PatniTop or Patnitop, is a hilltop tourist location in Udhampur district on the National Highway 44, on the way from Udhampur to Srinagar. It is located in the Shiwalik belt of the Himalayas, and is in Jammu and Kashmir. The river Chenab flows in close proximity to this location. Origin of the name PatniTop is a distortion of the original name of "Patan Da Talab" meaning "Pond of the Princess". In olden times a pond existed in the meadows and the kings princess often used to have her bath there. Part of the pond still exists near the youth hostel. The Britishers probably couldn’t get the name correctly in their revenue records , and over the years it changed from "Patan Da Talab" to PatniTop.
112 kms from Jammu, this famous hill resort is perched on a beautiful plateau, at an altitude of 2024 metres across which the Jammu-Srinagar Highway passes. Enveloped by thickly wooded forests, PatniTop offers beautiful picnic spots, peaceful walks and breathtaking views of the of the Chenab basin. In winter, the resort is generally covered with a thick mantle of snow thus providing opportunities for various snow games including Amateur skiing. Further ahead, at a distance of about 19 Kms from PatniTop, is Sanasar (2079 m), a satellite resort of PatniTop, with a cup-shaped meadow surrounded by gigantic conifers. A place for a quiet holiday, the meadow has now been developed as a golf course.
It is the best-developed tourist spot of Jammu and is second to none in its natural charm, climate, pine forests and lush green cover. The complete tourist circuit covers Jammu-Katra-Vaishno Devi ji, Kud-Sanasar, PatniTop-Gourikund, Sudhmahadev, Mantali, extending upto Latti-Dhuna.
Skiing courses are conducted at PatniTop in the months of January and February. During winter months there are introductory courses for tourists/beginners at gentle gradient slopes of PatniTop. At Madhatop (5/6 Kms from PatniTop on Sanasar Road) excellent possibilities for all kind of skiing exist. A ski-lift in the area is also proposed. As for facilities 40 sets of equipment is available at PatniTop and Sanasar. Also available are wooden sledges locally. For beginners Instructors are also available
Paragliding has been introduced at Sanasar and Jammu. Equipment is available on Hire from tourist office in Jammu city. May-June and September October are best suited for paragliding. Other aero sports like Parasailing and Hot Air ballooning are also becoming operational shortly.
A range of trekking options is available here. Summer is the season when all trekking routes are open while some are open in winter too. There are excellent camping sites also En-route. The Sundrani- Jungal Gali-Nagarkot-Sanasar route in Jangal Gali area lets you choose any of three exciting treks. There are Trekking equipment hire shops of tourism Department at Jammu and Kud. They stock imported and local gear. These are available for fixed prices.