Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Travel: Kashmir - Paradise in distress.

My recent travel brought me to a region in northern India, Kashmir, literally heaven on earth. It really was a surprise travel arranged by Mr Bear, well, even Mr Bear didn't know we were going to Kashmir. He asked his travel agent friend to arrange for a trip to Ladakh but somehow, there was a mistake in the arrangement and we ended up in Kashmir.

We landed from Mumbai in Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir, there were more security personnels in the airport than flight passengers and airport workers combined. Kashmir has been portrayed by the western and Indian media as an unsafe place with riots and skirmishes between India and Pakistan. We didn't see any of this. With that many police and army crowding the city, Srinagar is possibly the safest city in the world.

On the first few nights we were put to stay in a boathouse in the middle of Dal Lake. It was my first time staying in a boathouse, I've heard about the moving boathouse hotels in Kerala but the ones in Srinagar are stationary. It was a delightful experience, except the time when I had to shower and brush my teeth. The water smelled funny because it was from the lake.

Dal lake is the most beautiful lake I've seen (not that I've seen many lakes before), this lake has a magical air around it and every inch of the lake is teeming with life. I thought they have managed to conserve the ecosystem of the lake by not using motorized boat.

Srinagar was entirely clean, something I did not expect because Jaipur, Agra, Delhi and Mumbai has taught me otherwise. I thought if there's one place that I would go back to visit again in India, it would certainly be Kashmir.

One the second day, we were brought to visit several Mughal gardens around Srinagar. There really are many flower gardens in such a small city and they look almost alike but we were happy to be close to nature and to breath clean and fresh air, something that we could not do in Mumbai. The mountainous background were breathtaking to look upon.

After spending the entire morning looking at flowers, we were taken to see the old town and an imposing 750 year old mosque that was build by Shah Hamdan, a wooden mosque that I thought was as elegant as Sultanahmet or Suleymaniye of Istanbul. On the way, we passed by a part of  Dal lake that was full of Lotus.


And we had Kashmiri ice-cream!

And that wrapped up our first 2 days in Srinagar!

PS: I thought Kashmiri food was delicious.


  1. great post! kashmir is surely an amazing place for having fun with you loved ones. luckily i found a website about Kashmir tourism that i would love to share

  2. nicely written post with some great pictures..keep up with great work. :))

    - Kashmir Houseboat information

  3. very useful and amazing information india is colorful destination of the world
    and visited by all travel lovers. AWESOME PLACE! :D

    - kashmir houseboat information

  4. I Plan this summer. I love to see this heaven place.

  5. Nice blog and information about Srinagar travel guide. Srinagar is infact a beautiful place to explore all sorts of beauty and oh yes, the Dal Lake Houseboats that makes the journey more beautiful. :)

    - Kashmir houseboats reservation

  6. Great Article! Srinagar is as amazing place..its beauty is undeniable. :)
    - Kashmir houseboat information

  7. Kashmir has beautiful places Dal lake is the main attraction in it , this is a nice post , thanks for sharing these amazing pictures with us . Jammu And Kashmir Tour