Last post you saw how we planned the whol trip with each day going to a new place. If you are reading this first I would suggest you to read our Hands on Guide: Trip to Srinagar Part 1 to get a clear idea.
Day 1 : Srinagar Dal Lake
If you are seeing it for the first time, this is one fabulous place which you had always heard in books or people who had been there. Though Dal lake is pretty big but the path made around it which stretches around the road is like 2 kms easily. This makes it a nice place to have a evening walk. And to tell you this lake freezes in winter completely and you can make a jeep run on it.
The other side of Dal Lake is full of House boats which we were talking about in last post. They are lined up with different shapes and sizes and speaking their own story. One of the house boats is also famous for being featured in Hindi Movie, Mission Kashmir.
To start with I would suggest you to straight away take a Shikara, which is a small but decorated boat perfect for couples. You might have to bargain a little but it would cost you around 200 Rs max. This Shikara will take you around the Dal Lake and will show you the following things:
- Floating Garden
- Water skiing
- Floating restaurant
- Floating Farm
- Floating market
- And also would show you the houseboats.
Floating restaurant is one of the major attraction to which your boat can get to and then you order and enjoy your food on the Shikara. If you get into Shikara when night starts falling you would love to see how all small boats get around the floating restaurant and people enjoy the food.
Floating Farm are like piece of land on which crops are grown but they are tied all together as they float on water. This is a unique style of farming around dal lake. Infact a story says that somebody stole the whole farm by tieng to it a boat and took it away to different part of dal lake.
This would take all your evening and if you had reached by afternoon it is the right time to book the car for next day and have some sleep. The next 3 days you are on your toes.
Day 2: Sonmarg
Start sharp 9 in morning to avoid traffic. We had little fight to start early but one day late was enough to tell us that traffic gets high after 9. Sonmarg will take around 2 hours to travel.
Sonmarg means meadow of gold which in turn gets its name from snowy mountains against clear blue sky. This is one place which trackers would love to go and the second place where you can get snow even in the month of July but not the snow you can play with.
As you enter Sonmarg you would see the miltary all around specially if its the time of Amarnath yatra you would also get chance to see the camps.
Once you reach Sonmarg ask the driver to arrange for the horses. Since they have tie up with people there you would get it easily. These horses will take you to the Thajiwas glacier where you can find ice and its pretty close to China border and also called as Gateway to Ladakh. Also you can see the amarnath mountains from here which is very close from this area.
You would also love the sidwalk while travelling to the valley of Sonmarg which is full of fresh water. Horses will walk around it and also cross sometimes which would be really an adventure. Also if you get a chance, catch the horses drinking water, it would be fun.
What you see above is cave made up of Frozen Snow which is a part of layers of ice which gets deposited in Winter here. This is at a little height in the valley where you will need to walk on foot and is little bit tiugh but if you areally want an adventure go for it.
We got a chance to run on sledge though and it was fun. It costs around 50 rs for 3 rounds.
You will definetly enjoy Sonmarg. Right from horse riding on steep hills to snow laden mountains with greenery around you. I would suggest you to stay for little longer and see what is around and have a fresh breath. Yeah and If you wish to have some coffee here you might end up paying 50 RS for each. Yup Too costly to drink at this height right!!.
Next postwe would visit Gulmarg and Pahalgam . Stay Tuned.