Kingdom of Kashmir
Kashmir a place of unparalleled beauty is often called Heaven of Earth by many. Everything about this place makes you fall in love with it more and more. Its pristine beauty stretches as far as the eye can see and beyond.
Kashmir is a filled with beautiful sights and places to visit. Tourists can start off with the capital of Kashmir, the city of Srinagar. This enchanting city with its beautiful lakes, springs, mountains, bustling bazaars and Mughal gardens has a medieval charm to it. Tourists can use buses or taxis to enjoy the various sights that the city has to offer, but the most popular way to go about sightseeing is on a shikara, a big wooden row boat that has become the cultural symbol of Kashmir.
One of the most beautiful lakes of Kashmir is the Dal Lake. It is surrounded by majestic mountains on three sides and the shore line of the lake is encompassed by a boulevard lined with Mughal era gardens and orchards. Dal Lake also has hundreds of iconic houseboats. These houseboats actually hold fully functioning houses in them and are not just a tourism gimmick. Mere words cannot explain the peace and tranquillity that you experience while residing in one of these houseboats. Another famous lake is the Nagin Lake where tourists can experience shopping in the middle of the lake itself. There are boats that properly function as shops where you can buy eateries, exquisite handicrafts and even the famous Pashmina shawls. Other famous lakes include the Wular Lake and the Manasbal Lake.
Kashmir also has sprawling, beautiful gardens that are a must visit. There are many gardens that you can visit like the Shalimar Garden, Nishant Garden, PariMahal Garden, Harwan Garden and the Jarogabal Garden. The Nishant Garden is the largest one on the Shore of Dal Lake. The lush lawns, mighty chinars and the rippling fountains are the main features of this garden.
For most people, summer may be the best time to visit Kashmir as the extreme cold of the winters may get highly uncomfortable for many but winters are the time when Kashmir reveals its true beauty.
Mutton, chicken or fish are the main ingredients of any Kashmiri meal. Kashmiri food is rich in flavour as the locals use a variety of spices such as cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, saffron etc. Various non-vegetarian delicacies include rogan josh, which is lamb cooked in heavy spices; yakhiyn, lamb cooked in curd and mild spices; rista-gushtaba, minced meatballs in tomato and curd curry and danivalkorme. As Kashmiri diet is mainly non-vegetarian, there are very few vegetarian choices such as dumaloo; boiled potato with heavy spices; tzaman, a solid cottage cheese and hakh, spinach like leaf. Rice is a staple food in Kashmiri diet. Being a majorly Muslim population, alcohol is strictly prohibited in most places.
In every sense of the world, Kashmir can truly be remarked as “heaven on Earth”. This breathtakingly picturesque city is a major tourist hub of India.