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Srinagar – Gulmarg – Pahalgam: If There Is Paradise, It’s Here!

April 11, 2014
Srinagar

Srinagar: Venice of the East

Srinagar

Surrounded by lush greenery and mountains; Srinagar is often called as the “Venice of the East”. Nestled on the banks of the Jhelum River, Srinagar is the summer capital of the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir. The meaning of Srinagar in Sanskrit language means ‘the city of wealth & abundance’. The Srinagar tourism is famous for its lakes, gardens and houseboats.

Srinagar

Beautiful Dal lake

Dal Lake – Many poets have weaved beautiful verses in the praise of this beautiful lake. Surrounded by the mighty Himalayas, Dal lake is famous for its Shikara boat rides and house boats. You can enjoy Shikara ride, kayaking, canoeing, and water surfing here.

Mughal Gardens – Built by the Mughal rulers, Mughal garden is a breathtakingly beautiful garden to enjoy a day in the lap of nature. Mughal gardens combine three prominent gardens namely Shalimar Gardens, Nishat Bagh, and Chashm-e-shahi.

Shankaracharya Temple – Built by Jaluka, the son of Emperor Ashoka around 200 BC, Shankaracharya Temple is nestled on top of the Shankaracharya Hill. Go there to have a peaceful time and catch spectacular views of the snow clad mountains.

Nagin Lake – Want a break from over touristy attractions and the hustle and bustle of the city? Come to relax at the Nagin Lake known as the ‘Jewel in the Ring’. Located around 6 km away from Dal Lake, Nagin Lake is more tranquil and cleaner than the former.

Hazratbal Mosque – Built in the Kashmiri and Mughal styles of architecture, Hazratbal Mosque is located on the banks of Dal Lake. It is a holy Muslim shrine that is believed to contain a relic. Made from white marble, the Hazratbal Mosque looks pristine.

Awantipora Temples – If you can spare a day, travel to Awantipora which is 29 km from Srinagar. It is one of the ancient places in the state and is home to several ancient Hindu temples built by the King AwantiVarman in the 9th century. Awantipora temples are mainly dedicated to Lord Shiva and Vishnu.

How to Reach

By air: Srinagar Airport has an international airport called Sheikh ul Alam Airport. Regular flights run from Srinagar to Mumbai, Delhi, and Chandigarh.

By train:
Jammu is the nearest railway station to Srinagar (290 km). Jammu railway station is well connected to all major cities in India by rail.

Gulmarg

Gulmarg is a beautiful hill station in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. Gulmarg literally means “Meadow of Flowers”. It used to be a resort for kings Jahangir and Yousuf Shah Chak. Earlier Gulmarg was called “Gaurimarg” – in the name of Lord Shiva’s wife.

Best time to visit: March to October. Winters (November to February) are cold and witness severe snowfall. If you want to enjoy skiing, head to Gulmarg in winter.

Gulmarg

A serene lake

Alpather Lake – A serene lake, surrounded by green gardens and the snow capped mountains, it is a great place for a picnic or simply for soaking in the view.

Gondola Ride – Don’t confuse this with Venice. Gondola in Gulmarg refers to a breathtaking cable car ride which trapezes you across lush green hills and magnificent pine woods.

Maharani Temple – Maharani Temple is located on a small hill in Gulmarg. Dedicated to Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, this temple is also known as Mohineshwar Shivalalaya.

Baba Reshi Shrine – This sacred shrine was built in honor of the Muslim scholar and saint Baba Reshi. Situated among the vast expanse of green lawns, Baba Reshi Shrine is a highly revered religious place that attracts thousands of devotees every year.

Gulmarg Golf Club – Considered as the highest green golf course in India, the historic Gulmarg Golf Club was established in 1911. Golf is a popular sports activity in Gulmarg and you will enjoy teeing off in the vast green expanse with mountains in the background.

Favorite activities:

Gondola Ride
Mountain Biking (June – September )
Skiing (December – Early April)

How to reach Gulmarg:

Nearest airport to Gulmarg is in Srinagar which is 56 km away from the city.

Pahalgam

Pahalgam is a breathtakingly beautiful hill station in Anantnag district in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.

Pahalgam

Magnificent view of lake

Located on the banks of Lidder River at an altitude of 7200 ft. from sea level, Pahalgam offers picturesque views and many tourist attractions.

Aru Village – While in Pahalgam, don’t forget to visit the picturesque village of the Lidder Valley – Aru Village. Just 15 Km away from Pahalgam, the ride to the village is an experience in itself.

Pahalgam

Pahalgam

Pahalgam Golf Course – Tee off at the splendid Pahalgam golf course with the azure skies overhead and the stunning views of snow-clad mountains in the backdrop.

Kolahoi Glacier – If you are fond of trekking, then visit the Kolahoi Glacier. The trek to the glacier is not for the fainthearted. Once you reach there, the magnificent views all around make all that strenuous effort worthwhile.

Tulian Lake – Enjoy a day in the lap of nature at the Tulian Lake or Tarsir Lake. It is a serene lake near Aru village that offers great opportunities for camping.

Other attractions of Pahalgam include Baisaran Hills and Betaab Valley.

How to reach Pahalgam:

By Air: From Srinagar Airport, you can take a taxi to Pahalgam. Or take a train to Jammu and from there take a taxi.

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