Srinagar

Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir is a bustling city along the Jhelum river in the beautiful Kashmir Valley. Winters come with moderate snowfall which covers the roofs of the quaint houses in a serene blanket of white. Pleasant summer months are also an ideal time for a visit. Srinagar is known for its gardens, lakes, patches of marshy land and places of worship. Many Mughal style gardens are located around the Dal lake. Nishat Bagh, Shalimar Bagh, Nehru garden and Chashmashi garden are a few notable ones. Well-tended lawns lined by blooming flower beds make a good picnic spot.   

The Hazaratbal Mosque recognized by its exquisite white dome houses the Moi-e-Muqqadas believed to be the hair of prophet Muhammad. The 14th century Jamia Masjid has a capacity for 90000 people.  Dedicated to Shiva is the Shankaracharya Mandir which also offers picturesque views of the Dal Lake.

Distinct elongated wooden boats known as the Shikaras are typical in Kashmir. Take a ride on a Shikara to visit Dal lake’s famous floating vegetable market. Himalayan ranges surrounding the city make it an ideal place for paragliding and trekking. Houseboats on the Dal Lake and Nagin lake are frequented by colourful Shikaras selling various things. One can also shop at Lal Chowk Ghantaghar and Sunday Market. Srinagar is well known for its rugs, soft Pashmina shawls and dry fruits. The streets often have vendors selling juicy barbecued meat pieces, popularly known as seekh-tuji. A steaming cup of kahwah which is spiced green tea perfectly complements the valley’s cool foggy weather.