Trekking in Kashmir is very enjoyable as you stand on world's rooftop. You can
enjoy the alpine lakes, snow-capped peaks, lush green valleys, glaciers and
fast flowing almost transparent rivers. Depending on your needs and experience
the operators can provide you with different trekking options.
Just move out of Pahalgam and you are in
picture-postcard type of territory. Grassy meadows, tall peaks, frothy streams
and tall fir trees can easily mesmerize you.
Pahalgam offers excellent trekking routes for trekking and hiking
activities. The various trekking routes are:
Out of these the
Pahalgam-Kolahoi trek through the Aru village and Pahalgam-Chandanwari trek to
Sheshnag Lake are the most popular routes which tourists opt for.
Trek to Baisaran can be done as a day trek or on you
can also do it on a horseback but there are other longer, and tougher, options
for the experienced trekker.
The Best 6 Treks Originating from Pahalgam
1. Pahalgam to Mamaleswara (round trip) - Kashmir - Easy Trek
4kms - 1.5 hours
2. Pahalgam to Baisaran (round trip) - Kashmir - Easy Trek
10 kms - 5 hours
3. Pahalgam to Aru (round trip) - Kashmir - Medium Trek
22 kms - 10 hours
4. Pahalgam and surrounding valleys - Kashmir - 7
day Trek - Medium Trek
Pahalgam, Hagan Valley,
Baisaran Valley, Kashmir Valley, Koutpathri, Harnaj Lake and Dhanwat Glacier.
5. Pahalgam to Baltal - Kashmir - 7 day Trek -
Sheshnag, Panjtarni, Amarnath Caves, Baltal.
6. Pahalgam to Ladakh and Zanaskar - Kashmir - 16
day Trek - Advanced Trek
Pahalgam, Sonamarg, Baltal,
Machoi, Drass, Kharlou, Kargil, Shergol, Mulbekh, Bodn Kharbu, Lamaguru,
Khalsi, Nurla, Rizony, Saspul, Lekir, Ninmu, Spituk and Leh.
The months from April to September are the best
for trekking activities.
Name of Trekking
There are many trekking
agencies offering various trekking facilities. Some of them are as follows:
1. Mountain Magic Trek n
Tours (Mobile: 094692 84249), and
2. Jungle Guide Adventures
Trek & Tour (Mobile: 09419923810) in Pahalgam.
Tariffs for Various
Approximate cost is ₹10,000-
15,000 per person (depending on size of group) for a 2N/3D trek, inclusive of
boarding, lodging, guide and porters.
is better to enquire beforehand, because sometimes the prevailing rates are
different and it depends on the number of participants.
How to Reach Pahalgam
Pahalgam unfortunately does not have any airport and depends on the closest one in Srinagar, which is 90 km away. This Sheikh-Ul-Alam Airport has excellent connectivity with Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Jammu and provides quick service to the tourists.
Cabs and taxis can be hired from the airport to reach Pahalgam. If you are a couple, you can also use a shared taxi and pay only a fraction of the fare needed for a full taxi. It is best to negotiate with only one cab else noisy scenes result if you turn to another vendor.
Udhampur is a nearest railway station at 220 km, then the next nearest is Katra, 270 km and the farthest is Jammu, 285 km away, that connect Pahalgam to the major cities of India. After reaching any of the stations, a private vehicle is required to reach Pahalgam. The travelers have the option of either hiring a private cab or taxi to reach their destination.
Local taxis and cabs are available at Jammu & Udhampur stations for various destinations in the valley. Katra is new on the circuit and not many options exist for travelling further. It is better to get down at Udhampur.
If travelling in a group you can also hire mini buses. We advise to negotiate beforehand and never turn to other operator midway, as noisy scenes are reported. Couples and small families can try hiring a shared taxi and you can save much money travelling.
From Srinagar, Pahalgam is 98 kilometers away. State Road Transport buses, luxury buses and taxis ply to and fro. Buses take around 2.5-3 hours whereas cabs need half the time. The best part being you can halt the cab at any point for clicking pictures.
If you can wait for a few minutes, even rigid cab owners give in to charging per person. This benefits all individual passengers and couples because booking a full cab means paying manifold.
Driving Own Vehicle
If you are travelling on own vehicle we recommend you to change your tyres with those that can handle roads in this region. It can make a huge difference in costing and budget travelers should consider another mode of travel.
Best Time to Visit Pahalgam
The best time for families start from March end onwards. However, it all depends on what temperatures you can withstand and what you are looking for! Every season & every climate has its own merits.
Kashmir has reserved something very unique for every season. For example, Skiing and every snow related activity needs the winter season.
Pahalgam welcomes tourists with open arms throughout the year. The tourists prefer to visit in three distinct seasons: Summers, monsoon and winters. Each has its own merits which tourists like and flock in big numbers.
The summer season in Pahalgam between April and June sees the maximum footfall from general as well as from those participating in the annual Amarnath Yatra. During this season, the weather is pleasant and maybe even a bit warm and favourable for day sightseeing. When planning to stay out please carry a light jacket, just in case the weather sees drastic change. You definitely need light woolens at night because the nights are sometimes chilly. Temperature generally ranges between 11 and 25 degrees.
Winter in Pahalgam is all about fresh, flaky snow and heavy woolens. The temperature usually hovers near sub-zero levels. The season starts in November and continues till February. Sightseeing is minimum as the landscape is white and some more white. However, those interested in skiing and skating (in the rink nearby or on frozen rivers), this is the ideal season as when it snows, it pours and pours. December and January it usually snows heavily.
If you love playing in snow, this is the time for throwing snowballs and making the snowman. Teenagers love the ease by which they roll down hills. They also love the experience when their feet get buried in snow. The chilly winds often play spoilsport making the winter a spine chilling experience.
The rainfall from July to September is scanty but the weather can be extremely humid though it rarely stays for long. The rain seldom spoils your outdoor activities. Couples love the mystic environs as the hovering clouds try filling the valley with their vapours. The skies are generally clear and are great for stargazing.
This is also the offseason period and my tourists prefer visiting Pahalgam now. The tourism industry rains freebies in a bid to welcome the meager tourists.