Backpackers, journeyers and high-end tourists have been coming to Kashmir and Jammu, for nigh on 500 years with everyone from Mughal emperors to Mahatma Gandhi and Paul McCartney sampling the special brand of Sufi Islamic hospitality that goes hand in hand with the faraway peaks of the Himalayas. There's an intrinsically magical feel as the Vale of Kashmir bathes in the golden light of the setting sun. The canals and lakes in and around the old town of Srinagar offering a timeless glance at another world, where shakaras float effortlessly by and the call to prayer blends with the sing song of Hindi film scores. Local guesthouses invite a chance to get to know charming hosts who revel in the role of Kashmir travel guide, only too pleased to show you their homeland where trekkers can find Nirvana and shoppers succumb to some of the finest wares this side of the Silk Route.
Kashmir is…

like a mystical Islamic land that time forgot.
Kashmir isn't…

just rammed-jammed with tie-dyed hippies.
If you'd like to chat about Kashmir or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.
Rosy & team.
01273 823 700



The region of Kashmir incorporates the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir in Pakistan, and Aksai Chin and the Trans-Karakoram Tract which are both areas administered by China. For this Kashmir travel guide we’re focusing on the three regions of Jammu and Kashmir: Ladakh in the east, which reflects the remoteness and peacefulness associated with Buddhism and the Himalayas, Jammu in the south, featuring countless Hindu shrines, including Vaishno Devi that’s located around 50kms north of the temples, palaces and forts in Jammu City, and Kashmir Valley including the city of Srinagar, hill stations of Gulmarg and Pahalgam, and house boats on Dal Lake.
Leh Nubra Valley Padam Rangdum Sonamarg Srinagar


Overlooked by the imposing ruins of the nine-storey royal palace, Leh is a relatively harmonious vision of religion in India with mosques and Buddhist monuments, such as Shanti Stupa, alongside smaller Christian, Hindu and Sikh places of worship. Leh is a ramshackle assembly of markets and monasteries with the surrounding mountains and lakes providing ample excuses to explore as you acclimatise at altitude.

Nubra Valley

Accessed via the world’s highest road, Khardung La, and featuring the 14th century Diskit Monastery and gigantic statue of Maitreya Buddha, Nubra is awash with sand dunes, sea-buckthorn and rushing rivers. Fertile valley slopes support several communities, such as Diskit village, where kids kick about under apricot orchards and wild camels roam the lands which were once the preserve of their forefathers on the Silk Route.


Thread your way through the agricultural plains and glacial valleys of the Zanskar Mountains and you’ll reach the village of Padum where nearby Buddhist monasteries provide the perfect point to head to before hunkering down for the night in a local guesthouse. Padum is a great place to meet local people and there are several homestays plus a good choice of restaurants servicing the steady flow of seasonal trekkers.


The remoteness of Rangdum offers travellers a glimpse at life in the far reaches of the Suru Valley. The summer campsite here, at Julidok village, offers overnight accommodation in between exploring the flat and arid landscapes en-route to the Rangdum Monastery, which is inhabited by around 30 Tibetan Buddhist monks and roughly the same amount of donkeys.


This seasonally inhabited hill station is situated within the alpine area of Kashmir Valley surrounded by the glacial summits of the Himalayas including the peaks of Sirbal, Kolhoi and Machoi. Day walks around the Himalayan foothills are matched by opportunities to meet nomadic Gujjar people who move lock, stock and flock up and down the mountain slopes in time with summer and winter.


Kashmir’s largest city is well-known for its lagoons, lakes and navigational canals with everything from floating fruit and veg markets to overnight houseboat accommodation offering travellers the chance to view the heritage sites and ancient alleyways from a whole new perspective. Mughal gardens, wooden mosques and Hindu temples make the moniker ‘Venice of the East’ almost entirely plausible.
Photo credits: Top box : Tony Gladvin George ] [Help desk: Nhi Dang] [Map intro box: Varun Suresh] [Leh: Anirvan Shukla] [Nubra Valley: Karunakar Rayker] [Padum: Hamon jp] [Rangdum: Narender9] [Sonamarg: Mike Prince] [Srinagar: McKay Savage]
Written by Chris Owen
Kashmir small group holiday, India

Kashmir small group holiday, India

An extraordinary road journey through Ladakh and Kashmir

From £2645 15 Days ex flights
Delhi to Kashmir tour

Delhi to Kashmir tour

Visit the hill stations of Kashmir

From £2595 14 Days ex flights
Kashmir cultural holiday, India

Kashmir cultural holiday, India

A relaxed tour of Kashmir by riverboat

From £2645 11 Days ex flights
Walking in holiday India, Ladakh & Kashmir

Walking in holiday India, Ladakh & Kashmir

Walking and camping holiday in beautiful Kashmir and Ladakh

From £2670 16 Days ex flights
Kashmir and Ladakh holiday, India

Kashmir and Ladakh holiday, India

An unforgettable adventure to the rooftop of the world

From £2149 15 Days ex flights
Kashmir tour, Mumbai to Kashmir

Kashmir tour, Mumbai to Kashmir

Mumbai to the beautiful Vale of Kashmir

From £3895 17 Days ex flights
Karakoram Highway holiday

Karakoram Highway holiday

Journey the Southern branch of the Silk Road

From £4595 21 Days ex flights
Ladakh and Kashmir tour, The Hemis festival

Ladakh and Kashmir tour, The Hemis festival

Experience the colourful Hemis festival

From £1749 11 Days ex flights
Ladakh &  Kashmir holiday, India

Ladakh & Kashmir holiday, India

Timeless monasteries, stunning mountain scenery and Srinagar

From £2349 14 Days ex flights
Photo credits: [Page banner: khlongwangchao]
Convert currencies