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Peer Ki Gali

Benish Ali Bhat

At an altitude of around 11,300 ft, Peer Ki Gali is the highest pass on the Mughal Road and has historically served as a gateway to Kashmir Valley. 

The picturesque pass mesmerises tourists and travellers with its breathtaking beauty. The place looks surreal with gushing streams, fresh breeze and clouds floating all around.

The spot is increasingly becoming a favoured tourist destination.

Hari Parbat Fort

Nishah Zargar

At the top of Kohimaran hill, the 200-year-old Hari Parbat fort built by Afghan governor Atta Mohammad is an integral part of Srinagar skyline.

The first fortifications on the site were actually built by Mughal emperor Akbar in 1590, but then the construction was never completed. The present fort was constructed in 1808 during the reign of Shuja Shah Durrani.

Badamwari

In Kashmir, almond blossoms are the harbingers of a vivacious spring. It is a sight to watch as the almond trees bloom with pinkish white flowers that sprout in the beginning of March – white as if seeing off the harsh winter and pink as to welcome the pleasant and colourful spring.

Lolab

Drive down from Srinagar and in around four hours you’re here in Lolab. Unwind yourself away from the hustle and bustle of your daily life. Lush green paddy fields against a backdrop of mountains and verdant forests await you. Tiny hamlets dot the valley. People are very welcoming and will offer you nunchai and homemade rotis. Children will guide you around.

Doodpathri

Doodhpathri may look like another meadow Kashmir is famous for. But it is more than that. You have to be there to know how Doodpathri is a grazing pasture for the Gujjar community whose wood and stone huts dot the meadow here and there. In the backdrop you’ll find pine forests.

A river gushes through the meadow. Its water is ice cold. Take a dip if you’re feeling too hot. You will find amazing pebbles around the stream which you would love to carry back home.

Doodpathri is over an hour’s drive from Srinagar, perched high on the deep mountains of Budgam.

Gurez

Are you a travel buff? Love mountains? Blue green river waters?And wide expanses of wild beauty? Then Gurez is the place for you. About 126 kms from Srinagar,  it takes roughly 6 hours from here. Take a taxi from the city. The ride is a joy. Enjoy what lies on the way.

Gurez has history hidden in its lap and falls along the famous Silk Route that once connected Kashmir to Kashgar. You may also call it ‘pre-historic’. It lacks mobile connectivity even today. So you can have time off your cell phone and its continuous buzz.

Lakes & longing

I  trekked down to Vishansar and Kishansar lakes around the middle of August along with my six friends. These lakes are above the Sonamarg valley. Plan a trek there next year somewhere between June and August. That is the best and only time to be there. Rest of the months are ice-cold.

At 9 am we were in Sonamarg. After some refreshments, we started off on foot. After a 2 km walk, we were at Thajewas glacier. We took a short rest, and then trekked a steep mountain up to Shokdari where from we could enjoy the beautiful view of the glaciers.

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