Location & description
Situated on the North-West tip of India, Kashmir we know for very long as the “Paradise on Earth” or “ভূস্বর্গ কাশ্মির”. It is the crown jewel of tourist destinations considering the world as the playground. From time immemorial all travelers to Kashmir valley stayed awestruck by the beauty of its pristine high altitude valleys surrounded by snow clad mighty Himalayan peaks and melting ice rivers flowing through the valleys.
Kashmir is not just cities like Srinagar or Anantnag, it is the whole area of large high altitude valleys where the soft grass covered vales rise to the mountainsides covered with tall conifer trees which finally merge with the snow further up.
When in winter the trees and the valleys get their thick snow covers, the place turns into a favorite place for skiers. In summer after snow melts, on horseback you can gallop across the grassy valley for long stretches. Or if you like you can roll down the soft grassy slopes.
Sparkling lakes mirroring the blue sky call you for floating in their midst on Shikaras enjoying beauty, peace and serenity.
Again Kashmir is not just its beautiful nature, it holds enough heritage to keep you fascinated with untold stories in its beautiful temples and numerous Mughal architectures.
Srinagar has its famous Dal lake where you must take at least one Shikara ride, or you may enjoy half a day in its picture perfect Shalimar Bagh. Not to forget its religious heritage of Shankaracharya temple or Jama Masjid.
It is the third largest town in Kashmir and apart from its other attractions is home of Martand Sun temple and the Amarnath temple. Anantnag is one of the most important tourist destinations in Kashmir.
Pahalgam attained special importance as the base of Amarnath Yatra, which is one of the most important pilgrimages in Northern India. Otherwise Pahalgam exudes a rustic charm, but with modern tourist facilities. It is fondly called the valley of shepherds because of it long sheep grazing grounds.
In spring the high altitude valley gets its carpet of multi-colored flowers and so its name “Valley of flowers”. It is also a favourite haunt for skiers and with its long typical Kashmiri valley and mountainside Gulmarg is a prime tourist destination in Kashmir valley.
Sonmarg valley is surrounded by many glaciers and is the base camp for glacier treks. With unmatched scenic beauty Sonmarg is an important tourist destination in Kashmir.
Situated at a distance of 141 kms from Srinagar, Amarnath temple, about 140 km distant from Srinagar is the abode of Lord Shiva. Pahalgam is the base point from where Amarnath Yatra starts. Amarnath is considered as the holiest shrine in Hinduism and is visited by millions of pilgrims and devotees from all over the world.
To this day, the large Dal Lake in Srinagar retains its legend of Shikaras floating through its sparkling placid waters. It is home of romance floating on the bed of lake. It is one of the main attractions for the discerning Kashmir tourist.
Amidst the city of Srinagar, the Mughal Gardens, built during Mughal period, is a collection of beautiful gardens Shalimar, Nishat and Chashme Shahi Bagh each with its own special flavour of exquisite beauty and flower arrangement.
Kashmiri people are placid and peace loving in general from far off times. Insurgency earned it a bad name but it rose from the ashes so to say to regain its place as a prime tourist destination in the world. Kashmiri Brahmin Pundits are a race apart.
Food, drinks, shawls
Kashmiris pride themselves in two things apart from the natural beauty surrounding them. First is their preparation of meat. You can’t have enough of it if you have tasted one of their famous meat preparations like Yakhni or Goshtaba. Kashmiri cuisine is famed worldwide for their special spicy tasty preparations.
Kahwah, a form of saffron mixed green tea, is the drink with which every Kashmiri will welcome you. It is a local specialty.
Last but not the least is the Kashmiri shawl, which is a cherished possession worldwide
Kashmir valley is a land of dreams and romance, something for everyone from every place. With unmatched scenic beauty, tall tree covered mountainside, majestic Himalayan snow ranges, large placid lakes, especially its long grassy glades, Kashmir will continue to entice and enchant travelers from all around the globe for all time to come.