If beauty is personified anywhere, it is in Jammu and Kashmir, the land of snowy mountains, canyons, glaciers, enchanting lakes and heavenly flowers. Here beauty speaks to you in the most romantic language of the world. The valleys in Kashmir spread their magical spell on the visitors, to let them be intoxicated with the opium of beauty. In this article, we will discuss four valleys of Jammu and Kashmir, which will surely leave you spellbound. These valleys are not so famous and not on the top list, but these are no less beautiful than the famous ones like Drass, Zanskar, Suru or Shyok Valley. Located far from the hustle bustle of the cities, these valleys are the places of peace and tranquility, where you can speak to your soul.
1. Nubra Valley
The Nubra valley is located in Ladakh, having the Diskit village in its center. River Shyok meets the Nubra or Siachen River and forms a large valley. The valley separates two ranges, the Ladakh and the Karakorum. The valley unfolds its mysteries of beauty in the scenery of green villages, apricot fields, steep rocks and slopes, high mountains and the carpet of greenery.
Traveling to the Nubra valley through the Khardung La Pass is an exciting journey. Being at a comparatively lower altitude (3048m on an average), Nubra is the ideal junction for the trekkers to acclimatize. The ideal season for visiting Nubra is from May to August, when the climate is friendly and the guest houses are open with complete facilities.
2. Nagin Valley
Nagin Valley is located on the Gulmarg-Botpathri Road at a height of 9000ft, just 5Km away from the official Line of Control (LOC). It was prohibited for the visitors due to security reasons for 22 years. However, it has been reopened in 2012. The lovely stretch of landscape is an attraction for the trekkers. It is surrounded by mountains wearing crowns of snow.
The best part of the attraction is the Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve which is rich in wildlife like the Leopard, Red Fox, Musk Deer and Hangul. The quite alpine meadows and blue pines apply soothing green balm on the tired eyes of city people. The climate is quite wet, making the landscape burst with colors of life. You cannot find stay options right here, but you can visit the place from Gulmarg which is only 10 Km away.
3. Poonch Valley
Being situated on the India-Pakistan border, Poonch valley is a great attraction for the travel enthusiasts. The Pir Panjal range fences the valley. Its scenic ecstasy charms the travelers with lush meadows, pristine lakes and alpine mountains. Noori Chamb, the waterfall at Behram Gala is one of the sites to be visited here. There are the lakes at Girgan Dhok: Sukhsar, Bhagsar, Neelsar, Kaldachnisar, Katorasar and Nandansar. You must also visit the 18th Century Poonch Fort. Quite small villages are there with the authentic essence of nature, unspoiled by the touches of modern civilization.
4. Markha Valley
Markha valley is ready to thrill the visitors with the enchanting beauty of the villages and the monasteries. Buddhist and Tibetan culture specially defines the ambiance of the place. You will find the ruins of old castles and forts which will create an aura of historical ages around you. The valley is surrounded by high mountain peaks like Kang Yatse (6400mts), Stok Kangri (6150mts), Nun Kun (7150mts) and Karakoram Saser Kangri Peak (7670mts). Canyons and wonderful rock formations create a magical view here. Accommodation is found in parachute tents in the villages. The Markha Valley trek route goes through the Hemis National Park.
So, do not forget to explore these four valleys when you are in Jammu and Kashmir. You will be spellbound for sure!
Rohit is a passionate traveler. He loves to discover new places in different parts of India. He shares his experiences through writing in transindiatravels.com.