its good time to travel kashmir..bit colder than peak seasons..
day 1 - arrive srinagar- houseboat stay- some local sightseeing and evening shikara ride at dal lake..
day 2- move to gulmarg - gondola ride night stay
day 3 - move to pahalgam- local sightseeing - evening at leisure.
day 4 - visit betab vallet-chandanbadi-aru valley etc.
day 5 - coma back to srinagar- hotel stay- local sightseeing - shoppint etc
day 6 - sonmarh and back
day 7 move back.
you can do sonmarg before gulmarg too.
October is nice time to visit Kashmir. You'll get to see snow clad mountains, saffron farming. Temp would be 23-24°C/5-6°C, must get woollens accordingly.
Day1 Arr. Srinagar. Check-in houseboat. Afternoon - shikara ride on Dal lake.
Day2 Transfer to hotel. Srinagar - Mughal Gardens, Hazratbal, Sankaracharya Temple. Afternoon - shopping.
Day3 Day trip to Sonmarg.
Day4 After breakfast transfer to Gulmarg, check-in hotel. Afternoon - roam around green meadow.
Day5 After breakfast - Gondola ride to Affarwat, snow activities. Afternoon - free at leisure.
Day6 Transfer to Pahalgam, enroute - Awantipura ruins. Check-in to hotel. Afternoon – strolling on the bank of river Lidder.
Day7 Pahalgam – Aru, Chandanbari and Betaab Valley. Evening – at leisure.
Day8 Transfer to Srinagar Airport, flyout.
AshisRoyEdited: 24 June 2013, 16:29
The itinerary provided by Ashis Roy is good, if you plan to do Gondola in Gulmarg then I would sincerely suggest book your ticket online. And be early to the spot. If you plan to start about 10 AM then be there at least by 8.30 AM or 9 AM. I just returned from Srinagar trip and saw the commotion over there regarding collecting boarding pass. I have posted my reviews and photos today and if passed by trip advisor it could be available shortly. It is under Heading Gondola Srinagar
Also if there is a lady in the group it would be helpfull to get the passes faster as there is separate queue for ladies. make sure you carry an proper ID card (voter ID, PAN etc) also if lady is collecting it ask her to take her as well. I am not sure about whether october is a peak season or not. Ashis can advice on this.
Although the trip from Gulmarg to Pahalgam it takes about 4-5 hrs but it may take longer as there is some stretch near prantha chowk where road is being constructed and one lane is used for incoming and outgoing traffic. We had started our journey from Gulmarg about 1:15 PM (afternoon) and reach pahalgam about 7.30 PM. So time it accordingly.
Best of luck for your travel
Thanks a lot AshisRoy !! :-) will come up with more questions while booking hotels and planning details !
Thanks Balbir for detailed inputs. Will surely check your photos.
Will also come back with more questions once I do my detailed trip planning !
I have a few questions:
1. In the 7 day iternary you have suggested, is it possible to cover Daksum, Kokarnag, Sinthan Top from Phalgam?
2. My travel dates are 29th Sept to 6th Oct. How is the situation in Kashmir now? I hope it will be safe to travel.
3. Also, I am planning to shortlist the hotels now, but not book any - directly go there and see the availability and check-in. Do you see any problem in this? Considering its not a very peak season, should we pre-book in advance?
4. For the sight seeing, we are planning to hire a taxi... My plan is - to do Srinagar sight seeing via local transport there and not have a full day taxi hire. For Sonmarg day trip, we will hire a full day taxi. For Gulmarg and Phalgam, do you suggest we hire a taxi for 4 days at a stretch? Or, should we just hire a taxi to transport us from Srinagar to Gulmarg and then leave that taxi and so on? Your inputs on this will be very helpful.
Only these queries for now. Thanks in advance for your reply.
Kashmir is peaceful and safe at present.
In the mentioned dates, hotels can be chosen on spot.
Hire the cab as and when needed. If you book the cab for entire trip, they may wave off night stay charges as its lean season.Edited: 09 September 2013, 19:49
Should I consider staying at Dal lake or Nagin lake ? Its our first trip to Kashmir and so we want to experience the culture around houseboat. Is Dal lake full of commotion and a lot noisy ?
At Dal lake I am thinking to stay at Chicago houseboat. However, they didn't offer any discounts and said the prices will be as per their website. 3300 for E.P and 5300 for M.A.P. Is this common for Chicago houseboats to not negotiate at all ? (may be they are no. 1 in TA and hence, dont negotiate or something?)
On the other side, Peacock houseboats have offered 20% on their tarrif card. So, it comes to 3600 for M.A.P
Thats almost 1700 rupees difference per day. I am planning to stay on houseboat for 2 days.
Do you think if I stay at Peacock houseboat, we will miss out on the hustle bustle experience that Dal lake can provide us ? Considering the rate, Peacock houseboat is more appealing.
Will be great to get your inputs.
Thanks for replying.
If you have kids, stay on Dal Lake, they will enjoy the activities. Although, Nagin Lake is beautiful amidst quiet atmosphere.
Chigago HB is good. There are other houseboats like Karnai Houseboats, Ambassador HB, Dawn Group of HB, Swan HB etc which are equally good.
If you want to stay on Nagin Lake, stay in Wangnoo HB, New Buckingham Palace HB, New Jacquelene HB, Flora.
Sometimes so called reviews are not correct.
More questions for you while I am detailing my trip.
If I have to choose between zojila pass vs thajiwas glacier which one is better .... ( visit on 2nd oct)
I read that both cannot be covered in a day trip and hence want your inputs.