The name of the place Gulmarg is made up of two words – ‘Gul’ meaning flowers and ‘marg’ meaning meadow. It is a very beautiful spot. The forests are dense. The slopes of Gulmarg are lush green. It provides a very serene environment. The backdrop is formed by snow clad mountains. Skiing is an important activity.
Gulmarg is located in extreme north of the state of Jammu and Kashmir. It is found in the Baramulla district of the state. Srinagar is 57 kilometers away from Gulmarg. It is located at a height of 2730 meters. The Indo-Pakistan border is nearby.
Several films have been shot here owing to its mesmerizing beauty. Gulmarg was earlier known as “Gaurimarg”. It was given its new name by Sultan Yusuf Shah in the 16th century. Mughal Emperor Jahangir visited this place several times.
TOURIST PLACES IN GULMARG
Khilanmarg: Khilanmarg is situated 6 kilometers from Gulmarg. Beautiful snow capped peaks can be seen from it. During winters, it gets covered with flowers. Khilanmarg is situated 600 meters higher than Gulmarg. It results in puddles and swamps during summers when the snow melts. If the view is clear, one can see up to the Nanga Parbat and Nun and Kun.
Alpather Lake: This lake is situated at the foot of Apharwat peaks. It is situated 13 kilometers from Gulmarg. It remains frozen for the most part of the year. There are two ways that lead to the lake. One is a longer one but safer. It extends for 3810 meters up to Apharwat ridge and then for another 3843 meters up to the lake. The second path is a risky one. It involves a direct climb up the boulder strewn slope. It is an ideal place for excursion. Pony rides are available.
The Ningli Nallah: The origin of this beautiful stream is melting snow on Apharwat peaks and Alpather Lake. It flows for 8 kilometers up to Gulmarg. It later drains into River Jhelum near Sopur after flowing down the valley. It is an ideal picnic spot. The Gujars are the nomads that travel through here during summers.
Ferozpore Nallah : This stream can be reached from Tangmarg Road or the Outer Circular Walk. At ‘waters meet’, it drains into the River Bahan. Trout fishing is an important activity in this stream. The stream is situated about 5 kilometers from Gulmarg.
The source of the river is at Ferozpore peak which can be seen from Tangmarg. It is also known as Shinmahinyu. Tosa Maidan, which is a beautiful 50 kilometers walk is close by. The Jamainwali Gali pass is located close which offers the safest route to Punjab.
Shrine of Baba Reshi / Ziarat of Baba Reshi : It is a Muslim shrine. Located on the slopes below Gulmarg, it can be reached from Gulmarg or Tangmarg. The saint died in the year 1480. He served the Kashmir King Zain-ul-Abidin before becoming a saint. Thousands of devotees come here ever year.
Golf Courses: One of the world’s highest green golf courses is present at Gulmarg. A historical building which operates as a clubhouse is also present. Temporary memberships are available along with golf sets on hire and professional instructors.
Gondola Lift: It is a fun filled and exhilarating ride. It takes you through the pine clad peaks of the Himalayas.
Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve: The Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve contains several unique animal species such as Himalayan Musk Deer, Red Fox, Brown and Black Bear besides others. It has an altitude of 2400 meters. It stretches over an area of 180 square kilometers. Srinagar is 48 kilometers away from the reserve.
HOW TO REACH GULMARG
By Air: Srinagar is the nearest airport. Regular flights from Delhi to Srinagar are available.
By road: The state tourism provides good buses throughout the place.