The third rural location in Kashmir that has started to see a return of foreign travellers is SONAMARG, 84km northeast of Srinagar. Perched beside the River Sindh and surrounded by forests of pine, fir, beech and sycamore, with towering peaks all around, it is a scenic spot to break the journey to Kargil or Leh. This is also the place with the best display of spring and early summer flowers. A further attraction is that the Thajiwas glacier is just 4km away and so makes one of the easiest treks. The only downside is that its location on the vital Srinagar–Leh road means there is a fairly constant and noticeable military presence.