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How To Reach Jammu and Kashmir
Located in northern India among the Himalayan Mountains, Jammu and Kashmir is also known as ‘Paradise on Earth’. The state is the ideal summer destination in India. It is also the only state in India with two capitals – Jammu in winter and Srinagar in summer.
Planning a trip to Jammu and Kashmir and wondering how to reach there? Read on and plan your trip soon.
There are three airports in Jammu and Kashmir with regular flights from all major cities of India:
• Sheikh Ul Alam Airport in Srinagar
• Jammu Airport in Jammu
• Kushook Bakula Rimpochee Airport in Leh
New Delhi is the closest destination to Jammu and Kashmir with daily flights to Jammu and Srinagar. Air India, Spice Jet and Jet Airways are some regular airlines on these routes. After reaching the airport, you can hire a cab to reach various cities and towns of Kashmir.
By train, Jammu Tawi is your last stop. You can also head to the Banihal railway station or Udhampur railway station. The Jammu Tawi station of Jammu is well connected to Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, Chennai, Pune, Trivandrum etc. The trains include Jammu Rajdhani, Jhelum Express, Uttar S Kranti, Andaman Express, Himgiri Express, Swaraj Express and Himsagar Express. It is advisable to check the schedule of these trains before booking tickets as some of them do not run daily. Udhampur railway station is also located in the Jammu region and is around 229 km from Srinagar.
The Banihal railway station (Ramban district) is connected to Srinagar and Jammu by road. The only issue with the railway station is that it is operational only during the summer season. You can avail taxi and state as well as government buses from the stations to reach your destination.
If you want to take a road trip then you will have to take the NH 1A as it connects to different cities of Jammu and Kashmir. On your way to Kashmir, you will be crossing the Jawahar Tunnel that connects Jammu with Kashmir and it is an enriching experience traveling through this tunnel. As the state is recognized for its tourism industry, the government has taken efforts to build good roads for travelers.
There are many comfortable and private buses that run from Manali, Ludhiana, Shimla and Delhi. Most of these are tourist buses, operated by the Jammu and Kashmir State Road Transport Corporation. You can also book a private car or taxi.
If you are taking a road trip to Srinagar, the drive may be comfortable, but it can also be tedious as the roads are open to both army and tourists. Some of the places may be difficult to access due to the political unrest in Kashmir and you may have to travel in an army convoy. Travelling by road in rainy and winter seasons can be risky due to landslides and heavy snowfall.