Thursday, January 27, 2011






Abbottabad (Urdu: ایبٹ آباد) is a city located in Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa province of Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, 150 km north of Islamabad and 200 km east of Peshawar at an altitude of 4,120 feet (1,260 m). The city is well-known throughout Pakistan for its pleasant weather, high standard educational institutions and military establishments. It remains a major hub for tourism of regions in Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir in the summer.


Abbottabad City, 1907

The town of Abbottabad in British India was the headquarters of Hazara Division, and named after Major James Abbott who settled the town and district in 1848 after the annexation of the Punjab. He soon after became the first Deputy Commissioner of the district between 1849 until 1853. Major Abbott is noted for having written a poem titled "Abbottabad", prior to his departure back to Britain, in which he wrote of his fondness for the town and his sadness at having to leave it. Abbottabad became and is still an important military cantonment and sanatorium, being the headquarters of a brigade in the Second Division of the Northern Army Corps. The garrison consisted of four battalions of native infantry (Gurkhas) and four native mountain batteries. In 1901 the population of the town and cantonment was 7764 and the income averaged around Rs. 14,900. This increased to Rs. 22,300 in 1903, chiefly derived from octroi. During this time chief public institutions were built such as the Albert Victor unaided Anglo-Vernacular High School, the Municipal Anglo-Vernacular High School and the Government dispensary. In 1911 the population had risen to 11,506 and the town also contained four battalions of Gurkhas. In June 1948, the British Red Cross opened a hospital in Abbottabad to deal with thousands of patients who were being brought in from the Kashmir fighting areas. On the October 8th, 2005 Abbottabad was devastated by the Kashmir earthquake. Although most of Abbottabad survived, many old buildings were destroyed or damaged.[


The city is bounded at all four sides by the Sarban hills, from which residents and tourists can see breathtaking views of the region and city. The location of the city and the hills allows Abbottabad to experience pleasant weather in the summer and cold winters. Neighbouring districts areMansehra to the north, Muzaffarabad to the east, Haripur to the west and Rawalpindi to the south.Tarbela Dam is situated west of Abbottabad.


Abbottabad is situated in the Orash Valley lying between 34°09′N latitude and 73°13′E longitude at an altitude of 4,120 feet (1,260 m).


Abbottabad's climate is of extremes with mild temperatures during the spring and autumn months, humid temperatures during the months of June and July and below freezing temperatures during the winter. The temperature can rise as high as 30°C during the mid-summer months and can drop to below 0°C during the winter months. Snowfall is common in January while most rainfall occurs during the monsoon season stretching from May to August and can sometimes cause flooding.


§ Languages

According to the 1998 Census of the 81,000 who resided in Abbottabad, Hindko was spoken by 94.26% of the population, followed by Potohari at 2.30%, Pashto at 2.22% and Urdu at 1.05%. Although the first language of most people in Abbottabad is Hindko, Urdu is understood and spoken fluently by majority of the residents and commonly used in the markets, offices and formal functions. English is widely used in business and education.

§ Ethnicity

The majority of the residents identify themselves as either Karlal, Jadoons, Sayeds, Malik Awan, Tanolis, Karlugh Turkss, Sheikhs, Sattis,Qazis, Sadozai, Kashmiris, Mughals, Rajputs, Qureshis, Utmanzai and Gujjars.


Abbottabad is the headquarters of Hazara Division and Abbottabad District. The District Nazim, Commissioner, Inspector General and Forest Conservator all reside in Abbottabad. Abbottabad is divided into localities, towns, colonies and neighbourhoods.


A view of Nathia Gali

Abbottabad has been attracting tourists to the city since the colonial era, as it is a major transit point to all major tourist regions of Pakistan such as Nathiagali and Naran. According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India, "the town is picturesquely situated at the southern corner of the Rash (Orash) plain, 4,120 feet (1,260 m) above the sea". Like much of the mountainous Northern Areas, tourism is one of the important sources of income in Abbottabad. In the summer when temperatures rise to around 45 degrees Celsius in Punjab and NWFP, a large number of tourists travel north to Abbottabad. The Karakoram Highway, which traces one of the paths of the ancientSilk Road, starts from Hasan Abdal on the N5 and heads north passing through the city eventually reaching Khunjerab Pass. The Karakorum Highway is a major attraction itself for its views. TheKarakoram, Himalayas and the Hindu Kush ranges can be approached from Abbottabad and it continues to be a transit city for tourists, serving as a base for visiting numerous nearby places, such as Hunza, Gilgit, Skardu and Indus Kohistan, of the Karakoram Range.


§ Abbottabad Cricket Stadium

§ Abbottabad Rhinos

§ Abbottabad Hockey Stadium

§ Abasin Karate And Martial Arts Training Center

§ Jansher Khan Squash Complex

§ AMC-PCB Ground

§ Kunj Football Stadium

§ Nawanshehr Football Ground

§ Dhamtour Football Ground

§ Banda Lamba Football Ground


Abbottabad attracts people from all over Pakistan to its high standard educational institutions and is commonly referred to "The City of Schools".



§ N-35 (also known as the Karakoram Highway)

§ Murree Road

§ Chinar Road

§ College Road

§ Sherwan Road

§ Link Road

§ Kasala Road


Abbottabad's main public transport consists of modified pickup vans Suzukis, which can accommodate anywhere from 8 to 13 people at one time. Taxis are also available as well as wagons which connect Abbottabad to the surrounding cities and towns (ex. Nathiagali, Sherwan,Dhamtour, Haripur, Mansehra) in the region. Abbottabad is also served by Daewoo Express and Niazi Express.


Pakistan Railways does not serve Abbottabad however a PR Reservation Office is located in Fawara Chowk in the city centre. The nearest railway station is located in Havalian, which is the last and most northern station on the Pakistan Railway network. The station is approximately thirty minutes drive south from Abbottabad city centre.