KATRA – Holy Shrine of Vaishno Devi

Katra, one of the small towns in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, is one of the known gateways to the holy shrine of the Vaishno Devi. It is nestled in the lap of the mountains of Trikuta, it is approximately around 42 Kms from Jammu and Kashmir and one of the talks of town destination for the pilgrims of Vaishno Devi. It is having an average elevation of around 754 meters and there have been reports with respect to possible oil reserves in the location. Baisakhi is one of the festivals which is celebrated on 13th April every year. It is one of the Sikh festivals and is celebrated by foreigners as well as local devotees with great zeal and enthusiasm. It is dedicated to the start of the cropping season in the Northern India.

How to reach Katra?

It is considered as one of the base camp for pilgrims who are visiting Vaishno Devi as it is having the thriving tourism industry which are offering wide ranges of hotels, restaurants, guest houses, dhabas, fast food joints etc with all the type of budgets. Even there are few trusts which are providing sarais for the poor’s in free as well.

  • Via Air 

Satwari Airport at Jammu is located at a distance of 48 Kilometres. It is the closest airfield which could be accessed for reaching Katra airbase. Some of the top notch airplanes which connect to the airport are- Air India, Go Air, Indigo, Spice jet, Jet connect etc. It is connected to Leh, Delhi, Srinagar, Pune, Mumbai, Chennai, Jaipur, Goa, Hyderabad and others.

  • Via Train

If you are planning towards the railway then the nearest location would be Jammu Tawi. It is well linked with major cities of the Country especially the Northern part. Most of the pilgrims do consider trains more suitable means to travel.

  • Via Road /Car

It is well connected roadways as one can easily reach in the convenient manner. There are regular taxis, buses and private transports for reaching to Katra. Some of the few locations near Katra are- Shiv Khori Shrine (85 Km), Dera Baba Banda (30 Km) and Jammu (50Km).

Top 10 places to visit in Katra 

  • Shiv Kohri
  • Temple of Vaishno Devi
  • Dera Baba Banda
  • Baba Dhansar
  • Ardh Kuwari Cave
  • Himkoti
  • Banganga
  • Bhairavnath Temple
  • Nau Devi, near Katra
  • Helicopter Services

Where to Eat and Stay?

All across the roads one could find people selling soft white buns/ breads called Kulchas with either cheese/ chick pea fillings or soya chunks with spices. Whatever the versions, they all are yummy and people do enjoy having it in their daily life. The cost is appropriate with respect to pocket of every individual. Some of the renowned names for food are as under- Punjabi Haveli, Gulshan Da Dhaba, Kens Food Planet, Prem Lahori Vaishno Devi Dhaba, Pooja Vaishno Devi Dhaba, Manoranjan Dhaba etc.

Few of the recommendation which could help in the stay are as under- Hotel Jagdish Residency, Hotel Asia Vaishnodevi, Hotel Asia Shripati, Hotel Dolphin, Hotel Bhargav, KC Residency, Hotel shree Hari Niwas etc.

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