Sight seeing Gulmarg Gandola
Gulmarg is a town, a hill station, a popular skiing destination and a notified area committee in the Baramula district of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The town is situated in the Pirpanjal range in the western Himalayas. Gulmarg is the heartland of winter sports in India and was rated as Asia's seventh best ski destination. Winter sports like skiing, tobogganing, snowboarding and heli-skiing take place on the slopes of Mount Apharwat reachable by a Gondola lift. Originally named Gaurimarg ("the fair one") by shepherds in honor of the Hindu goddess Parvati, the resort was renamed Gulmarg (“meadow of flowers”) by Sultan yousf Shah of the Chak Dynasty who frequented the place with his queen Habba khatoon in the 16th century.show more
Gulmarg is a town, a hill station, a popular skiing destination and a notified area committee in the Baramula district of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The town is situated in the Pirpanjal range in the western Himalayas.
Originally named Gaurimarg ("the fair one") by shepherds in honor of the Hindu goddess Parvati, the resort was renamed Gulmarg (“meadow of flowers”) by Sultan yousf Shah of the Chak Dynasty who frequented the place with his queen Habba khatoon in the 16th century. Wild flowers of 21 different varieties were collected by the Mughal emperor Jahangir for his gardens in Gulmarg.In the 19th century, British civil servants started using Gulmarg as a retreat to escape summers in North Indian plains. Hunting and golfing were their favorite pastime and three golf courses were established in Gulmarg including one exclusively for women. One of the golf courses survives and at an altitude of 2,650 metres (8,690 ft) is the world's highest golf course. In 1927, British established a ski club in Gulmarg and two annual ski events were hosted one each during Christmas and Easter. Central Asian explorer Aurel Austin also visited Gulmarg during this period.
After the end of London colonial rule, Gulmarg became a part of the independent princely state of Jammu and Kashmir. To ensure the accession of the princely state.
In 1968, Institute of Skiing and Mountaineering was established in Gulmarg to train ski instructors. Over the next decade Indian planners invested र-30 million (US$470,000) to transform Gulmarg into a world class ski destination. Gulmarg became a centre for skiers from Asian nations. In mid-1980s, Heli-skiing was introduced in Gulmarg in collaboration with the Swiss skier Slyvain Saudan of Himalaya Heli-Ski Club of France.
In the 1990s, the rise of militancy in Jammu and Kashmir affected tourism in Gulmarg. With the abatement of terrorism in the area, tourism started to recover in late 1990s. Work on the Cable Car project between Gulmarg and Apharwat Peak, which was commissioned in 1988 by Government of Jammu and Kashmir but was subsequently abandoned due to militancy in 1990, was resumed in 1998. In May 1998, Phase 1 of the project, between Gulmarg and Kongdori, began its commercial operation. In May 2005, Phase 2 of the project was also inaugurated making it one of the longest and highest rope ways of Asia. The Chair Lift was installed as a part of Phase 3 of the project began its operations in 2011.
India’s National Winter Games were held in Gulmarg in 1998, 2004 and 2008. In 2014, Government of Jammu and Kashmir drafted a Master Plan-2032 for Gulmarg. The plan includes development of a solid waste treatment plant on 20 acres of land close to Gulmarg.
According to CNN, Gulmarg is the "heartland of winter sports in India" and was rated as Asia's seventh best ski destination.The town is accessible from Srinagar by road via Tangmarg. The road climbs uphill in the last 12 kilometres to Gulmarg passing through forests of pine and fir. Winter sports like skiing, tobogganing, snowboarding and heli-skiing take place on the slopes of Mount Apharwat reachable by a gondola lift.
Maharani Temple (commonly known as Shiv Temple of Gulmarg) was built by a Hindu ruler Maharaja Hari Sisodia for his wife Maharani Mohini Bai Sisodia who ruled till 1915. This temple was considered as the stately possession of Dogra Kings. The temple is dedicated to Shiva and Parvati. This temple is situated on a slight hill top with greenery. This temple is visible from all corners of Gulmarg.
The Roman Catholic St Mary's Church is located in the valley of Shepherds in Gulmarg. It was built in 1902, during the period of British rule, and was constructed in a British style. Made of grey brick with a green roof and decorated wooden interior walls, it has been described as a "Victorian architectural wonder". St Mary's was closed for years, but was renovated and reopened in 2003, holding its first Christmas service there for 14 years.The church belongs to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Jammu and Kashmir.
Gulmarg Gondola Built by the French company Pomagalski, the Gulmarg Gondola is one of the highest in the world reaching 3,979 metres. The two-stage ropeway ferries about 600 people per hour to and from Gulmarg to a shoulder of nearby Mt. Apharwat Summit (4,200 m (13,780 ft)). The first stage transfers from Gulmarg at 2,600 m (8,530 ft) to Kongdoori at 3,080 m. The second stage which has 36 cabins and 18 towers, takes passengers to a height of 3,950 m (12,959 ft) on the Apharwat Peak (4,200 m (13,780 ft)). A chair lift system connects Kongdoori with Mary’s shoulder for taking skiers to higher altitude. The high inflow of tourists has had an effect on the fragile eco-system of Gulmarg and activists have demanded tightened regulation to save the environment of the area from over tourism.
Golf Course Situated at an altitude of 2,650 m, it is the highest green golf course in the world. The historic Gulmarg Golf Club was started in 1911 by the British who used the place as a holiday resort. The origin of Gulmarg as the golfing centre of India goes back to the late 19th century when a 6-hole course was made in 1890-91 by Colonel Navile Chamberlin. The first Golf championship was played at Gulmarg in 1922. The Nedou's Cup was introduced in 1929.
An annual three-day Gulmarg Winter Festival is held in March. Budding artists in the fields of music, films and photography are given an opportunity to showcase their work during the festival.
Sight seeing Gulmarg Gandola
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