Location of Aharbal
Aharbal is located in the south-western part of Kashmir Valley in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, 75 km south of the state capital Srinagar of Srinagar District of Jammu and Kashmir. Aharbal lies in the Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir.
Geography of Aharbal
Aharbal is located on the Veshu River, a tributary of the Jehlum River, in an alpine valley covered in pine and fir trees within the Pir Panjal Mountain Range in India, 18 km south of the town of Shopian and 28 km west of Kulgam. It lies at an altitude of 2266 metres above sea level.
Landform in Aharbal
The landform of Aharbal gives one the best option for having a camping nearby. Aharbal is known for its waterfall, Aharbal Falls, where the Veshu falls noisily 25 metres and 7 metres through a narrow gorge of granite boulders. Aharbal Falls are also referred to as the Niagara Falls of Kashmir, owing to the volume of the water that falls. According to a report, the water volume would be sufficient to generate 100 MW of hydroelectricity. The terraces leading to the falls are fenced, but care must be taken to avoid slipping.
Tourism in Aharbal
Aharbal is a base for adventure tourism. The Veshu River is stocked with trout. The fishing permit can be obtained from the Fisheries department stationed at Aharbal. The alpine meadow of Kungwatan lies at the halfway point of the two-day trek to the high-altitude Konsernag Lake, which is the source of the Veshu. Other activities include horse riding, photography, and skiing during winter. The Aharbal Development Authority, a government agency responsible for development in Aharbal, has built tourist infrastructure including huts and a cafeteria, and other lodging and boarding facilities have also been made available.
Aharbal is easily accessible from Srinagar, only 8 km from the Mughal Road that connects Srinagar and Poonch District. The 75 km drive takes less than 3 hours by car or bus via Pulwama and Shopian. An alternate route leads to Aharbal via Kulgam. The nearest railway station is Awantipora railway station at 26 km in the east.
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