12 to 55 years
12 to 55 years
Tarsar Marsar Trek
Arguably The Prettiest Trek In India
Tarsar Marsar is arguably the prettiest trek in India. This is a title we do not give treks lightly. Especially when its formidable sister trek, Kashmir Great Lakes, is in the picture.
However, Tarsar Marsar is a trek where alpine lakes take a life of their own. It is not just the fact that you get to camp beside these royal blue, snow-fed lakes (you don’t get this camping chance even at KGL). Or the secluded nature of these campsites (a Godsend in today’s trekking scenario!).
You get to circumvent the entire perimeter of Tarsar and Sundersar, offering you multiple perspectives of the very same lake!
Then there is the elusive Marsar, almost always hidden under a shroud of clouds. We see this lake from an overhang, sitting 600–700 ft below. It is a perfect spot to witness the grandeur of the lake, with the sun rising right above it. This is until dollops of clouds waft their way through the U-shaped valley and settle above the lake. The lake disappears from view within seconds!
The Tarsar Marsar trek takes you right to the heart of Kashmir. From the quaint village of Aru to the clearings of Lidderwat. From the rolling green mountains of Shekhawas to the massive alpine lakes. The setting of Tarsar Marsar is such that it leaves you visually stunned for weeks together!
Tarsar Marsar Videos
Watch these videos to prepare well for your trek
A route map of the Tarsar Marsar trek
Drive from Srinagar to Aru
Drive distance: 100 km | Drive Duration: 3-4 hours | Pick up point for Indiahikes trekkers: Sheikh Feroze Tours & Travels, Sathu, Barbara Shah Chowk, Srinagar
Transport will be organised from Sheikh Feroze Tours & Travels, Sathu, Barbara Shah Chowk, near Flourmill, Srinagar. at 11.30 AM sharp. The cost of transport is Rs 500 per person and needs to be paid directly to the driver.
Note: The process of your registration, health screening, and document verification start at 4 pm. Ensure you reach Aru on time for it. Do not travel elsewhere on this particular day before your trek.
Trek from Aru to Lidderwat
Trek distance: 10 km | Trek Duration: 6 hours | Altitude gain: 7,958 ft to 9,131 ft
Easy-moderate. Initial gradual ascent for about half an hour followed by gentle undulating walk until you reach the campsite of Lidderwat.
Trek from Lidderwat to Shekwas
Trek distance: 5.6 km | Trek Duration: 5 hours | Altitude gain: 9,131 ft to 11,039 ft
Moderate. Continuously ascending trail for the first couple of hours with a few short level walks. You have a river crossing just before Homwas followed by a gradual ascent.
Trek from Shekwas to Tarsar
Trek distance: 5 km | Trek Duration: 4 hours | Altitude gain: 11,039 ft to 12,449 ft
Moderate. Continuous ascent, mostly on gradual inclines to reach the ridge and then entering into the meadows of Tarsar.
Trek from Tarsar to Sundersar
Trek distance: 5 km | Trek Duration: 5 hours | Altitude gain: 12,449 ft to 12,946 ft
Moderate. Steep ascent in the beginning to the pass, followed by a descent and then a gentle ascent to Sundarsar.
Trek from Sundersar to Homwas via Marsar
Trek distance: 9 km | Trek Duration: 7 hours | Altitude loss: 12,946 ft to 11,500 ft via 13,021
Moderate. An hour ascent to Marsar. You later have a gradual descent all the way to Homwas.
Trek from Homwas to Aru. Drive to Srinagar
Trek distance: 13 km | Trek Duration: 6 hours | Altitude loss: 11,500 ft to 7,958 ft
Easy. Gradually descending trail all the way to Aru. The transport costs Rs 3,000 per cab (5-6 seater). You have to pay the driver directly.
- Advisory Note: For all your travel plans include a buffer day to accommodate bad weather on the trek/political instability. This depends completely on the circumstances of the trek and the situation in Kashmir.
- There are often uncertainties when it comes to trekking in Kashmir. If you're planning any trek in Kashmir, ensure you book flexible flight tickets, that allow you to reschedule your flight at no added costs. These are easily available with most airlines.
- In case of emergencies, we will reroute treks to other trails. Please ensure you're mentally prepared in case such situations arise.
We go to great lengths to keep you safe on your trek. However, trekking with the safest organisation in India comes with certain commitments from your end.
- It is mandatory for trekkers to carry a copy of their photo id along with the mandatory documents of the Medical Certificate and Disclaimer form. This is required for trek permissions. Do not leave this until the end.
- Please note that you will be staying in tents on all days of the trek. Trekkers need to make their arrangements for a stay in Srinagar on Day 7.
Please note: Twin sharing tents may not be available in May, June, July and August. This is because raw materials for making tents are sourced from different countries. But their export has been affected due to international unrest. This has led to a global shortage of tents. Having said that, you'll still have comfortable space as these tents have been designed to accommodate three trekkers.
A route map of the Tarsar Marsar trek
Book flexible flight tickets:
You are going on a Himalayan trek, where there are several unpredictable factors. It's best to book flexible flight tickets, which you can reschedule if required. These are available for a small added cost with most travel companies.
Campsites at a Glance
Tarsar Campsite is one of the most memorable experiences of the trek. Picture by Namita Kaith
The setting of Shekwas Campsite cannot be compared to any other trek. It is nestled between three valleys intersecting. Picture by Abhijit
Sundersar Campsite. Circumvent the entire perimeter of Sundersar and it offers you multiple perspectives of the very same lake! Picture by Santhosh
Why I Believe Everyone Must Trek: A Note from the Founder
Trekking transforms lives. It has completely changed my life. When I see my colleagues at Indiahikes, all of them have been impacted greatly. The transformations have been profound and irreversible.
I see it in our trekkers too. I have seen them change professions, careers or start a new life. I have seen them get in and out of relationships, and start new projects. These are life-changing experiences.
I have seen children building resilience. I have seen families come together. When I see those above 55, I see them rediscover passion and a sense of purpose. These are not small gains.
In the mountains new professions, new economies and new businesses have opened up. Our staff no longer go to cities to earn their living. Their income has increased. Above all, they are happiest working in this world. Trekking has been truly transformative.
Everyone must trek. It transforms lives far more than you imagine.
What I Like and Don’t Like About Tarsar Marsar Trek
What I Like About Tarsar Marsar Trek
When you trek through the forests and cover the last hump, the grasslands of Lidder are stunning.
Picture by: Gourab Nandy
Grasslands of Lidderwat
Know Your Trek
We have always wanted trekkers to be well-informed before they go on a Himalayan trek. Knowledge is the difference between a safe trek and a dangerous one. It’s also the difference between a wholesome experience and a superficial experience.
Use this section to learn about the Tarsar Marsar trek. It has in-depth information about each day of the trek, what to expect, and how you need to prepare for it. Many years of expertise have gone into this content. Trekkers find these extremely useful.
Things Nobody Tells You About Tarsar Marsar Trek
Did you know that the name of the Tarsar Marsar Trek is linked to life and death?
The name Tar and Mar in Kashmiri roughly translate to life and death. There is famous local folklore in Kashmir on why these lakes were named as such. Do ask your guides for the story.
Locals say that one can find true peace at the Tarsar lake. It joins one place to another and makes you feel at ease. On the other hand, it is believed that Marsar lake is the opposite.
Sundersar, the second lake on the Tarsar Marsar trek, is more locally known as Chandrasar because of the crescent moon-like shape of the lake. On this trek, you get to visit 3 beautiful lakes that give you a deep insight into Kashmir.
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