Pakistan is a country that has been blessed with lavish green lands, pine trees, chilly breeze and picturesque valleys in its northern areas. Without a doubt, this land is second to none when it comes to its natural and historical splendor. From the ancient remains of Mohenjo-Daro to the snow-topped summits of Himalaya; the nation’s tourism spots quenches the thirst of tourists and adventure enthusiasts. As indicated by a news report, amid 2016 summer season, around 0.7 million vacationers visited Naran and Kaghan. What about a place closer to the metropolitan that could refresh the body and soul alike?
General accord on this inquiry would be the hill station of Murree. Situated approximately 50 kilometers away from Islamabad, Murree offers scenic views all around with beautiful weather. With a well-constructed road, travelling experience to this hill station is worry free for the travelers. This mountain range satisfies the desires of the people looking for an instant sanctuary.
According to an estimate, around 15,000 local tourists visit Murree, Nathiagali, Ayubia and other nearby popular spots on daily basis.
Besides its grand view, there are a few other explanations behind the huge number of guests visiting Murree consistently. Patriata New Murree Chair Lift is a fresh addition to the factors which drive tourism in this locality of the country. As per a source, PM Nawaz Sharif approved the installation of a chair lift project from Kotli Sattian to Patriata and from Bastal Morr to Pindi Point. “With the completion of chair lift project, New Murree will be a completely vehicle free city, comprising of trans-system only,” says a representative of Country Dealers organisation. Cinepax Cinema is another venture in the pipeline which will gratify the needs of avid silver screen fans visiting Murree.
Being aware of the travelers’ needs, investors have planned and constructed the lodges and cottages accordingly. Green Hill Resorts is a completely functional estate, offering stunning layouts, fully furnished rooms and vital gadgets, for example heaters, LCDs and microwave ovens. Situated on the main road at Danna, it gives easy access to the Sozo Adventure Park and other vacationer spots. Valley View Resort is another project which has an outstanding sight on offer from the veranda, ample parking space and swift access to the Mall Road.
Murree realty has played a key role in improving tourism in the area. Viewing the influx of travelers in Murree during the summer season of 2016, it is safe to say that the tourism will further increase in years to come. Taking into account the tourist inflow, the government needs to come up with more projects which have the capability of further facilitating tourists. It will certainly spike up the tourist interest as the facilities will making tourists’ experience a more memorable one.
With all the developing projects and the tourism edge that this hill station offers, Murree realty aims to fulfill the needs of tourists and investors alike. However, like other cities, Murree real estate has also felt the shocks of the recently announced property taxes. Realtors in Murree have deemed it as “Property Death Tax”. They believe that Murree property has observed bottomless decline post taxes implication. “It is the last straw on the camel’s back and the last nail in the average size investor’s coffin,” adds Ghazanfar, a realtor operating from Murree.
It is important to note that Murree’s popularity is tied with tourism. It is not a place which has been eyed with interest by property investors. However, the influx of local and foreign visitors does drive the demand for commercial properties that are used for building hotels and other facilities. Hence, it can be concluded that while the taxes do not directly impact the tourism industry, it has stalled a thriving market which has gained momentum due to the increasing number of tourists.
Ridda Hamid is a freelance writer with an interest in social media. She likes to write about cultural issues, political satire and real estate.