Winter treks are both mesmerizing and adventurous. One such rare trek in Kashmir that you can enjoy during the winter is the Marchoi Winter trek. The beauty of Kashmir including the majestic snow-clad mountains, lush green valleys, rocky trails, pristine lakes, vast meadows, and exotic flowers make your trek worthwhile.
Every season turns Kashmir into a unique beauty. The winter covers the landscapes with a beautiful blanket of snow. The trail of the Marchoi trek is a river valley that you can reach from Naranag. Naranag is a small village around 2 hours drive from Srinagar, and it has archaeological importance. Naranag is a Hindu pilgrimage site and has ruins of a temple complex. These temples were built during the Karkota Dynasty by Lalitaditya Muktapida.
The trek route is gentle along the river and you can easily reach Dumail in around 2 hours. Along the journey, you cover beautiful stretches of maple and pine forests and then reach the silver fir and birch tree-covered Dumail grazing area.
On this trek, you camp at Dumail for 3 nights and then explore the Marchoi valley and the Shadimarg area.
Why Marchoi winter trek ?
During the winters all the mountains are covered with thick snow and hence it is quite difficult to find a simple and easy winter trek in Kashmir. Marchoi valley is easily accessible in winter and you can easily explore the surroundings and enjoy the winter beauty of Kashmir.
Most of the popular high-altitude treks remain inaccessible during the months of October to June. Marchoi winter trek is a rare trekking opportunity during the winter and spring season. During winter the Marchoi valley resembles the snowy Alps mountains.
The popular snow trek trails are crowded with people during the peak holiday season while the Marchoi valley trek trail is pristine and fresh hence, you will rarely find any other groups exploring the valley. Hence, you can enjoy the calmness of nature in the Marchoi winter trek.
Best time to visit the Marchoi winter trek
Marchoi valley trek is a low-altitude trek and is accessible throughout the year. Every season showcases its unique beauty. But for the Marchoi winter trek, the months from December to May are most suitable.
How to reach Marchoi winter trek basecamp (Naranag):
The base camp of the Machoi winter trek is the village of Naranag. Naranag is an offbeat holiday destination in the Ganderbal district of Kashmir. Naranag is about 60 to 70km away from Srinagar and you can reach Naranag in 2 to 3 hours from Srinagar airport.
All about the Marchoi winter trek
Marchoi winter trek is of 4 days which you will enjoy the winter beauty of Kashmir and explore the beautiful river valley. Let’s have a look at the 4 days of activities you will be carrying out in these 4 days of your trekking journey.
Day 1: Arrival at Srinagar
After you arrive at Srinagar you take a drive to Naranag which is about 60 to 70 km from Srinagar and will take you 3 hours to reach Naranag. When you reach Naranag you will begin your trekking journey from the Naranag village to Dumail. The trekking journey is about 4km long and you will take 2 to 3 hours to reach the destination. On reaching Dumail you will then set your camp and then relax and enjoy camping under the starry night sky.
Day 2: Trek to Marchoi Valley
On the 2nd day, you get up early and start your trekking journey from Dumail to Marchoi valley via Shingdi. Enjoy the trekking journey and the beauty of Marchoi valley on this day and then descend back to Dumail. The trekking journey is about 5 km and will take you 6 hours to reach Marchoi valley.
Day 3: Trek to Shadimarg top
On the third day, you get up early and begin your trekking journey to Shadimarg top. The trekking journey is approximately 5km long and you will take about 6 to 7 hours to reach Shadimarg’s top. After enjoying the trekking journey filled with nature’s winter beauty you will then descend towards Dumail and camp at night.
Day 4: Trek back to Naranag
You trek back to Narnag after enjoying the trekking journeys to Marchoi valley and Shadimarg top. On this day you can explore the ruins of the temple complex and then drive back to Srinagar. Then you can head back toward your hometown with lots of memories.
Being a low-altitude trek, the Marchoi winter trek is the best option for beginners. You can enjoy the winter beauty of Kashmir along the trekking journey of Marchoi valley trek. On this trek, you will explore the Marchoi valley and enjoy the snow and surrounding beauty of the valley. On completion of your trekking journey, you will take back lots of memories that will last a lifetime.