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Srinagar

Srinagar is the summer capital of the state of Jammu and Kashmir and is the pride of the beautiful valley of Kashmir. Srinagar is famous for its lakes and the charming rows of houseboats floating on them. It is also known for traditional Kashmiri handicrafts and dry fruits

The best time to visit Srinagar is during summers between April and June.

Srinagar, the summer capital of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, is acclaimed to be one of the loveliest places in India, in terms of natural splendor. Set in the picturesque Kashmir valley at an altitude of 1730 meters, Srinagar is a tourist’s paradise and one of the most beautiful hill stations in India. The major tourist attractions in Srinagar include its beautiful rivers and lakes, with rows of charming houseboats floating on them, magnificent blossoming gardens, and lush green woods.

The Land of Lakes and Gardens, as Srinagar is popularly dubbed, abounds in tourist attractions that lure even the most discerning traveler to this magical land. No destination is quite as romantic as Srinagar, no setting as spectacular as Srinagar, rightly termed the “Pride of Kashmir valley”. Explore the numerous tourist attractions in Srinagar, which throw up several delightful surprises that will remain etched on your memory forever.

Srinagar’s charm changes with every season as each season lends unique vistas to the tourist attractions in Srinagar, captivating every one with the splendid beauty. Though the picturesque lakes and beautiful gardens are prime among Srinagar tourist attractions, there are other places to see in Srinagar as well, including several temples and mosques, charming waterways, unique houseboats, and nearby hill resorts. Even the thrilling water sporting activities offered form part of tourist attractions in Srinagar.

Dal Lake

the most important tourist attraction in Srinagar, the Dal Lake has, within its periphery, four enormous water bodies, Lokut Dal, Bod Dal, Gagribal and Nagin. The lake is not a flat, continuous mass of water, but an intricate labyrinth of waterways, that constitute a spectacular sight and an amazing locale to explore.Srinagar is also known as the city of Dal Lake. This lake is 6.4km long and 4km wide and is divided into three parts by man-made causeways. The western portion of the lake has an inlet. It is the deepest part of the lake. In the eastern part there are many Houseboats available for the tourists. The edges of the lake are covered with the groves of chinar, poplar and willow. There are gardens along the bank. The famous Nishat Bagh (Garden of Gladness) lies here. This garden was laid out by Asaf Khan, Nur Jahan's brother, in 1632.

Wular Lake

the largest freshwater lake in India, Wular Lake lies about 32 kms to the northwest of Srinagar city. The lake is surrounded by high mountains on the north and north-east of the valley, which augment the scenic charm of the region. Claimed to be the largest freshwater lake in India, the Wular lake can spread over nearly 200-sq-kms but its actual surface area tends to vary during the year. The Jhelum River flows into the lake, 40-km downstream from Srinagar, and then out again.

The lake, calm though it may appear, is noted for the fierce winds that sometimes blow up. The deepest part of the lake is known as Mota Khon, the 'Gulf of corpses', since the bodies of people drowned in the lake were all supposed to be washed to this place. At one time there was an artificial island on the lake, where boatmen could shelter if the weather turned bad, but silting on that side of the lake has joined the island to the lakeside. It's now a popular picnic spot.

Hazratbal Shrine

A sacred Muslim pilgrimage destination lying on the banks of the famous Dal Lake in Srinagar, Hazratbal Shrine reflects the devotion and respect of Muslims for Prophet Mohammad and his relics stored here. Srinagar tour enables you to view the Hazratbal Shrine, a renowned Muslim shrine in Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir, India. This magnificent shrine is located on the left bank of the Dal Lake, Srinagar. It is located at a distance of 25 kilometers from the Badgam district. This Shrine is a renowned Muslim pilgrimage and it is located just opposite the Nishat Bagh. It took 11 years to construct this marble shrine.

The construction of the Hazratbal Shrine was started in the year 1968 by Auqaf Trust. You can witness a mixture of blend of both Mughal and traditional Kashmiri styles. The whole shrine was made up of marble. Travel to Hazratbal shrine that provides you an opportunity to participate in the vibrant fairs that are held at Hazratbal every year. This colourful festival is also a major cause of attraction of tourists of the entire globe. Before the construction of this holy shrine, the sacred hair was placed in the shrine of Naqshband Sahib. It is one of the renowned tourist’s places in India.

Shankaracharya Temple

Located on top of a hill known as ‘Takht-e-Suleiman’, this ancient temple stands at an altitude of about 1100 feet above the surface level of main Srinagar city. The sacred temple can be visited only through a trek to the top of the hills.One of the most revered Hindu pilgrimage destinations in Srinagar, the Shankaracharya Temple is located atop a hill known as ‘Takht-e-Suleiman’. The ancient temple stands at a height of about 1100 feet above the surface level of the main Srinagar city. A visit to this sacred temple involves a trek to the top of the hills.

Devoted to the worship of Lord Shiva, Shankaracharya Temple is believed to have been built by Raja Gopadatya in 371 BC. During those times, the temple was known as Gopadri. The great saint Shankaracharya is supposed to have stayed here when he visited Kashmir in the early part of the ninth century with the primary aim of spreading the philosophy of Vedanta. This perhaps led to the renaming of the temple as Shankaracharya Temple. Shankaracharya was also instrumental in popularizing the worship of Lord Shiva in Jammu and Kashmir.

Shankaracharya Temple is a monument of great significance, not only because of its religious importance, but also for its architectural beauty. A high octagonal platform supports the temple structure, reached by a flight of around hundred steps. The sidewalls of the steps are believed to have once bore valuable inscriptions.

An inscription in Persian inside the Shankaracharya Temple dates back to the reign of Mughal Emperor Shahjahan.

Khanqah-e-Molla

Also called Shah-e-Hamdan, this shrine is believed to contain "the secret of Allah”. One of the oldest Muslim shrines located on the banks of the river Jhelum in Srinagar city, the Khanqah-e-Molla exhibits exemplary specimen of wood architecture.

The Khanqah-e-Molla or Shah-e-Hamdan is one of the oldest Muslim shrines located on the banks of the river Jhelum in Srinagar city. An important religious destination in Srinagar, this shrine was originally built in 1395 and later reconstructed in 1732.Believed to contain "the secret of Allah” – the Khanqah-e-Molla is an excellent example of wood architecture that draws inspiration from Buddhist, Hindu and Islamic styles.

Khanqah-e-Molla was originally constructed by Sultan Sikander (1389-1413 AD) in memory of Sufi saint Mir Syed Ali Hamdan, who stayed in Kashmir and was instrumental in the spread of Islam in Kashmir.

Khanqah-e-Molla was ravaged by fire in 1480, and reconstructed by Sultan Hassan Shah in 1493. Again in 1731, the shrine got damaged, with Abul Barkat Khan reconstructing it in 1731.

Khanqah-e-Molla, as it stands today, has a square plan, erected on irregular walled base made of materials from ancient temples. The two-storied, two-tiered structure of the shrine has gently sloping pyramidal roofs demarcating each tier. The roofs are further accentuated by heavy woodwork adorning the cornices under the eaves.

The first tier features double-arcaded verandahs that run continuously around the building, and the second tier is in the form of an arcaded balcony protruding on all four sides of the main building.

Jama Masjid

A revered mosque located at Nowhatta, Jama Masjid is one of the main tourist attractions in Srinagar for Muslims.

Also worth visit in Srinagar are the Khir Bhawani Temple, Chatti Padshahi, Chashma Shahi and Pari Mahal, Nishat Garden and Shalimar Garde.

The imposing structure of Srinagar's largest mosque, the Jama Masjid or Friday Mosque, is one of the earliest examples of Islamic wood architecture. First built in AD 1398, it was successively destroyed by fires and rebuilt thrice. The present building conforms to the original plan. Unlike the Islamic shrines, the Jama Masjid & other Muslim shrines in Kashmir are not topped by a dome. Instead four spires tower above the surrounding rooflines. Each of mosque's massive walls are pierced by an enormous doorway below its corresponding spire. Four lofty prayer halls are surrounded by 370 pillars, each the size of the deodar tree. The sunlit central courtyard with its pool of water contrasts masterfully with the somber serenity of the four pillared prayer halls.

 

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