Saturday, 9 April 2016

Heaven On Earth - Kashmir

They say if there is heaven, then it’s here, in kashmir! And you start realizing this once your flight hovers over the stunning snow-clad Himlayan peaks, it almost seems surreal. Written and spoken about umpteen times, Pahalgam’s beauty has maintained its demeanor even after years of political volatility. But as you enter Srinagar, the capital of Jammu and Srinagar, you are convinced that security is the last thing you need to worry about here.

Jammu and Kashmir, India’s one of the most picturesque state lies on the peaks of Himalayan Ranges with varying topography and culture. Jammu was the stronghold of Hindu Dogra kings and abounds with popular temples and secluded forest retreats. Kashmir’s capital city, Srinagar offers delightful holidays on the lakes with their shikaras and houseboats.

Set like a jeweled crown on the map of India, Kashmir is a multi-faceted diamond, changing its hues with the seasons – always extravagantly beautiful. Two major Himalayan ranges, the Great Himalayan Range and the Pir Panjal, surround the landscape from the north and south respectively. They are the source of great rivers, which flow down into the valleys, forested with orchards and decorated by lily-laden lakes.

Kashmir is known as one the most beautiful places in India where time stands still.  Water, in all or any forms, is one of Kashmir's charms like rivers, lakes, springs, make music all over the valley. The alluring and majestic sweeps of forested mountains are tempered with miles of flowering meadows. It has many breathtaking and attracting places that is beyond imagination. In this beautiful land, fruits grow in abundance: apple, cherry, peach, pear, plum, loquat, almond, walnut and pine nut.

Laced with green hills and colourful flowers, Sonmarg puts up the first picture of Sonmarg as perfect. And the famous Dal Lake adds serenity to its ethereal beauty. Don’t miss a shikara ride on the Dal Lake even if you do not like to do touristy things or better still stay on a houseboat to get the real flavour of life in Kashmir.

Climb up a few hundred steps to witness the grand Shankaracharya Temple, built on a hilltop which offers a divine view. As you move around, you cannot miss the flowers smiling at you, which are found in abundance at the famous Mughal Gardens – Chashme Shahi, Nishat Bagh and Shalimar Bagh. Built by the Mughals as their summer retreat, these gardens have various fountains with Persian carvings, giving them a royal look. It’s hard to find so much grace and elegance at one place.

If you almost fell in love with holidays, then hold your heart for Pahalgam, also known as the ‘Village of Shepherds’.You'll find breathtaking views of snow-clad mountain peaks and gushing water streams. Soak in the beauty of this stunning hamlet by taking a stroll around or taking a pony ride; go for white water rafting or trekking or just camp at the lush green view points like Aru Valley and Betaab Valley.

To enjoy some more of these free things, you have to see Gulmarg, Also known as the ‘Meadow of Flowers’, here, lovely wild flowers decorate your ways as you move ahead to catch a Gondola to reach the Kongdoori Mountain peak. Once you reach the peak, you will know what it means to be on top of the world with only snow and sun around. It’s almost impossible to not think of giving skiing a try.  Move downhill to Tangmarg to catch some fresh air and fragrance of strawberries coming from the orchards. Don’t forget to buy a carton of these juicy delights.

Gulmarg will charm you with its out-of-the-world sights, Sonmarg, also known as 'Meadow of Gold', will startle you with sudden rains and sunshine. Just 3 hours away from Srinagar,

Sit down anywhere amidst lush greenery in holidays and soak in the blissful environs or just ride up till the foothill for some of the most heart-warming views. Serpentine roads and cherry-laden trees will follow you while you drive in and out of Weekend Getaway and do not miss the cheerful faces of Kashmiri people who innocently smile at you.

Watch in pics the beauty of Kashmir and understand why it's called heaven on earth:

Beautiful Mountains
Dal Lake
Kashmir Valley
Houseboat/Shikhara Named As Paristan
Floating fountains In Dal Lake
Sunset At Mughal Garden
Leh Ladakh
Road To Ladakh.
Nubra Valley
Come Visit Heaven On Earth, Beautiful Kashmir In My Beautiful India

To know more about my India. Keep checking My #AtoZChallenge Posts.

Blogging For A To Z Challenge