"Life is not always what one wants it to be, but to make the best of it as it is, is the only way of being happy." ~ Jennie J Churchill


Jammu and Kashmir

At an altitude of 2,740 meters, Sonamarg, the meadow of gold, lies in the heart of a gorgeous valley carved by the river Sindh.

At an altitude of 2,740 meters, Sonamarg, the meadow of gold, lies in the heart of a gorgeous valley carved by the river Sindh. From snow-blanketed reaches the river surges through a gorge, then winds at leisure through the flower-strewn meadow. Lofty peaks, with flanks sparkling with glaciers that skim down almost to the camping sites, encircle Sonamarg. A thick forest cover of sycamore, alpine flowers, silver birch, fir and pine. Sonamarg offers adventure in the form of treks, sledging, angling, alpine skiing and white water rafting.

Thajiwas (3km)

The whole mountain range here is covered by glaciers. Water falls from these in silver sheets. A forest rest house and a tourist hut between Sonamarg and Thajiwas have excellent views.

The Lakes
The loveliest of the high altitude Himalayan lakes are Vishansar and Krishnasar. The translucent waters of these lakes are speckled with ice flakes, and the occasional trout that pops up now and then.

Also called Harmukh Ganga, it is sacred to Hindus. It can be reached from Sonamarg via Krishnasar and Vishansar - a trek through enchanting scenery. The ice-fed Gadsar Lake is in the vicinity.

Zoji-La Pass
20 kms east of Sonamarg lies the gateway to the Ladakh plateau, the Zoji-La Pass at 3,540 m.

More on Kashmir
Tourist Information

Places to Visit
More on Ladakh
Journey to Ladakh

Rock climbing

Baltal (15km)
Baltal, which lies at the foot of the Zoji-La pass, the sacred cave of Amarnath is a one-day journey. Near Baltal is a vast camping ground.

Ancient Monuments
8 km to the east of Wangat, high up in the valley are traces of temples near Narennag spring. A vast pool scooped out of stone lies between two groups of temples, which are 90 m apart.


Sonamarg has a number of hotels and lodges, which are open only during summer months. JKTDC has a Dak Banglow with huts available on hire. Tourists are advised to contact Manager, Tourist Reception Centre, Jammu/Srinagar for booking and tariffs.

How to Get There
Air : The nearest Airport is in Badgam District.

Rail : The nearest Rail junction is at Jammu.

Road : Sonamarg on the Srinagar-Leh Highway is approximately 110 kms from Srinagar on the National Highway 1A. The 10 to 12 hour journey passes through the famous Jawahar Tunnel. Buses and private taxis can be hired from Srinagar. The J&K Road Transport Corporation runs sightseeing buses to Sonamarg from Srinagar. The route first passes Ganderbal, 21 km from Srinagar, a camping ground on the banks of the Sindh Nallah with two tourist huts. 6 km beyond Ganderbal is Wayil, where the road crosses the river Sindh. A PWD rest house is also located here. 19 km further is Kangan, another beautiful spot with a PWD and Tourist Rest House. Harmukh Range Camping Area at Margund is beyond Kangan. Gund is the last big village on the way to Sonamarg. From here the road is hilly and winding. Assistance is available at the Tourist Reception Centre, Srinagar

Compiled by Puneet Sachdeva

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Editor: Romola Butalia       (c) India Travelogue. All rights reserved.