Nestled in hilly areas of Trikuta Mountain, Katra is small town in Udhampur district of Jammu and Kashmir and is divine place and road to Holy shrine of Vaishno Devi. It is ancient pilgrimage spot and has been mentioned in Holy epic of Mahabharath where Lord Krishna advised Arjun to worship Mata Vaishno devi and seek Her blessing before the ferocious battle of the era began.
The weather of the place is sub tropical with three main seasons – summers, monsoon, winters. Summers are very hot with temperature soaring up to 40°C and Monsoon climate has intermittent rains lasting from August to September with high humidity. Winter from October to February has extreme cold climate and all the pilgrimage carry woollen clothes during this period.
This religious abode has rich culture and heirloom of ancient traditions in its lap and festivals and cultural activities of this region epitomise this cultural heritage. Most of the population is Hindu and the locals celebrated all the festivals with enthusiasm and vigour. The most important festival that is celebrated here is Navaratri, wherein nine incarnations of Goddess Durga is worshipped along with array of cultural activities like singing competition, painting events, rangoli competition etc is arranged for nine days and umpteen number of people from neighbouring states swarm to this place to be part of these enthralling events and enjoy with full of religious and competitive spirit.
The city is shopping hub where shopaholics have umpteen numbers of items to stuff in their shopping bags. Dry fruits being the speciality of this town and other knick knacks like hosiery items, woollen clothes, leather items etc are available at most economical prices.
This place has many religious destinations to be visited and worshipped:
- Holy shrine of Goddess Vaishno Devi
- Baba Dhansar temple
- Jhajjar Kotli
Katra has lip smacking cuisines in its platter. One can taste yummy Rajma Chawal, Baigan ka Bharta, Alu gobiParathas etc. Kulchas, rotis, Kashmiri food are famous in the region. Dhaba culture is normal in the streets where you get economical yet hygienic food to eat. There are restaurants serving multi cuisines like Chinese, Italian etc.
Language of the locals is Dongri and other two main dialects are Punjabi influenced by neighbouring regions and Hindi which is the national language. English is another language that is common in Katra.
This holy embrace welcomes mammoth of pilgrims throughout the year and has variety of accommodation facilities depending on your needs, tastes and budget. One can corner from economical low budget hotel to the luxury resorts and suites. All these stay options are best in their hospitability and hygiene. They provide contemporary facilities to all its guests.
Katra has divinity in its environment and aura. Inner spirits are elevated with the chanting of divine mantra Jai Mata Di which is spread in the air all through the region. The place which is celestial abode to religious fervour is a must visit to enlighten you soul and mind.