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SRINAGAR CITY TOUR

Srinagar is famous for its canals, houseboats and Mughal gardens. The city itself is quite unlike most other large Indian cities for here you are much more in Central Asia than on the sub continent. It's a city full of intriguing alleyways and curious buildings. A place where it's very easy to spend a few hours simply wandering - particularly along the old city streets near the Jhelum river.

Sightseeing


City Of Lakes :
Srinagar's lakes are the reason why the city receives so many tourists. Not just expanse of water, the lakes are filled with houseboats, villages, narrow water canals, lotus and vegetable gardens and houses and shops.
Life on the lakes, as witnessed from the confines of a Shikara, is unique. It is possible to book a Shikara for the whole day and sightsee Nishat Garden, Nasim Bagh, Hazratbal Mosque, Pathar Masjid and Shah Hamdan's Shrine, having a picnic lunch in the boat. While Nagin is quieter, the Dal is full of local colour, with tourists being rowed in Shikara to shops selling every conceivable handicraft - all within the lake.


About Dal Lake

Dal Lake famed for its clear water, its lotus flowers, and its floating gardens, forms the centre around which most Mughal gardens in Srinagar are arranged. Located on the northeast side of the Kashmir valley plain, in the foot hills of the Himalayas, Dal lake measures 6.23 Km long by 4.15 Km wide, and it covers total area of 25.86 sq Km. formally, Dal lake was devised by man-made causeways into four basins, known as Gagribal, Lakut Dal ( small Dal), Bod Dal (big dal), and Nagin. It contains two islands, rup lank (silver island or Char Chinari) and Sona lank (Golden island).

 

Dal lake is one of the major attractions in the vicinity of Srinagar. House boats for accommodating tourist and Shikaras (water taxis) for transporting people and goods between the shores of the lake. At dawn, local (shikaras) boats gather along one side of the lake, forming a market garden where produce and goods are bought and sold (floating Vegetable market - Gudir).
Maximum number of houseboats are located in front of the boulevard road within Gagribal (from Dal gate to Centaur hotel, while Lakut Dal ( rup lank are

Ride Of The Lake :
A Shikara ride is one of the most soothing, relaxing aspects of a holiday in Kashmir. It can be an hour-long ride to see the sights of the Dal; a shopping by Shikara expedition to visit handicraft shops within the periphery of the lake; or a whole day trip to visit important city landmarks. Because the Dal is so central to the landscape of Srinagar, many places of tourist interest have, over the ages, been built in its vicinity.

The Mughal Gardens :
The art of designing formal gardens which the Mughal (also spelt as Moghul) emperors expended such time and energy upon, reached its zenith in Kashmir. The Mughal gardens in Agra or Lahore may be very fine but only in Kashmir is the formal beauty of the gardens matched by the natural beauty of the surrounding countryside. The gardens follow a standard pattern with a central channel carrying water through the descending terraces in a delightful series of cascades, falls and pools.
Another distinctive feature of Srinagar is the Mughal Gardens with their terraced lawns, cascading fountains and bright flowerbeds, overlooking the panorama of the Dal Lake.

 

Chashma Shahi (Royal Spring)
Received it name from its water source, a spring located on its uppermost terrace. The garden, one of the smaller Kashmiri gardens around Dal Lake, Is found on the southeastern side of the lake. It was built by the Mughal governor Ali Mardan Khan under the emperor Shah Jahan in 1632 - 1633. Chashma Shahi is laid out as a rectangle, measuring 108 by 38 meters along a north - south axis.

Pari Mahal

On a nearby spur of the mountain is the ancient monument Pari Mahal, planned out by Dara Shikon as a sufi school, surrounded by Outside Srinagar, Pampore (18 km), located on the National Highway, is famous for the saffron that grows here from September to October.
 

Shalimar Bagh
Is located on the northeast side of Dal lake, approximately 15 Km. away from the centre of Srinagar. It was laid out by Jahangir as Farah Baksh (the delightful) in 1619, while he was founding the city of Srinagar. Covering an area of approximately 12.4 hectors, the garden is rectangular in shape and measures 587 meters long by 251 meters wide, having four terraces, rising one above the other. A canal runs through the middle of garden, supplied by water from Harwan.


Shankaracharya Temple

The Shankaracharya Temple, another prominent landmark of Srinagar, is built on a high octagonal plinth, on the hill known as Takht-i-Sulaiman .The site dates back to 250 BC and is associated with the Hindu Philospher Shankarachayya who visited Kashmir ten centuries ago.


Hari Parbat

The hill of Hari Parbat is considered sacred to the Hindus, Muslim and Sikhs alike. For the Hindus it is sacred due to the presence of the Temple of Sharika Mata, a form of goddess Durga or Shakti. On its southern side is the historic shrine of Makhdoom Sahib, a sufi saint of Kashmir revered by people of all faiths.
Further down the Hill is the historic Gurudwara Chhatti Padshahi near the Kathi Darwaza (gate) of the Fort. It is associated with the visit of the sixth Sikh Guru to Kashmir. There is also Mughal Fort on this Hill called Hari Parbat. The Afghan Governor, Ata Mohammad Khan, developed it to its full size in the 18th century.