An important occasion from July to August is the Amarnath Yatra to the sacred shrine. This Yatra is a yearly event in which huge number of Hindus from all parts of the Globe visits the Amarnath caves. Amarnath is perched at an elevation of 3,880 mts in the southern Himalayas of Kashmir & is believed as the holiest place. The devotees trek to the magnificent caves from Pahalgam and adore the grand ice Lingam.
According to the mythology, Shiva narrated to Parvatithe secretof the creation inthe Amarnath cave. Without their knowledge, a pair of buddingdovessecretly heard their conversation and have learned this secret, are born again & again, and made this cave their everlasting dwelling. Many devotees said that they have seen the pair of doves when they were trekking the arduous way to pay salutation before the lingam of ice.This is an incident you surely will talk about all through your life.‘Darshan’ at the sacred Cave is usually open from early on July (Ashad Purnima) to early on August (Sharvan Purnima).
For those people who travel with faith, Amarnathji Yatra is a worthwhile experience. This Yatra is a visit to the cave pilgrimage, the habitat of the Himalayan pauper who is both demolisher and healer, the utmost of the Hindu deity – Lord Shiva.
The trek to Amarnathji cave from Pahalgam is on a very old peregrine way. This 45 kms distance is attained in 4 days, with night stops at Chandanwari, the Sheshnag and Panchtarni. The distance of Chandanwari (16 km) from Pahalgam is now obtained by motor transportation. The devotees camp here at Pahalgam on the very 1st night out.
The 1st day's trek of about 13 kms from Chandanwari is via spectacular archaic countryside. The chief centre of allure on this trek is the Sheshnag which is a mountain lake which gains its name from the seven peaks, similar to the heads of a mythological snake. The trip to Sheshnag follows vertical inclines up the bank on the right side of a flowing stream and exotic scenery unharmed by civilization. The 2nd night's camp is at Wawjan which overlooks the dark blue water of the lake of Sheshnag and glaciers away from it. The 2nd day's trek of 12 kms gradually gains elevation, twisting up across Mahagunas Pass which is at 4,600 m and then going downward to the field which is the Panchtarni which is the last camp on the way to the sacred cave.
From Panchtarni, Amarnathji is only about 6 kms, but a start of early morning is suggested for there are long queues waiting at the entrance of the cave. The same day, after having darshan, pilgrims can go back to Panchtarni for lunch, and then go back to Wawjan for the 4th night out; or go back further to Zojibal, on the 4th day returning to Pahalgam.
The pilgrims sing bhajans, chant mantras, and the priests perform puja and aarti, appealing for the blessing of Lord Shiva, the divine and the absolute.
The location of Amarnathji Yatra is in Jammu & Kashmir. The Amarnath cave is perched at an elevation of 3,880 mts in the southern Himalayas of Kashmir.
Time of festival
The annual Amarnathji Yatra is organized from June to August every year.
Point to Remember
For the Amarnathji Yatra one has to fill up a registration form which is available in different websites which are offering Amarnath Yatra trips. As the Amarnathji cave is at an elevation of 3, 880 mts, patients of high BP, diabetes, asthma and heart problems are strictly restricted for this Yatra. One has to show a health certificate issued by an authorized doctor for this Yatra.
No entry fees is required for entering the Amarnathji cave but one has to pay a registration fees for availing this Yatra. This registration fees is different in different websites who are offering this Yatra.
Effects on tourism
This Amarnathji Yatra has affected the tourism of Jammu & Kashmir to a great extent. People from all over India and world come to this state and take part it. They get attracted by the mythological tales related to this Yatra along with the beautiful and giant ‘Ice Lingam’ whose formation is beyond explanation. They also get attracted by the alluring beauty of Jammu & Kashmir because of which they come to this state again & again.
How to reach
The closest airport is at Srinagar and it is well linked with all the major cities in India.
From Jammu, buses are available for Pahalgam (250 kms). Jammu is well linked by National Highways to various places in north India and all other major cities by roads.
By RailThe closest railway station for Amarnathji Yatra is Jammu station and it is well linked to all major cities through railways.
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