Best Treks and Hikes in Jammu and Kashmir

Best Treks in Kashmir

Best Treks and Hikes in Jammu and Kashmir

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Jammu and Kashmir are one of the best places to go trekking and camping. The treks here can take you to some of the rarely seen and isolated places, which are also full of spectacular natural beauty. Trekking is also the best way to see the raw virgin forests, shimmering lakes, cascading waterfalls, frozen glaciers, nomadic shepherd villages, serene valleys, and towering mountain peaks. While some treks are challenging, others are very easy and even families can do these treks. Jammu Kashmir trekking tours are the best way to ensure that you get all facilities, equipment, and support on your treks.

Find More: Jammu & Kashmir Travel Packages

1. Great Lakes Trek

The Kashmir Great Lakes Trek is undoubted, one of the best trekking routes that you can take in Jammu and Kashmir. The trekking route is full of scenic panoramas and mountain vistas. The lakes that you can cover on this trek are Krishansar Lake, Vishansar Lake, Gadsar Lake, Nichnai Lake, Yamsar Lake, Satsar Lake, Gangabal Lake, Nandkol Lake. The Kashmir Great Lakes Trek takes you through some of the most scenic landscapes in Kashmir. You have to climb steep mountain slopes and descent at some places also includes walking on glaciers. But the views of surrounding mountains, flowering valleys, snow-covered mountain tops, green alpine meadows, and Himalayan wildlife make you forget every trace of fatigue.

  • Maximum altitude: Gadsar Pass (13,800 ft)
  • Starting Point: Sonmarg
  • Ending Point: Naranag
  • Trekking distance: 72 km
  • Duration: 7 days
  • District: Ganderbal, Kashmir
  • Level: Moderate to Difficult
  • Best time: July to September

2. Chadar Trek

Walking on the frozen Zanskar River is the highest level of thrill that you can have on this Chadar Trek. This is one of the most famous treks in Jammu and Kashmir. This is a long trek of more than 6 days, and every moment of this trek is exciting. You will have to brave cold temperatures on this trek. But the scenery, caves, atmosphere, and campsites all remove fatigue. Walking on snow and ice, crossing rivers and coming across frozen waterfalls, and spotting incredible wildlife are some experiences that you will have on this trek. Landscapes will keep on changing, from steep mountain slopes to glaciers and alpine grasslands. Chadar trek can be challenging and it will take some trekking and physical fitness for this trek.

  • Maximum altitude: 11,123 ft
  • Starting Point: Leh
  • Ending Point: Leh
  • Trekking distance: 62 km
  • Duration: 9 days
  • District: Leh, Ladakh
  • Level: Difficult
  • Best time: January to February

3. Stok Kangri Trek

Stok Kangri trek can be challenging and exciting at the same time. This trek is one of the highest treks in Jammu and Kashmir. Stok Kangri trek can be very difficult as you have to walk on glaciers, brave sub-zero temperatures, and walk on steep mountain ridges. However, once you reach the summit of Stok Kangri, you can view the mesmerizing view of the Zanskar and Indus river valleys. Stok Kangri trek is a 10-day trek, and you can stay in campsites at various places on this trek. But one of the most breathtaking sights is the view of the tallest mountain on earth, K2, on a clear day. Camping and walking through villages can be a beautiful adventure into the Ladakhi lifestyle and cuisine.

  • Maximum altitude: Stok Kangri Peak (20,180 ft)
  • Starting Point: Leh
  • Ending Point: Leh
  • Trekking distance: 40 km
  • Duration: 9 days
  • District: Leh, Ladakh
  • Level: Difficult
  • Best time: Mid-June to September

4. Amarnath Cave Trek

Amarnath Cave Trek is a religious trek but the adventures here are no less than those of the above-mentioned treks. It is a natural cave formation with an ice shiv linga, which is immensely holy for the Hindus. Lord Shiva is said to have revealed his secret of immortality in this cave. The religious trek to Amarnath Cave is one of the greatest pilgrimages in North India and the Himalayas. The trek or take the help of ponies to reach Amarnath Cave near Pahalgam, Kashmir. The cave is estimated to be 5000 years old.

  • Maximum altitude: Amarnath Cave (3888m)
  • Starting Point: Srinagar
  • Ending Point: Srinagar
  • Trekking distance: 36 to 48 km
  • Duration: 3-5 days
  • District: Pahalgam, Kashmir
  • Level: Easy
  • Best time: July & August

5. Vaishno Devi Trek

Vaishno Devi Temple in Katra near Jammu is one of the foremost temples of Durga. The temple is situated in Trikuta Hills and the yatra to this temple is one of the toughest Hindu pilgrimage circuits in India. Vaishno Devi Yatra starts from Jammu and Katra is the place where the actual trek takes place. The climb up to the shrine is done on ponies, palkis, foot, or ropeway. Those who take the climbing route by foot have to climb a steep ascent of 13 km. In between, you can take a rest at places like Ardhkuwari, and Himkoti. There are food stalls, and street shops, throughout the trek, and pilgrims can even find accommodation in Ardhkuwari, which is halfway to Vaishno Devi temple.

  • Maximum altitude: Trikuta Mountains (11,750 ft)
  • Starting Point: Jammu
  • Ending Point: Jammu
  • Trekking distance: 15 km
  • Duration: 1 day
  • District: Jammu
  • Level: Easy
  • Best time: throughout the year

6. Markha Valley Trek

Markha Valley Trek can be your Ladakhi adventure. The trek gives you a golden opportunity to view Tibetan monasteries on mountain cliffs, shepherd hamlets, cattle grazing meadows, remote river gorges, and campsites. Markha Valley Trek goes through mountain streams and mountain passes. Watch the most scenic Himalayan landscapes here on this trek. You can stay at campsites or homestays in villages. You can enter into an eerie land of Ladakhi landscapes, with their unique rock formations. Markha Valley Trek is a moderately difficult trek where you should have peak physical fitness and some trekking experience in high-altitude regions of India.

  • Maximum altitude: Kongmaru La (17,100 ft)
  • Starting Point: Leh
  • Ending Point: Leh
  • Trekking distance: 65 km
  • Duration: 8 days
  • District: Leh, Ladakh
  • Level: Moderate to Difficult
  • Best time: Mid-June to September

7. Tarsar Marsar Trek

The twin lakes of Tarsar and Marsar are breathtakingly beautiful. The Tarsar Marsar Lake trek is one of the finest in Jammu and Kashmir. The trekking route goes through alpine meadows, gurgling streams, mountain passes, tiny hamlets, and rocky terrain. The surrounding mountains seem to keep you company throughout the trek. The glaciers and snow-capped peaks are enough to give you plenty of excitement and thrill. The amazing thing about this trek is that you get to camp beside the lakes and admire the wondrous beauty of grasslands and wildflowers that grow here.

  • Maximum altitude: 13,500 ft
  • Starting Point:
  • Ending Point:
  • Trekking distance: 48 km
  • Duration: 7 days
  • District: Pahalgam, Kashmir
  • Level: Easy to Moderate
  • Best time: July to September

8. Naranag Mahlish Trek

Among the multi-day treks in Jammu and Kashmir, the Naranag Mahlish Trek is one of the most thrilling. The trek allows you to witness the pristine beauty of lakes and the raw natural beauty of Kashmir. The Naranag Mahlish trekking route goes through pine forests, mountain meadows, Kashmiri villages, and rocky mountain terrain. You can see the Gangabal and Nundkol alpine lakes on this trek. The trek also gives you a glimpse of Harmukh Mountain. On the route, there are Buddhist temples and flowering valleys with rocks strewn among the greenery.

  • Maximum altitude: Kolesar Lake (3800m)
  • Starting Point: Srinagar
  • Ending Point: Srinagar
  • Trekking distance: 33 km
  • Duration: 6 days
  • District: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Level: Easy
  • Best time: June to October

9. Naranag Gangabal Trek

Gangabal Lake is a pristine blue lake at the foot of Harmukh Mountain. A trek to this lake from Naranag village is what this trek is all about. On the trekking route, you will have a glimpse of the steep gorges and ravines, alpine meadows, ancient temples, and alpine lakes. The campsites on this route are situated in breathtakingly beautiful valleys. You will experience Ladakhi cuisine and their simple rustic lives on this Naranag Gangabal Trek. Gangabal Lake is an alpine lake with trout fish. The surrounding mountains cast a reflection on this lake making the landscape stunningly beautiful. You may even see a rainbow between the valleys.

  • Maximum altitude: Gangabal Lake (3700m)
  • Starting Point: Srinagar
  • Ending Point: Srinagar
  • Trekking distance: 32 km
  • Duration: 6 days
  • District: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Level: Moderate
  • Best time: June to October

10. Kolahoi Glacier Trek

The Kolahoi Glacier is the source of the Lidder River. The glacier is near Kolahoi mountain peak. The Kolahoi Glacier trek is a trek that ranks among the most adventurous treks in Kashmir. The trek starts from Aru valley and goes through numerous lakes and small ponds, alpine meadows, pine forests, mountain streams, and icy glaciers. Kolahoi Glacier is, however, meant to be seen from a distance, and is a very unsafe place. The trekking route goes through rocky patches, giant boulders, steep ascents, grassy meadows, and crevasses. You will get to trek beside the Lidderwat river, cross river bridges, and camp in the wide open valleys.

  • Maximum altitude: Mount Kolahoi (5425m)
  • Starting Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Ending Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Trekking distance: 50 km
  • Duration: 6 days
  • District: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Level: Easy to Moderate
  • Best time: March to October

11. Kashmir Alpine Lakes Trek

Kashmir is home to some of the purest and clearest alpine lakes. The Kashmir Alpine Lakes Trek is one of the longest treks in Jammu and Kashmir. The trek takes you to Krishansar Lake, Vishansar Lake, Gadsar Lake, Gangabal Lake, Satsar Lake, Nundkol Lake, Yamsar Lake, and many other smaller lakes and ponds. The trek goes through grassy meadows, river streams, rocky terrain, lush green forests, high altitude mountain passes. You will find camping grounds near the lakes and spend the night in picturesque surroundings. On route are nomadic villages, grazing grounds, and pastures, views of glaciers and mountain valleys. In some places the ascent is steep and you will have to walk on large boulders.

  • Maximum altitude: Kolahoi Base Camp (4210m)
  • Starting Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Ending Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Trekking distance: 105 km
  • Duration: 15 days
  • District: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Level: Easy
  • Best time: June to November

12. Sonmarg Vishansar Naranag Trek

The Sonamarg Vishansar Naranag Trek is amazing in Kashmir. The trekking route goes through green meadows, alpine lakes, mountain streams, scenic valleys, and small hamlets. On the route, you will have to cross mountain passes, walk through meadows, wade through mountain streams, and camp in tents. The trek is 7 days long and is a chance to view the spellbinding natural scenery of the high-altitude regions of Kashmir.

  • Maximum altitude: Nichnai Pass (4080m)
  • Starting Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Ending Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Trekking distance: 46 km
  • Duration: 6 days
  • District: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Level: Easy
  • Best time: June to October

13. Bandipora Gangabal Naranag Trek

Some treks like the Bandipora Gangbal Naranag Trek are such that they will remain forever in your memories for years to come. The trek route goes through amazing pine forests and you can walk along the Jhelum river on this trek. On the route, you will pass small shepherd boys grazing their cattle, small rivers, streams, green pasture lands, and rocky patches. You can camp outdoors among the serene valleys and watch the mountains and the starry night sky. If you are lucky, you will spot some Himalayan wildlife too. Some areas on this trek have steep ascents. However, the panoramic mountain and valleys, coupled with camping near lakes, and crossing valleys will give you an unmatched thrill.

  • Maximum altitude: Gangabal Lake (3700m)
  • Starting Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Ending Point: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Trekking distance: 30 km
  • Duration: 6 days
  • District: Srinagar, Kashmir
  • Level: Easy
  • Best time: March to November
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