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SRINAGAR


INTRODUCTION

"Srinagar is a resort for the tourists who can experience the beauty of the valley that has attached the Chinese, the Mughals and the British to it.Srinagar is located in the heart of the Kashmir Valley at an altitude of 1,730m above sea level, spread on both sides of river Jhelum.

Its waterways with their own quaint lifestyle, the unique houseboat, the blossoming gardens, water sports activities, shopping for lovingly handcrafted souvenirs and the nearby resorts make it a cherished spot among those looking for a memorable holiday. It is the largest city in India without a Hindu majority.

ORIENTATION

The city is located on both the sides of the Jhelum River, which is called Vyath in Kashmir.It coordinates at 34°5N 74°4E.

HISTORY

This more than 200 years old capital of the valley was founded by Ashoka the Great belonging to the 3rd century BC.The original city of Srinagar was called as Srinagari.The present city was built by Pravarsena II adjoining the old city.Srinagar literally means the City of Lakshmi,the Goddess of wealth. The treaty, inter alia, provided British de-facto suzerainty over the Kashmir Valley, and installed Gulab Singh as an independent and sovereign ruler of the region. Srinagar became part of his kingdom, and remained until 1947 as one of the several princely states of undivided India.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

Srinagar is best visited during summers between the months of April and June.

FAIRS AND FESTIVALS

NAUREH MAVAS

A fair is held at Vichar Nag, a northern suburb of Srinagar on the 15th day of dark fortnight of Chet.

BAISAKHI

A fair is held at Gupta Ganga near the Nishat Bagh on the first day on the month Baisakh.

DURGA ASHTAMI

A fair is held at Khir Bhawani (Tula Mulah) on the 8th day of the bright fortnight of Chet.

RAM NAVAMI

A fair is held at Hari Parbat and at Raghu Nath Temple on the 9th day of bright fortnight of Chet.

VETAL SHASTI

A fair is held at the different shrines of Vetals in Srinagar on the 6th day of dark fortnight in Baisakh.

GANESH CHOUDAS

A fair is held at the Ganesh Ghat in Srinagar on the 14th day of bright fortnight of Baisakh. The other common festivals celebrated here Shivratri, Sankrant and Dussehra with same and fun as in other parts of the country.

PLACES OF INTERESTS

DAL LAKE

Srinagar's distinctive feature is the great body of water, the Dal lake, which forms its focal point. The Dal has within its area, two enormous sheet like expanses of water Lokut dal and Bod dal,the rest of its surface being broken up alternatively by man made strips of land inhabited by whole colonies of people and vegetation.’ Bathing boats’ here hire out water skis and motor launches.

Shikaras are a refreshingly noval way of seeing Srinagar by day and at twilight, the gentle soothing motion of the boat, as it glides along the water, is unbelievably romantic.

NAGIN LAKE

Leading from the Dal lake is the smaller Nagin lake. Here too the waters are edged by trees of willow and poplar whose reflection is mirrored in the lake.Shikaras can be hired out from any of the steps called ghats or jetties leading to the lake. This lake lies to the east of the city at the foot of the Zabarwan mountain.

THE WULAR LAKE

The Wular Lake acclaimed to be the largest freshwater lake in India and perhaps in Asia too – ranks prominent as one of the major tourist attractions in Srinagar.Lying about 32 km to the northwest of Srinagar City, Wular Lake is set amidst scenic locales, and the lake reflects the beauty of nature at her pristine best. Wular is encircled by high mountains on the north and north-east of the valley, which further add to the scenic charm of the locales.

THE MUGHAL GARDENS

With terrace lawns, cascading fountains, paint box bright flowerbeds with the panorama of the Dal in front of them-the three Mughal gardens of Chesmashahi, Nishat and Shalimar are the Mughal emperor's concept of paradise and are today very popular places for picnics and excursions.

SHALIMAR BAGH

Built by Emperor Jehangir for his wife Nur Jehan, Shalimar, 15kms fom the TRC is a beautiful garden with sweeping vistas over gardens and lakes and shallow terraces, rising one above the other.

NISHAT BAGH

Situated on the banks of the Dal lake, with the Zabarwan mountains as its backdrop, this garden of bliss commands a magnificent view of the lake and snow capped Pir Panjal mountain range which stands far away to west of the valley.Nishat was designed in 1633 AD by Asaf Khan, brother of Nur Jehan.

CHESMA SHAHI

At Chesmashahi, is a beautifully laid garden in terraces from where you get a beautiful view of the Dal lake below and surrounding mountain ranges.The original garden was laid out by Shah Jehan in 1632 AD.

PARI MAHAL

Once the royal observatory, Pari Mahal has a charmingly laid out garden and is a five minute drive from Chesmashahi.This mahal is illuminated with full lights in the night.

HARWAN

On the hillside, south of the village of Harwan is remarkable remains of ancient ornamented tile pavements of the Buddhist period have come to light.

HAZARATBAL MOSQUE

This mosque is located in a village of the same name on the banks of the Dal.Is pristine white marble eegance is reflected in the waters of the lake.Hazaratbal special significance is derived from the fact that it houses a hair of the prophet Muhammad.

JAMA MASJID

The Jama Masjid at Nowhatta, in the heart of the old city is the other important mosque in Srinagar at which thousands of people congregate for the Friday prayers.Of imposing propotions, the mosque is built around a courtyard and is supported by 370 wooden pillars.

SHANKARACHARAYA TEMPLE

The sacred temple of Shankaracharaya occupies the top of the hills as Takht-i-Sulaiman in the south east of Srinagar.The site dates back to 250 BC.The philosopher Shankaracharaya stayed at this place when he visited Kashmir ten centuries ago to revive Sanatan Dharma.

KHANQAH OF SHA HAMADAN

Situated on the banks of the river Jhelum, between the third and the fourth bridge, it is the first mosque ever built in Srinagar.

HARI PRABHAT FORT

The Ragnya Devi is symbolized as a sacred spring at Tula Mula village, 27 kms from Srinagar.Within the spring is a small marble temple. The temple spring complex is popularly known as Kheer Bhawani because of the thousands of devotees who offer milk and kheer to the sacred spring, which magically turns black to warn of disaster.

MAKHDOOM SAHIB

On the southern side of the Hari Prabhat is the historic shrine of Makdhoon Sahib, which is visited by people of all faiths.

MARTAND

Martand located atop a plateau close to the township of Anantnag, has a temple dedicated to Surya, the "Sun God”. The temple complex has 84 columns and offers a commanding view of the valley of Kashmir.

KHEER BHAWANI TEMPLE

The Mughal emperor’s fort crowns the top of Hari Prabhat hill. Even though in a state of ruin, it still conveys at least a little of the grandeur of the Mughals summer retreat in 'paradise'.

SHOPPING

Shopping in Srinagar may involve woolen garments, handmade woolen shawls, the carpets, stone jewelry and silver products like cutleries and utensils are famous in the Kashmiri market. Wooden products like hand curved swings and baby cots are also quite famous here. Shopping in Srinagar might also comprise of the wooden hand curved swings and baby cots for the children back home.

There are wooden souvenirs and mementoes in plethora at the Srinagar market. Shopping in Srinagar must include the pashmina scarves and shawls which are supposed to be one of the most expensive fabrics in India.Lal Chowk, Badshah Chowk and the near by Polo View in Srinagar and Vir Marg, Raghunath Bazaar and Hari Market in Jammu are best places for shopping in Srinagar.

EAT OUTS

The cuisine of the valley city of Srinagar is rather flexible; while it can serve as a daily family meal, it can also do duty for a 36-course king's feast which is generally referred as 'Wazawan'.Some of the famous restaurants here include

Ahdoos Restaurant in Srinagar - Shervani Road
Mughal Darbar Restaurant in Srinagar - Shervani Road
Ruby - Lambert Lane
Juniper - Lal Chowk
Shamyana - Boulevard
Nun-Kun - near Nehru Park
Alka Salka - Shervani Road
Tafree Restaurant in Srinagar
Lhasa - Boulevard
Solace - Shervani Road
Tao Cafe - Shervani Road

ACCOMMODATION

1.Silver Star Hotel
Lasjan, Byepass Road, Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir
0194 2145586

2.Srinagar Houseboats
Dal Lake, Srinagar 190001,
Jammu & Kashmir
Mob- 09797715981

3.Hotel Pinegroove
3rd Cross Road Boulevard,
Srinagar, 190001,
Kashmir (J&K), INDIA
91-194-2472405

4.HOTEL SADAF
45, Exchange Road
Srinagar, Kashmir
190001
0194-2457490

5.Centaur Lake View Hotel 
Rainawari
Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir

6.Hotel ShahenShah Palace Boulevard
Srinagar. J
&K, India.
0194-2501246, 0194-2500762

7.PERSIAN PALACE GROUP OF HOUSEBOATS 
Rainawari
Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir 190001
09810312256

8.Blooming Dale
Dalgate,Buchwara,
Srinagar 190001,
Kashmir(INDIA).
0194 2479999.

9.Kolu Houseboats
Old boulard road,
behind hotel shah abbas,
Srinagar-1901001 Kashmir (INDIA)
0194-2458830

10.Dandoo Resorts 
Rainawari
Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir
0194 2500197

HOW TO REACH

By Air

Srinagar is well connected to the major cities like Delhi, Chandigarh, Amritsar, Jammu.

By Trains

The nearest railhead is Jammu Tawi, i.e. 305 km from Srinagar. However, it is well connected by road to important places like Chandigarh (630 km), Delhi (876 km), Jammu (298 km), Leh, Kargil, Gulmarg, Sonamarg, and Pahalgam. The main bus station is at Lal Chowk, which is the city center. Travelers can use auto-rickshaws and mini-buses to move around the city.

By Road

Srinagar is connected by an all weather road to Jammu, which in turn is connected to many parts of North India. One can catch buses from Delhi but people making the trip by road should take up the route via Chandigarh, Amritsar or from the Himachal Pradesh hill stations.