Skiing in Kashmir

Skiing is one of the prime attractions in Kashmir and is apt for adventure seekers looking for a day of fun and exciting amidst the valleys of Kashmir. Skiing in the Himalayas is definitely a must-do as it allows you to catch a glimpse of the mighty mountains quite up-close.

Gulmarg, Kashmir is considered as the best ski resort in the Himalayas. This Ski Resort was founded in 1927 by the British and its establishment is credited to two British Army Officers named Major Hadow and Major Metcarp who had once setup a Ski Club of India at Gulmarg during the British Raj in India.       

Skiing in the snow-clad mountains of Gulmarg was quite popular during the pre-independence era especially during the events hosted in Christmas and Easter Day. There is a mention that over 500 Skiers participated in the Christmas and Easter ski race events which was organised in 1938-39.

Gulmarg is accredited as the highest cable car enabled ski resorts in the world mainly due to a Gondola Cable Car Lift that was setup here. The second section of this cable car takes you up to a height of about 4,000 meters above the snow level from where you can enjoy a 5-km downhill ski run. To avail the Gondola Cable car facility, Skiers can purchase a Daily, Weekly, or Seasonal pass from the Ski Resort Center. Apart from the second section, there are 3 ski lifts to serve the purpose for beginners and intermediate-level skiers, respectively.

You can enjoy Skiing in Gulmarg before Christmas which happens around mid-December and continues up till mid-April. In fact the first ever National Winter Games of India was held in this Gulmarg Ski Resort between January and February way back in 1998.

Gulmarg then became the venue for the 4th and 5th National Winter Games events held in 2004 & 2008. Henceforth, it was made the permanent venue for the National Winter Games organized every year. Declared as the Winter Games Capital of India, Gulmarg was approved by FIS or ‘Federation of International Skiing’ as the venue for ‘The Himalayan International Cross Country Ski Championship’ which was held in 2005.

Since then the skiing facilities were tremendously upgraded and hence improved at the Gulmarg Ski Resort. They acquired 2 Snow-Beating Machines of International repute that were extensively used for preparing the slopes for skiing, including 5 snowmobiles as well. You can hire High quality equipments such as snow skis, bindings, ski boots, ski gloves, and ski goggles on the spot from the J&K Tourism operated ski shop. You can also request for well trained ski instructors to guide you through the slopes, if you are unsure. The J&K Tourism Department also engages a Ski Patrol Team supervised by accredited experts from abroad to manage the mountain operations each year.

Gulmarg offers a friendly and home-like atmosphere for all skiers. Many tourist skiers from abroad visit this Ski Resort every year and even stay over for extended days. You can get in touch with the Assistant Director of the Gulmarg Tourism Department for further information at;

Mobile No.: +91 – 9419 708 180
Phone: +91 – 1954 – 254 487 or +91 – 1954 – 254 439

For would-be learners, Ski courses are conducted at Patnitop every year during the winters as the gentle-graded ski slopes at Patnitop is most suitable for beginners. Situated on Sanasar Road about 5 to 6 kms from Patnitop is Madha Top that offer possibilities for skiing in all levels. Once the next project of another Ski Lift Cable car is established and functional at Madha Top, this place will offer skiing options for beginners and seasoned skiers as well.

For skiers visiting Gulmarg, accommodation is available at the J&K TDC Huts situated in Patnitop, Sanasar and Kud apart from the several private hotels available for booking at Patnitop and Kud. Just ensure that you book your rooms well in advance as the accommodation facilities at these places tend to get reserved quite rapidly.

Adventure Activities in Kashmir