In Love with Kashmir
Bat Travels organizes tours for sighted and visually impaired people to travel together as travel pals. As a travel pal when you explain the visual surrounding to an unsighted person, you start noticing more. And the unsighted person is in turn making you notice a peculiar smell, or a faint sound. So say hello to a totally new way of travelling.
Everything about Kashmir is distinct. From its food, culture, attire to music and way of living. When you travel to Kashmir, be ready to get bowled over by the crisp and cool air. And then by the fragrant smell of wild flowers blooming in the meadows. Definitely not to miss the mountain smell of pine trees. The gurgling Lidder river, and the chill when you walk on snow. The lullaby that the buoying shikara will sing you, and the flavours of wazwan. Welcome to Srinagar, Gulmarg, Sonmarg and Pahalgam. Welcome to our very own paradise.
Amongst the highlights of the trip are Shikara ride, stay in boat house (1 night), Gondola ride, stay in a Pine Forest, one meal in a local’s house, a visit to flower market on Dal Lake. We have a special musical evening arranged just for us. Local artists will sing for our group. For people like me, it will be a totally new world of music. Since the only Kashmiri song I know is 'Bumroo-Bumroo' from the film Mission Kashmir.
-We arrive at Srinagar airport before noon. We then drive to Gulmarg, which is 60 km away. The almost 2 hour drive is in itself an experience. We drive through valleys and the fragrantsmell of pine trees won't escape you. The word Gulmarg means a meadow of flowers. So do keep checking with your travelpal to explain the scenery around. It will definitely bring a smile on your face.
-In Gulmarg we take a Gondola ride (at own cost). It is one of the world's highest operating cable cars. And will take you to a height of 12293 ft. On the top you will be welcomed by snow and the closest one can get to the Pir Panjal range without scaling it. Ask your travelpal to describe the stunning view of the snowcapped mountains.
-We check into our hotels, have dinner and retire for the day.
-We drive from Gulmarg to Sonmarg after breakfast. It is a 3 and a half hour drive. Sonmarg literally means yellow meadow, named after the yellow corcus flowers that cover the whole valley when it blooms.
-After checking into our hotels we go to the Thajiwas Glacier. Be dressed to beat the cold here, for we will be walking on a glacier and it will be really cold. Pony rides are also available (at own cost).
-We come back to our hotel, have dinner and retire for the day.
- Breakfast we transfer to Srinagar. It's an 80 km drive and takes us approximately 2.5 hours. In Srinagar we enjoy the Shikara ride on Dal Lake. We also visit the very famous Mughal Gardens. Here are rows of flower beds and sprinkling water fountains.
-We have home cooked local food for dinner at a resident Kashmiri's house. So we get to experience how Kashmiris live.
-We spend the night in houseboats.
-If you wake up early, you will witness the flower market on the Dal Lake (at your own cost). The sells and aroma will enchant you and so will the chatter in Kashmiri accent. After breakfast we transfer to Pahalgam, it is a 3 hour drive. In Pajalgam we will be staying within a Pine Forest.
-Imagine the fragrant air surrounding you. You can also take a leisure walk in the forest with your travelpal.
-You can also visit the river Lidder and sit beside it for hours. The gushing waters of the river and the cool breeze will do you good.
-We explore Pahalgam. We go to the valleys and the one made famous by the film Betaab. In fact, the valley is now called Betaab valley.
-We stopover for lunch at Troutbeat Cafe or a similar outlet. Do try some dishes made from fresh catch of the day (at your own cost).
-We also visit an outlet of Himalayan Cheese. It's a local revolution where the Gujjars sell milk to the Dutchman Chris Zandee. With the help of locals, he makes Gouda and other varieties of cheese.
-After breakfast we drive back to Srinagar. It should take us not more than 3 hours. You will have a few hours in Srinagar, if you want to go shopping (at your own cost).
-In the night we have a special musical evening for us. Local artists will sing for our group. For people like me, it will be a totally new world of music. Since the only Kashmiri song I know is 'Bumroo-Bumroo' from the film Mission Kashmir.
-After dinner we retire for the night in our hotel.
-After breakfast we transfer to the Srinagar airport. Alvida Kashmir.
Breakfast and dinner
Visit to a local's house
Shikara ride (1 boat ride in Dal Lake for 1 hour, four passengers in one Shikara)
Visit to cheese market or similar activity
Expenses mentioned in itinerary as 'at own cost'
Medicines, if needed
Bottled water, incidentals, porterage, charges, tips or any other service
Any type of natural crises, road blocking and flight delay charges.
Anything not included in inclusions
Note: Single occupancy can be arranged at an extra cost
End location: Srinagar Airport, Srinagar
Duration of the event: 7 days 6 nights
Date and Time: May 20th to 26th . We start the trip from Srinagar Airport, before noon on May 20th
Places: Srinagar, Gulmarg, Sonmarg, Pahalgam
Place to stay: Resort, hotel and houseboat on twin sharing basis
How to get to the venue: Fly to Srinagar
Pick-up and Drop-off points: Srinagar Airport, Srinagar
Things to carry: Carry a jacket, comfortable shoes, sunglasses, sunscreen, and love for outdoors
Srinagar International Airport
Indragandhi Road, Humhama, Badgam, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir 190007