Current situation in Srinagar for Tourists travelling to or from Ladakh

by Vargis.Khan

For anyone planning to visit Ladakh anytime soon, either going or returning via Srinagar, here is a little information on how the situation currently is for tourists. I had actually been receiving this question so often ever since the unrest in Kashmir started last month so I decided to post an article on this for everyone’s sake. Some of the questions I received were like is it safe to travel to Srinagar right now? Can we go to Ladakh from Srinagar? Are people going to or coming from Ladakh allowed to pass through Srinagar? What is the current situation in Srinagar for tourists? I hope the information below will help answer these questions. Thanks my friend Gaurav Bhatia for this information who just came back from Ladakh last week and travelled through Srinagar.

Also read: Tourist Attractions in Srinagar City and its Vicinity

Currently, the army is escorting the tourists in and out of Srinagar and no one is allowed to stay. There is a convoy that starts from Sonamarg and Jammu that tourists travel with and it will leave you somewhere near the outskirts of Srinagar. For information’s sake, let us assume that you are travelling from Leh to Srinagar. Once you reach Sonamarg, there are check posts beyond which you will not be allowed to go. You will have to stay in Sonamarg for the next convoy to begin the journey which will be at midnight. Yes, you read it right. The convoy will start from Sonamarg at midnight and will travel non-stop until Srinagar. All the vehicles, which will be a lot many, waiting at Sonamarg will be travelling with the army convoy. As I mentioned, this convoy doesn’t stop anywhere and will keep driving until they have reached Srinagar, except for small washroom breaks on the way. The total time of the journey will be approximately 9 hours and they will drop you near Dal lake in Srinagar from where you will be on your own towards Jammu.

Current situation in Srinagar for Tourists travelling to or from Ladakh

Current situation in Srinagar for Tourists

Current situation in Srinagar for Tourists travelling to or from Ladakh

Current situation in Srinagar for Tourists

If you are doing the journey other way around, that is going to Leh from Srinagar side, this convoy will start at either from Jammu or Patnitop. Once again, there will be barricades at either of these cities on the highway beyond which tourists will not be allowed to go. You will have to wait until midnight and travel with the convoy which again starts at midnight from this side as well. Rules are again the same, they will drive non-stop with a few washroom breaks. The first convoy will leave you at Srinagar and the other one will escort you from Srinagar to Sonamarg.




The only exception is vehicles with registration numbers of JK01 and JK02 (Jammu and Srinagar). Rest all other vehicles will be stopped. Another thing I would like to add here is that this convoy travels at quit a speed and that too in the night so please be careful while driving with them.What baffles me is that for people coming from Sonamarg, they will only escort until Srinagar and let them travel alone until Jammu but won’t let people come from Jammu alone. Do not ask me, I have no idea what the logic behind this arrangement is.

For anyone flying to Srinagar, I really do not have an advice. Best thing I can suggest is to wait at the airport and go straight to Srinagar bus stand and take the next bus out of the city to Srinagar or have an arrangement made in advance for a private cab to pick you from the airport and drop out of the city, at least until Sonamarg. There could be an arrangement to have tourists escorted from the airport as well but I am not too sure about that.

Let me end this by saying that I totally love Kashmir and it breaks my heart every time the violence erupts in the valley and threatens to destroy what is popularly known as a paradise to everyone. What will be the outcome of all this hatred and violence, where and when will all this end is something I so often wonder. I still remember that during my 2009 trip to Ladakh, we were returning via Srinagar and a curfew was imposed right on the day we were schedule to arrive in Srinagar. We entered the city, totally unaware of the curfew, and it was only after we saw a few damaged and burnt vehicles and other signs of violence that we realized that something was wrong. The silent streets is what eventually made us realize that we were riding our motorcycles through a city that was under a curfew. Surprisingly, we came across a few locals but none bothered us. They just looked at us and did not bother. The police and the army guys too, after seeing the Delhi numbers on our motorcycles and the luggage, just lifted the barriers and let us pass with a word of warning that we should not stay in the city and only stop once we are out of Srinagar. Next year, when I again did the same route, we stopped in Srinagar and I enquired the locals about what had happened last year. Almost everyone gave us the same answer, that they never bother or hurt tourists because that is their primary source of income. Having said that, please do not in any way assume that I am telling you to go to Srinagar and feel safe thinking that you are a tourist. Violence doesn’t care if you are a local or a tourist so it is always better to stay safe and not go to a place where there is a high chance of getting hurt. For now, my best advice would be that you go via Manali and return the same rout. Better be safe than sorry.

Planning a trip to Srinagar anytime soon? Read Tourist Attractions in Srinagar City and its Vicinity for a list of must visit places in Srinagar and nearby areas.

I hope this information was helpful. If you have any further question, please feel free to ask in the comments section below and I would b glad to answer.

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120 comments

Rakesh May 17, 2018 - 7:48 am

Hi Vargis, Thanks for giving this valuable information. I think It’s been 2 years that you wrote this post and I don’t the current situation in Srinagar.

Actually, we as a team of 6 people planned to travel leh ladakh from 23rd June, 2018 to 2nd July, 2018. Our plan is to start from Delhi – Manali – Leh Ladakh – Kargil – Srinagar – Delhi. But one thing I am confused about the travel through Srinagar and stay there. What is the current situation? Is it possible to travel from Ladakh to Srinagar then Delhi?

Waiting for you response. Thanks in advance

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Vargis.Khan May 17, 2018 - 6:18 pm

Hi Rakesh – Situation is OK as of now. Lot of people are already traveling on both Srinagar Leh highway and to Kashmir as well. But keep a close watch on the news and check the situation in June as well.

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pradeep September 15, 2017 - 11:00 am

Hi vargis,
I’m planning a road trip to leh via srinagar during last week of Sept. My concern is about Jammu-Srinagar highway. Is it safe and possible to travel alone in Jammu to Srinagar during last week of Sept. Most importantly I don’t know Hindi or Urdu.

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Vargis.Khan September 15, 2017 - 3:24 pm

Hello Pradeep – In terms of safety, yes it is fine to travel on the road alone. Lot of tourists do it each year. In terms of language barrier, due to the region being entirely a tourist area, people here tend to speak a bit of english as well. You should be OK traveling though it will be a bit of hassle.

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yada September 22, 2017 - 3:32 pm

Hi Vargis,

I’m planning to go to Srinagar in this October. How is the situation now? Is it safe to visit?

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Vargis.Khan September 28, 2017 - 3:52 pm

Hello Yada – It is safe to travel right now, nothing to worry about.

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Lynn D Stucker July 31, 2017 - 4:21 am

Hello Vargis, You provide a valuable service. Thank you. I flew into Srinagar on Aug 24, 2016. Had my daughter’s husband and family pick our party up at the airport. We spent two weeks in Srinagar, with a side trip to the glacier lake at Naranag. We were treated exceptionally well by locals and army alike. Their ‘fight’ is Not with tourists, just as you said. As long as we made it a point to stay away from the actual disturbances and protests, most of them occuring at night, we did as we pleased. Including travel, having local plates on our vehicles and motorcycles. I never felt ill at ease and was constantly welcomed by those I met, day or night. My son and I stayed at Houseboat Mt, Everest on the Bund on the Jelum River in Downtown Srinagar, and we felt free to come and go in the day or dark of night. The strike was a bummer though, for all. Nobody wins with those. After spending time with the family we loaded up our car and three bikes and without escort drove to Leh then turtuk, pangong, Miorri, Kar tsos then to Manali, Shemla, and Delhi. We flew home to the US on Sept. 27, 2016, after a train ride to Agra.

My son in law in Srinagar says that conditions there are definitely better there now than last year when pretty much the town was shut down, which wasnt to say you couldnt do anything, because you really could if you wanted to.

I am returning in early October with more friends to Srinagar to Ride our bikes through Kashmir, Anantnag, Kitshwar, Killar, keylong, on the Cliff Road to Manali, and then Delhi. Looking forward to another Memorable and enjoyable time in India!

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Vargis.Khan August 1, 2017 - 4:10 pm

Hello Lynn – Thank you so much for your valuable inputs and I completely agree with your statement that their so called “fight” is not with tourists. They make it a point to ensure that tourists are not harmed or hassled in any way because their livelihood pretty much depends on it.

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vijay July 18, 2017 - 5:27 am

Hi bro
I’m travelling from Delhi to leh on bike starting 23th of dis month- July. V have planned to travel through srinagar. I want to know tat is it safe to travel through srinagar in bike. V r very much confused regarding dis. Try to give us dis solution.

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Vargis.Khan July 18, 2017 - 8:57 pm

Hello Vijay Bhai – It is safe to go as of now is what I can tell you. Things in Srinagar change by day but tourists are almost never harmed so you are OK to go. Since you will not be staying there for more than a night, you got nothing to worry about. If anything happens and you need assistance, call Faisal in Srinagar at 9596410670. Give him my reference and he will do all that he can to help.

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Sabith July 1, 2017 - 6:32 am

Hi Varghese,

I’m planning to visit Srinagar in last week of July. Is there any problem in visiting Srinagar at this time?

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Vargis.Khan July 18, 2017 - 8:55 pm

Sorry Sabit, did not notice this comment until now so missed replying. Did you go to Srinagar?

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Sabith Sabu July 19, 2017 - 2:10 am

Hi Vargis,

I’m planning to go on 23 July and return on 27 July..is it Ok?

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Vargis.Khan July 19, 2017 - 2:04 pm

Hi Sabith – Yes, it is OK to go as of now.

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RishuAgrawal June 17, 2017 - 8:20 pm

Hi Vargis,
We’re group of 10, travelling via Delhi – Srinagar – Leh – Manali- Delhi from 25th June to 8th July. Should we follow this route or do we need to change in plan? Is everything normal in Srinagar right now? We’ll be reaching there on 26th June evening via Bikes.

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Vargis.Khan June 18, 2017 - 12:04 am

Rishu – Amarnath Yatra will begin on 29th of June so expect a lot of traffic and rush on the roads and even in Srinagar. Chances of unrest are also kind of high at this time.

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Faisal Nazir June 5, 2017 - 7:32 am

Kashmir is as safe as you are in home, people who are leaving for leh ladakh should not bother for anything, since you guys will be taking the highway route and on highways there are no curfews or protests, while people who would like to explore Kashmir should come and judge it by themselves, in Kashmir tourist are treated as a family be it a protest or curfew, locals will provide you every possible help to make your trip worth remembering, apart from this if anybody is coming to Kashmir and need any sort of help can contact me @ 9596410670!!
P.S avoid Indian news channels, they only know how to make trp rather a good journalism!!
moreover you can visit this page (www.facebook.com/kashmirtravelogue.com) and see the reaction of people who visited Kashmir this season, thanks

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Vargis.Khan June 6, 2017 - 3:57 am

Thank you Faisal Bhai for your valuable inputs. I really appreciate it.

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Satya June 8, 2017 - 12:11 pm

Hi, Faisal
I ll b riding from bangalore to leh on july 2…what do you suggest on the weather and issues that were going over there and can i go through manali route and come via srinagar?

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Satya June 8, 2017 - 12:12 pm

And i have ur no.

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Dinesh Kumar June 2, 2017 - 5:25 pm

Hi bro
I’m travelling from chennai to leh in bike starting 20th of dis month. V have planned to travel through srinagar. I want to know tat is it safe to travel through srinagar in bike. V r very much confused regarding dis. Try to give us dis solution.

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Vargis.Khan June 3, 2017 - 3:50 am

Hi Dinesh – Are you coming all the way from Chennai on bikes? Situation in Srinagar is Ok as of now, tourists are traveling already so you are Ok to go. I am guessing that you wont be spending any time within the city and will be on your way after night stay, correct? It is not a problem right now.

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Dinesh Kumar June 3, 2017 - 4:23 am

Thank you bro. Thank you so much.

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Vargis.Khan June 3, 2017 - 4:23 pm

You are welcome Bhai !!!

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Ashwani kumar June 2, 2017 - 12:49 pm

Hi vargish Khan sahab I booked flight on 8th of June and return flight is on 11 June and iam planning with my wife to be on 3 nites tour to soonmarg Gulmarg and dal lake pls provide the details that it will be ok to travell with these dates which I mentioned

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Vargis.Khan June 2, 2017 - 2:04 pm

Hello Ashwani Bhai – No one can actually confirm anything for sure when it comes to Kashmir. Things can get disrupted there anytime. All I can tell you that right now it is Ok over there, couple of my friends traveled yesterday from Srinagar to Leh without any problem and there are indeed a lot of tourists in the valley.

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Arush June 1, 2017 - 3:33 pm

I m visiting to ladakh via srinagar on 15 June should I visit or not what’s the situation there

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Vargis.Khan June 2, 2017 - 3:26 am

Curfew was lifted a couple days ago, life has returned to normal and tourists are already traveling. Do not spend much time in Srinagar though.

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Uttkarsh Mishra May 31, 2017 - 3:15 am

hi vargis!
Of curfew is lifted then should i travel to Srinagar . Is pahalgam and gulmarg also under curfew. My hotel in Srinagar is in wazair bagh is that area also effected.
Is tourist movement completely stooped in Srinagar. Is pahalgam also under curfew.
If i change my hotel from stinagar to pahalgam then?

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Vargis.Khan May 31, 2017 - 11:44 am

Hi Uttkarsh – The curfew was lifted today. Life returned back to normal. It will however be all closed again on Friday, June 2nd, for a day.

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Satheesh June 1, 2017 - 5:41 am

Hai I am booked to visit srinagar Pahalgam Gulmarg on the date of June 8 to 13 …. I don’t know current situation of such places …pls give suggestions to visit or not

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Vargis.Khan June 1, 2017 - 1:11 pm

No one can say anything for sure Satheesh, things can change in Kashmir anytime. Curfew has been lifted and life has returned to normal. There are already tourists there, visiting Kashmir and Ladakh so as of now it is Ok to go.

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Ravikiran Bhonagiri May 30, 2017 - 9:18 am

Hi I am Ravi, We total 6 people are reaching to Srinagar on 2nd June Afternoon. We planned to Stay for 2 days in Srinagar and go to Leh from Srinagar. But Seeing the situation I think we cannot spend even a day in Srinagar. In the worst case can we get a cab in Srinagar Airport to Leh ? Any hope this tense situation will subscede ? Please reply me …!

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Vargis.Khan May 30, 2017 - 4:06 pm

They are hoping the curfew will be lifted tomorrow but cannot really confirm anything. I know Army is escorting tourists out of Srinagar from Jammu Srinagar highway to Sriangar Leh highway but I am not sure if any such service is available from the airport. Considering the curfew, It will be hard to find a cab.

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Ravikiran Bhonagiri May 31, 2017 - 5:05 am

Please inform us as soon as the Curfew is lifted…! Thanks

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Vargis.Khan May 31, 2017 - 11:43 am

The curfew was lifted today. Life returned back to normal. It will however be all closed again on Friday, June 2nd, for a day.

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darshan May 29, 2017 - 7:48 am

Hi I am darshan i am visiting srinagar on 15th june as my trip to leh ladakh is from 15th to 25th june my flight are on and from srinagar on these dates. I am travelling with around 12 friends my trip is starting from srinagar and covering kargil ,sonmarg, leh ladakh and back to srinagar so should I be safe to visit on these dates or should I cancel my trip

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Vargis.Khan May 30, 2017 - 12:34 am

Well the valley is under a complete shut down right now, curfew imposed and internet services closed. Things may get better around 15th June but with Kashmir, you can never really say anything for sure. Best to watch the news before you start.

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Uttkarsh Mishra May 30, 2017 - 3:32 am

Hi
my ticket are booked for 3 june shold i cancel th ticket

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Vargis.Khan May 30, 2017 - 3:59 pm

3rd June? You said you were going on 15th June. But yes, if it is for 3rd June I would advise against traveling right now. I just have a word with someone in Srinagar and they are hoping that the curfew would be lifted tomorrow but cannot say for sure. Right now, Army is escorting tourists out of Srinagar, I do not know if there is any such arrangement at the airport though. They are accompanying tourists from Srinagar Jammu highway and leaving them outside Srinagar on Ladakh highway.

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Uttkarsh Mishra May 29, 2017 - 4:10 am

Hi vargis
How is the situation now in Srinagar?are there very less tourists now
Should i travel.

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Vargis.Khan May 30, 2017 - 12:33 am

Well the valley is under a complete shut down right now, curfew imposed and internet services closed. Better give it a few days and check the news before you go.

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Monal Modi May 18, 2017 - 5:07 pm

Hi, whether it is safe to plan to travel to Srinagar, Gulmarg, Sonmarg and Phalgam in month of August??

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Vargis.Khan May 18, 2017 - 7:47 pm

It will be monsoon in August so not really the best time to go. In terms of the political situation, cannot really predict how it will be in August.

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Kalpit May 17, 2017 - 6:29 pm

Hi Vargis I m travelling to leh on 6 of june I m confused from where to go Manali or srinagar.

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Vargis.Khan May 17, 2017 - 7:21 pm

Hi Kalpit – Go from Srinagar and come back from Manali. That way you can rest assured that the Manali highway will be open and in better road conditions.

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Uttkarsh Mishra May 9, 2017 - 2:29 pm

Hi!
I am travelling to Srinagar in june i have a tour of pahalgam, sonmarg also and stay at
Houseboat in dal lake.
So is it sage to travel there.
Pls help me with yoir reply.
Thank- you

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Vargis.Khan May 9, 2017 - 3:58 pm

Hi Uttkarsh – Yes you may travel to Srinagar as of now, there are already plenty of tourists there.

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Uttkarsh Mishra May 10, 2017 - 3:09 am

Hi
would current situation of Srinagar affect tourism
Thamk you

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Vargis.Khan May 10, 2017 - 4:25 am

It always does. With Kashmir, it is always an ongoing story but a general rule is that they do not bother tourists because even they understand that their livelihood depends on it.

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Naimish Patel May 3, 2017 - 5:28 am

Hi Vargis,

I am travelling to Leh in June last week. I will be entering through Manali and exiting the Leh through Srinagar on 3rd july 2017.
I have 2 nights stay booked in Srinagar do you think it’s safe to stay there as per current situations as we have a flight on 5th july 2017 for back to pavillion. What can be the exact situation you think and should it be safe or we should fall back and go to manali in return.

Naimish Patel.

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Vargis.Khan May 4, 2017 - 3:05 am

Hello Naimish – As of now the situation is perfectly safe. A friend of mine just came back from Sonamarg yesterday and there was nothing to worry about. However, with Srinagar, you can never really say anything for sure.The best I can suggest is to keep a check on the news before you start your journey. Or, if you are still not comfortable with idea of Sriangar, you can spend this time in Sonamarg or Gulmarg. Both places are way beautiful that Srinagar. From Sonamarg, Srinagar is hardly a 3 hours drive so you can start from there in the day, go straight to the airport and catch your flight.

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Naimish Patel May 8, 2017 - 4:01 am

Hi Vargis,

Thank you for reply. Apart from this i also wanted to know like is there anything special on route from Sonamarg to Srinagar or its just a normal route as i was thinking to go till Dras (as back up plan) and then back to Leh and get flight out of Leh. Also suggest me where to halt for a night as i am doing Dras and back. And how much time you think it may take? Also if while returning from Dras is Alchi a good place for night halt? Kindly suggest an itinerary for that route.

Thank you.

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Vargis.Khan May 8, 2017 - 2:27 pm

Hi Naimish – From Leh to Drass, there are several places worth seeing like Gurdwara Patthar sahib, indus and zanskar river confluence, magnetic hills, lunar landscapes, the grand buddha statue. It is all between Leh and Kargil actually so you won’t even have to come to Drass. Also, Leh to Drass will be too long a journey so if you do this, then plan it until Kargil and back to Leh.

Between Sonamarg and Srinagar is all natural beauty.

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samuel May 2, 2017 - 5:14 am

Hi Vargis, I have searched Heaven and earth for a post on return from Leh to Srinagar. Alas, thanks for yours!!

I am planning to return from Leh to Srinagar on July first week 2017, and fly out from Srinagar. How is the situation. where will the bus from Leh drop me in Srinagar and How can I reach the airport safely?

any information would help a lot

thanks in advance,

Samuel

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Vargis.Khan May 3, 2017 - 2:56 am

Hi Samuel – Thank you for your kind words.

The bus will drop you at the main bus stand in Srinagar from where you can take a cab to the airport. July will be safe to travel, there will be a lot of tourists in the region either going to Leh or coming back so you have nothing to worry about. Just keep a check on the news before you go for any recent turbulence.

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Rajiv Goyal May 1, 2017 - 7:19 pm

I am planning to visit srinagar on 10 may to 14 may is it safe for tourist and visit sonmarg and gulmarg

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Vargis.Khan May 3, 2017 - 2:58 am

Yes it is. You are safe to go to both these places as of now.

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Ali April 18, 2017 - 7:10 am

Hi Vargis,we are travelling to Srinagar on 26nd. april .Please suggest is it safe to travel now with my wife and two kids.We will be back on 2nd may.Please suggest

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Vargis.Khan April 20, 2017 - 3:37 am

Hi Ali – Honestly I have been telling everyone to avoid going to Srinagar as of now. Tourists are visiting the valley however due to elections, you can never tell for sure when can there be violence.

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Sanjay shet April 17, 2017 - 5:25 am

Hi Vargis,
We are a group of 10 bikers with one back up car planning to travel to leh via jammu-srinagar-kargil in the 2nd week of June 2017. I understand that the current situation is not good but how do you think it would be in June. And secondly do you advise us to avoid staying in Srinagar during our trip? Would there be travel restrictions?

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Vargis.Khan April 17, 2017 - 9:18 pm

Hi Sanjay – It should be Ok to travel by that time but hard to predict as of now. If situation isn’t under control, you will have to take the Manali Leh highway and return via the same route. Manali route should open by first week of June.

Yes, if the situation is safe, you can stay at Srinagar. If within budget, stay at one of the houseboats in Dal lake, amazing experience.

No travel restrictions as of now but if there are problems during elections, then yes, Army may implement some restrictions like last year.

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AT_89 April 16, 2017 - 9:42 pm

Hi Vargis, thanks for this informative post. Can you please advise if it will safe to visit Leh-laddakh taking flight to Leh airport? I am planning to visit during May 2017.

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Vargis.Khan April 17, 2017 - 9:15 pm

Hi AT – With elections around that time, I wouldn’t really call it safe.

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ASHOK PARIDA April 16, 2017 - 3:25 am

Hi Vargis,we are travelling to Srinagar on 22nd. april .Please suggest is it safe to travel now with my wife and two kids.We will be back on 26th.Please suggest

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Vargis.Khan April 16, 2017 - 4:04 am

Hello Ashok – As of now, I am not advising anyone to go that way until elections have passed.

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Ishtiaq Ahmed April 7, 2017 - 9:35 am

Hello Vargis, I’ve found this article and the comments section extremely helpful. Thanks a lot for doing this and appreciate the effort.

This is Ishtiaq from Dhaka, Bangladesh. Wanted to know about the current status and safety issues regarding travel to Kashmir. Me and my wife are planning to go to Ladakh via Kashmir this JULY [as suggested by another post of yours regarding Srinagar – Leh highway]. We also want to do sightseeing in Kashmir like Gulmarg, Pahalgam, Sonamarg etc. Will the plan be feasible?

Will really appreciate your thoughts on this.

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Vargis.Khan April 8, 2017 - 5:14 am

Hello Ishtiaq – Thank you for your kind words brother. I am glad I could help.

Current situation in Srinagar is totally safe as of now for tourists. Unless something goes wrong until July (god forbid), you should be OK to travel to all the places you mentioned.

Best I can recommend is to keep a check on news to see how the situation is. You may check back with me as well before your trip and I can let you know too.

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love April 6, 2017 - 6:39 pm

hi vargis , I am traveling to indore from jammu on 27th april . Will there be any problems in staying in srinagar, Sonmarg, gulmarg for a few days? Please advise

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Vargis.Khan April 8, 2017 - 5:20 am

Hi Love – No problem at all as of now. You can travel to these places.

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Vargis.Khan April 10, 2017 - 2:48 am

Love – Do not travel to Srinagar as of now until Elections have passed. Cancel any plans of going that way in April.

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Raj April 3, 2017 - 3:47 pm

I am traveling to Srinagar from Jammu on 16th April in morning , I am planning to stay there for 2 days and return back on 18th morning . Is it safe to stay at Srinagar or should we go to sonmarg , also which is better and safe place. Please suggest

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Vargis.Khan April 4, 2017 - 1:20 am

It is safe to stay at both places right now. I will suggest that for one day you stay in Sriangar, in a houseboat in Dal, and spend the second day in Sonamarg, beautiful it is and even the drive is quite good.

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Vargis.Khan April 10, 2017 - 2:49 am

Raj – Do not travel to Srinagar as of now until Elections have passed. Cancel any plans of going that way in April.

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Vinod vasan April 3, 2017 - 7:34 am

Hello Vargis
Is it safe to travel to srinagar via direct flight from delhi on April 17, 2017. Will there be any problems in staying in srinagar for a few days? Please advise.

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Vargis.Khan April 4, 2017 - 1:19 am

Hi Vinod – No problems as such right now. You should be Ok.

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Vargis.Khan April 10, 2017 - 2:49 am

Vinod – Do not travel to Srinagar as of now until Elections have passed. Cancel any plans of going that way in April.

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Deepak March 19, 2017 - 8:42 am

Hi Vargis, Thanks for the post and your insights.

I need your help. We (my fiancee and I) are planning to travel to Srinagar via direct flight. The flight lands at 1430, is there any bus/car etc. service from Srinagar to Leh at this time?

If not, where we will get the bus next morning? Could you let us know the address and time.

Do you know a good hotel near the bus stop or airport?

Thanks,

Deepak

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Vargis.Khan March 19, 2017 - 12:32 pm

Hi Deepak – When are you traveling, what date? It all depends whether or not Srinagar Leh highway is open. There is no bus to Leh at that time, all the buses go early in the morning. If however you do not wish to stay within Srinagar, you can go towards Sonamarg and stay there for the night.

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Deepak March 20, 2017 - 3:38 pm

I am landing at Srinagar on July 22. How far would be Sonamarg from airport and how can I reach there after landing in afternoon?

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Vargis.Khan March 21, 2017 - 12:52 am

Your best bet would be hiring a private cab from Srinagar Airport. Total distance would be approximately 90 kilometers, easily doable in 2-3 hours. So assuming you get a cab from the airport say by 3, you should be safely in Sonamarg by 6, before it gets dark.

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Rahul Narang March 18, 2017 - 6:37 pm

Hi Vargis,
I am planning to visit Srinagar around 22 April 2017. Kindly advise if that will be a safe to visit the place at that time

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Vargis.Khan March 18, 2017 - 7:52 pm

It is Ok to travel to Srinagar right now Rahul.

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Tasneem Goryawala March 18, 2017 - 6:34 pm

Hello Vargis.. I’m planning to go to Jammu and Kashmir on 27th march 2017.. I’ll be taking a train from Mumbai to Jammu and we’re just going to be in j&k and not be going to leh ladakh etc. We’re going along with a tour operator. Will it be safe?

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Vargis.Khan March 18, 2017 - 7:52 pm

You can travel to Srinagar right now Tasneem, shouldn’t be a problem.

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Juzar Kachwala January 25, 2017 - 6:57 am

Hi there vargis , its a very good thing that you are discussing this topic. I am planning to go via a bike ride to leh via srinagar. What kinda situation can i expect in around May mid as the current news scenario is pretty quiet there too I beleive. TIA.

Regards,
Juzar

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Vargis.Khan January 25, 2017 - 9:30 pm

Hi Juzar – Situation is pretty much back to normal now in Srinagar. Unless something happens again (god forbid) between now and May, you are Ok to travel.

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Arun Varma December 9, 2016 - 6:14 pm

Hi Vargis, We are planning to spend new years in Srinagar and Gulmarg, what do you advice. The news says that life has returned to normalcy but like you said, better to believe a person living there (or contacts in Srinagar) rather than news. Thanks

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Vargis.Khan December 11, 2016 - 1:11 pm

Hi Arun – I would first like to clarify that I do not really live in Kashmir. I am from New Delhi and the information I provide here is from a few people I made contacts with during my trips in the region. Life has indeed returned to normal, tourists have started to travel there already. There is always tension in the air in Kashmir which I guess is a part of the “normal” over there.

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Raghuramu Chitradurga Subbarao December 9, 2016 - 11:04 am

Dear Vergis,

I am planning to visit for Srinagar sight seeing during Jan-Feb16 along with my wife. Since we are vegetarians can we get a small room with a kitchen( for own cooking ) for rent in middle of the city for 2-3 days?

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Vargis.Khan December 11, 2016 - 1:22 pm

Hello Mr. Subbarao – Unfortunately this is a question I cannot help you Sir. I really do not have any tie ups over there with any hotels or guest houses. You will have to Google for some guest house, call them and let them know what you need.

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Arpit Shah November 4, 2016 - 10:50 am

Hi Vargis.. Thanks for your replies. I have already booked flights for Srinagar on 21st-25th December’16. I have not planned anything specific there as I just want to enjoy natural scenic beauty. I am flexible for my 4 days there. What do you suggest me to do? SHould I cancel my trip? if I visit, where should I be visiting after landing in Srinagar.

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Vargis.Khan November 4, 2016 - 2:25 pm

Hard to comment as of now about December Arpit. Right now I wouldnt advise anyone to go there unless you have some contacts in Srinagar itself. Life is pretty much the usual as of now but a lot of tension in the air. I am hoping it would improve by December end.

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Vargis.Khan October 30, 2016 - 6:49 am

Hi Vansinee – I just spoke to a contact of mine in Srinagar and he said that unless you have contacts in Sriangar, this is not the ideal time to go there. Situation over there right now is what it has always been in the past, the regular Srinagar life but there is also a lot of tension in the air, the aftermaths of August and September. If there is a sudden change in the situation then you will get stuck.

I know someone who runs a houseboat in Sriangar and a hotel in Pahalgam. If you want, I can speak to him to help arrange your stay at both places. Let me know.

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Tim Agius October 22, 2016 - 2:58 pm

Hi Vargis, how are you? Thanks for the article!
As the most recent comments are already 3 weeks outdated, I just wanted to check if your information is still valid now or has the situation changed?
I will be coming from Leh on bicycle in around 2 weeks. Going back the same way towards Manali is a much more difficult option for me being on a bicycle haha with those roads and weather conditions being very very tough!

Thanks 🙂

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Vargis.Khan October 23, 2016 - 8:21 pm

Hi Tim – First of all, Manali Leh highway has already been declared closed for civilian traffic so you cannot take that route anymore 2 weeks later. Situation in Srinagar has improved but it is still tensed. Best would be to consult at the Army check posts on the route before proceeding any further. Army movement is a regular thing on this road because it is so close to the border so in case they tell you that the situation up ahead is not ideal, then wait it out and proceed further only with the Army convoy.

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Prajakta October 24, 2016 - 4:06 pm

Dear Mr. Vargis Khan,

Can you please advise if Patnitop – Pahalgam – Srinagar – Delhi itinerary is possible from 1st November to 08th November. I have already made all the bookings in the month of June and I really want to go ahead with my plans as I am not sure whether it will be possible again to bring my whole family together for this kind of trip. How safe is it there? Can we at least make it until Pahalgam?

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Vargis.Khan October 26, 2016 - 4:30 am

Hello Prajakta – Situation in Srinagar is still a bit tensed however tourists still continue to visit so if you have already made plans, please go ahead. One thing that I would still advice though would be to spend lesser time within the city of Srinagar. Patnitop and Pahalgam are perfectly safe.

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Vansinee October 28, 2016 - 7:27 pm

Hi vargis i already booked to visit srinagar pahalgham gulmarg on 1st december 2016! I will be also staying in boat house! How is the actual situation there

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Vargis.Khan October 29, 2016 - 5:25 am

There is a lot of tension in the environment in Srinagar however the curfew is gone and life has returned to routine. Expect heavy security and Army presence throughout the route though.

December 1st week is not an ideal time to visit in my opinion though. It will be cold but there won’t be much snow and greenery at that time, just thought I will let you know. If you can, push it further towards December end or January first week and you will see plenty of snow in Srinagar.

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vansinee October 29, 2016 - 6:30 pm

Hi vargis planned to visit srinagar on 1st december and stay for 3 days with family. The date cannot be changed as i have already booked my other flight. My tour operator gives me a 2nd option that of spending the 3 days in shimla and chandigar. I am very keen to visit srinagar but afraid of the current situation. Please what will be your advice!

vazid October 6, 2016 - 9:35 am

Hi,

I am planning for Kashmir Honeymoon tour from 27th Oct to 2nd Nov it is safe for us??

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Vargis.Khan October 8, 2016 - 4:12 pm

Situation is not really ideal right now

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chetan September 29, 2016 - 4:24 am

Hi Mr.Vargis.Khan, Good Day ,could you please update the current situation of Srinagar.I have a plan on 21st Oct.

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Vargis.Khan September 30, 2016 - 1:25 am

It was quite safe Chetan but after the recent Pakistani incursions, situation is again tense.

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C R BABU September 3, 2016 - 4:36 pm

Dear Mr. Vargis Khan
What about staying in Srinagar in house boat as I had booked well in advance and plan during last week of Sep. Hopefully situation returns to normal. will be going from Srinagar Airport to Dal lake and back to Airport.

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Vargis.Khan September 5, 2016 - 4:05 pm

Hello Mr. Babu – There is no curfew currently and the situation has eased out a bit so there should be no problem in staying in a house boat.

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Vargis.Khan August 20, 2016 - 12:35 pm

Chetan – The curfew was lifted per the news report today but the situation over there is tense. My friend was stuck in Sonamarg for 2 days before he finally got a chance to travel with the convoy and cross Srinagar. As of now, my advice would be that you skip Srinagar and take the Manali Leh route to get there. While on your way back, inquire about the situation in Srinagar while you are in Leh and then make a decision whether to come back via Sriangar or Manali. I am hoping that it will get better by then but cannot be too sure.

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Chetab August 21, 2016 - 1:43 pm

Thanks Vargis. We might think of plan B.
Can we come till Patnitop and then take the Kishtwar- Keylong route and go to Leh?
By any chance do you know if this road open?

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Vargis.Khan August 21, 2016 - 1:57 pm

Yeah you can do that. Sach pass will remain open in early September.

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Chetan August 31, 2016 - 1:54 pm

Hi Vargis,

We heard that the curfew is lifted in Srinagar. Can you help me with the current status?
Can we now come to Srinagar and then take the Kargil road?
We will start our journey on coming Saturday.
What do you suggest?

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Vargis.Khan August 31, 2016 - 8:33 pm

Hi Chetan – The convoy system was still being followed as of last week. I do not know what the latest and current situation is this week. If you really want to, then take the Srinagar Leh road. Lots of tourists are still traveling anyways. If there is no convoy system, all well and good. If you still find it in effect, another adventure added to the trip to talk about later, correct?

Chetan August 18, 2016 - 7:00 am

Hi Vargis,

Thanks for this information. What about if we are traveling by bike?

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Vargis.Khan August 18, 2016 - 12:55 pm

Hi Chetan – It is still the same. You will have to follow the convoy on bikes

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Vargis.Khan August 18, 2016 - 12:56 pm

And I am assuming here that by bikes you mean motorcycles, not regular bikes (bicycles).

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Chetan August 18, 2016 - 1:30 pm

Yes I means motorcycles. We are planning to go to Leh via Srinigar which will cover Kargil and drass. Can we still continue with our plan aur dj you suggest we should take a different route and skip Srinigar

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Vargis.Khan August 19, 2016 - 12:47 am

When are you planning to travel Chetan?

Chetan August 19, 2016 - 7:16 am

We have our trip schedule next month 4th September

farogh August 11, 2016 - 7:42 am

Hi vargis, can we take shimla kaza gramphu keylong route to leh. How many days needed to reach leh from delhi.

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Vargis.Khan August 12, 2016 - 1:27 am

Hi Farogh, You mean via Spiti valley? Yes you can take that route but it would take a minimum of 8-9 days to make it to Leh from Delhi.

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