Popularly known as the “Paradise on Earth”, Jammu and Kashmir is world famous for its scenic splendor, snow-capped mountains, plentiful wildlife, exquisite monuments, hospitable people and local handicrafts.
The paradise on earth Kashmir has almost everything that nature can offer. One such unexplored breathtaking destination in Kashmir is Tosamaidan. An alpine meadow that has been under the army since 1964 and is now open for the world to visit.
Also Read: Is it safe to go to Kashmir?
About Tosa Maidan
Tosa Maidan (or Toshamaidan) is a tourist destination and a hill station in Jammu and Kashmir. It is located in the Khag area of Budgam district of Jammu and Kashmir. The name also marks the historic Tosa Maidan route into the Kashmir Valley from the Poonch Valley. In fact, the original name of Tosa Maidan appears to have been “Tosa Marg”.
This beautiful meadow is in khag tehsil of Budgam district of Jammu and Kashmir.Tosa Maidan is not only famous as a pasture but also for its historical background. Bounded by dense forests, it is situated about 10 kms from Khag in the mountains of the Himalayan range. After crossing the upper mountain reaches of Drang, Zakhora and other small villages, one reaches the pasture of Tosa Maidan. It is said that Tosa Maidan is one of those pastures which the shepherds of other neighboring countries also used to visit in ancient times. The Mughals used to go to Poonch using this route. It is said that they had constructed a seven-storeyed building – Dam-Dam – here.
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The Basmai Gali(13,000 ft) is the pass which leads into Tosa Maidan. Another pass – Poonch Gali – on its right side leads to the valley of Poonch. This pass was deemed to be the safest, easiest, and nearest to reach Punjab in ancient times. From here, a path also leads to Nilnag. Tosa Maidan is the largest pasture in its surrounding areas, 3 miles in length and 1.5 miles in width. Sky-touching deodars fence this pasture presenting a view of a green carpet in summer. During the summer, the camps of the Gujjar community and shepherds with their grazing sheep in the pastures present a riveting picture. Also, the fragrance of wild flowers refreshes the whole environment.
Tosamaidan and its adjoining areas are sources of many perennial water bodies like Nalah Sukh-Nagh, Doodhganga Nalah, Suresh Kulh and Googaldara Nalah which provide water to District Budgam, Pattan, Tanghmargh and also to some parts of Srinagar city, where it is used for irrigation and drinking purposes.These Water bodies with its blue-green roaring cold water flowing through Tosamaidan and adjoining areas are ideal for the trout and carp fishing and rafting. The fragrance of beautiful wild flowers on the vast land of tosamaidan refreshes whole pastures, meadows and environment of the tosamaidan.
Tosamaidan In The Tourist Map Of Jammu Kashmir Keeping In Mind The Fragile Environment
Tosamaidan should be developed in such a way that will not deteriorate the natural environment and fragile ecology of the Tosamaidan. Eco-friendly markets and infrastructures will retain the virginity and sustainable development of the Tosamaidan.
Plastic items, polythene bags and other non biodegradable items should be banned and local organic foods in biodegradable items should be encouraged and promoted in Tosamaidan for making it the most beautiful eco tourism destination in india. Bringing Tosamaidan on tourist map and development of all kinds of infrastructure and basic facilities including electricity, water supply and mobile communication system for the convenience of the visitors by the government will promote the tourism sector in kashmir valley and contribute very well to the state economy.
Things To Do In Tosa Maidan
Tosa Maidan is surrounded by various other meadows like Watadar, Hafwas, Kadlibal, Nagnibal, Duriyaan etc. The trek will take 10 to 12 hours and you can return to base in the evening if you leave early morning. Towards the west is Bandsar- source of river Sokhnag.
Best time to visit
Best time to visit Tosa Maidan is from May to September. Tosa Maidan remains covered with snow from November till April.
How To Reach
The nearest airport is the Sheikh ul-Alam International Airport (Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir). Tosamaidan is at a distance of 70 Kms From this Airport and it takes about 2.5 hour by Car or Taxi.
The nearest railway station is situated in Budgam town at Ompora at a distance of 65 Kms to Tosamaidan.
Tosamaidan is easily accessible from Srinagar in under 2.5 Hours by car or Taxi via budgam. Another route is from Srinagar Gulmarg road,the route starts from Srinagar to Magam, Magam to Khag via Aripanthan total distance about 50 km
Contributed by NomadLawyer volunteer, Amir Rashid Wani
If you wish to know more about Amir Rashid Wani, check the link:
Kashmir’s GenX Humanitarian: Amir Rashid Wani
Edited By Imtiaz Ullah
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