Pahalgam Sightseeing – Snow skiing an attraction during winter months

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Pahalgam - Quick Facts

Area: 32.27 sq. Km.
Population: 5,922
Altitude: 3505 m above sea level
Season: October To February
Clothing: Summer- Light woollen, Winter- Heavy woollen
Rainfall: 15 cm average
Languages: Urdu, Kashmiri & Dogri


Pahalgam is a town and a notified area committee in Anantnag district in India's northernmost state of Jammu and Kashmir. It is a popular tourist destination, and every year, many tourists visit Pahalgam. Pahalgam is located at 34°01'N 75°11'E? /? 34.01°N 75.19°E? / 34.01; 75.19. It has an average elevation of 2740 metres (8989 feet). Demographics As of 2001[update] India census, Pahalgam had a population of 5922. Males constitute 56% of the population and females 44%. Pahalgam has an average literacy rate of 35%, lower than the Indian national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 49%, and female literacy is 17%. In Pahalgam, 14% of the population is under 6 years of age. Tourist Attraction Arguably one of the most beautiful places on earth, the town of Pahalgam (Village of Shepherds) offers breathtaking views.

One can just relax in one of the many hotels in Pahalgam, or trek on some of the many mountains. One can trek to Lidderwat, Kolohoi Glacier or to Sonmarg. Snow skiing is an attraction during the winter months (from December to late February). Pahalgam is also the entry point for the famous Amarnath Cave, a holy site for Hindus. There was a conflict recently involving the temple. Kolahoi Glacier Kolohoi Glacier, situated up the Lidder Valley, just below Mount Kolohoi, is currently a hanging glacier. It is basically hollowed out from global warming, the Asian brown cloud, and local environmental factors associated with mountain hydrology. According to the mountaineers from Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering (JIM) in 2008, the glacier has receded by half since 1985.


By Air
Pahalgam is in Anantnag District and is about 96 Kms from Srinagar. The nearest Airport is in Badgam Distt. This Airport is connected with major cities of India.

By Rail

The nearest Rail Head is at Jammu and from there National Highway NH1A connects the Kashmir valley with India.

By
Road
The road to Pahalgam takes from Khannabal or alteralternatively from Bijbehara towns from this National Highway. Every sort of transport suiting every budget from Buses to Taxis ply on this Highway.
Pahalgam Distance(s):
•        Chandanwari 16 km.
•        Pissu Top 19.6 km.
•        Sheeshnag 25.6 km.
•        Holy Cave 46.7 km.


Pahalgam Adventure

Pahalgam is the starting point of a number of trekking and hiking trails to the surrounding mountains. Trekking around Pahalgam is exhilarating, as it takes the traveler through virgin pine forests, clear mountain streams, and meadows of wildflowers.
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Aru (11 km: 2,408m)

This charming meadow can be reached by walking along a mountain path. The river Lidder disappears at Gur Khumb and reappears after 27 mts.

Lidderwat (22km: 3,408m)
A beautiful camping site set among dense forests. Starting point of the trek to the Sindh Valley.

Kolohi (1,467 m)
Base for a three-day return trek to the Kolohi Glacier.

Tarsar Lake (34 km: 3,962m)
It can be reached from Lidderwat. There are delightful camping sites and flower meadows at Sikiwas, 24 kms from here. To reach the nearby Mansar Lake one has to cross a 243 mts high bridge.

Lake at Pahalgam


Tulian Lake

If one continues 11-km beyond Baisaran one reaches the Tulian Lake at 3,353m, 1,200m higher up. It is covered in ice for much of the year and surrounded by peaks, which rise more than 300m above its shores. It also can be reached by pony trek.

Liddar River
The Liddar River is popular among travelers interested in angling. Stretches of this river are suitable for trout fishing. Travelers interested in fishing have to obtain a fishing license from the Directorate of Fisheries in Srinagar.

Amarnathji Yatra
A journey into faith Every Year Shri Amarnathji Yatra will commence from both the routes, of Pahalgam and Baltal. The Antm Darshan will held on Raksha Bhandhan. Lord Shiva is known to have made his home in the Himalayas. He built no house nor shelter, not for himself or his bride. He was an ascetic, and yet married; he could be both for "he was the wild god sporting in the forest or taking his ease on a cloud.

Legend has it that Shiva recounted to Parvati the secret of creation in the Amarnathji cave. Unknown to them, a pair of mating pigeons eavesdropped on this conversation and having learned the secret, are reborn again and again, and have made the cave their eternal abode. Many pilgrims report seeing the pigeons-pair when they trek the arduous route to pay obeisance before the ice-lingam (the phallic symbol of Shiva).

Situated in a narrow gorge at the farther end of Lidder valley, Amarnathji stands at 3,888 m and is 45 km from Pahalgam and 141 km from Srinagar. Though the original pilgrimage subscribes that the yatra be undertaken from Srinagar, the more common practice is to begin the journey from Pahalgam, and cover the distance to Amarnathji and back in four or five days. Pahalgam is 96 km from Srinagar.

Chandanwari (2,895 m), 16 kms from Pahalgam, is the starting point of the yatra that takes place every year in the month of Sawan (July to August). The road from Pahalgam to Chandanwari is on fairly flat terrain and can be undertaken by car. From Chandanwari onwards the track becomes much steeper, and is accessible on foot or by pony. About 11 kms from Chandanwari is the mountain lake of Sheshnag (3,574 m), after which, 13 kms away is the last stop, Panchtarni. The Amarnath cave is 6 kms away from there. During the month of Sawan, an ice stalagmite forms a natural shivling in the Amarnath cave, which waxes and wanes with the moon.

Since the base point for the pilgrim's trek is picturesque Pahalgam, a large tented township springs up to accommodate the pilgrims. The conduct of the yatra is a gigantic task in which the State Government takes the assistance of the security departments for providing security and helping to keep the route open. All intermediate halting places have the same kind of facilities as are provided at Pahalgam, and a Yatra Officer is appointed to conduct the pilgrimage.

What to Do


Horse Riding
Ponies can be hired directly or through the Tourist Office. Tariff boards are displayed at all important locations.

Golf
Pahalgam has an 18-hole Golf Course, which is presently under upgradation and is expected to be playable by the middle of 2010.

Fishing
The Lidder River has excellent fishing beats for brown trout. The fishing season stretches from April to September. Permits are issued, for a maximum of three days at a time, on a first-come - first-served basis and are charged on a per day per rod basis. Fishing equipment can be hired in Srinagar. Live baits and spinning are not allowed. For permits contact the Directorate of Fisheries, Tourist Reception Centre, and Srinagar.

Trekking

The environs of Pahalgam offer exciting trekking opportunities, the best known being: Pahalgam - Chandanwari- Sheshnag- Panchtarni- Amarnath Cave Temple- Sonamarg. Equipment is available on hire from Tourism Department; besides Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering also facilitates the Trekkers.


Pahalgam, originally a shepherds' village, is naturally known for products made of wool. Gabbas, Namdas, Chain Stich material, Shawls etc can be purchased from local shops.

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