Abbottabad is a small neat and clean town in spacious valleys surrounded by green hills. It is a popular summer resort, located at the end of Murree-Abbottabad hill tract, noted for its verdant parks, gardens, golf course and pine covered hills. Abbottabad, apart from being famous for its educational institutions and Military Academy, also serves as the gateway to almost all-beautiful places in Pakistan. The formidable Karakorams & the enchanting Himalayas can be approached from Abbottabad. Though the importance of the city has been diminished a little by the completion of Karakoram Highway because, in the past, the only track available to reach Karakoram was through Babusar Pass, which in its turn, could only be approached through Abbottabad.
In spite of this development, the city continues to be a transit city for the tourists. Abbottabad is the junction from where one can go to places like Hunza, Gilgit, Skardu and Indus Kohistan, of the Karakoram Range. One can reach Swat, Swati Kohistan, Dir and Chitral of the Hindukush Range. And one can approach Naran, Saif-ul-Muluk, Shogran and Babusar Pass of the Himalayan Range. Neelum, Leepa and Jhelum Valley of beautiful Azad Kashmir are also connected through Abbottabad. While other hill stations are deserted during winter this place has visitors due to the bracing winter. The place has beautiful gardens, Jinnah Garden, Ladies Garden and another garden maintained by the Cantonment Board. To the splendid stretch of turf with plenty of room for polo, football, hockey and golf. At the back of the station to the west is the Brigade Center, ideal for walks and picnic.
The Cantonment area of Abbottabad is still very British. The European bungalows, the club, the church and cemetery are still there. Abbottabad is an hour’s drive from Nathia Gali, the summer capital of the North West Frontier Province, which is from Nathia Gali to Abbottabad is about 34 km dropping steeply through the beautiful valleys with few trees to the river bed.
Thandiani As the name indicates, Thandiani is supposed to be coldest among the hill stations of Pakistan. The approach to Thandiani (2691 meters above sea level) is from Abbottabad. Thandiani can also be reached from the Murree-Nathiagali route, but it takes more time and the road is too winding. Thandiani is 31 km from main Abbottabad City and 25 km from Thandiani-Nathiagali crossing. The drive takes more or less 80 minutes from Abbottabad with lovely views on both sides of the road. The road spans more than 1219 m above Abbottabad. On the way along with tall majestic pine trees you come across groups of monkeys. The major place on the way is Kalapani at 23 km from Abbottabad. It has a beautiful local dak bungalow. Hule ka Danna is about two kilometres north of Thandiani. It is one of the most beautiful glades in the region. Thandiani offers lush green lovely views. At night the lights of Hazara District and Azad Kashmir are clearly visible. To the east beyond the Kunhar River, may be seen the snow covered mountain ranges of Kashmir, to the north and northeast, the mountains of Kohistan and Kaghan are sighted, to the northwest are snowy ranges of Swat and Chitral.
Nathiagali Perhaps the most sought out is the beautiful Nathiagali perched 2501 meters high about 32 km away from Murree. The bracing air of the surrounding mountains is as pure as fresh spring water.
Ayubia is situated at an average height of 2,135 meters, Khairagali, Changlagali, Khanspur and Ghora Dhaka, these four mini resorts spread over an area of 26 km have been developed into a resort complex called Ayubia. In addition to riding trails, hiking places and picnic spots, Ayubia has a chair lift at Ghora Dhaka, which attracts visitors to enjoy scenic beauty of Pine Hills. The nearby hill station of Nathiagali, Changlagali, Khanspur, Khairagali and Kala Bagh present an unpolluted environment and scenic beauty. Ayubia is 26 km from Murree.