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Old 23rd June 2011, 15:03   #31
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

Quote:
Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
Please share details of the hotels and car rental agencies that you used.
Did you go via a package tour or rented these cars at your houseboat location?
Selfdrive, DKG has given the details above.
Kindly go through that post.
He mentioned, that he booked the trip through makemytrip.com and all arrangements were provided for in that package.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 15:11   #32
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fordmanchau View Post
Selfdrive, DKG has given the details above.
Kindly go through that post.
He mentioned, that he booked the trip through makemytrip.com and all arrangements were provided for in that package.
Thanks Fordmanchau for pointing that out!

I guess I was so enamoured by the pics that I only read the travel details and his experiences. So easy to be transported away from a boring work desk at 2pm in the afternoon

Edit: I know what happened. I opened the TL before going for lunch and on returning only read the first page and replied without refreshing to check the update/ details on Page 2!

Last edited by selfdrive : 23rd June 2011 at 15:14.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 15:25   #33
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

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Originally Posted by sudev View Post
You missed Sonamarg and the lakes other than Dal/Nishat? Time constrains apart worth a visit.

One of the loveliest place that I remember is Yusmarg but I hardly hear of it now from travellers. Perhaps once peace gets its chance.
We did cover the gardens and Sonamarg. Will upload the pictures this evening and complete the travelogue.

Next year I plan on doing this by road and cover places like Yusmarg, Bangus valley and many other places which are not on the tourist circuit but are worth a visit.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 15:44   #34
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

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Originally Posted by DKG View Post
Next year I plan on doing this by road and cover places like Yusmarg, Bangus valley and many other places which are not on the tourist circuit but are worth a visit.
And add to that Gurez, Aharbal, Lolab, and Doddpathri.

Next year, May summer, we too are planning particularly to these places including Bangus and Yusmarg. But then it is just like any other plan, nothing definite. Do continue with your wonderful trip story!

Last edited by adc : 23rd June 2011 at 15:46.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 16:07   #35
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

As I reached the valley from Chandanwari the Bolero caught up with me and we stopped for a while at what is known as Betaab valley (which got its name from some movie that was filmed here apparently)

I thought it would be a good idea to step into the water so I removed my shoes and stepped in only to step out within 10 seconds. The water was freezing cold. But in that instant of icy cold whatever little soreness that may have set in with that long walk miraculously vanished. My feet suddenly felt completely rested and ready for action. Great feeling to recover so quickly.

The driver informed us that we were to drive to Aru valley next. Once again my mind, still reeling from that walk down Chandanwari, wondered what Aru could possibly have in store !! After all that beauty I had seen how could there possibly be anything more. By now I had gotten used to Kashmir springing surprises and sure enough a few bends along the winding roads and a series of "wow"'s escaped my lips

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Here too it was the drive to Aru which charmed me more than the valley itself. But what fascinated me about Aru was many trekking opportunities it afforded. I was told one could trek for days in the mountains sleeping in tents. My guide told me that he would arrange all the food and ponies should I desire to go for a few days into the mountains.

On one of the bends we came upon a convoy of cars which seemed familiar given the jammer vehicle and the fire engine and ambulance. I asked if this could be the CM and the driver replied in the affirmative. It was the CM enjoying the gorgeous Lidder raging past pine forested mountains and valleys.

Last edited by DKG : 23rd June 2011 at 16:12.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 16:25   #36
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

The next day we returned to Srinagar and post lunch headed out to the famous Mughal gardens. June may be a tad bit too early for full bloom but all the same the flowers that were in bloom were a treat extraordinaire.

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Last edited by DKG : 23rd June 2011 at 16:27.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 16:41   #37
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

Sir,
A refreshing change of destination to read in your TL. The very name "Kashmir" when mentioned makes one think of the beautiful vistas seen over and over again in various media.
The suberb narration and pictures has brought the place all so alive on our screens.
Thank you for sharing. Looking forward to the rest of the TL.
Rated 5*
Regards
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Old 23rd June 2011, 19:37   #38
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

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Old 23rd June 2011, 19:59   #39
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

The last day of our tour we were to visit Sonamarg. I wondered now what this place had in store for me. I had already overdosed on beauty and I honestly couldn't imagine how things could be different. But like I mentioned earlier I had learnt to expect surprises in Kashmir. The amazingly beautiful drama that unfolds in unique ways in different locations had left a deep imprint on my mind. As we drive across the valley toward Sonamarg my mind blanked out allowing me to be open to anything that would come my way

As we drove up to Sonamarg I was looking to my left looking for signs on some buildings that Sonamarg had arrived. Noticing Sonamarg on a sign board then I turned to my right wondering what this place was like and I was completely stumped by what I saw

There before me was a vista I simply could not relate to or comprehend as possible on earth. It looked completely unreal and alien. Like some massive alien ship had landed in the otherwise plain landscape. It looked so surreal I almost felt it to be a massive painting before me. I almost rubbed my eyes in disbelief.

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Old 23rd June 2011, 20:13   #40
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

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The weather in the mountains suddenly changes in minutes and from blue skies and bright sunshine you can go to this in minutes. I guess this was Kashmir's way of bidding us a farewell. The entire week that we were there we didn't encounter bad weather. Now as we were getting ready to leave Sonamarg we were given a glimpse of how things can turn for the worse weather wise. I loved it

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Last edited by DKG : 23rd June 2011 at 20:14.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 20:38   #41
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

As the aircraft took off and I left the magnificent Himalayas behind I tried to get a grip on what I had been through over a week in Kashmir.

I knew Kashmir had affected me deeply. Very very deeply. The sheer scale of the Himalayas, the stunning pine forests, the charming Dal lake, the massive Chinaar trees, the myriad gushing streams, the raging white water river, the snow and glaciers, the mindblowingly beautiful flowers, the quaint houseboats and delightful shikharas, the outstanding handcrafts, the handsome men and extremely beautiful women, adorable children, apples and kesar and walnuts, the ultimate in offroading ie ponies, the list seems endless.

Was Kashmir in all of this? Yes it was and more. Kashmir is nature's finest drama. A spectacle you have to actually witness to experience its immense beauty.

My heart, mind and soul was overflowing with a sense of satiation. I honestly had not experienced so much beauty compressed into such a short time.

I would like to see the Indian government do more for tourism as the people of Kashmir depend on the income you bring in. When something so deeply precious is on the table you cannot simply waste it away.

I knew when I was experiencing Kashmir that no written word or picture can capture the extraordinary beauty of the place. You have to be there in person to actually soak it in. And be prepared to be flooded with beauty. I know I remain drenched for life !!
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Old 23rd June 2011, 20:59   #42
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

Superb DKG as usual. Nothing less was expected from you. As you rightly said you need to go there and experience it and understand how beautiful the place actually is.

Cheers

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Old 23rd June 2011, 21:37   #43
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

wonderful travelogue!!! Great pictures as well. Hope to make it there one day.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 23:07   #44
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Default Re: Kashmir : Nature's bewitching drama !!

Great travelogue Sir,
Thank you very much for taking me away from the sweltering heat of Kolkata for a little while.
And what was that quaint green roofed building in Attachment 565268?
If it is a hotel could you let me know the details if you have them?
If it is a private house and if you know the owners could you please let me know, so that I can beg, request, plead , beseech, appeal, pray and whatever else may be needed to be allowed to stay there?

Thank you very much again.
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Old 24th June 2011, 07:56   #45
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And what was that quaint green roofed building in Attachment 565268?
If it is a hotel could you let me know the details if you have them?
If it is a private house and if you know the owners could you please let me know, so that I can beg, request, plead , beseech, appeal, pray and whatever else may be needed to be allowed to stay there?

you just got lucky !! You won't need to plead with anyone to stay there. Its the Tourist Hotel run by J&K Tourism. I think its listed on the website. This is at Aru valley where I plan on staying the next time I visit Kashmir as there are many trekking opportunities from this location. The road from Pahalgam to Aru is divine with the raging Lidder river flowing alongside
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