Winter wonderland: 5 places to see snow this weekend
The new year has just begun, and is already looming with deadlines and exams. Take a break this weekend by travelling to these snow-clad attractions!Updated: Jan 10, 2020 10:14 IST
1. Auli, Uttrakhand
Unmistakably the most picturesque location, with incredible views of the Himalayas from any point. Auli is located in Chamoli district in the Himalayan mountains of Uttarakhand. It is also one of the best locations in India to learn skiing while enjoying the views of the oak and coniferous trees blanketed with snow. With the current average temperatures ranging from -3 to -6 degrees, it is better to bundle up to watch the crystal flakes fall.
The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, which is about 270 kilometres from Auli; the airport operates daily flights to Delhi. Driving from Delhi takes about 10 hours. The nearest railway stations are Rishikesh railway station (250 kilometres) and Dehradun railway station (290 kilometres).
Top Things To Do In Auli
Auli is most famous for breathtaking views witnessed during skiing and trekking. Gorson Trek is one of the most famous trekking trails, with unobstructed views of Nanda Devi and a camping location at the end in Gorson Bugyal, besides Gorson trail there are many locations for trekking, ranging from easy to challenging such as Kuari Pass trek, Trishul Peak trek. Visit Nanda Devi National Park, a UNESCO Heritage site, where one can gaze at the views of The Valley of Flowers, and Badrinath Temple. Try the Ropeway Ride, it has a chair-lift and a cable car. Besides these, Auli’s local market and traditional food is certainly something to try.
2. Gulmarg, Jammu and Kashmir
Gulmarg is known as the heartland of winter sports in India and a popular shooting location for Bollywood movies such as Haider, Bobby, Jab Tak Hai Jaan, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, Highway, Phantom. It is located in the Baramulla district of the Indian union territory of Jammu and Kashmir. The town is situated in the Pir Panjal Range in the western Himalayas. The current average temperatures range from 0 to -7 degrees, you get to witness snowfall throughout the month.
The nearest airport to Gulmarg is Sheikh Ul-Alam International Airport in Srinagar which is 56 km away, it has regular flights to Delhi. From here, cabs are available to reach the base, Tangmarg. The journey would be best with a gondola up to Aparwath and Kungdoor.
Top Things To Do In Gulmarg
Winter sports are integral to a visit to Gulmarg, try your hand at skiing, tobogganing, snowboarding and heli-skiing that take place on the slopes of Mount Apharwat which is reachable by a Gondola lift. Besides sports, there is still a lot to do, such as visiting the scenic Alpather Lake which is around 13kms from Gulmarg, exploring Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve which is a safe shelter for many wildlife animals like the Himalayan Musk Deer, and Red Fox. Your visit would not be complete without a visit to St. Mary’s Church, its stained glass artwork adds to the peaceful experience.
3. Manali, Himachal Pradesh
Home to the Winter Carnival and the ever-famous Mall Road, Manali is a well-known resort town located in Himachal Pradesh, near the Kullu Valley in the Beas River Valley. It is located in the Kullu district, about 270 km north of the state capital, Shimla. It serves as the gateway to Lahaul and Spiti district along with Leh. The current average temperatures range from 3 to -4 degrees, with a heavy chance of snowfall.
The nearest airport Bhuntar Airport is at Bhuntar town, situated on NH21 about 50 km south of Manali and 10 km south of Kullu town. The airport is also known as Kullu-Manali airport. Air India has regular flights to the airport from New Delhi. It is a 12 hour drive from Delhi to Manali, distance from Chandigarh to Manali is 310 km, and the total distance from Delhi to Manali is 570 km.
Top Things To Do In Manali
Manali is full of exciting experiences for everyone. For adrenaline junkies, the Solang Valley is known for paragliding, helicopter rides, skiing, trekking, and zorbing, and much more. Although Rohtang Pass may be closed during January due to heavy snowfall, Hampta Pass is just as beautiful and serene. It is a beautiful a minute corridor connecting the Kullu Valley to Lahaul, which also serves as a trekking trail and a camping ground.
4. Leh, Ladakh
From the highest motorable roads, its unique culture and cold deserts, Leh is the joint capital and largest town of Ladakh, a Union Territory in India. It has strong Tibetan culture, and Buddhist roots with monasteries present throughout the city. The current average temperature ranges from -19 to -15 degrees, with a record low of -21 degrees.
Leh’s Leh Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport has flights to Delhi at least daily, it also has weekly flights to Jammu and Srinagar. It is also accessible through the Leh-Manali Highway, which is a 26 hour drive.
Top Things To Do In Leh
The Leh Palace, Shanti Stupa, and many monasteries are beautiful attractions to visit throughout the year. Leh also has incredible local food and markets, with yak momos and cheese. Although, the travel radius has to be trimmed in the winters.
5. Mussoorie, Uttarakhand
Happy Valley, Camel’s Back Road and Kempty Falls are all famous attractions located in Mussoorie. It is a hill station in the Dehradun District of Uttarakhand. It is about 290 km north of New Delhi. It is in the foothills of the Garhwal Himalayan range, and is known as The Queen of the Hills. The current average temperature ranges from 3 to -5 degrees.
The nearest Airport Jolly Grant in Dehradun is 60 km away from the city. The closest rail station is Dehradun. Mussoorie is connected by road to Delhi and is a seven hour drive.
Top Things To Do In Mussoorie
Top attractions include the Mall Road, Jawalaji Temple, Nag Tibba, and Gun Hill. It is a very easy going town, with secluded sports and serene environment.