist attractions and famous places in Swat such as Madyan, Bahrain, Kalam, Utrar (Utroor), and Gabral.
    • The distance between Kalam and Kumrat Valley is approximately 63 km (39 miles), which takes just over 3 hours to drive.
  3. Considerations for Swat to Kumrat Route

    • While in Swat, especially in Kalam Valley or surrounding areas, you might find it tempting to take this alternative shorter route to Kumrat Valley.
    • However, it’s important to note that the “Utrar to Dir Road” is not a smooth drive and can be challenging. This route can be a great attraction for adventurous travelers but requires careful driving due to its condition.

From Swat Kalam to Kumrat Via Local Transport

If you wish to travel to Kumrat Valley from Swat Kalam using local transport, follow these steps:

How to Get to Kumrat Valley from Kalam?

  1. Travel from Kalam to Utrar

    • Head to Utrar from Kalam, about an hour away.
    • Take a shared taxi from Kalam’s main bazaar to Utrar. Taxis leave when full, so aim to leave around 7:30 am.
    • The shared taxi costs around 150 to 200 Rs per person.
  2. Journey from Utrar to Thall

    • In Utrar, take a shared jeep to Thall. Jeeps leave when full, carrying up to 10 passengers.
    • The jeep fare from Utrar to Thall is 500 to 700 Rs per person. If there are fewer passengers, the driver might charge more. For three people, expect to pay about 1,000 Rs each.
    • The ride from Utrar to Thall takes about four hours. You’ll cross a 3,000m+ mountain pass and pass through forested areas, with some shops and tea houses along the way.
  3. Travel from Thall to Kumrat

    • To go from Thall to Kumrat, hire a jeep and driver.
    • A jeep ride costs 2,000 to 4,000 Rs, depending on how far you want to go in the valley.
    • If you plan to be picked up later, the cost might be higher.
    • The ride from Thall to Kumrat takes one to two hours and passes through a narrow valley.
    • You’ll go through an army checkpoint on the way. Bargain with the driver and tell them where you want to be dropped off and picked up.

In short, travelers from Swat Kalam can use local taxis and jeeps to reach Kumrat Valley by going through Utrar and Thall. This journey is an adventure through mountains and offers a scenic way to get to the beautiful Kumrat Valley.

Beautiful View of Kalam Valley

Weather

Kumrat Valley generally has cloudy weather all year round. The monsoon season brings heavy rainfall, and winters are chilly with snowfall. When planning a visit, dress according to the weather conditions.

Kumrat Valley
kumrat Valley
1:45 pm, April 13, 2024
9┬░C
light rain
Wind: 1 mph
Pressure: 1021 mb
Visibility: 1.774 km
Sunrise: 5:42 am
Sunset: 6:42 pm

Best Time To Visit Kumrat Valley

The best time to explore Kumrat Valley is during the Spring and Summer when the temperature is around 20 degrees Celsius. However, winters can be extremely cold and snowy due to its altitude of 3100 meters, with temperatures dropping to as low as -4 degrees Celsius. Therefore, it’s best to avoid visiting during the winter months.

Year-Round Weather Patterns in Kumrat

JanuaryFebruaryMarchAprilMayJuneJulyAugustSeptemberOctoberNovemberDecember

Avg Temp (Celcius)

-13.7-11.2-7.1-2.42.58.11211.57.4-0.1-7.9-12.5

Min. Temp (Celcius

-17.2

-15-11.2-7.3-3.21.36.16.11.4-6.3-12.5

-16.1

Max. Temp (Celcius

-9.8-7.3-2.71.97.213.316.916.212.65.6-3.2-8.6

Rainfall/ Precipitation 

1111661681681028812711078687077

Humidity

56%

61%60%59%63%64%74%77%71%64%59%55%

Rainy Days

9

1011101013171712.8866
Avg Sun Hours per day6.26.07.58.810.010.28.57.37.78.87.26.8

Source: VisitSwatValley

Tourist Attractions Near Kumrat Valley

Kumrat Valley in the Upper Dir region of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has many stunning attractions for nature lovers and adventurers.

PlacesDescription
Jahaz BandaBeautiful meadow in Kumrat valley with a waterfall, standing at 3100 meters. Popular for hiking.
Do Kala ChashmaRiver between two dark mountains, known for its stunning beauty. Best reached by jeep with a local driver.
Do JaggaOffers a three-hour trek to Shahzore Lake (9-hour trek) and Kundol Lake starting from Kalam valley.
Katora LakeNamed for its bowl-like shape, reachable after a challenging 2-4 hour trek. Surrounded by glaciers.
Panjkora RiverLocated 59 km north of Kumrat Valley, known for archaeological value and fishing.
Wooden CanalsUnique canals in Thal, built from wood, providing water to the local community.
Thal ValleyGateway to Kumrat and Jaz Banda with a rich history, wooden canals, and beautiful Jama Masjid mosque.
Kumrat National ParkCovers 775 sq km, home to snow leopards, ibex, and musk deer. Popular for jeep rides and the Chitral Gol trek.

Jahaz Banda

Jahaz Banda is a beautiful meadow in Kumrat valley surrounded by tall trees, snowy mountains, and green fields. One of the main attractions here is the Jahaz Banda Waterfall. It stands at 3100 meters above sea level. The distance from Kumrat valley to Jahaz Banda is about 17.6 kilometers. Many experienced hikers enjoy trekking here because of its challenging trails and stunning views.

Jahaz Banda Near Kumrat

Do Kala Chashma

The Do Kala Chashma is a river that flows between two dark mountains. People love visiting this spot because of its breathtaking beauty. Since the road to Kumrat is rough, it’s best to rent a jeep and hire a local driver to get there safely and comfortably.

Do Kala Chasma

Do Jagga

Do Jagga offers a three-hour trek. The name means “two places” or “two treks”. The first part of the trek takes you to Shahzore Lake, which takes about 9 hours. The second part is an easier trek to Kundol Lake starting from Kalam valley.

Do Jagga Near Kumrat

Katora Lake

Katora Lake gets its name because it looks like a bowl (“Katora” means “bowl” in Pashto). You can reach this beautiful lake after a 2-4 hour trek from Jahaz Banda meadows. The trek can be challenging due to large stones on the path, but the lake surrounded by melting glaciers is worth the effort.

Katora Lake

Panjkora River

The Panjkora River is located 59 kilometers north of Kumrat Valley. It’s famous for its archaeological value and the Gandhara grave culture. Many people visit this river for fishing, and its cold freshwater is a treat for visitors.

Panjkora River near Kumrat Valley

Wooden Canals

Thal in Kumrat valley is known for its unique wooden canals. These canals, built from wooden sheets and pillars, provide water from the Panjkora River to the local community. It’s a great example of local engineering and innovation.

Wooden Canals
Source: Shutterstock

Thal Valley

Thal Valley is the gateway to Kumrat and Jaz Banda. This village in KPK has a rich history and is famous for its wooden canals, traditional mill, and beautiful Jama Masjid Dar-ul-Salaam mosque. The village has many hotels now to accommodate the growing number of tourists.

A cozy cabin nestled among lush green mountains in Kumrat Valley

Kumrat National Park

Kumrat National Park is close to Kumrat Valley and covers an area of 775 square kilometers. It’s home to many animals like snow leopards, Himalayan ibex, and musk deer. The park is a favorite spot for wildlife lovers and offers jeep rides and hiking trails. One popular trail is the Chitral Gol trek, which takes about 5 days and shows the park’s best views.

Kumrat National Park
Source: Pinterest

Tourist Activities

  • Trekking and Hiking: The valley caters to adventurers with numerous trails that vary in difficulty.
  • Camping: Tourists frequently camp amidst the picturesque environment.
  • Photography: The scenic beauty also attracts photography enthusiasts.

People and Culture of Kumrat Valley

The people in Kumrat Valley are friendly and welcoming, reflecting the kind spirit of Pakistanis. Even though they have a simple lifestyle, they’re happy with what they have. They treat tourists like honored guests, always ready to help and offer guidance.

Hotels in Kumrat Valley

Kumrat Valley offers a range of hotels catering to diverse budgets and preferences. Travelers can expect comfortable lodging options, many of which provide modern amenities to enhance their stay in the picturesque valley.

NameAmenitiesDistance from Kumrat City CenterPriceRatings
Kumrat Glamping ResortsParking, Free Wi-Fi0.1 Km$982.0
Valhalla Resort KumratParking, Free WiFi, Restaurant1.46 Km$882.5
Hotel Green Hills Thall KumratParking, Free WiFi, 24/7 front desk2.52 Km$562.5
Royal Lushy ResortParking, Free WiFi, Laundry2.25 Km$782.0
Mom Touch HotelParking, Free WiFi, Restaurant2.52 Km$812.5
Sky Hill’s Hotel & RestaurantParking, Laundry, 24/7 front desk2.72 Km$762.5
Spring Fields HotelParking, Free Wi-Fi, Bar, Restaurant, 24-Hour Front Desk1.85 Km$1255.0
Empire HotelParking, Free Wi-Fi, 24-Hour Front Desk1.28 Km$1165.0
Vintage Resort KalamParking, Free Wi-Fi, 24-Hour Front Desk5.89 Km$1055.0
Walnut Heights by RoomyHiking, Parking, Free Wi-Fi, Restaurant, 24-Hour Front Desk1.93 Km$984.3

What to Take on a Tour to Kumrat Valley?

  • Comfortable hiking boots or walking shoes
  • Lightweight and breathable clothing for trekking
  • Warm layers like fleece jackets or sweaters
  • Raincoat or waterproof jacket
  • Sunhat and sunglasses
  • Backpack or daypack
  • Water bottle
  • Snacks like energy bars or trail mix
  • Personal medications and a basic first aid kit
  • Personal identification and travel documents
  • Cash in small denominations
  • Camera
  • Binoculars
  • Portable charger or power bank

Security Measures Taken By KP Govt.

The KP Govt. has implemented several safety measures to ensure a secure environment for visitors in Kumrat Valley. Camping in the open is considered safe, with no major security concerns reported. Additionally, the government has made significant investments in the tourism sector. This includes improving hotel services and developing better roadways to facilitate tourists and enhance their overall experience.

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