• Credits: Taha Malik

Jahaz Banda is a lush green and peaceful hill station in the upper spreads of Kumrat Valley, in the Upper Dir District of Pakistan. It is situated at an altitude of 3,100m above sea level. The region is surrounded by snow-dressed mountains, lofty trees and filled with green prairies.

The main road lingers on north up the upper Dir and reaches the village of Darwaza, where the road branches off and enters into Lamoti village then to Jandrai village through a jeepable road and a trek until Jahaz Banda.

Kumrat is one of the scenic valleys of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and a picturesque spot for travellers. Every summer, thousands of tourists from around the globe visit here and enjoy the greenery and cool weather.

The weather of the valley is alpine and mild, cool summers are common. Average temperature ranges from 20 to 25 °C. In winter the temperature drops to -4 to -10 °C due to heavy snowfall.

Kumrat is a popular picnic and camping spot. Most people bring their own tents and pitch for lodging. The valley provides options for mountaineering, trekking, rock-climbing, and a base camp for a hike to the glacial Katora Lake. Jahaz Banda, Patrak, Kalkot, Lamutai, Seri and Thal are all popular spots.

Many of the medicinal plants are found there like atropa belladroma and artemisa martima. The most abundant fruit trees are walnuts, amluke mulberries, chilgoza, and cherry. Animals common in the area are brown bears, snow leopards, monkeys, porcupines, deer, jackals and other mountainous species.

Awful, average or astonishing? You decide: