A Complete Travel Guide to Gulmarg, Kashmir

A trip to Gulmarg is the most satisfying present you can give yourself.


Blog Home | Mujtaba Hussain | 19-10-2022

If a list of the most popular hill towns in our nation were to be compiled, Gulmarg would undoubtedly be at the top. As it is appropriately called, the Meadow of Flowers is a beautiful area to walk in that offers captivating scenery and an alluring prospect of numerous adventure sports. This place is so picturesque that visitors come from all over the world to visit it all year long. It is among those places where the travel season never stops.

Gulmarg Location

Snow-laden wonderland at its glory. Picture Source: mouthshut.com

To give a basic overview, Gulmarg is a hill town in Kashmir that is 2,650 metres above sea level and situated in the Pir Panjal Range of the western Himalayas (8,690 ft). Sultan Yusuf Shah Chak, who frequented the area with his wife Habba Khatoon in the 16th century, gave it the name Gulmarg, which means “meadow of flowers” in Arabic. Similar to Shimla and Mussorie, Gulmarg was used by British public workers during the English era as a getaway. This was to get away from the oppressive summer heat of the plains in North India.

How Do You Get to Gulmarg?

A path to heaven in its unspoiled tranquilly. Picture Source: flickr.com, Shah Basharat.

You must first travel to Srinagar to get to Gulmarg. For travellers arriving in their vehicles, you can simply take the Mughal road through Shopian or the main Jammu-Srinagar highway to reach Srinagar city. You can simply keep driving via Tangmarg towards Gulmarg after reaching Srinagar. Just 2 to 3 hours will be needed to travel the 50 to 60 kilometres. It is primarily a straight journey on a flat road with a very gentle slope from Srinagar to Tangmarg. Apart from that, you won’t even feel like driving in a hill station. The actual steep ascent begins after Tangmarg, and you continue to ascend a meandering route until you reach Gulmarg. 

Taxi and Bus from Srinagar to Gulmarg

The freedom of the open road is seductive, serendipitous and absolutely liberating. Picture Source: theprint

Renting a private taxi for the journey would be the ideal, most practical and most convenient option. The cost of a taxi from Srinagar to Gulmarg, including petrol and the driver, would range from Rs. 2000 to Rs. 3000, depending on the type of vehicle you picked. There is no direct bus that travels from Srinagar to Gulmarg. In light of Gulmarg’s prominence as a tourist destination, it is somewhat surprising. From Tangmarg to Gulmarg, however, buses are available.

Getting to Gulmarg in the Winter

With every falling flake, a unique spark of interest falls from heaven. Picture Source: skigulmarg.com 

 Things take a completely different turn in the winter. The road leading here and the entire town of Gulmarg are both buried beneath several feet of snow. After then, it is challenging for a typical car to ascend the last section from Tangmarg to Gulmarg. This route is only used by Sports Utility Vehicles equipped with snow chains during this time. You can simply take a taxi from Srinagar to Tangmarg and then a different 4 x 4 taxi from Tangmarg to Gulmarg.

Getting to Gulmarg via Air and Train

A train to Srinagar ploughing through the snow. Picture Source: quora

The closest airport to Gulmarg is Srinagar Airport. It is roughly 60 kilometres away from Gulmarg, and it takes 2 to 3 hours to get there. You must take a road trip from Srinagar to Gulmarg. The closest railroad station to Gulmarg is Srinagar. But there is no connectivity between Udhampur to Banihal, you have to travel between Udhampur railway station to Banihal railway station by bus or tempo. From Banihal you will get the train to Srinagar. From Srinagar railway station you have to take a road trip to Gulmarg. Thus, the simplest route would be to take a shared taxi or bus straight from Udhampur to Srinagar.

Gulmarg Weather

A glimpse of an Arctic igloo in Gulmarg. Picture Source: indianexpress.com

The 2,690-meter altitude of Gulmarg from the level results in a cool or mild climate during summer. In the months of January and February, there is a lot of snowfall, and the area is completely covered in a thick layer of snow. Summers are brief, so you will still need a blanket to sleep under at night, even in months like June and July. Gulmarg often has wonderful summers. The average temperature, however, fluctuates between 13°C and 29°C, making it a pleasant hideaway from the heat of the lowlands. The meadows and valleys of Gulmarg become completely lush green when spring arrives. The average rain here is pretty mild, even though it doesn’t rain that much. Midway through September, the temperature begins to fall rapidly as the cold sets in. 

Gulmarg-specific Clothing

When winter is not a season, but a celebration. Picture Source: outlookindia.com

You should wear different clothes when you visit Gulmarg depending on the time of year. Heavy wool clothing, gloves, woollen socks, mufflers, thermals, and an excellent heavy, windproof jacket are essential in January and February. Light woollen and a bulky jacket will do if you are travelling in March. Bring a lot of cotton clothing and a light jacket when travelling between April and August. Similar to March, when you’ll need some light sweaters and a thick jacket, September and October will be like that. Thermals, thick wool, and a windproof warm jacket will make up your Gulmarg clothing for November and December.

 Gulmarg Attractions

Alpather Lake’s natural surroundings, waiting to calm your eyes. Picture Source: trahot.com

Gulmarg’s main draws are its peacefulness and pristine natural surroundings. Come here to enjoy the stunning, rich green meadows and the quiet, serene atmosphere. Below are some additional tourist attractions.

  • Apharwat Peak
  • Alpather Lake
  • Maharani Temple
  • Golf Course
  • Strawberry Valley
  • Children’s Park
  • Maharaja Palace
  • St. Mary’s Church
  • Khilanmarg
  • Baba Reshi
  • Bota Pathri
  • Ningle Nallah
  • Ferozpur Nallah

Gulmarg Activities

The picturesque surroundings of Gulmarg combined with adventurous activities make it a heaven for adventurers. Below are some of the activities you can enjoy in Gulmarg.

  • Golfing
  • Skiing
  • ATV ride
  • Pony ride
  • Trekking
  • Gondola Ride
  • Winter Games
  • Winter festivals
  • Snow sledging
  • Snowboarding

Food 

Hot cuisine served with Kashmiri warmth and hospitality has no parallels. Picture Source: tripadvisor.com

It wouldn’t be inaccurate to claim that Kashmir is a paradise, not just for its natural beauty but also for its mouth-watering cuisine. In Gulmarg, both vegan and non-vegan culinary options are available. Kashmir’s traditional food, wazwaan, is unmatched in taste and quality throughout the whole subcontinent. Below is the list of foods served with love in Gulmarg.

Vegetarian Foods

  • Kashmiri Saag
  • Nadhir Yakhni
  • Palak Paneer 
  • Dham Aaloo
  • Kashmiri Rajma
  • Kashmiri Dahi Baingan
  • Modhur Pulao 

Non-vegetarian Foods 

  • Kabab
  • Tabakh Maaz
  • Methi Maaz
  • Rogan Joosh
  • Goshtaaba
  • Ristaa 
  • Kormaa
  • Yakhni 
  • Shaami Kabab
  • Kaanti 
  • Seekhe Tujj.


About the author


Mujtaba Hussain
Mujtaba Hussain is a poet, writer and analyst. He loves to research different things. Travelling is his passion, and he is in quest of learning something about everything.