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6 lesser explored places of J&K that will leave you amazed!

Ready for a staycation? Perhaps heading out for a quick getaway is on the cards with the summer holidays in full swing. Look no further and dive into discovering Jammu and Kashmir’s top hidden gems!

Jammu & Kashmir is a destination where beauty breathes and nature smiles in all its glory. As evidence of its rich history and culture, Jammu holds many glorious tales within its forts, palaces, and temples nestled away in the foothills of the Trikuta range amid lush green forests. Snow Capped Mountains, fruit-laden orchids, divine waterfalls, lily-laden lakes, and green meadows with blooming flowers of Kashmir have rightly earned it the sobriquet of being “India’s Switzerland.” J&K is frequented by thousands of travellers, nature enthusiasts and explorers from far and wide each year.

There are plenty of options for those who hunt to visit offbeat places in J&K to witness less explored attractions and off beaten track. Here is a list of some brilliant and less explored places that will amaze you with their stunning scenery and natural splendour.

1. Peer ki Gali:

Located in the Pir Panchal Range at 1140 ft, Peer ki Gali is a holy place between two villages, Poshana and Heer Pur, along the Mughal Road. In addition to being a sacred spot, Peer Ki Gali has various water streams and snow-covered peaks. Sarimastan and Girjan are famous meadows that can be witnessed from this road.

The road is dotted with Mughal serials, public buildings that sheltered caravans and travellers in the Mughal Era (16th Century). The winding road, hairpin turns, and steep cliffs make the roads recommended for seasoned drivers only.

2. Shiva Garh in Patnitop:

Shiva Garh is one of the top trekking destinations near Patnitop. It is located at an altitude of 3500m. The trekking trail crosses through a picturesque pine tree forest and then follows a steep uphill climb which takes you to a serene and pristine mountain village offering brilliant views of the valley. The best season to trek is from May to September. These warm months are perfect and delightful, whereas the winter season can be cold and inconvenient to tour.

3. Krimchi Temples:

These temples are located in Krimchi, a small village in the Udhampur district of J&K. These magnificent ancient temples are believed to have been built in the 11th-12th century AD. They locally are known as the ‘Pandhava Temples’. There are seven ancient temples dedicated to Lord Shiva at this famous tourist site, of which four are large, and three are small.

These incredible temples stand on a stone complex, with a small stream flowing at a close distance, greatly enhancing its beauty. It is incredibly pleasing to look at the fantastic architecture of these temples. Visit this famous religious and historical attraction in Jammu and Kashmir to glimpse its rich heritage and culture.

4. Ranjit Sagar Dam:

It is constructed on River Ravi, which runs on the border of J&K and Punjab. 60% of the man-made lake in this hydroelectric project is located in J&K.

It is located in a very serene and idyllic location. One can see the wire bridge, the second of its kind in our country which is called Atal Setu. This bridge has a low centre of gravity, making it efficient in resisting earthquakes. It has a unique architectural appearance due to its small diameter cables and unique overhead structure.

To enter the dam, visitors need permission from the authorities. Few cottages surround the dam where tourists can stay. During the monsoon seasons, one can see the lake brimming with water, which glistens under the sun if one visits the place.

5. Bhaderwah:

Located in Doda, Bhaderwah boasts adventure sports like paragliding at Seoj Meadow, Skiing, Mountaineering, Rafting, Rock Climbing, angling, or simply camping in Jai valley.

It is also known as ‘Naagon ki Bhoomi’ as it is home to various snake species. The beauty of Bhaderwah is enhanced by its sparkling water bodies, diverse flora and fauna, rocky terrains, lush green pastures and snow-capped mountains.

6. Aru Valley:

It is a 12 km drive from Pahalgam in the Anantnag district. It is an absolute delight for nature lovers and explorers alike. Waterfalls, turquoise brooks, deodars and Pines dot the landscape. It wraps itself around the lovely valley like a pale blue satin ribbon. The neighbouring Overa Aru Wildlife Sanctuary covers 500 square kilometres and is home to rare species like Hangul, Must, Deer, Brown Bear, and Snow Leopard. Baisaaran and Betaab Valley are two nearby attractions. Whenever you would like to quietly admire nature and go trekking, Aru Valley is your place.