Gulmarg is a town in India located in Pir Panjal Range of Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir. It is well known to be a perfect place for snow skiing. Gulmarg lies in the mountains of the Himalayas with an altitude of 2,730 meters above sea level. Since Gulmarg has a high elevation, it experiences a humid continental climate. A moderate temperature is present during the summer, and heavy snowfall is expected during the winter season, just perfect for the different snow sports held in town.
Gulmarg is proclaimed as the “heartland of winter sports in India” and it ranks seventh place in Asia’s best ski destination. Gulmarg is not like your usual ski resort. It has incredible terrain access, suited for people who are advanced and expert in skiing. Gulmarg offers two ski areas, first is the high mountain ski area, ideal for competent skiers who enjoy off-piste ski riding. It is easily accessed by the Gulmarg Gondola cable car ride, which opens from approximately 10 am to 4 pm. The second ski area is for the people who are just starting to ski. The beginners’ ski area usually opens from 10 am to 1 pm and operates again from 2:30 pm to 4 pm.
Gulmarg Ski Guides
Do not be afraid of skiing in Gulmarg because ski instructors can be easily found in the town. Since some terrains in Gulmarg are complicated and a bit difficult for novice skiers, ski guides are highly recommended. The guides available in the ski resort can be Americans, Australians, British, and of course, the locals in Kashmir. They offer different varieties of services that include hotel accommodations and meals.
Ski Equipment in Gulmarg
Government-owned shops in Gulmarg provide snowboarding and ski equipment rentals. They usually open at around 10 in the morning. The price of the equipment rental starts from 300 Indian rupees per day. Since the government owns the rental shop, ski equipment can be a little low-grade and shoddy. There is also a lack of ski poles in the shop. So if you are an excellent skier who likes off-piste skiing, it is best to bring your own ski equipment when you come to Gulmarg.
Things to Remember When Visiting Gulmarg
- Gulmarg always receives a lot of snow, so it is best to ski here during January (preferably the third week of the month) until March 31st.
- Some of Gulmarg’s ski areas are not beginner-friendly, so instructors could be needed.
- Communication can be poor in Gulmarg. This town has a slow internet connection and an irregular network for your sim cards. Sim cards that are bought in Kashmir will only work in Kashmir.
- Most of the hotels and restaurants in Gulmarg do not offer liquor and alcohol.
- Some terrains are prone to avalanche. Make sure to be kept posted in Gulmarg’s Snow Safety daily advisories regarding avalanches.
- Weekends on Gulmarg consist of mixed traffic flow and conditions.
- Power outage frequently happens in Gulmarg. Some hotels use generators, but in most of the hotels, power cuts can be common.
- Due to Gulmarg’s high altitude, strong winds are experienced; because of this, Gondola lifts closure occasionally happens.
- Be prepared for a cold and chilly night because most of the hotels in Gulmarg pause their heating systems between 10 pm and 7 am.
When Is The Best Time To Visit Gulmarg?
Gulmarg is gaining its popularity from tourists day by day. If you are a fan of the beautiful snowy slopes and the blow of the cold breeze, it is ideal for visiting Gulmarg during January and February, just after the peak of the winter season. During this time, the beautiful snowfall in Gulmarg is something that you do not want to miss. On the other hand, if you like seeing the breath-taking green meadows of Gulmarg and its calm and serene blue lakes that reflect the delightful rays of sunlight, you would want to visit Gulmarg from March to June, the months wherein tourist season is at its peak.
Is Gulmarg a place worth to visit?
Gulmarg surely is a heavenly place ideal for tourists. Beautiful and expansive terrains are open for skiing during the winter season, and mesmerizing views of mountains and the panoramic views from a high altitude are great during the summer season. It is incredibly different during the summer season and just as marvelous during the winter. Aside from snow skiing, various activities can be done in Gulmarg. Some tourist attractions include the Maharani Temple (commonly known as the Shiva Temple), the Alpather Lake, Gulmarg Golf Course, the Baba Reshi Shrine, and St. Mary’s Church. So all in all, Gulmarg is definitely a place worth to visit.