Where to travel
If you are a snow seeker, you have many options to rejoice in white winter of Patnitop:
- Hike through alpine forests decked with snowflakes.
- Get your feet wet by joining a skiing course.
- Sledge white gentle slopes.
- Test your skiing skills.
- Savor local sweets.
- Shop handicrafts.
Who will enjoy this short adventure trip idea?
People who want to learn ski
People looking for soft and medium adventure destinations
What to do & see: physical, cultural
The erstwhile Patan Da Talab (the Pond of the Princess), where the princess enjoyed her bath amid the lush surroundings, is now known as Patnitop (2,024 meters / 6,680 feet). The plateau / table land, located in the Shiwalik Himalaya lies in Doda and Udhampur districts, Jammu and Kashmir. This mosaic of meadows is laced with blue pine (kail in Hindi) and cedar (deodar in Hindi) forests. The popular hill station faces the Pir Panjal Range and the Chenab River Valley and Gorge.
Skiing for beginners, professionals
Gentle ski slopes of Kud (1,738 meters / 5,735 feet) in Udhampur District and Patnitop are perfect for amateurs. They can enroll for one of introductory skiing courses at Kud and Patnitop during winter (January to February). For skiing training, you may contact the sub center of Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering and Winter Sports (JIM & WS) in Sanasar, known as “mini Gulmarg”, is about 17 kilometers from Patnitop. http://www.jawaharinstitutepahalgam.com/
Mid-level and professional skiers may explore challenging ski slopes of Madha Top, about six kilometers from Patnitop. The seasoned skiers may further venture into Natha Top, about ten kilometers from Patnitop. Nath Top on Patnitop-Sanasar Road receives snow until mid-April.
You have other options to explore snow slopes: sledging and walking. You can rent a wooden sledge locally. Walk the following trails:
The Patnitop and Sanasar Road that partly huddles under white blanket
Patnitop to Madha Top
Patnitop to Natha Top
Cycling enthusiasts may repeat adventures of M.S. Athirup who cycled through snow in these areas He enjoyed the “snow cycling.”
Savor patisa, a popular sweet prepared and sold in Kud
When to go
December to February
How to reach
Delhi-Jammu: approximately 610 kilometers
Delhi-Patnitop: about 680 kilometers
Delhi-Udhampur: approximately 630 kilometers
Katra-Patnitop: approximately 87 kilometers
Jammu-Patnitop: approximately 107 kilometers
Udhampur-Patnitop: approximately 45 kilometers
Patnitop-Kud: about 6 kilometers
Jammu Civil Enclave / Satwari Airport (IXJ) is approximately eight kilometers from the city. The air journey between New Delhi (DEL), national capital of India, and Jammu (IXJ) about one and a quarter hour (1:15 hours). The fare starts from INR 4,350 per passenger. You can book flight ticket for any of the following airlines serving the route:
- Air India
- Go Airlines
- IndiGo Airlines
- Jet Lite (India) Ltd.
Indian Railways run a number of trains connecting New Delhi to Jammu (Jammu Tawi Railway Station). The train fare starts from INR 251.00 per passenger for sleeper class. The travel time ranges from nine (9) to sixteen (16) hours. Jammu Rajdhani takes the shortest time (about nine hours) to reach Jammu. However, you have to shell out at least INR 895.00 per passenger for 3-tier AC class because there is no sleeper class in the train. You can book rail ticket online.
Patnitop and Kud are situated along National Highway (NH) 1 A, Jammu Srinagar Highway. Govt. / state and private companies ply between the Delhi and Jammu. For instance, Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) State Road Transport Corporation, Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation Limited and PUNBUS/Punjab Roadways offer bus services from / to Jammu General Bus Stand to/from Inter State Bus Terminal (I.S.B.T.), New Delhi. You can choose from different types of buses, including deluxe, ordinary, air conditioned (AC), non-air conditioned, semi deluxe and video coaches.
The fare for the 10-13 hours journey starts from INR 380.00 per passenger. You can even book bus tickets (mainly of private bus companies) online at Red Bus and / or Travel Yaari.
Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation (J.K.T.D.C.) offers 1, 2 and 3 BHK huts, 2-bed rooms and 4-bed rooms at its Tourist Establishment, Patnitop, Udhampur. The tariff ranges from INR 600 to 3,600 per night.
A short list of hotels in Patnitop and Kud follows:
Aroma Hotel, http://www.aromahotelpatnitop.com/ (2,000-3,500)
Hotel Green Top, http://www.greentophotel.com/HOMEPAGE.htm (2,690 –7,490)
Hotel Holiday Inn, http://www.holidayinn.co.in/ (3,090-6,090)
Hotel Jai Shree, http://www.hoteljaishree.com/ (2,190-4,190)
Hotel Subhash Palace, http://hotelsubashpalace.com/ (2,090-5,790)
Shiva Cottages, http://shivacottage.com/ (2,590-8,990)
Vardaan Inns Resorts, http://vardaanresortpatnitop.com.managewebsiteportal.com/ (2,990-3,950)
The nightly room tariff in brackets is exclusive of taxes and other charges.
What is happening?
- The proposal for constructing 2.6 kilometer long passenger aerial ropeway in Patnitop is awaiting clearance. The ropeway with 23 trolleys would link Patnitop to Sangote, Karla and Kud and pass through the Dudu Forest Range.
- A nine kilometer tunnel between Chenani and Nashri is being laid. The longest tunnel in India would be complete by 2016. The new all-weather road would reduce the distance between two places by one third (from 30 km to 10 km).
- The government allocated funds for different tourist infrastructure development projects for Natha Top and Sanasar 2012. Natha Top and Patnitop may also install ski lifts.