Top Places To Visit in Ganderbal
Hotels and Homestays in Ganderbal
Weekend Getaways from Ganderbal
286 Kms from Ganderbal
Best time to visit - June to September
This beautiful town happens to be located in Jammu & Kashmir and is an abode for those who wish to pursue Buddhism. The place is surrounded by tall mountains, clear blue water, a white surrounding and many monasteries. The people here are warm and welcome tourists. Found midway between the Karakoram and Himalayan mountains, the beauty of Leh is beyond words, making it a hotspot with the tourists. Visiting the local markets here is a treat as one will get to browse through Tibetan jewelry, carpets, woolens and much more. Be sure to carry an extra bag to fit in all your purchases.Read More
On this day, we went for local sight-seeing. We started at 9 AM around and went to The Hall of Fame. It is located near the Leh Airfiled, and is a museum constructed as well as maintained by the Indian Army in the memory of the soldiers who had lost their lives during the wars. Great place for history lovers.After this, we visited the Spituk Gompa. The view from the monastery is beautiful. One can see the mountains and the airport runway is also visible. We saw many flights land and takeoff.Magnetic hill is also an interesting place to Visit. Your vehicle will roll on the road like a downhill while it seems like an uphill. Go and explore the mystery yourself.We also visited Sangam point where Zanskar and Indus River merge together. Pathar Saheb Gurudwara, Shanti stupa and Leh market are few of the other places that one can visit.This day will give you a good feel of the culture and how life at Leh is so different from ours. I started appreciating the surrounding and the people there.Day 3:Changla Pass and Pangong Lake
We landed at Leh Airport at around 8:30 AM. It is a very small airport and the runway is clearly visible as you are landing. We could see ourselves approaching the beautiful mountains. It is one of the highest commercial airports in the world. I had a feeling already that this is not any usual trip and is full of wow elements.We had planned our trip with YHAI (Youth hostel association International) and thus we went to their hostel. As it was Day 1 for us, it was the acclimatization day and we just relaxed.Day 2
Day 1 : Visited Leh LocalLeh Palace : The palace is one of the major attractions here.The palace was built in 17th century by Tashi Namgyal and is now dilapidated and deserted.It was the home of the royal family until they were exiled to Stok in the 1830s.Above the palace,at the top of Namgyal peak,is the Victory Tower,built to commemorate Ladakh’s victory over the Balti-Kashmir armies in the early 16th century.Shanti Stupa: It was built by Japanese order and was opened by Dalai Lama in 1985. From the top,one can view the exotic locales nearby.The Stupa is located at a distance of 3km from the Fort road.Leh Market: Small/Compact market is very beautiful. You can enjoy shopping for Leh traditional wearing.
Rumtse to Leh 11482 ft, 76 km- The day started with goodbyes as some of the support people and one of the vehicles had to go back from there. Then we started our journey to Leh. As we climbed down from Rumtse, vegetation started appearing again. A little way before Upshi, there was a board announcing the first view of the Indus river. As we entered Upshi, there was a bridge across the Indus from where I could see the river flowing in its full glory. Seeing her from that bridge, gushing down to quench the thirst of millions of people, I realised why our entire country was named after this one river- something that had seemed unfathomable up till then. The ride after Upshi was a mix of ups and downs where downs were blissfully more abundant. We crossed many settlements of varying sizes and stopped at Thiksey for lunch. Another 20 km ride and we were in Leh. We reached the guesthouse and had lunch on a dining table which seemed like a luxury. My cycle had faithfully served me for 10 days without any trouble at all. So I decided to clean it as a token of thanks to my cycle before saying my goodbyes to everyone. It was strange how it felt as if I was parting from my family. I believe that is what we had become in those days. Apart from their trait of throwing challenges but never humiliating, their supreme dignity and pristine and glorious beauty, I will remember the mountains for showing to me how good people can be. I felt a sense of camaraderie with all the fellow cyclists who had been complete strangers up till then. The cyclists and the support people became one big family for those 10 days. Chachu, the chef, often said ‘jo ek bar pahadon ka ho gaya wo yahin ka hoke reh jata hai’. But after reaching Leh, as I was leaving the group and the mountains behind, I felt a tinge of sadness. In that instant I understood what he had meant. The mountains have a way of making you feel small- small but not slighted. They make you humble and humane. They give life a perspective and make you realise that no goal is too big to be achieved. It was my first time in the mountains and I feel as if I have been initiated into a kind of life from which there is no going back.
We started in the morning after breakfast towards Nimmu valley to see the confluence of Zanskar and Indus rivers. It is a beautiful spot where you see the confluence of the two rivers and it provides good photographic opportunities.We went on to visit the Basgo Fort which is approximately 40 kms from Leh. There is a complex of buildings which includes ruined remains of a fortress, a temple and a monastery on top of a hill. This place gives a very ancient and a calm feeling, it's like you are away from the civilization and on your own as this place is not much crowded.After visiting the fort, we went on to visit the Pathar Sahib Gurudwara on the Leh-Kargil road before returning to the hotel for lunch and rest.
300 Kms from Ganderbal
Best time to visit - January,February,March,October,November,December
Amritsar has made a huge contribution to Indian history and is the holiest hub for Sikhs. The name of the city, which means the pool of nectar, is derived from the pool that surrounds the Golden Temple. Though the city is quite congested, it has an air of spirituality and a heart to it. The stunning complex of the Golden Temple, with the Central Sikh Museum, will surround you with a spiritual energy that is hard to shake off. The gurdwara is located at the nucleus of the lake, which glitters like gold after the sun goes down. At every corner you’ll find devotees who have volunteered for either cooking or cleaning the premise. Eat a free meal at the dining hall and make sure you don’t waste any food. The Jallianwala Bagh, from the pages of history, comes to life here. The complex, where around 1500 people were massacred, still has bullet marks all over it. A peek into the well, inside which hundreds jumped to save their lives, is sure to leave you feeling uncomfortable. An hour away from the city is the Wagah Border, where the gates divide Pakistan and India. An evening parade, held before sunset every day, is an experience worth savouring. Amritsar remains incomplete without the lassi with heaps of malai, available almost everywhere. There are endless options to stay in the city but if you want to splurge, consider the Green Acres Haveli and Country Inn Hotels and Resorts.Read More
Getting aroundThe gateways to the Buddhist Circuit are Varanasi and Lucknow. The quickest convenient cost effective way to travel on this circuit is in a private vehicle with a guide, and only travel Delhi to Varanasi or vice versa by flight or overnight train. However you can also do this journey using local bus and train services. The entire sector is well aligned to the needs of pilgrims and tourists from around the world. Most material and religious needs will be well served.What to see and do - The ItineraryDay to day descriptions provide some background of why we do what we do each day. However please do research in detail before taking this itinerary, one of the most fascinating journeys of India.
AmritsarAn important city of Punjab. It is also the centre of Sikhism and the site of the Sikh’s principal place of worshipHow to reachThe Sri Guru Ram Das Jee International Airport, about 11 km. from town, is connected by domestic flights to Delhi, Srinagar and Chandigarh.Amritsar is connected by direct trains to major Indian cities like Delhi, Jammu, Mumbai, Nagpur, Calcutta and Chandigarh.Bus services also connect Amritsar with most north Indian towns, including Chandigarh (235 Kms), Delhi (450 Kms),What to do
From defining historical monuments to the streets of Amritsar, there is so much to do, love and experience in Punjab that every trip delayed to this state is a loss. Kick-start your journey through this city of religion and celebration with Cox & Kings.
5) Chandigarh - AmritsarMake a visit to India's one of the most well planned cities-Chandigarh. The city is beautiful and highly enjoyable. Everyone I ask says Chandigarh is a gem. Don't stop yourself here. Head over to Amritsar and visit the beautiful Golden Temple, India Pakistan border and feel the patriotism in your blood this Independence Day. Spend a day with soldiers and give them the respect they deserve.
Chandigarh to Amritsar is 230Kms and takes 4-5 Hours by car. You can start very early in the morning from Chandigarh to reach Amritsar by breakfast time and to have ample time to explore the city within a day.Apart from its famous Golden Temple, the city holds a rich history of Indian Independence.Start with Jallianwala Bagh, the iconic garden where the tragic Amritsar massacre took place in the British Era. The garden is very near to Golden Temple(almost within the same complex). So you can pay a visit to the famous Golden Temple consecutively.
We all have that travel bug inside us and most of the people I have come across, the one thing which is common- “travel more, spend less”. The pleasure of visiting a new place without spending much is second to none. The other thing which is common between my fellow citizens is that they don’t have enough leaves so the weekend breaks becomes the new found best friend.Amritsar can be easily visited on weekends. We (group of 5 friends) travelled to Amritsar from New Delhi. It’s an overnight journey. There are several trains and buses between the Capital city to Golden city. Trains are more convenient, of course for the most obvious reasons. In case you are visiting the city only for a day, make sure you book a train which reaches Amritsar early morning. (as early as possible)We had planned the trip only for a day. We went straight to the Golden temple by taking a shared auto.The auto dropped us right outside the temple and charged us Rs. 35 per person (30 mins from railway station). We walked inside the temple complex with our luggage and went to their bathing area (free of cost). There was separate bathing area for men and women and is clean and well maintained but crowded. Cleanliness is maintained by volunteers.If you are staying overnight in Amritsar, it is highly recommended to stay in hotels which are close to the Golden temple. The range of these hotels varies (from Rs. 500 to 3000) and it’s up to the individual’s choice. But make it a point to get refreshed quickly and leave for the Golden temple.We kept our luggage in the luggage room (free of cost) and footwear in jora ghar (shoe stands) and entered the temple complex. An artificial stream was flowing to wash one’s feet before entering. Make sure to cover your head properly before entering the holy complex. Anyone can take a dip in the holy sarovar but use of soap or shampoo is not allowed. It’s believed that one gets cured of the diseases by taking a bath in the sarovar. As soon as we entered, the grandness of the temple bowled us over. The temple has gold work done on major part of it including the dome. The carving work done on the walls is amazing.The katha and kirtan at the temple was melodious. It took us approx. 3 hours to get the darshan. There are separate queues for women with toddlers. Unlike other temples in India, the volunteers don't pester you to go out once you enter the Sanctum Sanctorum. The kadha Prasad is offered with cupped hands and it is touched with the tip of krippan before it is distributed.It was almost lunch time when we moved out of the temple complex and headed towards the langar hall. We were to astonished to see hundreds of volunteers working there. The food served was fresh and hot, excellent Kheer, and a special mention of the unique way of serving drinking water. Everything was systematic and neat and clean. If you are not having the lunch there, still it’s a must to go and see the Langar area because you will be amazed how common people are providing their services to do activities like cutting vegetables, making rotis, washing used plates. Everything is very systematic. A perfect example of team work. (CEOs/Managers go have a look).We then covered Jallianwala Bagh (India’s bloody past) which is mere 5 mins walk from the Golden temple. In the center there is a memorial tower. It is difficult to think how, from a lane where three people can’t walk side by side, one man managed to perpetrate a massacre. It infuses patriotism in andreminded us of sacrifices made by our ancestors to win Independence. Once we were out of Jallianwala bagh, we found lot of taxi and auto owners asking for Wagah border. They take you on a sharing basis for Rs. 120 per person to and fro. Try to take comfortable seats in auto as its almost an hour drive but the condition of the road is good. (No point of doing advance booking)Make it a point to reach Wagah Border by 2 pm or let’s say as early as possible but be ready to wait for approx. 3-4 hours before the ceremony starts. But it’s still advisable if you want to sit and watch the entire ceremony. The place was excessively crowded plus a big queue for security check. We didn’t carry anything and it was such a relief because nothing (Nothing means nothing- no chips, popcorn, ladies handbag, camera cover, etc. Only water, wallets, sunglasses, cameras are allowed) is allowed inside and then you have to keep your stuff in road side vendor locker for which again you have to stand in queue.We reached in nick of time and occupied seat which gave okay view but we still felt lucky because there was humongous crowd standing and forced to watch the border parade on the big screens installed there instead of live.The retreat ceremony is for 45 minutes which includes the closing of international gates and the lowering of the flag. The atmosphere was simply electric. The crowd modified into a hooting cheerleader. Passion and patriotism was at all-time high. The moment became so live and full of energy. People danced on some of the famous patriotic numbers. Children also get a chance to take the flag and run.The auto dropped us at the same place and we decided to do some shopping. We went to Hall market which lies in the way to the Golden temple. Patiala salwar and jootis were exceptionally beautiful and cheap. We found handicrafts like phulkari and shops of weaponry like swords and krippan and other souvenirs in abundance. Later, we went back to the Golden temple and collected our luggage and had our dinner at one of the local dhabas. (within city limits non-veg food isn’t available). Don’t miss out the famous Amritsari Kulcha and Punjabi lassi (a giant glass with malai on top). We missed on sarson ka saag as its mostly available in winters.
So it all started 3 years back when I planned a trip to explore the beauty of Amritsar.I was accompanied with one of my friend from South India (Malhar Ashrit) who always wanted to travel to this place, but had a budget constraint.So was that a big deal, NO.I booked the tickets in sleeper class coach of Indian railways for 280 bucks from Delhi to Amritsar. Train departed around 7:30 pm from Nizammudin, Delhi and reached Amritsar around 4 30 Am.There' s always a free bus service available to golden temple from Amritsar railway station. But, you need to stand in a big queue. Since, we wanted to save money, we waited for some 10-15 min for the bus to arrive and got a seat as well. The journey took us around 15 mins to reach Golden Temple (Free of cost service).The Golden temple provides you accommodation at a cheaper cost, but check-in time for it is 12 noon. We did not wanted to waste any time, took a lodge outside the Golden temple area to fresh-up and keeping the luggage, paid 200 bugs.( You can easily get cheap accommodation in-around the place).
4. Experience the Beating Retreat ceremony at Wagah BorderPlan a place to visit near Delhi on weekends to the Wagah Border to witness the Beating Retreat Ceremony. A local transport service from Amritsar will take you to Attari. Easy connectivity make Wagah Border one of the cheapest places to visit near Delhi. Avoid booking local taxis if you are on a strict budget. Remember to be seated not later than 3pm for the 4pm ceremony. Choose tourist guesthouses for the cheapest deal.
275 Kms from Ganderbal
Best time to visit - February,March,April,May,June,October,November
Located in Himachal Pradesh, what most people refer to as Dharamsala is actually Lower Dharamsala. This is where the bus drops you, and from here you can make your way to Mcleodganj, or Upper Dharamsala, which is also where the Dalai Lama lives. The two Dharamsalas have a strong Tibetan presence with monasteries, meditation centres and a big library of Tibetan history. This is owing to the Tibetan refugees who have made this place home after fleeing the oppression of China in their homeland. There is a lot to explore at these destinations, which are popular both with Indian and foreign tourists. For tourism in Dharamsala, there is the Norbulingka Institute, where you can see artisans making thangka paintings, embroidering and carving food. Further up in Mcleodganj, you can visit the Namgyal Monastery, say a prayer at the St John in the Wilderness, take a dip in the gushing Bhagsu Falls, trek up to Triund or just enjoy the surrounding pine forest from its many fabulous rooftop cafes and restaurants. Some resorts provide opportunities for paragliding, flying fox, rock climbing, zip lining, rappelling and even night camping. Treks through the magical hills and forests are always invaluable, the most cherished one being, the trek to the snowy peaks of Triund. Dharamshala's vast Tibetan population gives way to charming little kitchen cafes serving the most lip smacking Tibetan dishes, that too at very affordable prices (below Rs 500 for two). Dishes such as thenthuk, thukpa, chocolate and meat medallions are a huge hit with most travellers that have visited and sought refuge in this city's mystical spread. Close Read More
McLeodganj is a small suburb in the city of Dharamshala. It is also the headquarters of the Tbetan - Government in exile and has plenty of monasteries if one wants to visit. Monks are a common sight in this small suburb. The peaceful McLeodganj is ideal as a last stop or destination as it provides the perfect atmosphere for calming the senses. McLeodganj is also called the 'Little Lhasa' or 'Dhasa' by the locals who reside over there. Various charitable organizations operate from McLeodganj for the Tibetan cause.
From Chandigarh, I had a full day of riding (on the roughest paved road I’ve ever seen) to get to Mcleodganj. What’s in Mcleodganj? The Dalai Lama and Mountains. I didn’t see the Dalai Lama, but I did go through the temple. Right before I had to give up my camera, they had this huge banner honoring Tibetans that had self-immolated…grim. Of course, I had to do a little hiking in the mountains. Back home, friends and I would often joke about how it’d be great to have a beer/food/etc. waiting at the end of a big hike or climb. To my surprise, this dream finally came true. At the top of this ridge line, there was a little shop where I warmed up with a nice cup of coffee.
The home of the Dalai Lama is a perfect place to relax and unwind. Lush green mountains, monasteries, western cafes. The place has a lot to offer. Weekends are packed, given its proximity to states of Punjab and Haryana, while weekdays are more calm and relaxed. We spent 2 days in the city, lazing around, exploring local cuisine and visiting the nearby monastries.
181 Kms from Ganderbal
Best time to visit - January,February,March,October,November,December
Jammu is one of the fastest developing cities in northern India. Its Vaishno Devi Temple, which is one of the holiest places for Hindus, sees millions of devotees every year. The city also has many more Hindu temples that are believed to be of significant religious importance, such as Peer Kho Cave and Panchbhaktar temple to worship Lord Shiva. If you are fond of shopping, Jammu has a number of markets offering shoppers a variety of options. Bahu Fort is another must-visit for its magnificent architecture and overwhelming views of the mountains in the distance. The Bagh-e-Bahu Garden is beautiful at spring time, and even more so because the dazzling river Tawi surrounds it. The garden will take you back to the Mughal era with its lush green surroundings and historic aura. Don't forget to enjoy a meal of kalhadi kulcha at any of the popular dhabas in Jammu!Read More
Our Journey Started from Jammu and our destination for day one was Basholi, a small quaint town situated in the middle of hills of Shiwaliks. The major attraction of this town are the famous Basholi Paintings, Basholi bridge that connects JnK with Himachal and the beautiful Ranjit Sagar Dam lake. Though I didnt know about the paintings, I googled about Basholi when I came back :P that's why it is always advised to do proper RnD before you go anywhere. The road from Jammu to Basholi is still under construction with good and bad patches. The best place to stay is a Gov. Guest House which has a nice view of lake and the Basholi bridge with access to the lake as well.
We reached Jammu and then from there we book a Innova for Pahalgam it’s around 280km from Jammu but its very long journey (around 9hrs)You can visit :
Day-11: Pahalgam- Anantnag – JammuOvernight at Jammu
Once, back in Katra, we picked our bags from the room and immediately left for for the airport (at Jammu). This cost us a lesser amount (Rs. 900) as it was an empty cab going back to pick up a ride from the airport. After quick (relatively) boarding formalities, we were on you way back home for dinner in the city of dreams.Although a weekend trip, it was planned much before, without much room for delays. I would recommend having an additional day as buffer, just to be sure.
We started early on Saturday. But it was evening by the time we reached Jammu airport (thanks to the long stopover at Delhi). We had tried to organise cabs from Jammu to Katra but I found it quite expensive at that. The best prices, (and very convenient) I found were the cabs arranged at the Airport itself. Charged us Rs. 1450 till our hotel at Katra, which was about the same when I researched about cab services online.
Next morning we start sightseeing for Jammu for full day. After finish the sightseeing we get back to hotel and took our lugguage and go to railway station & board the train for Delhi. I want to tell you here that God sent some persons for helping us and that was the persons who help us alot. God bless them.So, thats my unforgettable journey to the heaven on earth. ;) :) Please tell me how much you like it?
Today, bid farewell to your 'Kashmir - Paradise on Earth - Summer' tour as you are transferred to the airport / railway station in Jammu for your onward journey.
Welcome to your 'Kashmir- Paradise on Earth - Summer' tour! On arrival at the airport / railway station in Jammu you will be met and transferred to Pahalgam where you will check- into your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure for independent activities. Overnight in Pahalgam. None (Meals on your own).Request A Call Back
Never forget the spiritual aspects of travellingNext short road trip was to a Holy place, a 14Km trek to the Temple of Vaishnodevi in Jammu. This was the final destination for my recovery journey, and I made sure that the higher power was involved in my ordeal for a healthier life. It seemed like a fitting “rite of passage”. There, I worshipped and thanked God for giving me a new life. I was grateful for a new reason to live in happiness, after being through some hardships.
76 Kms from Ganderbal
Best time to visit - January,February,March,April,May,June,July,August,September,October,November,December
Gulmarg is synonymous with beauty so stunning that finding another place like it would be impossible. From its overwhelming ski-slopes, astounding meadows, numerous small streams to its hidden trekking trails, Gondola rides and Bollywood connection, Gulmarg is a must visit when you are visiting Kashmir. Gulmarg is visited by thousands of starstruck tourists every year and it's every bit worth the hype. Though at first glance it might seem like just another hilly resort, the serenity of the place will surprise you. Do try everything touristy here including the gondola and pony ride lest you miss out on a true Gulmarg experience. The route from Srinagar to Gulmarg is absolutely stunning and there are several places you can stop at including Baba Reshi Shrine and Tangmarg. There are quite a few resorts, cottages and hotels in Gulmarg so you'll be spoilt for choice though if you are visiting only for the day, the restaurants and dhabas here more than make up for a hearty meal. Do carry extra layers since it tends to get a little chilly here. Travelling here during winter is a little tricky so it's best to take a local taxi rather than driving yourself. And if you are lucky, you might just spot a snow leopard or two, though for that you'll need to go a little higher than Gulmarg. Another thing that stands out in Gulmarg is the effort to keep it clean, so if you happen to be there, do your bit.Read More
Gulmarg: One word come “Gondola Ride” there are 2 phase in gondola ride.1st Phase: It’s normal so anybody go there oxygen level is good and there you will enjoy some good food, Bike ride to the snow, there you also enjoy sledging.2nd Phase : The view around you is like heaven on earth because of low oxygen level infants are not allowed on top. There you will enjoy skiing and sledging and reach on the top.Over all gondola ride is most amazing experience. Its height 1400ft (2nd Phase) I recommend to stay in Gulmarg at least one night. I enjoyed rain there and that was awesome if you are lucky then might be you will also enjoy and feel the rain.
It was our second day in Gulmarg. We reserved this day for Gondola and local sight seeing.Gondola costs you 1600 INR per person for both the phases.You'll encounter many local guides who will ask you to accompany on your ride to Gondola. One such incident happened with me. An old man in his 60's-70's approached me and asked to serve as a guide for Gondola. I politely told him that I want to explore the place myself and don't need his assistance. He was extremely persuasive and denied to leave my back. In the end I had to give him 50 bucks just to leave me alone and let me go on my own.Note: You don't need a guide for Gondola. Take your passes from the counter and enjoy the ride. I would suggest you to cover Phase 1 and Phase 2 both.In the second phase you''ll be able to reach Apharwat peak. On your left, you'll find Sunshine peak and Shark peak on your right. You'll be able to see Indo- Pak border as well.Snowcapped mountains, cool breeze of air with skiing. This is what Apharwat is all about.As the sun went down, we started riding back to Srinagar from Gulmarg.While riding back, I felt that this was the best of Kashmir that I saw. It couldnt get better. Well, I was wrong.
We had 2 days reserved for Gulmarg and 2 days are more than enough for the place. Stay in Gulmarg is expensive and in the peak season time its difficult to find a hotel even at the highest price. We decided to stay at "Tangmarg". Tangmarg is 11 km before Gulmarg. It's a small village. We booked the hotel "Pine view Resort" through Goibibo at mere 750 INR for a night.The hotel room is clean and the restaurant serves delicious food. Do try their dosa.The moment I entered Gulmarg, some locals asked me to park my bike and told me that I might have to face penalty if I roam around on the bike. I decided not to hear them and continued to explore Gulmarg on my bike.Note: Some people might mislead you, I would suggest you not to throw away your money and get to know about the place. Kashmiri people can get a lot pushy while selling you something, so, keep that in mind.Day 1 in Gulmarg was amazing. Coming from Delhi it was surprising to watch huge green meadows, thousands of sheep, superb weather all at once. We roamed around for a while appreciating its aesthetics. It was around 4 pm when we decided that we were going to Khilanmarg enjoying the pony ride. Well, if you are a first timer, I must tell you that pony ride is not so interesting as it sounds. You'll get to know more once you'll do it.Gulmarg to Khilanmarg is around 5 km. Pony ride is going to cost you around 400 Rs.You'll cross deodar and pine forests on your route to reach Khilanmarg. Once you'll reach the place you can enjoy skiing and sledgingas well. Though its not quite famous for its adventure sports but a ride on sledge will do no harm.It was almost dark when we reached back to Gulmarg. We decided to leave for Tangmarg for our night stay. We had to come back to Gulmarg on the next day for Gondola. It was total dark on our way back. There was no other vehicle on the road except ours and it was horrifying.Later in the morning, locals told us that there have been some cases of the encounters with wild animals between the route of Gulmarg and Tangmarg. That was the day when I decided that it was the last time that I rode at night in the mountains.
This day we started off early and headed to Gulmarg. It was a day trip to Gulmarg and we went to Sonmarg for stay from there. Gulmarg was one beautiful place with lot of pine trees and valleys. Way to Gulmarg was fabulous.W e saw a valley flowing by road and stopped there for a while. After we reached Gulmarg , we had two options : Afarwat peak through gondola and khilanmarg through horse with several stops. We chose Khilanmarg as we experienced Gondola and snow a lot. And this was our best decision. We rented out jackets and we were on horses the next moment. In these places , the guide you get is as important as place. We got a very good guide here. The horses soon went into pine trees. We were seeing nature at its best. Our horse even crossed small water bodies and we felt like kings and queens. Then we were at a point where there were all snow capped mountains and the view was perfect. Next stop was view Reshi baba mandir/mosque from a mountain top. Then we headed to a childrens' park and this was magical. Park was green and there was water flowing through it with a small bridge across water. We were into water the next moment not even caring about how cold the water is. We spent a lot of time there. Then we headed to Khilanmarg. Khilanmarg had very murky ice. It was long time it snowed there as it was summer. We didnot do much there except for sledging in ice. Then we came down and started for Sonmarg. Our Sonmarg hotel was right in front of the mountain. We checked in to hotel, had dinner and relaxed for our next exciting day.
The initial need that I had to reach the top had now being overtaken by the amusement of being on the track-path and sitting down at the cottages, having Nun chai (salt tea- Kashmiri tea). After a long journey up the mountain we finally reached. I could tell by the beams of sun that landed on my face, a reward for making it up so far. It was the most miraculous feeling I ever had, maybe it was the reason I was brought to India, to watch the blue skies kissing the mountain top, which was in the veils of white snow. I felt that I was on the peak of the world, and everything else is below my feet, and no one can reach me. I could see people climbing up below, like tiny dots. They would reach anytime soon. The feeling was so magical that I had not realized my palms turning red, with the unbearable cold that my body was exposed to for the first time in my life. Blood ran up to my top layer of paled skin to fight the strong breeze against me, but it was not powerful enough to kill the smile on my face out of the happiness. Surprisingly, Abid was not scolding me for not bringing proper winter clothes. Instead he was beaming, with a broad smile on his face that touched the corners of his ears as he watched me gradually picking my breath. He was equally happy as I was, to have been the pioneer to bring me to Kashmir, which till now has become a home than any other to me and will always be.
Gulmarg: February is an excellent time to get your gear on and go snow boarding and skiing in the the snow-clad meadows of Kashmir. Gulmarg not only becomes the hub of adventure activities in this season but also promises surreal landscapes and a clear night sky for those who want a peaceful vacation.The nearest airport is in Srinagar, 56 kms from Gulmarg. Taxis and buses are available from Srinagar to Gulmarg everyday at regular intervals.Read more: Snow-Covered Gulmarg In Photos by Ayandrali Dutta
God himself showers light upon this place. And the people there, they couldn't be any more generous in their attitude. Even in a state of curfew, they helped the tourists, the families to get to a safer place, and offered them all the help they could give selflessly.
This summer vacations, my family decided to land on the one place that hits every Indian Middle class family's vacation list, yes-Kashmir! It truly is the 'Heaven on Earth', with the green flowing all around,naturally growing flowers making it even more beautiful, those horses, the hills, and the clouds completing the image of a fairyland.
Gulmarg ("Meadow of Flowers") is a town, a hill station, a popular skiing destination and a notified area committee in Baramula district in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The town is within the Himalayas and is within miles of the Line of Control between India and Pakistan. ccording to CNN, Gulmarg is the "heartland of winter sports in India." Gulmarg was being mooted as a possible host for the 2010 Commonwealth Winter Games. As such, Gulmarg has been rated by CNN International as Asia's seventh best ski destination. This resort is famous because of its "Gulmarg Gondola," one of the highest cable car in the world, reaching 3,979 metres. The two-stage ropeway ferries about 600 people per hour to and from the gondola main station in Gulmarg to a shoulder of nearby Mt. Apharwat Summit (4,200 m (13,780 ft)). The ropeway project is a joint venture of the Jammu and Kashmir government and French firm Pomagalski.
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Located 30 km from Srinagar on the road to Wular Lake. Situated in the Jhelum Valley, it can be reached via Shadipur or via Naseem or Ganderbal (we chose this one).