Aharbal, also known as "Niagara Falls of Kashmir", is a hill station in the south-western part of Kashmir Valley in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, south of the state capital Srinagar (tehsil: Damhal Hanjipora, district: Kulgam). The place is quite peaceful and suitable for expeditions, trekking, photography, and fishing. Due to mesmerising look of meadows, pine and fir tree forests, the abutting snow clad mountains, the waterfall attracts every year a large number of tourists, from India as well as elsewhere.
|State||Jammu and Kashmir|
|Elevation||2,266 m (7,434 ft)|
|• Official||Urdu English|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (IST)|
Aharbal lies in the Kulgam district's Noorabad Area of Jammu and Kashmir. It 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 mountains. It lies at an altitude of 2266 metres above sea level.
The road route is from Srinagar-Kulgam-Nehama-KB Pora-Aharbal Road.
- Land encroachment.
- Lack of quality hotels at Aharbal hill station.
- Less number of tourists who visit Kashmir know about Aharbal.
- Carelessness of Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Department.
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,[specify] 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.
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. The area is peaceful and the crime rate is very low.
Aharbal falls in Noorabad sub divison of District Kulgam and is easily accessible from Srinagar via Shopian [Bab-ul-Islam], only 8 km from the Mughal Road that connects Srinagar and Poonch. 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-Nehama-DH pora -Kb pora -Manzgam-Wattoo-Aharabal. It is only 22 km from the District Kulgam the first District one enters the Kashmir valley after crossing the Jawaharlal National Tunnel. The nearest railway station is Anantnag railway station at 44 km in the east.
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|Aharbal Waterfall on YouTube|