Timings of the Temple:
- The Amarnath cave remains open to public during the month of July-August (Vyas Purnima to Shravan Purnima) only.
- All Yatris have to register at the Jammu and Kashmir Tourist Offices located at major cities of India like Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, etc.
- The trek for Amarnath Cave involves walking for 42 km at a high altitude.
How to Reach:
- By Air:The closest airport to Amarnath is Srinagar, located at a distance of around 95 km from Pahalgam, the base camp for Amarnath Yatra. Helicopters also fly to Amarnath and can be booked through their official website.
- By Rail: The nearest railhead to Amarnath is Jammu, located at a distance of around 315 km from Pahalgam.
- By Road: The journey by road (walking) passes through Pahalgam to the holy Cave and covers a distance of about 46 kms.
Important Tips for Amarnath Yatra:
- Achieve physical fitness a month before the Yatra.
- Begin deep breathing exercise as there is lack of oxygen at high altitudes.
- Carry warm and comfortable clothes during the Yatra as temperatures can drop radically.
- Carry a raincoat and torch as it might rain or snow during the Yatra.
- Keep some identification document of yourself with you all the time.
- Carry a water bottle and some dry fruits to snack on the journey.
- Keep a moisturizer or a cold cream to protect your skin from dry conditions.
- Follow the instructions given by the Yatra administration.
- Carry basic medication along with you.
- Take regular breaks and try not to exert yourself too much during the climb.
Top Attractions near Amarnath Place:
- Chandanwari: The distance from Pahalgam to Chandanwari is 16 kms. Mini buses run from Pahalgam to reach Chandanwari. The trail runs along the Lidder River with a fabulous scenic view.
- Pissu Top: As the Yatra proceeds further from Chandanwari one climbs a height to reach Pissu Top. It is said that to be the first to reach for darshan of Bhole Nath Shivshankar, there was a war between Devtas and Rakshas. With the power of Shiv, devtas could kill the rakshas in such large number that the heap of their dead bodies resulted in this high mountain.
- Sheshnag: Sheshnag – is actually a mountain which derives its name from its Seven Peaks, resembling the heads of the mythical snake. The second night's camp at Sheshnag overlooks the deep blue waters of Sheshnag Lake, and glaciers beyond.
- Sonmarg: Sonmarg is a hill station in Ganderbal district in Jammu and Kashmir, India. It's a popular tourist destination, nestled within the imposing Himalayan peaks. The drive to Sonmarg is through yet another spectacular facet of country side in Kashmir.
About the Temple:
Amarnath Temple or Amarnath Cave commonly known as Baba Barfani, is a Hindu temple. It’s one of the most famous temples in India. Amarnath temple is dedicated to praying Lord Shiva. It’s situated in the state of Jammu & Kashmir at a height of about 12,760 feet. Devotees visit the Amarnath cave per annum for obtaining a pious symbol of Lord Shiva that is believed to be shaped naturally from ice. The temple is barely accessible for a brief length throughout the year within the month of July to August, once the ice symbol is created. The scene throughout the time is totally unbelievable which makes folks believe the quality of the place.
Story Behind the Temple:
Behind the invention of the Amarnath temple or Shrine lies a curious story. At some point, Maa Parvati asked Lord Shiva to let her recognize why and once he started carrying the beads of heads (Mund Mala), to which Bhole Shankar replied, “Whenever you are born I add more heads to my bead”. Parvati aforesaid, “I die again and again, however you're Immortal. Please tell me the reason behind this”. "Lord Shiva replied that for this you will have to listen to the Amar Katha" Shiv decided to describe the complete story to Maa Parvati. He started for a lonely place where no alive being could listen to the immortal top-secret and eventually chose Amarnath Cave. Lord Shiva arrived the Holy Amarnath Cave along with Maa Parvati and took his Samadhi, to confirm that no living being is ready to listen to the Immortal Tale, he created Kalagni and ordered him to unfold fireplace to eliminate each physical object in and around the Holy Cave. When this he started narrating the key of immortality to Maa Parvati. However, as a matter of likelihood, a try of pigeons overhead the story and have become immortal.
Discovery of Amarnath Cave:
The popular story narrated by people about the re-discovery of this Holy Cave is a shepherd Buta Malik. One day a saint gave Buta Malik a bag full of Coal. On reaching his home when he opened the bag, to his utter surprise the bag was full of gold coins. This overwhelmed him with joy. He ran to thank the Saint. But the Saint had disappeared. Instead, he found The Holy Cave and the Ice Shiv Lingam therein. He announced this discovery to the Villagers. Then onwards this became a sacred place of Pilgrimage.