There are plenty of road trips in Kashmir and its vicinity. However, Srinagar to Gurez is the most rewarding road journey in terms of natural landscape and the sightseeing places. Gurez Valley is one of the least visited areas of Kashmir and the only place that truly qualifies as an offbeat destination for all kinds of trips. This location is perfectly beautiful with its dense forest and challenging terrain. You won’t find views like this anywhere else, nor can you find the natural beauty of mountains.
Many people only think about typically four places in Kashmir, Srinagar, Sonamarg, Gulmarg, and Pahalgam. These are just starting points in Kashmir Valley there are many places to visit from these places. Such a place is Gurez Valley.
It is just a few years ago the valley was open for tourists to stroll around and now it is one of the famous offbeat, one can explore the whole Gurez Valley through Gurez Valley Tour Packages. As a result, it turned out to be the least visited place in Kashmir. A lot of tourists from Srinagar want to drive to Gurez through high passes, spend time there, and then continue to Sonamarg in their itinerary.
This blog is a detailed travel guide that talks about Srinagar to Gurez Valley road codition, routes to be taken, sightseeing places on the way, where to find the private cab, how to board the shared bus, taxi fare etc. should be on your top list if you’re thinking about visiting Kashmir and want to get a blend of nature and adventure at its best. But one should notice that the area is still under development and promoted as a tourist destination in recent years and the roads are very poor. Continue reading to learn about Srinagar to Gurez.
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Route & Road Condition Of Srinagar To Gurez
The following is the route that leads from Gurez Valley to Srinagar:
Dawar (Gurez Valley) – Razdan Pass – Bandipora – Sumbal – Srinagar
Depending on your pace and breaks, the roughly 140 km total distance between the two locations can be completed in 5 to 7 hours. The journey from Srinagar to Bandipora is expected to be uneventful and seamless. Wular Lake and Manasbal Lake can be seen along the route. It is suggested to take some photos at both lakes if you have some spare time.
The road begins its ascent shortly before Bandipora. You will soon arrive at the summit of the Razdan Pass, the sole high-altitude pass of the road, after passing Bandipora town. This road was a poorly broken dirt one until a few years ago. However, the road is now paved, and the ride will continue to be smooth. In winter still, there may be some difficult road conditions.
You will encounter a roughly 10-kilometer section of severely damaged road on the way to Gurez once you begin your descent from the other side of the Razdan pass. Right now, that represents the only problematic stretch of road along this stretch, but things could change in the years to come. After passing through a few checkpoints and registering, you will arrive at Dawar, the biggest town in Gurez Valley.
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Best Transportation Options
By Rental Vehicles
For booking a private taxi in Srinagar or bike you can rent them daily in Srinagar. The total cost of a private taxi will be around 10000-14000 INR for a two-day round-trip from Srinagar to Gurez. Including all your excess cost it will be around 18000-21000 for a round-trip. Make sure you rent a good, conditioned cabs as they are more comfortable in rough terrains and other vehicles may be not suitable for the road conditions.
You can rent bikes in Srinagar from Cliffhangers India. We provide the best possible rental services. For a bike rental from Srinagar to Gurez, it will cost you around 2000 per day depending on the bike you choose. If you wish to spend a day more in Gurez exploring all the surroundings, then rental vehicles are the best option for a flexible itinerary.
By Public Transportation
If you want to travel from Srinagar to Gurez through public transportation like a bus, it can be a little challenging. The bus services are not in one go from Srinagar to Gurez. One should divide the trip into two. First from Srinagar to Bandipora and later from Bandipora to Gurez. The cost for one head will be 100-125 INR approximately. Buses run from Srinagar Bandipora at regular intervals. Later from Bandipora to Gurez bus services are affordable and regular. You can explore the rich natural beauty throughout the scenic routes.
By Taxi/ Cab
A shared taxi will also be in a similar manner to a bus. You will travel from parimpora in Srinagar to Bandipora first and then Bandipora to Dawar in Gurez. This is the most affordable and convenient mode of transportation. The approximate Srinagar to Gurez taxi fare per head will be 150 INR for the first phase and later 350 INR for the second phase of taxi travel. Join groups to get taxis easily from Bandipora to Gurez.
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Stops Along the Route
The journey from Srinagar to Gurez Valley provides you with several captivating stops, each having its unique charm. Places like Bandipora, Razdan Pass, and Dawar welcome you across the route.
Bandipora: Nestled on the banks of Wular Lake, Bandipora is the stop that you will witness in all kinds of transportation. People stop here, especially for Wular Lake. You need to exchange bus and taxi at this stop. Travelers can spend time and explore the lake and its island called Arin. Facilities here include restaurants, shops, and guesthouses with all basic amenities. In the same district, you will see on the way famous Manasbal Lake. Stop here and enjoy the beautiful views of this lake.
Razdan Pass: As you embark on a journey, Razdan Pass welcomes you with panoramic views of snow peaks. Being the highest motorable road, it is an excellent stop for photography. Limited facilities are available here, we advise you to carry essentials. People who travel in rental vehicles can enjoy this stop.
Dawar: the major town in Gurez Valley, Dawar offers you an overview of local life. It is an ideal base for exploring Gurez Valley. Facilities include guesthouses, local hotels, and shopping for essentials. While reaching from Bandipora to Dawar you need to carry efficient supplies for your next step as the facilities along the route may be scarce.
Other stops like Kishanganga Dam, and Chakwali are generally included in some itineraries for an evening walk.
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Challenges For Travelers On the Route
When traveling from Srinagar to Gurez, you will face unique challenges with an element of adventure in your ride:
- Traveling through challenging mountains to Gurez Valley can be daunting. Limited roads and windings make the journey full of headaches and nausea.
- The region’s weather is unpredictable, including heavy snowfall in winter can affect travel plans.
- Certain areas may require permits like Chakwali, Chorwan village etc. So secure them from concerned authorities.
- During peak seasons Gurez Valley may has limited accommodations and demand can vary.
- The availability of fuel stations across the route may be sparse, but carrying efficient fuel will help you.
- In remote areas, network connectivity may be affected by altitude. You should be prepared for communication challenges.
- Altitude sickness is also a concern for travelers.
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Tips For Travelers
When planning from Srinagar to Gurez, perfect planning is the key to a successful and memorable travel experience. Many people face problems without any proper plan and hurry. Here are comprehensive tips for your seamless exploration.
Check Road Conditions: Before going on the roads, assess the current state of the route. The journey’s success rate depends on how good the road conditions favor you. Particularly during winters check road closures and focus on snow-covered routes. Take help from local people to know about regular road conditions and the shortest routes available to save time and ensure safety.
Collect Permits: Know about all the necessary permits required for regions that are included in your itinerary. Given the proximity of Gurez Valley to border areas, certain areas may need permission. Collaborate with other travelers and local authorities to earn the required documentation for a hassle-free journey. You may enquire about everything with locals if you have any doubts regarding this.
Checkout Weather: The dynamic terrain of Srinagar to Gurez Valley experiences different weather conditions throughout the year. Prioritise awareness of atmospheric conditions and pack according to your needs. Equip yourself with perfect gear to overcome hard weather throughout your way. If you want to take part in Gurev Valley Trek or any other hikes take care of your health and be ready with your fitness.
Travel Time and Distance: Develop a well-crafted understanding of the dimensions of each stop in your journey. Whether you travel by bus or shared taxi, disparities occur in travel times. Include them in your itinerary. Know about all the stops you can take in between for taking rest of the long journey. Make sure to plan your food timings and other things for a comfortable travel.
Fuel and Supplies: If you travel by bus or public transportation this may not be needed for you. But if you start exploring with rental vehicles, ensure your vehicle is full of fuel, especially in a self-driven itinerary. Be ready for scarcity of gas and prioritize the packing of essentials such as water bottles, snacks and any other important things for a comfortable trip. You should be ready with supplies such that you can overcome unseen changes in your itinerary.
Booking for Stay: Increase your success rate by securing accommodations well in advance. Particularly if you are planning an overnight stay book accommodation that is near to all famous places in Gurez for an easy and simple day excursion. This will help you save time and can plan more.
By following these guidelines, you embark on your journey from Srinagar to Gurez Valley with preparedness, ensuring an immersive and hassle-free exploration. If you want to know more about the trip, feel free to consider Cliffhangers India, we will suggest to you with all the knowledge that we have. If you want to travel without taking a load of all this plan your trip with our packages. We will take care of everything in your itinerary. Safe travels!
Srinagar To Gurez Valley Itinerary
Here are different itineraries that you can follow based on the time you can afford.
Three Days Itinerary
Day 1: Srinagar to Dawar. Along the route, observe Lake, the Kishangana River Dam, and Razdan Pass. Register at the Kaka Palace Hotel. Take a drive to the Army Cafe, stop beside the Kishanganga River, then drive up to Habba Khatoon Peak.
Day 2: Take a car trip to Chakwali. If you leave your hotel at nine in the morning, you will get back by four or five in the evening. Head to the Kishanganga River’s flooded area on the other side of Dawar. It’s a great spot to hang out with friends and enjoy the sunset.
Day 3: Head to Khandiyal Top early in the morning to witness the sunrise. Arrive in Srinagar around 3 or 4 pm, having left your hotel by 9 or 10 am.
You should forgo the day trip to Chakwali if you just have two days available. At that point, your itinerary will resemble this.
Two Days Itinerary
Day 1: Srinagar to Dawar. Along the route, observe Lake, the Kishangana River Dam, and Razdan Pass. Register at the Kaka Palace Hotel. Take a drive to Habba Khatoon Peak, stop by the Army Cafe, and relax by the Kishanganga River in the vicinity of the floodplain.
Day 2: Head to Khandiyal Top early in the morning to witness the sunrise. Arrive in Srinagar around 3 or 4 pm, having left your hotel by 9 or 10 am.
Gurez Valley will take at least two days to explore; a one-day visit is not feasible.
Our agent will meet and greet you when you arrive in Srinagar. They’ll go with you to the hotel and assist with the check-in process. You have the day off today. You will see well-known tourist attractions throughout your time spent sightseeing in the area.
DAY 1: Travel 123 km (6–7 hours) from Srinagar to Gurez
Start your day with the magnificent Gurez Valley package with breakfast and prepare to travel to the valley.
Once you arrive in Gurez, make arrangements to stay the night at your hotel.
DAY 2: Local Sightseeing in Gurez
Eat breakfast first thing in the morning to set yourself up for Gurez sightseeing.
You are going to a nearby town called Dawar. As an archeological site, it is well-known. Beautiful log-wood houses can be seen here. The residents of Dawar Town are referred to as “Dards.” You can converse with them and learn more about their local life because they are amiable.
You later reach Habba Khatoon Peak, which resembles a pyramid. The stunning mountain summit has a significant historical role in Kashmir. It bears the name of Habba Khatoon, a well-known poet from Kashmir. Habba Khatoon Spring is one of this location’s other attractions. With healing qualities, the lucid water that flows out of the mountains is crystal pure.
Day 3: Gurez – Tulail Valley Round trip
You will travel through Dawar on your way to Tulail Valley after eating breakfast. This valley is among the most isolated in the area.
You will also stop at the picturesque villages of Chakwali and Sheikhpura on the way back. The final Indian settlement on the line of control is the Chakwali settlement.
Drive return to Gurez Valley later in the evening to spend the night there.
Day 4- Return Srinagar
Start your magnificent Gurez Valley tour today with breakfast and prepare to go by car to Srinagar.
See the settlement of Izamrg while traveling and be sure to take pictures of the breathtakingly beautiful meadows. Another option is to stroll through the village and discover its allure.
After arriving in Srinagar, check into your hotel, have supper, and spend the night there and depart.
Best Time For Srinagar To Gurez
This tour can be planned throughout the year depending on your needs here is an overview of different seasons in Gurez Valley to select the best time. However, keeping all things into consideration, the best time to visit Srinagar to Gurez is from June to September.
Summer is the most favourable season to visit Srinagar. Temperatures fluctuate from 12⁰-25⁰C. It’s an ideal time for outdoor activities. Winter brings cold temperatures in both Gurez and Srinagar, but the routes may be closed during this time for months. You can visit Gurez valley for winter treks and to experience freezing temperatures. If you want to experience golden temperatures you can plan your itinerary in spring, with blossoming flowers and temperatures from 6⁰-18⁰C. In winter the climate is favorable such that you can explore the route with different snowfall levels in Kashmir.
Places To Visit During The Srinagar To Gurez Tour
Dal Lake, Srinagar
Taking place in the centre of Srinagar, discussions about the city’s beauty would be incomplete without mentioning the stunning Dal Lake. In general, the Dal Lake is alive with various features, including vibrant houseboats, romantic shikhara rides, genuine local marketplaces, etc. However, some components are not available to appreciate in their best form throughout the winter. The wintertime low is below zero degrees Celsius. whose influence was also discernible on Dal Lake. Since Dal Lake is practically frozen, you are unable to enjoy the well-known Shikhara rides. All year long, nevertheless, the scenery of Dal Lake is truly magnificent.
Shalimar Bagh, Srinagar
The way the lawns have been set out and the building itself both demonstrate the Mughal artistry. One of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir’s favorite places was Shalimar Bagh. In January, one of the greatest spots to visit in Srinagar is this exquisitely designed Mughal Garden.
Dal Lake and Shalimar Bagh are connected by a waterway. There are waterfalls, structures with exquisite arches, etc. The garden opens at 9:30 a.m. and is located at Chinar Chowk. There are numerous streets with local shopping alternatives for visitors in the garden surrounds.
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Wular Lake, Bandipora
About 50 kilometers northwest of Srinagar sits the Bandipora district of Jammu and Kashmir, home of Wular Lake. Situated at an elevation of 1580 meters, the lake is encircled by stunning peaks of mountains. Numerous authors have complimented Wular Lake’s beauty in their works, and it is truly breathtaking. Wular Lake is 16 km in length and 10 km wide, though its exact dimensions change with the seasons and fluctuating water levels. The lake’s maximum depth is fourteen meters. Additionally, marshes surrounding Wular Lake serve as crucial migrating bird habitats. You can see migratory birds here, including Mallards, Egret, Common Pochard, and Shoveler.
Dawar, Gurez Valley
Dawar is the principal town and a centre of culture. In addition to showcasing the liveliness of everyday life, the local market provides an opportunity to view traditional Gurez handicrafts. Gurez’s capital is Dawar. The area’s central township is Dawar. There are fifteen communities in the area, with an estimated 30,000 people living there. The Kanzalawn-Dawar Road and the Bandipora-Gurez Road connect Dawar to other locations in Jammu and Kashmir as well as India. The Gurez Valley is accessible from Dawar Town on all itineraries.
Habba Khatoon Peak, Gurez Valley
This summit, which bears the name of a well-known poetess from Kashmir, provides sweeping views of the entire Valley below. You will experience an adventure walking to the summit through beautiful scenery. All that’s left of it is a massive mass of granite that towers over Dawar, the Gurez township’s centre area. This mountain has a spring just beneath it. Its waterfalls precipitously and merge with the picturesque Kishanganga River next to it. On your Gurez Valley tour, this is the location you simply must see. Winter trekking is a popular activity on the Habba Khatoon summit. The residents of Barnoi gather Gurezi Kala Zeera, one of the priciest cumin seeds in the world, from the edge of the mountain.
Tulail Valley, Gurez Valley
Known as “the little Ladakh,” Tulail Valley is situated in the Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory’s Bandipora district.
The Kishanganga River’s course through this valley highlights the area’s overall natural splendor. In 2014, this valley was formed out of the Gurez Valley. There are farms and pine trees throughout the area, which gives the scenery more greenery. You can go on a cultural and village stroll, see the charming village of Angainkot, and explore the Chakwali border area. There’s also a healthy dose of passion for trekking. One of the enjoyable things to do in Gurez Valley is the Gurez-Tulail Gangabal Trek. The journey begins in the Tulail Valley and ends in the Sonamarg region of Kashmir.
A freshwater lake called Manasbal Lake Kashmir is situated in Kashmir, India’s Jhelum Valley. It is regarded as one of the most gorgeous locations in the Kashmir Valley and is one of the biggest and deepest freshwater lakes in all of India. The lake has great religious significance as well, drawing a large number of pilgrims who come to honour the nearby Muslim and Hindu shrines. Numerous migratory species, such as the black-necked and the Himalayan monal crane, find refuge in the nearby marshes. The lake is well-known for producing premium lotus stems, which are utilized in traditional Kashmiri cuisine, and is bordered by verdant orchards.
Razdan Pass is a high mountain pass that rises to a height of 11,672 feet (3557 meters). It is situated 16 kilometers from Bandipora and 72 kilometers from Srinagar along the Gurez–Srinagar road. The Gurez Valley was connected to the rest of Kashmir by a road that crossed the pass. Located high in the Himalayan ranges, the pass is blocked for six months of the year due to heavy snowfall. Most individuals will need two and a half to three hours to travel the entire distance without stopping. The pass connects Kazalwan and Manrigam and is 58.8 km (36.53 mi) long.
In case of time constraints, it is feasible to complete a visit to Razdan Pass in just one day.
Kheer Bhavani Temple
The divine dwelling of Goddess Ragnya Devi is the Kheer Bhawani Temple, nestled among stunning Chinar trees and meandering waterways. The unique custom of presenting Kheer to the presiding god makes Kheer Bhavani Temple unique, not its architectural design. Hindus hold great regard for the Kheer Bhavani Temple, which was constructed in 1912 by Maharaja Pratap Singh and then restored by Maharaja Hari Singh. The temple celebrates an annual celebration on the date of Shukla Paksha Ashtami. On that specific day, worshippers fast and congregate at the temple to honor the Goddess.
Is it Worth Visiting Gurez Valley?
Gurez Valley is a destination that is well worth exploring. It is well-known for its secluded and untainted regions that captivate people’s thoughts and emotions. As a result, it serves as an incredibly charming and amorous backdrop for couples seeking to spend quality time together. The valley is home to numerous lakes and trekking bases, making it an ideal place for winter expeditions.
How to Visit Gurez Valley from Srinagar?
The path that goes to Gurez Valley from Srinagar is as follows. Razdan Pass, Bandipora, Sumbal, Dawar (Gurez Valley), and Srinagar. The about 140 km total length between the two destinations can be covered in 5 to 7 hours, depending on your pace and breaks. With our carefully thought-out itinerary, getting from Srinagar to the Gurez Valley is simpler than you may imagine.
Are Foreigners Allowed in Gurez?
This valley is regarded as a restricted territory due to its proximity to the Line of Control (LoC). Foreign visitors will not be allowed to enter this area after 2024. Indian tourists are free to enter this region, except for a few border communities like Chakwali. The government offices in Srinagar and Bandipora are the places to get these licenses.
What is the Distance from Srinagar To Gurez?
Srinagar to Gurez distance of 140 km between the two locations can be travelled in 5 to 7 hours, based on your speed and how often you stop. It’s easier than you might think to go from Srinagar towards the Gurez Valley with our well-planned schedule. You will pass through Razdan Pass and Bandipora.
Are there any Accommodations Available in Gurez?
The J&K Tourism Dak Bungalow used to be the only lodging option in Dawar. However, several hotels have been built as a result of the area’s growing appeal as a travel destination. However, this valley has the minimum infrastructure for tourists. There are very few conventional hotels. Gurez has no three-star or opulent hotels.
What is the Best Time to Visit Gurez?
Gurez’s geographic location plays a part in both its beautiful scenery and its nice climate. Nonetheless, summer is the ideal season to visit Gurez Valley, Kashmir. During the winter, this valley remains blocked and is inaccessible. Its lowest sections and passes are covered in snow. As a result, the temperature is below zero and the roads are closed.
Are there any Restrictions or Permits Required to Visit Gurez?
Because this valley is close to the Line of Control (LoC), it is considered a restricted region. As of 2024, foreign visitors are not permitted to enter this location. Except for a few border settlements like Chakwali, Indian tourists are free to enter this area. These licenses are available at the Bandipora or Srinagar government offices.
How to Reach Srinagar to Gurez?
Passengers can take a bus or hire a taxi from Srinagar. The trip takes about six to seven hours and provides beautiful views of the valleys and mountains in the area. There are no taxi or bus services that go from Srinagar directly to Gurez. Hiring a straight taxi in Srinagar is the most practical way to get there.
How is the Road Condition from Srinagar to Gurez?
As Gurez Valley is still a developing tourist spot, the roads are not up to your expectations. Normal vehicles may not be able to provide you with a comfy ride you better book highly dominant vehicles like Bolero suitable for rough terrains. The main reason is the road from Dawar to Gurez is extremely bad and may damage your cars with lower GC. Make sure you know completely about the road conditions before you start the adventurous journey.
Are there any Public Transportation Options from Srinagar to Gurez?
It can be a little difficult to go from Srinagar to Gurez via bus or other public transit. The bus services from Srinagar to Gurez don’t arrive all at once. The excursion should be split into two halves. From Srinagar to Bandipora initially, and then Bandipora to Gurez subsequently. The approximate cost per head will be between 100 and 125 INR.
What should I Pack for the Trip to Gurez?
Gurez Valley experiences extreme weather conditions, so pack your bag with layers and thermals to protect yourself. In remote areas, there is limited power connectivity, pack power banks, and other required power sources with a working local SIM card. Pack the necessary trekking gear for treks and the required medical kit for your trip from Srinagar to Gurez.
What is the Srinagar to Gurez Taxi Fare?
For the first phase of taxi travel, the anticipated Srinagar to Gurez taxi fare will be 150 INR, and for the second phase, 350 INR. To simply obtain a taxi from Bandipora to Gurez, join groups. From Parimpora in Srinagar, you will first go to Bandipora, and from Bandipora to Dawar in Gurez. This is the most practical and reasonably priced kind of transportation.
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