Amarnath-abode Of Shiva
Legend has it that Shiva narrated the secret of creation to Parvati in a cave in Amarnath
. They did not know that, a pair of mating doves are hearing this conversation and having learned the secret, are reborn again and again, and have made the cave their everlasting abode. Many pilgrims report seeing this pair Amarnath shrine to pay respect to the lingum (the Phallic symbol of Shiva).
The trek to Amarnath, in the month of Shravan (July-August) has the devoted flock to this mind-
The trek from Chandanwari to Amarnath Cave is only on an ancient route. The 30 Km. distance is wrapped in two days, with night stoppages at Sheshnagh (Wawjan) and Panchtarni. The distance from Pahalgam to Chandanwari (16 Km.) is now covered by vehicular transport, and the track runs along the Lidder River. Pilgrims stay at Pahalgam or Chandanwari on the first night out.
On the first day trek is of 12 Km. from Chandanwari. On the second night pilgrims stay at Wawjan..
The second day's trek of 12 Km. progressively gains height, at the maximum across Mahagunas Pass at 4,600m and then downhill to the meadow-lands of Panchtarni, the last camp on the route to the sacred Cave.
From Panchtari to Amarnath it is just 6 Km. but an early morning's start is suggested for there is a long line awaiting entry to the cave. The same day, following darshan, pilgrims return to Panchtarni in time for lunch, and then proceed towards Sheshnag to spend the third night out. They can even spend the night at Panchtarni and go back to Chandanwari/Pahalgam on the next day. Entrance to the cave is synchronized and darshan is a quick affair as there are many others waiting outside to pay homage before the breathtaking Shivalinga. The devotees sing hymns, chant incantations, and priests perform arti and puja, calling upon the blessings of Shiva, the divine, the pure, the complete. For those who journey with trust and devotion, it is a satisfying experience, this simple visitation to a cave-shrine, the home of the Himalayan mendicant who is both destroyer and healer, the supreme Hindu god.
Day 1: Srinagar Sonmarg 99 Kms
On coming to Srinagar airport a three hours drive will take you to Sonmarg. Dinner and Overnight at Hotel
Day 02: Sonmarg Baltal 15 Kms drive and Amarnath 24 Kms return
It is better to leave very early in the morning round about 4AM and short drive to Baltal from Sonmarg will take 10 minutes by helicopter to Amarnath Cave and within two hours time you will reach back to Baltal. From Baltal three hours drive will take you to Srinagar.
Day 03: Srinagar
After breakfast one can go for a Shikara ride on Dal Lake and visit exciting places around the lake.
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