Handwara is located at . It has an average elevation of 1,582 metres (5,190 feet).
India census, Handwara had a population of 10,624. Males constitute 55% of the population and females 45%. Handwara has an average literacy rate of 54%, lower than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 66%, and female literacy is 38%. In Handwara, 13% of the population is under 6 years of age.