Doodhpathri, explore an unexplored Kashmir! !!


My routine morning alarm broke morning hush and now I could hear the echoes of golden words, 

"गर फिरदौस बर रूये ज़मी अस्त/ हमी अस्तो हमी अस्तो हमी अस्त" (धरती पर अगर कहीं स्वर्ग है, तो यहीं है, यहीं है, यही हैं).

I could sense something (but no idea exactly what).

Ajaz with Pari
Quickly we got ready and grabbed some food, and I called Ajaz. He was already at the parking. As we stepped out of the Hotel, with a broad smile on his face, Ajaz said, “good morning” (Ajaz, our new driver cum Guide cum navigator cum care taker). You know what, today I am gonna miss yesterday’s roller coaster ride (Ajaz took over from Bilal). We all jumped in to the car and headed up to Doodhpathri. Now you really need to fasten your seat belt and get ready for a bumpy ride. Making our way through tiny towns, dazzling valleys and crossing Hyderpora, Ompura, Badgam, Arigam we finally entered enchanted Doodhpathri Valley….

As we entered Doodhpathri

Road to Heaven!
Doodhpathri = Valley of Milk. Less explored place near Srinagar, at a distance of 42 km, lies in a bowl shaped valley in the Pir Panjal Range of Himalayas, at an altitude of 8,957 ft above sea level. It is an Alpine valley covered with snow in winter and meadows of Pine. Fur and Deodar, is covered with wild flowers such as Daisies, Forget-me-not and Butter cups in spring and summer. Complete raw experience. Rarely explored part of Kashmir.

People tell many interesting tales about name Doodhpathri,
Horseman who took us on a ride said, “This valley produces Rich Milk in a very large quantity, so is a Doodhpathri”.

Local Guide Ahmad said, “When water gushes and hit hard against the stones it appears milky white, so we call this place as Doodhpathri".

Milky Water.
A wise old man. whom I met along the way said, “Madam, you listen to me, I know the true story behind name Doodhpathri”. (to your surprise above two also started their story with the same sentence.) and then he explained, “A very famous Kashmiri saint, Sheikh Ul Aalam Sheikh Noor din Noorani stayed and prayed here for all long 12 years and once he was in search of water, he pricked ground with his stick and the milk started oozing out. Seeing that, Saint said to Milk, “People can use you only for drinking and not for any other purpose.”  Hearing this milk changed his state to water. And this water appears milky. So this place named as Doodhpathri”.

Many stories about Doodhpathri, but no evidence, no documentary, nothing  supports any of these stories.

Cute Little Horseman.
As we parked our vehicle, horsemen came running offering some deals. I asked Ajaz to handle it (Ajaz was really a great help during our entire tour). Ajaz spoke to them and we ended up taking 2 horses to ride little up to Pir Panjal Range of Himalayas. It was really cold and windy, and again a sip of Kahwah helped us to keep little warm inside.

Fractured Bridge!
We started riding and as we reached to river crossing, that fractured narrow bridge (made by locals, with just some wooden logs and strips on it and was little broken and scary) sent chills down to my spine. But we managed to cross it without too much of hassle (I literally felt saved). Riding up, to hill, is something everyone must try once in a lifetime. Throughout our ride Horseman was telling me, “Madam, darna mat, ye trained horse hai, girayega nahi. (Ma’am, don’t worry, horse is well trained)”. And I was like, wish, even the horse could hear and understand this. As we reached half way to the Mountain, I finally got off the horse.

Horseman Abdul

My little Pony!
Pointing at a deep cave horseman said, “You know madam, in this deep cave, exists lots of Gold and Money, but there are many wild animals too. So no one ever dared to enter this cave. But if you throw a stone inside, coins and gold will make noise.” Out of curiosity I threw a stone, and eagerly i was waiting to hear something. Unfortunately I heard nothing. And then again he said, “May be you won’t hear it, it might have got covered with the stones (thrown by people).

Peep inside, loads of treasure inside for you.
We spent some time there admiring stupendous nature. Up on the hill, I was surrounded by tall standing Pine, Fur and Deodar trees, sun rays were trying to peep inside, a carpet of colorful tiny wild flowers caught our attention, birds were singing along, gushing water was creating a rhythm too….. Breathing pure and fresh air brought life back to me. OMG, is this called as a heaven or there is something beyond that as well. And I remembered waking up in the morning with those beautiful words. Is this something, I sensed in the morning. What a lovely day! !!!!

Her first experience at snow

So Serene and Tranquil.

Kashmiri Galicha (Carpet).

As we started descending, it was hilarious. Aarya was all on her own pampering Mehendi (a horse she was riding), talking to her. Aarya was actually explaining her how to go up on the hill and down. She gathered all necessary information about Mehendi from Horseman, what she eats, when she sleeps, what she does in her free time, when she takes her bath and what not, as if we are adopting Mehendi. And she almost learnt how to control a horse ( and I really wonder, how smart these kids are).

Kothis, half underground and half above (back view).

Kothi (front view)
Lets cook something!

Kothi owner Riyaz.

Enjoy your sip of Kahwah here.

Many captivating places around Doodhpathri to explore are : Tangnar, Mujpathri, Palmaidan, Diskhal. Palmaidan is a favorite spot of shepherds and cowboys, where they gather in summer and graze their cattle and livestock. During summers they repair their Kothis (houses) and stay there, which are half below and half above the ground (lovely, cozy houses). In winters they stay at nearest town, as this area is fully covered with snow with all the houses buried inside. Aarya declared, soon she will buy a Kothi here and a piece of land to grow her essentials and some livestock. Every day she will graze them and farm her land (is that something, even I want to do? Of course, yes). To explore more unexplored Kashmir, join us on our next tour to Kashmir. We have some other surprise for you, on our July tour. For more info, write to –

My little sheep, Isn't she looking like one of them?

Again on a bumpy ride back to Srinagar and we returned to the Hotel to well-earned rest. 

Tomorrow see us at an altitude 9200 ft above sea level..............


  1. What a narration!! U have a magic.. ur words r powerful enough to make me feel live.


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