Generations of Indians have been told for centuries that the Amarnath cave was discovered by a Muslim shepherd, Buta Malik, in the year 1850. in which he had found the Himling incarnation of Lord Shive, and it was only after the discovery of this shepherd that the people of the whole country came to know about Baba Barfani and the pilgrims started visiting Amarnath.
Amarnath is a major pilgrimage centre for Hindus. It is located at an altitude of 13,600 feet above sea level, 135 thousand metres north-east of Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir state. The length (depth inside) of this cave is 19 meters, and the width is 16 meters. The cave is 11 metres high. Baba Barfani appears in the holy cave during the Amarnath Yatra, and a natural Shivling is made here every year. Due to the formation of natural snow, they are also called Geo Himani Shivling and Baba Barfani. Baba Barfani’s journey is considered the most important. The government also makes many special arrangements before starting this journey. Pilgrims have to pass through many inaccessible mountains in this religious journey. It is believed that if one sees Baba Barfani once in his life, then all his sins are destroyed.
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Take air related services which operates from Baltal and Pahalgam, or walk on foot, or get a pony ride to directly reach the Amarnath temple.
Pahalgam – It is believed that when Lord Shiva was looking for a secret place to narrate the immortal story to Mata Parvata, he first left Nandi. The place where he left Nandi came to be known as Pahalgam. The Amarnath Yatra begins here.
Chandanbadi – After this, Lord Shiva moved forward, and after going some distance, he separated the moon from his locks. It is believed that the place where he separated the moon from himself is called Chandanbadi. At this place, along with the moon, Lord Shiva had also removed the sandalwood and bhabhoot from his forehead. Every particle here is considered very sacred. Devotees start their journey by applying the soil here on their foreheads.
Pissu Valley – The next stop on this journey is Pissu Valley. It is said that upon reaching here, the movement of the travellers becomes like a flea. That’s why it’s called Flea Valley. Aside from that, it is said that the gods and demons once visited Lord Shiva.Out of jealousy over getting ahead first, both of them started fighting with each other. The gods killed the demons like fleas, and since then it has been known as Pissu Valley.
Shesh Nag Lake – Following that is Shesh Nag Lake.It is believed that this lake is inhabited by Sheshnag. During the journey to Amarnath, Lord Shiva removed the snake from his neck. It is believed that Sheshnag appears in this lake once every 24 hours. The texture of this lake is also in the shape of a snake. Seeing this, it seems as if the rest of the snake is sitting with its hood spread.
Mahagunas Parvat (Ganesh Top) – Mahagunas Mountain comes after the Sheshnag stop. The beauty of this place cannot be described in words. This giant mountain is green and brown in color, and its size is also surprising. It is said that Bholenath made his son Ganesh sit here. That’s why this place is also called Mahaganesh Parvat or Ganesh Top.
Panchtarni – Then there’s Panchtarni.Here, five rivers flow in five different streams. After crossing, the travellers move forward. It is said about Panchtarni that here Shiva’s hair was spread in five directions, and these five streams are the symbol of his hair. Touching these streams makes the mind feel ultimate peace.
Baba Barfani’s Cave – Ahead of this sangam, there is an icy road for a distance of three kilometers. Here, the pedestrian path also passes through the ice bridge. The Amravati river flows below it, and snow remains frozen above it. Darshan of Barfani Shivling is the natural Shivling of Lord Shiva inside a 20-foot-long, 30-foot-wide, and about 15-foot-high cave built in the middle of the mountain without any door or restrictions. The natural back is made of paved snow. While outside the cave, you will see raw and soft snow.
June to September is a good time to visit Amarnath, as the famous Amarnath Yatra starts any time from June to September, coinciding with the holy month of Shravan. Pilgrims from all over the country come here in large numbers to participate in it.
By Flight: Srinagar Airport is the nearest airport to Amarnath, which serves all major airlines and is at a distance of 70 km from Pahalgam. After that you can take the government bus service or private cabs to reach Pahalgam, from where you commence the journey to Amarnath.
By Train: Jammu is the nearest station, located 178 kilometres from Amarnath. From Jammu, one can hire cabs to reach either Baltal or Pahalgam, Take air releated service, walk on foot, or get a pony ride to directly reach the temple from here.
By Road: Amarnath is on very treacherous terrain; hence, it is not very well connected by road. One can travel to Jammu, and then one has to go by road to Srinagar and then to Baltal or Pahalgam. Baltal is the shortest but most difficult trek on the way up to Amarnath. The walking distance from Baltal to Amarnath Yatra is 15 km, making it a 1-2 day trek, whereas the Pahalgam to Amarnath trek takes 3-5 days to cover 36-48 km.
Route : Srinagar – Pahalgam – Amarnath- Sonmarg- Srinagar
Duration : 6 Days 5 Nights
Start Point : Srinagar
End Point : Srinagar
On arrival, our representative will meet you at the Srinagar airport. You will have an assisted transfer to Pahalgam, located at an altitude of 2440 m above sea level. Once you reach Pahalgam, complete the check-in formalities at the hotel and relax. The rest of the day is at your leisure. You can explore the town on your own and partake in outdoor activities. Enjoy the beauty of nature, and take a leisurely walk. Dinner and an overnight stay at the hotel in Pahalgam.
Early morning breakfast and then proceed for Chandanwani (2895 m) by road. This place is the culmination point of the Amarnath Yatra. Once you reach here, begin an upward trek to Sheshnag. After a sharp ascending trek, you will get to Pishoo Ghati Pass. On arrival in Sheshnag, visit the deluxe tents and make yourself comfortable. Admire the local scenery and rejuvenate amidst serene environs. Dinner and an overnight here.
After having a delicious breakfast, start your trek to Panchtarni from Sheshnag. The trek covers a hike through Mahagunas Pass (3200 m) and then gradually reaches Panchtarni. After this point, your trek gets easier and is a downward one that will lead you to Panchtarni. So enjoy being in the lap of nature and relax for a while.Later, proceed with your sharp ascent to the holy Amarnath cave by trek or with the help of air related services. On arrival, you can spot an ice lingam dedicated to Lord Shiva. Post Darshan, begin your trek back to Panjtarini. Dinner and an overnight stay in the hotel here.
Early morning after have breakfast, proceed to Baltal. It is a 9 km trek, and upon reaching Baltal, you will proceed toward the vehicle that will take you to Sonmarg. On arrival in Sonmarg, you will have an assisted transfer to the pre-booked hotel. Check-in at the hotel and unwind. The rest of the evening is at your leisure. Dinner and an overnight stay at the hotel in Sonmarg.
Early morning proceed toward Srinagar. En-route, visit Kheer Bhawani Temple, one of the valley’s revered sites. On arrival in Srinagar, check in at the hotel and proceed for a sightseeing tour. You will cover some popular attractions on this day, including Mughal gardens like Nishat Bagh and Shalimar Bagh. Conclude your day with a Shikara ride on the calm waters of Dal Lake. Return to the hotel in the evening for dinner an overnight stay.
This is the day to say goodbye to the beautiful mountains. After breakfast, you will get transferred to the Srinagar airport to board a flight for your onward journey.