Widely known as the gateway to Kashmir, the town of Kathua has a unique charm as it nestles among the foothills of the Himalayas. Situated near the southern border of Kashmir, the city is acclaimed as Dawlat Auliya or the City of Sufis due to a large number of Sufi shrines there.
Kathua is one of the best places to visit in Kashmir, owing to its natural scenic beauty and vibrant culture.
How and When to Visit
Kathua can be reached by rail or road. Kathua Railway Station, located within the city, is connected to the rest of the country. There are regular buses plying from and to Kathua as well, connecting the city to Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, and Delhi. The nearest airport is Gaggal airport in Himachal Pradesh, about 72 km from Kathua.
The whole state of Jammu and Kashmir has a different kind of charm in different seasons. Starting in October, the temperature begins to drop, marking the beginning of the winter season. Travellers can look forward to participating in several adventure sports and sightseeing activities from October to February.
April marks the beginning of summer and a lot of the greenery and warm weather can be enjoyed in Kathua. April to June sees the city come alive with many local festivities, also an enjoyable season for visiting tourists.
Tip: The period from July to September sees a lot of rain and humidity. This may not be the ideal time to visit Kathua since several activities and tourist places in Kashmir are closed on account of the monsoon.
Places to Visit in and Around Kathua
Kathua includes a lot of sights to see in Kashmir, so exploring all of them may extend your itinerary to a good 5-6 days. Here are some of the must-visit places:
Ranjit Sagar Dam – It is part of a hydroelectric project started by the Government of Punjab. The dam itself is a man-made project while the township located nearby, Shah Pur Kandi, has a different and fascinating culture.
Mukteshwar Temple – A historic temple where the Pandavas were said to have taken refuge, Mukteshwar in Pathankot is located on the banks of a serene river in between high mountain ridges, making it a splendid and peaceful place. It is about an hour’s drive from Kathua and holds great historical and mythological value.
Timings: 7 am to 8 pm
Dream Recreational Park – It organises various activities like river rafting, boating, and other adventure sports for tourists. The road leading up to the park has a beauty of its own, and the overall experience is worth cherishing.
Macchedi – A valley located in Kathua district, this offbeat location isn’t overrun with tourists. This is a quiet and serene place with a temperate climate all year round. The peace and solitude are what makes this one of the best places to visit in Kashmir.
A houseboat experience – What can be better than exploring tourist places in Kashmir the authentic Kashmiri way, in a houseboat? Houseboats often have in-house restaurants, offering local favourites such as kahwa and mutton rogan josh. The boat has rooms for couples as well as for three guests, offering a chance to participate in activities engaging the local culture. Living in a houseboat is a one-of-a-kind experience and a refreshing alternative from traditional Kashmir resorts.
It is truly said that if there’s a paradise on Earth, it is Kashmir. And the best way to experience Kashmir is with Club Mahindra Holidays. We offer a plethora of activities along with local delicacies of Kashmir at our in-house restaurant. So enjoy a traditional meal while enjoying the beautiful view of Dal Lake. Guests get the opportunity to stay in Kashmir houseboats where they can relax after a long day of sightseeing.
Club Mahindra’s top priority is guest satisfaction; check out the Club Mahindra reviews online to get a glimpse of our guests’ experiences. Why wait? Join Club Mahindra today to have the best holidaying experience in Kashmir and other locations in the country!