Pahalgam, Kashmir: A Historical and Cultural Gem in the Himalayas

pahalgam travel guide

Pahalgam is a picturesque town located in the Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is situated on the banks of the Lidder River and is surrounded by majestic mountains and lush forests. The town has a rich history that dates back to ancient times and has played an important role in the cultural and religious landscape of the region. In this post, we’ll delve into the history of Pahalgam and explore the town’s significance for travelers.

History of Pahalgam

Pahalgam’s history dates back to ancient times when it was a popular spot for shepherds who used to bring their flocks to graze in the green pastures of the valley. The town was also a popular stopover for travelers who were on their way to the holy shrine of Amarnath.

During the reign of the Mughal Empire, Pahalgam gained prominence as a summer retreat for the ruling class. The Mughal Emperor Jahangir was particularly fond of the town and used to visit it frequently. He even built a garden in Pahalgam, which is known as the “Pahalgam Chashma Shahi Garden” and is still a popular attraction for tourists.

In the early 20th century, Pahalgam became a popular destination for British tourists who were attracted to the town’s natural beauty and serene environment. The British built several bungalows and hotels in the town, which are still standing and are now popular accommodations for tourists.

Attractions in Pahalgam

Amarnath Yatra: Pahalgam is the starting point for the Amarnath Yatra, one of the holiest pilgrimages for Hindus. The Amarnath cave is located at an altitude of 3,888 meters and is believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva.

Betaab Valley: Betaab Valley is a picturesque spot located a few kilometers from Pahalgam. The valley is named after the Bollywood film “Betaab” which was shot here. The valley is surrounded by mountains and is a popular spot for camping, trekking, and picnicking.

Aru Valley: Aru Valley is a scenic spot located 12 kilometers from Pahalgam. The valley is surrounded by mountains and is a popular spot for trekking and camping.

Lidder River: The Lidder River is a popular spot for fishing and river rafting. The river is also a great spot for picnicking and leisurely walks.

Pahalgam Golf Course: Pahalgam Golf Course is a popular attraction for golf enthusiasts. The golf course is located in the middle of the town and is surrounded by mountains.

Pahalgam Chashma Shahi Garden: Pahalgam Chashma Shahi Garden is a beautiful garden built by Mughal Emperor Jahangir. The garden is located on the banks of the Lidder River and is a popular spot for picnicking and leisurely walks.


Pahalgam’s rich history and natural beauty make it an ideal destination for travelers seeking a peaceful retreat in the midst of nature. Whether you’re interested in history, adventure, or spirituality, Pahalgam has something to offer for everyone. So, plan a trip to Pahalgam and explore the town’s rich cultural heritage and stunning natural beauty.

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