Tulail valley, one of the remotest regions of Jammu & Kashmir, is Himalayan sub-valley of Gurez, which lies immediate east of Gurez valley. It is connected by a 200 km paved motorable road which leads from Srinagar through Bandipore, Razdan pass and Gurez town to Badogam. The road from Tulail valley and Gurez valley remains cut off from Bandipora town for six months every year due to heavy snowfall at Razdan pass. The valley is also connected with Drass by a motorable road over Kaobal Gali pass and Mushkoh valley. Tulail is also connected with Kashmir by hiking trails which lead to Naranag over Satsar pass and to Sonamarg through Gadsar lake.
Tulail is one of the most beautiful valley of Kashmir, in summers as well as in winters is filled with breathtaking scenic beauty, yet mostly unexplored, because of its lack of connectivity in winters due to heavy snowfall in the region and poor infrastructure and tourist facilities. Tulail, blessed with nature’s bounty, of bush meadows and alpine forests, the gushing clear water of Kishanganga, and wonderful trekking routes, is the most beautiful and safest place to visit for tourists in Kashmir. A valley between high snow- capped mountains, Tulail is a place of beautiful simplicity and pristine natural beauty. The people of Tulail speak a unique language Shina & they belong to Dard Shin Tribe, one of the oldest tribes of Kashmir. Some of the least explored tourist destinations of Tulail are mentioned in succeeding paras.
Vishansar lake, is a high-altitude lake blessed with breathtaking natural beauty and pristine surrounding. It is surrounded by lofty jagged mountain peaks on the side and bush green meadows on the other. The mountain trail trek from Baraub to Vishansar offers panoramic scenic beauty throughout the route. Kishansar lake, part of Great Lakes of Kashmir trek, is situated a little above Vishansar lake, can be trekked from Tulail. No words can do justice to the true beauty of this place. Gadsar lake, the lake of fishes, is a picturesque alpine lake. The bluish – green waters of the lakes are so crystal clear that the clouds, mountains and surroundings are perfectly reflected in it. Satsar lake, basin of which is surrounded by a sheet of alpine flowers, can be trekked from Tulail via Gadsar pass. Chakwali, the last village on Indian side of border is start point of Kishanganga river & is full of scenic spots. It looks like a small meadow with huge snow-covered mountains in the front. Kaobal Gali, provides an alternate route from Kashmir into Ladakh via Tulail instead of Zojila, is full of natural scenic beauty in the bowl of mountains. Mushkoh valley, knows as valley of wild tulips, accessible from Tulail via Kaobal Gali, has breathtaking landscape, full of meadows dotted with varieties of flowers.
The Kishanganga river and its tributaries having gushing icy waters are home to famous rainbow trout and other varieties which could be harnessed for angling sports for adventurists, while the mountain tracks leading to lakes like Vishansar & Kishansar could be promoted for adventure tourism. Local residents of Tulail are welcoming tourists for home stay, however, some financial support from government is required for modification of houses to include renovation of existing public guest houses and construction of some more hotels, resorts and guest houses with adequate facilities for tourists.
Tulail valley, once a part of ancient silk route, has witnessed a fair increase in tourist footfall over past some years, but not indeed commensurate to its potential. To boost the tourist flow and to fully capitalize the tourism capacity of Tulail, the government administration needs to give special focus and emphasis on the infrastructure development of Tulail by creating a separate tourism development body. It can be a leading tourist destination of Kashmir, even in winters, if its connectivity can be improved by blacktopping the road or construction of tunnel, development of tourist spots, guest houses, etc.
Tulail tourism can also boost the local economy and can help in boosting employment opportunities for locals with the help of social forestry department, floriculture department and horticulture department which will be further beneficial for overall development of this completely cut-off area. Facilitating tourism industry will speed up the process of joining the population staying in isolated region of Tulail with mainstream of the country in the fastest possible manner.