Pilgrimage Tour
Pilgrimage Tour

Sonmarg Travel Guide

Sonmarg translates to “Meadow of Gold” and can definitely be referred as one. The beautiful hill station of Sonmarg lies in the Ganderbal district of Jammu and Kashmir at an elevation of 2,800 m. Sonmarg lies 80 km from Srinagar and 14.5 km from Baltal, which is one of the route that pilgrims take for the pious Amarnath Yatra begins.

From snow-capped peaks to crystal clear lakes to mesmerizing meadows, Sonmarg offers a vast range of experiences for those seeking it. It truly is a paradise in itself.

Places to see in Sonmarg

  1. Nilagrad River – Nilagrad River is a mountain river red in colour revered for its healing properties by the people. The pine trees and the picturesque meadows gently overlooks the river meeting the Indus River. The meadows around Nilagrad River are an ideal spot to enjoy family picnics and to enjoy a peaceful time listening to the soft flowing river.
  2. Zoji La – At an elevation of 3,528 m, Zoji La is one of the highest mountain passes in Kashmir located in the National Highway 1D between Srinagar and Leh. The historic pass which was once captured by Pakistan and re-captured by India the same year, offers a bird’s eye view of the beautiful valley that lies below. The thrill and excitement of experiencing Zoji La is outworldly.
  3. Gadsar Lake – Also known as the Yemsar Lake or the Valley of Flowers, Gadsar Lake is a high altitude oligotrophic lake situated at an elevation of 5,000 m. Gadsar Lake is surrounded by beautiful floras and an environment that leaves an enchanting spell on anyone who visits the lake. The lake contains several species of fish including the brown trouts. No wonder the literal translation of ‘Gadsar Lake’ is ‘Lake of fishes’.
  4. Thajiwas Glacier – Located just 3 km from Sonmarg, Thajiwas Glacier is a mesmerizing glacier surrounded by snow-clad mountains, lush meadows, and clear waterfalls. You can trek towards this beauty which is comparatively shorter compared to treks to other glaciers of this region. Camp at Thajiwas Glacier, engage in skiing, and enjoy the peaceful feel of the place.
  5. Krishanasar Lake – Krishansar Lake is a high altitude oligotrophic lake located at an elevation of 3,801 m. Krishnasar Lake literally translates to ‘Lake of Krishna’ and is a peaceful place full of beautiful floras. The lake features different species of fish including trouts. The place is ideal for picnics, camping, fishing, trekking, and angling.
  6. Vishansar Lake – Located at an elevation of 3,710 m, Vishansar Lake literally translates to ‘Lake of Vishnu’. It is a high altitude lake and is fed by glaciers and Krishansar Lake. The distance between Krishansar Lake and Vishansar Lake is just 1.8 km and you can trek up to both the lakes together.

Things to do in Sonmarg

  1. White River Rafting – The experience of white water rafting from Baltal to Shutkari Bridge is one of the adventures you shouldn’t miss out in Sonmarg.
  2. Trekking – With numerous high altitude lakes, glaciers, and meadows Sonmarg offers trekking options for newbies and experts across breathtaking trails.
  3. Hiking and Camping

How to reach Sonmarg

By Flight : The nearest airport from Sonmarg is Srinagar which is located 70 km from Sonmarg. From Srinagar, you can reach Sonmarg either by bus or taxis.
By Train : The nearest railway station from Sonmarg is Udhampur and Jammu which is located at a distance of 250 km and 300 km from Sonmarg respectively. From Udhampur or Jammu, you can reach Sonmarg either by bus or taxis.
By Bus : If you travel by bus, then you need to travel to Jammu or Srinagar first. Buses to Jammu or Srinagar are easily available from Delhi. From Jammu or Srinagar you can travel to Sonmarg via bus or taxi.

Best time to visit Sonmarg

The best time to visit Sonmarg is during summers from the month of March to June. At this time the weather is pleasant and perfect for hiking, camping, and trekking.

The months during July and August sees a large crowd too due to the holy Amarnath Yatra.

Avoid visiting Sonmarg during winters as at this time it snows heavily and the roads may remain blocked.

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