Updated: Jul 3, 2021
What do you feel when you imagine or visit Kashmir ? Witnessing the thick snow bed in the mountains, the crisp faint chill of the wind, the line of the hills mounting majestically like guards of heaven
The rich Kashmiri cuisine that leaves the taste buds wanting for more soaking your memories in the warm cup of Kawah as you indulge in the pristine natural beauty decorated with coniferous kissed hills and deciduous trees that promises a rich colourful show in the fall with fields of saffron and orchards of apples awaiting their full bloom making your heart synchronize with the wintry water cascading down the glacier fed rivers as you dust the snow off your shoulders after a long trek up to imprint the memory of the sun kissed snow capped mountains.
Despite the political strife, Kashmiris are homely and peaceful with a unique culture that keeps you intrigued as you go through their craft works and decors made of walnut or maple wood.
Each design carries its authenticity with no replica to be witnessed. Kashmir has gifted us more than any other Himalayan place ever has, painted with vast sunny lawns escorted by clusters of tall trees, muster of dry fruits and snow fed parks where the river cut through them keeping you company as you witnessed the godsend beauty.
The journey doesn’t end here, one of the remarkable gifts that Kashmir presents us is its surreal treks. Kashmir treks are one of the most stunning treks a trekker can experience in their life packed with alpine lakes that revives a life of their own.
One such trek is the “Tarsar-Marsar Lake Trek” an almond shaped oligotrophic alpine lake situated at the heart of Kashmir which will make you realize why so many poets, authors, philosophers, artists have spent their lives trying to capture this paradise with their words.
With the rise of Azaan and an unfathomable calling, this trek is a delicate reminder that poetry is not bound to pages and words. Even when the ink fades away, this living poetry can be felt through every beat of your heart as you trace the trails leaving an impression in your heart that you can personify when you capture the beautiful frozen blue sky beholding Tarsar and Sundarsar’s multiple perspectives of the very same lake.
Tarsar is one lake, Sundarsar is another and then there is the elusive Marsar lake which almost always stays hidden enveloped with a shroud of clouds.
You can catch a glimpse of this lake from an overhang perched at an altitude of 600-700 feet below which is a perfect spot to witness the grandeur of the lake until huge columns of clouds waft their way through the U- shaped valley to settle above the lake making the lake disappears from eyesight within seconds.
Pahalgam- The Valley of Shepherds
The Tarsar-Marsar trek begins from Pahalgam, a charming town along the banks of the Lidderwat river famed for numerous Bollywood shoots which rivals Switzerland in the scripts of B-town.
This strikingly attractive town has been the most sought after movie set for classic movies like Amitabh Bachhan’s ‘Silsila’ (1981), Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s Thriller ‘Khamosh’(1985) and many more.
You trail through the wide plains, flower decked valleys and grassy knolls making your way to an old - world village of Aru embraced by the thick avenues of splendid Chinar tree forest, brimmed with lush green meadows and spell binding streams that gushes down the natural pools from the lofty snow clad mountains.
Aru Valley- The Bewitching Village
Aru is a quaint village whose panoramic view will leave you stunned for days. The trail to Aru village itself holds the power to make you feel that you are teleported in an enchanted forest surrounded by head held high trees, natural springs and eye - catching shepherd huts.
Aru valley is home to 20 lakes, rich grasslands and friendly shepherd greeting you throughout your journey.
Lidderwat - The Magnetic Blue Stream
Lidderwat Trek is remarked as one of the stunning campsites due to the dense forest and lush green grasslands in its vicinity.
Adorned by a forest filled with pine and maple trees, this campsite will win your heart by its natural wonders.
You tunnel through the coniferous forest and make your way to the wide stretched grasslands surrounded by ancient trees and hills rising out from one side.