10 things to do when in Gulmarg
A beautiful hill station that lies at a distance of 56 kilometres from Srinagar (closest airport ). Nestled with stunning peaks in the Himalayan ranges, Gulmarg is an eye catching place with picturesque surroundings, serene lakes & beautiful gardens with mind blowing flowers and fragrance. If you’re looking for some adventure, there is one of the best ski resorts in India.
Things to do in Gulmarg
1. Apharwat Peak
Apharwat peak situated at height of 4390 metres ( 14,403 ft ) above sea level . The LOC is hardly few kms from here . It’s lies in the second phase of cable car ride from Gulmarg this is a must in list of things to do as this place assures a wonderful experience with snow , reaching here is highly dependant on the weather conditions . It recieves heavy snowfall for much of the year .
2. Gulmarg Gandola
The two-stage gondola lift ferries about 600 people per hour to and from Kongdoori Mountain, a shoulder of nearby Apharwat Peak (4,200 m (13,780 ft)). The ropeway project is a joint venture of the Jammu and Kashmir government and French firm Pomagalski. The first stage transfers from the Gulmarg resort at 2,600 m (8,530 ft) to Kongdoori Station in the bowl-shaped Kongdori valley. The second stage of the ropeway, which has 36 cabins and 18 towers, takes skiers to a height of 3,747 m (12,293 ft) on Kongdoori Mountain, a shoulder of nearby Afarwat Peak (4,200 m (13,780 ft)).
The timing of the gondola is 10 AM (IST) to 5 PM (It’s highly dependent upon the weather at both stages).It takes approximately 9 minutes to reach the first stage and 12 minutes for second stage.
3. Go discover Gulmarg Adventures
Go Gulmarg Adventures makes ones experience a most memorable one. Be it Skiing, Snowboarding, Sledging, Snowmobile or any other adventure sport available with them .Go Gulmarg Adventures arranges everything. Nobody can do it better than Go Gulmarg Adventures.
4. Gulmarg Ski Resort
Gulmarg Resort is a big ski hill serviced by a gondola, and you are going to have to get the lungs going to make the most of it. The lift tops out at about 4,000m with the summit of Mt Apharwat another couple of hundred metres above that, which provides 1,500+ metres of vertical. Some of the bowls off the summit have a straight 1,200 metres of thigh-destroying vertical descent!
The amount of Gulmarg ski terrain is virtually unlimited and includes alpine bowls, chutes, cornices, glade skiing amongst ancient pines, and glacier skiing without the glacier(!). That’s not to mention the epic ski journeys down to some of the local shrines and villages which add a whole new dimension to the terrain.
The Gulmarg skiing and snowboarding is suited to advanced and expert riders who enjoy off-piste backcountry terrain. Gulmarg is definitely not the place for the average beginner or intermediate rider. Gulmarg is also best appreciated by those with a propensity for hiking and skinning, and laid-back riders who can cope with an “adventure”.
5. Outer circle walk
The outer circle road runs around the Gulmarg golf course and covers almost everything that Gulmarg has to offer. One loop on the outer circle is roughly 10 kms and the terrain is flat with a few easy uphill and downhill sections. It takes around two and half to three hours to finish the walk at a leisurely pace. During the walk you’ll get splendid views of snow covered peaks including the Nanga Parbat which at roughly 8,500 meters is the fourth highest peak in the world. A number of attractions of Gulmarg like the main market, children’s park, Shiva temple and the Ice skating rink can be covered during the outer circle walk and a few detours from the main outer circle road. For the brave and adventurous, a walk along the outer circle during winter evenings is awe inspiring. You’ll get to see orange lights, of the golf course and the hamlet, shrouded in a fog that gives the area a rather ghostly appearance. If you’re lucky, you might get to experience fresh snowfall which will certainly be a memory to last a lifetime. A word of caution though, ensure that you have proper footwear if you’re planning to do this walk in the winters as there may be deep powder snow and several stretches of hard ice which make it difficult to walk.
6. Gulmarg Alpine Guides
7. Baba Rishi Shrine
This is a very famous & auspicious shrine on the way to Gulmarg – just 4 kms detour .This is a shrine dedicated to Baba Reshi who served as a major courtier during the reign of King Zain-ul-Abidin, King of Kashmir. The mosque is said to be dating back to 1480.This 500-year-old shrine was constructed with the architectural style of that time and it was dominated by Persian and Mughal influences. Inside the tomb are beautifully-crafted wooden artworks reminiscent of the bygone era. The tomb can accommodate more than a 1000 devotees at any given time.
8. Rani Temple
This temple which is in the centre of Gulmarg among hotels and restaurants /shops was constructed by the wife of Maharaja Sir Hari Singh and is reached by climbing 70 steps . The best way to get there is to engage a single seater ATV outside the Gondola entrance station at a cost of Rs 1500/hour which enables travellers to stop for a while at the scenic strawberry valley as well . It is a very small temple with Shiva as the main deity . You get beautiful views of the Apharwat range of mountains from the temple as well as of Gulmarg below . As some travellers have pointed out here before, the temple became famous after the song in the Rajesh Khanna-Mumtaz starrer Hindi movie “Aap ki Kasam” was recorded here in the 70s .
9. St Mary Church
10 .Children Park
Its a neat and clean park and charged nominal fees for entrance. This park is situated near golf club and is very well maintained and has lot of attraction available like artificial lake where you can enjoy boating and fishing.Good place to spend some time with children
11. Alpathar Lake
Revitalize your senses through a spa experience at The Khyber
The Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa
65km away from the Srinagar airport, this stunning resort offers a 360–degree view of the majestic Pir Panjal ranges and the Apharwat Peak. The highlight of your experience at Khyber Himalayan Resort and Spa will be the wellness treatment at The Khyber Spa by L’occitane. The spa therapies amidst the serene environs will leave you feeling de-stressed and rejuvenated. The Khyber Himalayan Resort is also known for the skiing opportunity it offers on the adjacent snow-covered slopes.
Must Have Experience: The Revitalising Aromachologie Massage should be on your must–try list.