Pahalgam, located in the Anantnag district of Kashmir is a hill town well-known for its pleasant weather, serene ambience, and green surroundings. Also known as the “Valley of Shepherds”, Pahalgam is a nature lover’s retreat and lures tourists from all over the country and the world to enjoy a holiday amid natural beauty and tranquillity. Sitting on the banks of the Lidder River, this destination in Kashmir fascinates visitors with its apple orchards, verdant forests, lush meadows, and towering mountains.
A holiday in Pahalgam with family, friends, or your beloved lets you spend time in the blissful environment accompanied by Mother Nature. Aru and Betaab Valleys along with Bainsaran are popular due to their lakes, streams, and meadows. This hill town is also the starting point of the much-revered Amarnath Yatra, which is undertaken by thousands of Hindu pilgrims every year. Along with its religious significance, Pahalgam also offers a lot of thrilling adventure activities for adventure enthusiasts like camping, white water rafting, and trout fishing.
If you want to know more about this beautiful town, here is the Pahalgam Travel guide which will help you find out the best time to visit, how to reach, places to eat and stay, places to visit, and more.
Why visit Pahalgam?
If you want to get away from the hustle-bustle of the city life and treat your lungs to some fresh, unpolluted air, then visit Pahalgam. Delight in nature views and spend quality time with your loved ones. Whether you are a honeymoon couple, a family, or an adventure lover, there is a lot to see and do in this hill town in Kashmir. For Hindu pilgrims, there are a lot of religious sites in Pahalgam you can visit and offer prayers. Pahalgam is also the starting point of Amarnath Yatra, which is another great reason to visit.
Pahalgam is located in the high Himalayas and is an ideal destination for trekking. Due to the presence of the rapid Lidder River, white water rafting is also a very popular adventure activity in Pahalgam. And if you love to witness snow, then you surely cannot miss Pahalgam.
How to Reach Pahalgam
Pahalgam is a popular tourist destination in Kashmir and therefore, is well-connected by airways, railways, and roadways. The nearest airport to Pahalgam is Srinagar airport, which is located nearly 89 km. Taxis and other private vehicles can be hired from the airport. If taking a train, get off at Jammu Tawi, which is connected to other major railway stations in India. And if you are travelling to Pahalgam by road, you can board a flight to Srinagar and then take a bus/car to Pahalgam.
How to get around Pahalgam
The most convenient way to travel in Pahalgam is by cabs or taxis. There are many cab services and also car rentals available in the region, which makes your travelling more flexible. And to transverse the steep hills in Pahalgam, you can use ponies. You can find them in areas like the Main Market, Aru, and Laripora. Also, trekking in Pahalgam is always a good option to explore nature and famous attractions.
Best time to visit Pahalgam
Summers i.e. March to June is a great time to visit Pahalgam as the whole region is blooming with lush greenery. The weather is pleasant with temperatures ranging between 15°C to 30°C and also, the much-awaited Amarnath Yatra starts in June. During the monsoon months, Pahalgam receives very little rainfall but many pilgrims visit as yatra takes place at this time. Lastly, winter starts in October and continues till February. If you love snow and enjoy nature and activities at their best, it is a good time to plan a Pahalgam tour.
Places to visit in Pahalgam
Kashmir is truly a slice of heaven and pristine Pahalgam is one of its picturesque places. When it comes to natural beauty, Pahalgam never disappoints anyone. Dotted with serene lakes, towering peaks, lush surroundings, peaceful ambience, and tourist attractions, there is a lot to see here. One of the most famous places to visit in Pahalgam is Betaab Valley, where many Bollywood movies have been filmed. Mammal Temple attracts Shiva devotees, and Sheshnag Lake a place where one can sit in silence and calm their mind.
Lidder Amusement Park, Aru Valley and village, Baisaran Hills, Avantipur Temple, Pahalgam Golf Course, Chandanwari, and Tulian Lake are some other prominent places to visit in Pahalgam.
Things to do in Pahalgam
With diverse places to see, Pahalgam has been a go-to destination for all kinds of travellers. All the places to visit in Pahalgam are pristine, unspoilt and magnificent and offer a lot of things to do on your Pahalagam travel. Whether you are a nature lover, adventure buff, or spiritual seeker, you will find a lot of options to choose from. For instance, rafting in the Lidder River, trek to Kolahoi Glacier and Amarnath Holy Cave, Tulian Lake, Chandanwari, Sheshnag Lake, Tarsar Lake, and Marsar Lake. Fishing and golfing are other popular things to do in Pahalgam. If you wish, you can take the Amarnath Yatra and devote yourself to the almighty for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
How many days are enough to visit Pahalgam?
3 days are enough to explore and experience the best of Pahalgam.
Accommodation in Pahalgam
Pahalgam is a famous destination in Kashmir and therefore, has many hotels and resorts that offer comfortable stays. On your visit, you can find many five-stars to budget-friendly hotels in Pahalgam depending upon your needs and budget. You can also choose to camp in nature for a memorable experience. Some popular places to stay in Pahalgam are Pahalgam Hotel, WelcomHotel Pine n Peak Pahalgam, The Chinar Resort and Spa, Hotel Heevan Pahalgam, and The Villagio.
What to eat in Pahalgam
The foods of Pahalgam have a distinct taste in comparison to its neighbours. Marschgand (minced lamb meatballs in spiced gravy) and Kaanti (lamb pieces in red hot gravy) gives the dishes in Pahalgam a unique taste. Other popular items are Modur Pulaav (sweet potato eaten as a dessert), Muj Gaad (fish with radish), Nadir-Haak or Gogji or Montji (lotus stems cooked with radish/spinach), and more. Some famous places to eat in Pahalgam are Log Inn, Troutbeat, Dana Pani, Nathus Rasoi, Palestine Restaurant, and Punjabi Rasoi.
Shopping in Pahalgam
There aren’t many shops and a variety of things to buy when it comes to shopping in Pahalgam. Most tourists on their visit buy Pashmina shawls and stoles as it is very popular all over the world. Colourful hand-embroidered jackets and phirans, cigars, lamps, handicrafts made of silver, copper, and wood are some popular things to buy in Pahalgam. Do not spend on expensive things from the roadside but yes, you can buy Kashmiri stoles and scarves as they can be cheap and very useful.
Useful Tips for Pahalgam Trip
- Do not wear revealing clothes while visiting a religious place.
- Respect the local culture.
- Learn some local phrases to interact with the locals better.
- For skiing and ice skating, December and January are the best time to visit Pahalgam.