OVERVIEW- The Amarnath Yatra is organized every year by the J &K Govt. during Shravani Mela in July-August(Shravan month in Hindu calendar) - the only time in the whole year when the Amarnath cave is accessible. The cave is placed at an altitude of 3,888m, about 141 km from Srinagar, the capital of Jammu and Kashmir and reached through Pahalgam town. The shrine has an important part to play in Hinduism and is considered to be one of the holiest shrines in Hinduism. The annual 'Amarnath Yatra' is marked by 'Pratham Pujan' which is said to invoke the blessings of Baba Amarnath. It is said that the 'lingum' in the holy cave grows and shrinks with the lunar cycle. Moreover, since the ice is collected from the water dripping from the top of the cave due to the melting of the ice on top of it, the 'lingum' reaches a maximum around July-August when the ice caps around the cave are melting. Water seeps into the rocks that form the cave and progressively fades thereafter. As per the religious beliefs, it has been claimed that the lingam grows and shrinks with the phases of the moon reaching its height during the summer festival. A journey which will rediscover the nature and its love which is always inside but one has never felt.
SRINAGAR- Srinagar is the summer capital of the state of Jammu and Kashmir and is the pride of the beautiful valley of Kashmir. Srinagar is famous for its lakes and the charming rows of houseboats floating on them. It is festooned with wooden Kashmiri mosques and expansive gardens with wide variety of flora species.
SONMARG- Located at a distance of 79 kms from Srinagar the hill station is one of the popular attractions near the capital city. Surrounded by dense forests of alpine vegetation and with snow -capped mountains standing all along its boundaries, the valley of Sonmarg looks highly captivating.
BALTAL- Baltal Valley is a beautiful destination which serves as a camping area for pilgrims heading towards the Amarnath Caves. The destination is well-known to offer beautiful views of snow-capped mountains. Amarnath Caves are located at a distance of 15 km from Baltal Valley.
PAHALGAM- Pahalgam is one of the most popular tourist destinations of India. The hill town is well-known for its pleasant weather, serene ambiance and green surroundings. Tourists from all over the country and the world visit here to enjoy a holiday set amid natural beauty and tranquility.
Tour Destination: Srinagar - Baltal/Pahalgam - Amarnath Cave - Baltal/Pahalgam - Srinagar
Travel Duration: 03 Nights/04 Days
DAY 1: SRINAGAR - BALTAL OR PAHALGAM
Arrival at Srinagar Airport and drive to Baltal via Sonamarg or Pahalgam. Rest of the day free for acclimatization and prepare for next days trek to Amarnath Cave.
Overnight at Hotel/Tents.
DAY 2: TREK TO AMARNATH CAVE
The devotees start their yatra from Srinagar or Pahalgam on foot and take one of the two possible routes.
ROUTE 1: The shorter but steeper trek via Baltal, Domial, Barari and Sangam is 14 km long and allows people to take a round trip in 1-2 days. However, ponies are not allowed on this route due to safety reasons. One has to either walk or be carried on 'Dandies' (carried on a seat atop shoulders of other people). This Amarnath Yatra route is considered more favorable for returning back from the shrine than on the way up as steep slope is said to cause serious health problems among un-acclimatized visitors. Young, healthy and people looking for adventure amidst the religious trip happen to take this trek.
ROUTE 2: The longer Amarnath Yatra route via Pahalgam is generally preferred by most of the devotees. The length of the trek varies from 36 to 48 km depending upon the devotion of the pilgrim. The trek usually takes 3-5 days one way. The Amarnath route is much wider than the Baltal trek and slopes gradually. However, one will also find it crowded by ponies for almost whole of the route. Aged, sick or people with past history of illnesses are advised to take this Yatra route.
Later return back to Baltal/Sonamarg or Pahalgam.
Overnight at Hotel/Tents.
DAY 3: BALTAL OR PAHALGAM - SRINAGAR
Today drive to Srinagar. Transfer to hotel. In the evening move around the town and revel in the scenic surroundings. You can take a long ride in the Shikara on ever beautiful Dal Lake.
Overnight at Hotel.
DAY 4: SRINAGAR DEPARTURE
Day free for shopping.
SHOPPING- Kashmir is also a shopper's paradise. A tourist can buy Pashmina shawls, carpets, papier mashie, walnuts, saffron, willow wicker, leather jackets and bags, cricket bats, Honey, copper utensils, wooden handicrafts, Kashmiri embroidered suits, saris and jewellery.
Later in the evening, travel back by car/flight/train towards onward destination.
Distance & Time (Approx)
Jammu & Kashmir at a Glance
Srinagar at a Glance
Sonmarg at a Glance
Pahalgam at a Glance
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