In the Udhampur district of Jammu and Kashmir, a little town called Katra sits above the picturesque Trikuta Mountains. Maa Vaishno Devi, one of the most respected Hindu pilgrimage sites, is the primary draw. In addition to being a popular pilgrimage site, Katra offers a wealth of other attractions. In and around Katra, there are a slew of interesting religious, historical, and scenic attractions worth checking out. It’s also a great place to shop. Leather goods, fruits, rugs, and other interesting items can be purchased at the main market. If you’re planning a journey to this heavenly place, don’t forget to include these additional stops on your itinerary.
Top 12 Must See Destination In Katra
Katra, a town in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, has a lot to offer visitors. 12 must-see destinations in Katra have been compiled for your convenience. Indulge your wanderlust with these Katra tourism attractions!
- Maa Vaishno Devi Temple
When we think of Katra, the Vaishno Devi temple is the first site that springs to mind. The Trikuta mountains surround the temple. Mata appeared in three rock shapes known as Pindies in the shrine’s grotto. Darshani Darwaza, the yatra’s entrance gate, is a mile and a half from the bus station.
From Katra, you must go 13 kilometres upward to reach the sacred shrine. For the elderly and disabled, there are horse and palanquin services. The shrine may also be reached via a 2.5-kilometer walk from Sanjichhat, which can be reached via helicopter. Sanjichhat is a great vantage point from which to take in the magnificent Himalayan scenery.
- Charan Paduka
On the path to Maa Vaishno Devi’s cave or bhawan in Katra, this is one of the most sacred places to visit. Maa’s footprints can be found on a rock slab in Charan Paduka. Bhairavnath, the saint-turned-demon, was pursuing Vaishno Devi or Vaishnavi. After a while, she decided to take a break from her journey and relax here instead of going to her cave. Those are the dates on which her paw prints were found in the sandstone. Before ascending to Mata’s cave, visit Charan Paduka to seek her blessings.
- Ban Ganga
Ban Ganga is a revered halt on the way to Vaishno Devi. It’s one of Katra’s most popular attractions. Visit the Shivalik Himalayan Range, the source of the Ganga, while in Kashmir in June for one of the most memorable experiences of the year. Once upon a time, Mata Vaishanvi was accompanying a thirsty monkey as she made her way to her cave residence. Maa launched an arrow into the ground, and out of it, the Ganga emerged. The name “Ban (arrow) Ganga ” comes from this.
Because of this, it is also known as the “Hair Ganga,” as Maa is said to have bathed her hair in the river. Ban or Bal Ganga provides worshippers with a place to rest during their journey to the shrine of Devi. Take a refreshing swim in the holy waters of Katra before moving on to other tourist attractions in the city.
- Baba Bhairavnath
Once you’ve had your fill of Maa’s spirit and energy at the Vaishno Devi temple, make your way up to Baba Bhairavnath, another top Katra tourist attraction. A short 2-to-3-kilometer ascent from Vaishno Devi brings you to the Bhairavnath shrine. At this altitude, the vista is even more awe-inspiring.
Bhairav, a saint who later became a demon, is honoured in this temple. Maa Vaishno Devi killed him in this place. Forgiving him because of his resentment of his sins. A visit to my temple would be incomplete without stopping at the Bhairavnath temple, which is considered to be as sacred as Vaishno Devi.
- Baba Dhansar
Baba Dhansar is one of Katra’s many sacred sites. It’s only about 13 kilometres away from Katra, where you’ll find a slew of fantastic homestays and guesthouses. Around 100 steps are required to get to the top. A fascinating narrative surrounds a shrine devoted to Lord Shiva. In addition to the stunning temple, visitors are drawn to this location by the awe-inspiring waterfalls and lush foliage surrounding it.
Spend some time relaxing and admiring Himkoti’s natural beauty on your pilgrimage. Enjoy the stunning view of the Katra Hills, the lush and tranquil surroundings, and the tranquil atmosphere. It’s also an excellent spot for a family outing and picnic. It’s no surprise that Himkoti is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Katra.
Katra’s Baag-e-Bahu is an out-of-the-way destination. From Katra, it’s around 45 kilometres away. When you’re done touring all the temples, this is the perfect location to unwind and recharge your batteries.
A visit to the nearby Bahu Fort is highly recommended if you’re interested in Indian history and your body hasn’t been overworked from your pilgrimage there. The fort’s history and the founding of Jammu are intertwined. Additionally, there is a shrine devoted to the goddess Maa Kali within the fortress.
Sanasar, often known as “Mini Gulmarg,” is a 17-kilometer drive from Patnitop. It’s a bit of a drive from Katra; you’ll need around three hours to get there. The lake, hills, and trees that surround the area are very beautiful.
The summer in Kashmir is also a great time to try paragliding, hot air ballooning, and horseback riding. Sanasar has enough things to see and do to keep you busy for the entire day. See the waterfalls at Nag Temple, Hidden Creek, and Sanasar Lake.
- Jhajjar Koti
Jhajjar Kotli is one of Katra’s most popular tourist attractions. At Jhajjar Kotli, you can have the picnic of your dreams. When you’re on vacation with your family, this is the best site to visit in the Katra area. It’s as if you’ve been given a spa treatment for your senses while you’re here. This is one of the most popular spots around Katra because of its tranquil surroundings and calming atmosphere. It’s about a 15-mile drive from Katra to this peaceful area.
- Raghunath Temple
Raghunath Temple is situated 8 kilometres from the city of Jammu. Maharaja Ranbir Singh commissioned its construction, and it is now one of the most popular attractions in Katra. This temple, one of Northern India’s largest, is dedicated to Lord Rama. Lord Krishna, Ganesh Ji, and other Hindu deities are also depicted in the temples.
There is a Mughal style temple and a Sikh type temple with a central tower. The artworks featuring religious lines from the Holy Gita, Mahabharata, and Ramayana are also on display.
- Ranbireshwar Temple
Ranbireshwar Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is another must-see attraction in Katra. It is one of Lord Shiva’s 12 Jyotirlinga temples in India, and it is frequented by pilgrims hoping to get blessings from the divine. Deepawali, Lohri, Ram Navami, and Makar Sankranti are among the busiest times of the year.
- Dera Baba Banda
Dera Baba Banda, a Sikh pilgrimage site, is another popular Katra tourist attraction. A Gurdwara established by Guru Gobind Singh’s favourite, Baba Banda Bairaagi, can be found in the compound, which is almost 300 years old. The interior and architecture of the Gurudwara, which is made entirely of white marble stone, are quite impressive. During the three-day mela held every year during Vaisakhi, thousands of people come to pay their respects.
Best Time To Visit Katra
The months of March through November are ideal for visiting the charming town of Katra. Due to the great weather conditions, this is the best time to visit the beautiful scenery and monuments. If you’re visiting Katra in the dead of winter, be sure to pack enough woollens.
Katra is a miracle of nature and religion for anybody who visits. Don’t just plan to visit Vaishno Devi when you visit Katra. Visit as many or as few of the places on this list as you can manage in order to fully appreciate all that the city has to offer. We hope you enjoyed this guide to the best sights to see in Katra and that it will be useful to you when you decide to visit Jammu & Kashmir.
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Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs]
Q1. What is Katra well-known for?
Answers:- Katra is a picturesque town in Jammu and Kashmir known for the famous temple of Goddess Vaishno Devi. The temple is well-known, and hundreds of tourists pay their respects to the Goddess at the shrine each year.
Q2. What is the best time of year to visit Katra?
Answers:- The climate in Katra is subtropical. Summers are quite hot, while winters are tolerable, if not pleasant. From March to November is the best time to visit Katra.
Q3. What can you do in Katra?
Answers:- Aside from darshan at holy shrines, Katra offers a variety of sightseeing and adventurous activities. With its breathtaking views of hills, waterfalls, streams, and greenery all around, the location is a naturalist’s dream. Paragliding, trekking, white water rafting, horseback riding, and other activities are available for thrill seekers. There are also a plethora of shopping malls for the shopaholic.
Q4. How many days will it take for the Katra trip?
Answers:- Because Katra is a small town with important sites close to each other, a 2-3 day trip is sufficient to see all of the important sites. However, if you want to visit places near Katra, you may need to extend your trip by a day or two.
Q5. How do I get to Katra?
Answers:- There are no direct flights to Katra because it lacks an airport. You can take a flight or train to Jammu, which is the closest city. Katra is 49 kilometres away from there. You can take a cab from Jammu to Katra.
Q6. Where can I go in the vicinity of Katra?
Answers:- Visit Dalhousie, McLeodGanj, Baba Dhansar, Pahalgam, Patnitop, and Chandanwari.
Q7. Is there a well-known shopping mall in Katra?
Answers:- Katra Main Bazaar is a popular shopping area where you can find almost anything. Purchase delicious dry fruits, shawls and other traditional clothing, artefacts, and much more.
Q8. At what elevation Katra is located?
Answers:- Katra is situated at the base of the Trikuta, or three-peaked mountains. It is situated at a height of 2,871 feet above sea level.
Q9. Aside from Vaishno Devi, what else is there in Katra?
Answers:- Aside from Vaishno Devi, Katra is home to a number of holy shrines. It is also a breathtakingly beautiful location, with breathtaking hills, dense forests, lovely streams, and waterfalls. It is an excellent destination for both devotees and nature lovers.
Q10. What are the best restaurants in Katra?
Answers:- Prem Vaishno Dhaba, Punjabi Haveli, Saini Rajasthani Vaishno Dhaba, Gulshan Da Dhaba, and Madhuban are some of the best places to eat delicious local cuisine in Katra.
Q11. When is the best time to go to Vaishno Devi?
Answers:- The best time to visit is from March to October, when the weather is cool and pleasant, and many pilgrims pay their respects. Vaishno Devi, on the other hand, is open to pilgrims all year.