Kumrat valley — the hidden gem of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

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About an hour from Timergara, the road bifurcated towards Kumrat valley on the right and we entered a gorge travelling along the river. Up until now, the road was perfect but then it started to become a bit tricky in terms of pot holes and broken patches. However, it was still an easy road to drive on. We crossed small mountain towns with men and boys wearing round prayer caps and the women mostly in veils of the shuttlecock variety. The rough road was taking its toll on us and to our luck, no one had a good idea of how far Kumrat was. We were hungry but could not find a reasonable place to break bread and this is when we already travel with pretty low expectations. This was the real Pakistan, simple people living their lives in poverty but they looked happy.

It took us four hours from Timergara to reach Thall town, known more for the majestic 19th century wooden mosque by the river. We took a break to explore the historic mosque made from huge planks of Deodar trees and embellished with intricate wood carvings and motifs. The mosque looked somewhat similar in architecture to ancient mosques in Shigar and Khaplu constructed by Kashmiri craftsmen.