Gumarg - Meadow of Flowers
Gulmarg is located 52 kms south west of the capital city of Srinagar and lies close to the Indo-Pakistan border area. Immensely beautiful, the landscape of Gulmarg offers a pleasant and comfortable stay to its visitors. Today the place. has been famous for the different adventure activities and gives a fabulous background to many bollywood movies. The original name of Gulmarg was gaurimarg. Its name has been changed by Yousuf Shah Chak after collecting 21 kinds of flowers.Gulmarg, "Meadow ofFlowers", was discovered in 16th century during the reign of Sultan Yousuf Shah. Historians describe the famous love couples, Habba Khatoon, poetess of Kashmir and King Yousuf Shah Chak, and Jehangir and Noor Jehan visiting Gulmarg for enjoying life. Gulmarg is on full bloom during the Summer with flowers like bluebells and daisies. This wonderland of nature was first discovered in the year 1927 by the Britishers as a place of recreation and relaxation amidst the glory of nature during pre independence India.
During summer months Gulmarg is famous for its highest green golf course in the world which is at an altitude of 2732 mtrs. Since 1972, proved by the famous Australian golfer Mr. Peter thomson who played golf at gulmarg. Gulmarg is blessed with nature- the magical meadows and the snow capped mountains is a wonderful touristdestination in the world. One of the best adventure destinations of India, Gulmarg is called the Meadow of Flowers. The towering peaks provide the required background to the landscape of Gulmarg which is oneof the finest heli-skiing resorts in the whole of Asia.
Gulmarg is having the best ski resort in the country. The place maintains the standards naturally friendly service for which Kashmir is famed. It has been identified european skiing resort in the past. It holds a position as one of the highest lift served ski resorts in the world. Kashmir is also one of world's best heli skiing regions with thousands of possible 2200 meter descents. Gulmarg hosts several national winter games championships and recently in 2008. The slopes provide excellent opportunities to cross country and downhill skiing events. The resort has modern infrastructure helps in keeping the slopes fit for skiing and other winter sports related activities all times.
The gentle slopes, having runs of upto 200 meters, are the best for beginners while the steeper runs of 500 meters for intermediate level skiers, and yet other stretches of over 2500 meters, precipitously steep, for top level skiers. T-bars and chair lifts, on five runs for beginners and intermediates, are operated throughout the day.Gulmarg also offers heli-skiing, being the first destination in asia to do so. A helicopter takes you upto the apherwat peak from where you choose your own descent route.
In winters you can use toboggans, sledges, snow cycles and Snow Scooters. To get on the next level of Adventure, fun and excitement that snow generates The tempting ski doos are used for patrolling during winter. Visitors can try their luck for a ride on one of these. Gulmarg is famous among skiers for its unique powdery snow, natural slopes and suitable combination of snow with sunshine. British Army Officers, Maj. Metcarp and Maj. Hadow, set up the first Ski Club of India at Gulmarg in 1927. Today, every ski event from Giant Slalom to lnternational standard cross-country is organised in Gulmarg. Ski Training Courses are organised by J&K Youth Services & Sports and Indian Institute of Skiing & Mountaineering having offices in Gulmarg and Srinagar. The skiing courses generally start from December when substantial volume of snow is present. Championships are also organised by some private resort owners in Gulmarg. Ski equipment is available at government- run ski shops and private ones as well. T-Bar ski lifts are available for beginners and intermediate skiers Professional skiiers passionately ski down from the Apharwat mountain base and snow board lovers try sliding from Kongdori and around Gulmarg, enticing watchers to try their feet on the board.