One of the most beautiful destinations in India is the region of Jammu and Kashmir. From clear lakes glimmering like gems, to rolling hills, lush greenery and fruit orchards, trekking in Kashmir takes you deeper into this paradise-like land.
The greatest challenge when it comes to trekking Kashmir is the altitude and the weather. You’re advised to set aside a day or two to ensure you are fully acclimatized, before you begin trekking in Kashmir. However, views such as snow-clad peaks set against the blue skies make it all worthwhile. Some of the popular destinations while trekking in Kashmir include The Kashmir Great Lakes trek, Chadar Trek, Stok Kangri trek, and the Markha Valley trek.
Trekking in Kashmir: The Kashmir Great Lakes trek
This trekking expedition will prove why Kashmir is known as paradise on Earth. This moderately intense trek will take you to the five Kashmir Great Lakes of Kishansar, Vishansar, Gadsar, Satsar and the twin lakes of Gangabal. You’ll walk through alpine meadows, trek through high altitude passes, and camp beside the lakes at night. This eight-day trek to the Kashmir Great Lakes should be on the list of every adventurer and nature lover.
Trekking in Kashmir: Chadar Trek
The Zanskar river meanders through narrow gorges freezes over in the winter months, resembling an unending sheet of ice; hence the name 'Chadar' (sheet or blanket). The Chadar trek in Ladakh is only available for a couple of months in a year, and is one of the most coveted spots for trekking in Kashmir. This once-in-a-lifetime trek lets you walk over a frozen river, between the towering walls of the valley through which the river flows. You’ll get stunning views of the river, of the stark and frozen land around, and of the rock walls on both sides.
Trekking in Kashmir: Stok Kangri
Close to the stunning town of Leh, this expedition while trekking in Kashmir lets you explore the treasured towns of Ladakh, and witness the daily life of its people. This trek also offers splendid views of the Zanskar and Karakoram ranges from the summit. Trekking in Kashmir takes you to some unbelievable heights, and this trail takes you to the highest peak of 20,182 feet! Be prepared to trek through challenging routes at varying oxygen levels.
Trekking in Kashmir: Markha Valley
One of the most popular spots for trekking in Kashmir is the Markha valley. The hamlet of Markha seems like a little oasis in the arid terrain of Ladakh, where participants can trek through remote gorges and vast undulating grazing grounds, cross several streams and rivers, and experience Ladakhi culture and way of life. On this moderately challenging but long trek, participants get to climb two very high passes - Gandala la (4800 m) and Kongmaru La (5150 m) offering stunning views from the top.
Trekking in Kashmir will give you multiple sightseeing options, with great beauty and splendid landscapes across all of them. The best time to go trekking in Kashmir would be between the months of May to September, when the temperature is moderate.
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