Srinagar is a city in Jammu and Kashmir and the summer capital of the State. This beautiful pristine city is spread across the river Jhelum. Srinagar is a paradise for travel enthusiasts and poplar among the newlywed couples looking for some quality time to spend. Fondly known as Venice of the East, Srinagar has been an alluring tourist for centuries with its mesmerizing beauty. The snowcapped mountains surrounded by chinar trees give you an unflinching nostalgic mood right from a fairy tale. Tourist travels again and again to this beautiful city in seek of solitude and serenity.
Let’s get to know more about the city, its beauty, outdoor activities and historical avenues that the place has to offer-
Best of Places in Srinagar that will lure your heart!
Srinagar is a place where a traveler is a tourist who will never return disappointed. Right from amazing nature to architectural epitomes, gardens to lakes, everything has beauty redefined. However, we are listing out some best of places to visit in Srinagar for those who are visiting the place for the first.
- Dal Lake – The most visited place in Srinagar
- Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden
- Nigeen Lake
- Dachigam National Park
- Shah Kashmir Arts Emporium
- Hari Parbat
- Zabarwan Hills
- The floating vegetable market
- Badamwari Park
1. Dal Lake – The most visited place in Srinagar
The famous Dal Lake needs no introduction. It is the most beautiful lake in Srinagar and the second largest in the entire state. The beauty of this lake changes all four seasons and it is nothing like you have seen before. Dal Lake is also known as the Lake of flowers for its extraordinary seasonal beauty. It is the most visited Urban Lake in the entire country. Also, it is one of the most visited lakes by the tourist as well as the locals residing there.
Apart from tourism, this lake is also of great economic significance.
Fishing and harvesting water are some of the commercial factors that Dal Lake is responsible for. Hence visiting Dal Lake is a must for those who are visiting Srinagar for the first time. And for tourists who are revisiting I know I don’t have to stress!
2. Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden
It is an extraordinary affair to explore the beautiful Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden. This garden is also one of the largest Tulip gardens in Asia. It is spread across 30 acres of land with extraordinary 65 varieties of tulips. Indira Gandhi Tulip Garden was first opened for visitors in 2007 and is completely under the care of the Jammu and Kashmir governments. Tulip garden is located almost 18 kilometers from the Srinagar Airport which makes it the easiest place to reach. Also, it is comparatively near to the Railway station as well as buses.
Even though the garden was built in the 16th century by the Mughals, however, this amazingly beautiful garden was opened for tourism only in recent years. In order to protect the garden this step was taken.
3. Nigeen Lake
One of the most beautiful yet eutrophic lakes is the Nigeen Lake located in Srinagar. Nigeen Lake is sometimes considered a part of Dal Lake. Even though Nigeen Lake is full of a surprise it is comparatively low than that of Dal Lake. So frankly speaking, Nigeen Lake is the second most popular lake in Srinagar.
Tourists love houseboat rides in Nigeen Lake and hence it makes one of the main outdoor activities in Srinagar. During summers as well as winters the lake looks absolutely stunning. Tourists never miss an opportunity to click beautiful pictures of the lakes and the surrounding that go quite well with them.
4. Dachigam National Park
Dachigam National Park is not just a national park but a significant landmark that serves the city. It was first built to ensure a clean and healthy water supply for the city and its people. Then later in 1910, the entire park was declared a protected area as well as National Park. Now the park is home to some exotic animals and birds such as Hangul and Kashmir Stag. For tourists, special permission is mandatory for exploring the park.
The name Dachigam means ten villages. It is said that almost ten villages had to relocate to construct a national park. And hence the name seems to be appropriate.
5. Shah Kashmir Arts Emporium
Shopping is the main itinerary after sightseeing when you are in Jammu and Kashmir. And Srinagar has some wonderful shopping spots to its credit. Shah Kashmir Arts Emporium is one such place that is a must-visit for shopaholics. Kashmir is a hub for handmade carpets and handloom clothes. And if you are looking for high-quality Kashmir carpets you need to visit this place for sure. Shah Kashmir Arts Emporium was started in 1987 and exports fine carpets to all over the world.
Hence don’t forget to pick your favorite carpet from this wonderful emporium.
Also Read: Pahalgam-Hill Station Of Jammu And Kashmir
6. Hari Parbat
In the heart of Srinagar stands Hari Parbat overlooking the city and alluring tourists. It is also known as Kooh-e-Maran. There is a fort on the top of the hill which is named Hari Parbat Fort. It was built by the Mughal during the reign of Atta Mohammed Khan, Afghan Governor during the 18th century. The fort was planned as a fortification wall for the city capital of Kashmir during the 18th century.
Now the place is one of the most visited places in Srinagar. People trek to the hill and reach the fort where they halt a bit to rest before trekking back to the city. Don’t miss this beautiful place when you are exploring Srinagar.
7. Zabarwan Hills
With a misty mountain range and lake that touches the base, Zabarwan hills are all about beauty! It is too hard to elaborate on how a tourist feels while exploring these mystic hills in the Kashmir valley. Zabarwan is situated between the Pir Panjal and the majestic Himalayan Range. It is said that the mountain houses make the place very popular among young trekkers and explorers alike. They juggle through the hills and ranges in the daytime and come back to the comforts of tiny houses in the mountains. It is hence a must-visit place for every tourist.
8. The Floating vegetable market
If you are in Srinagar the floating vegetable market in Dal Lake is a must-visit. Not just because of the undisputable beauty, it possesses but for the hard work that the place nurtures. Sometimes during the winter when the Dal Lake is almost frozen, the floating market still functions in full swing. All thanks to the Kashmiri woman who works in the market all day!
The floating market is also one of the main attractions of Srinagar. Tourists love to come to visit this extraordinary market and buy some refreshing fruits and flowers.
9. Badamwari Park
The name literally means Flower blooms on badam or almond tree. The view of trees covered with reddish blooms is an attraction worth experiencing. There are more than 300 kanals across the garden which makes it a tourist attraction. Badamwari Park is situated in the Foothills of the very major attraction Hari Parbat.
It is however not very clear how and when the garden was constructed. A slight chance that the garden would have been here being from the 14th century. The architecture and the dome structure allow us to get that impression. The garden was fully opened to the public and tourists in 2008.
Outdoor activities in Srinagar
Kashmir is a place with unlimited outdoor activities. And when it comes to Srinagar there are quite a few interesting outdoor things that lure tourists. We will be looking at some adventurous outdoor activities in Srinagar that will give you the adrenaline rush.
- Rafting at Sonmarg
- Local cuisines
- Bird watching at Manasbal Lake
Also Read: Top 5 Places To Visit In Jammu – Kashmir
Srinagar is a place with several mountains and ranges. That makes the place best for certain activities and adventurous trips. Trekking is one such activity that people love to the core. Professional guides and centers are available for the first-timers to guide throughout the trek. Also, it is recommended to choose the trekking trip in groups. You will definitely come across some groups in Srinagar every time looking to go for a trekking spree.
Places like Sonmarg and Nichnai are considered the best for trekking activities. Also, Srinagar is a perfect winter spot for trekking. When the hills and lakes are frozen people find it more interesting.
Srinagar is the best spot for activities like skiing and snowboarding. The Gulmarg Skiing is famous among professional riders. It will be a bit difficult for the first-timers to cope with the advanced skiing in Gulmarg. However, there are several small and simple skiing is near it, particularly for the new bees and young people. The intermediate terrain is best for Indian tourists to enjoy the best.
The cost of the skiing sport varies from place to advanced level. It is said that for an amateur ski rider it may cost up to 7000 Rupees. So, pick your perfect spot that compliments your budget while choosing for Ski.
In a place with beautiful lakes and water bodies, spending a day in a houseboat is a must to do an activity. People love to experience the exclusive houseboat ride and stay. Without any doubt, Dal Lake is the best with several houseboats for travelers to choose from. Apart from a fun ride, a complete day tour with full fledges tasty food is also available in most of the houseboats.
For travelers’ delight, there are houseboats of different ranges, starting from Deluxe to A grade. A full fledge honeymoon service is arranged on special request.
4. Rafting at Sonmarg
River rafting is exclusively looked after by the government due to some climate and geopolitical issues. Making the service suitable only at selective places. However, Srinagar also ensures the best rafting experience for the tourist exploring here. However, unlike trekking and skiing, enjoying rafting completely depends on the climate and the place you are in Srinagar.
The river of Jhelum during summer can be a good source for water sports like rafting. Tourists love the sport yet find it quite a bit difficult in this part of the city.
With hills and ranges, paragliding is a beautiful sight in Srinagar. The best paragliding point in Srinagar is Aru village which is situated in Pahalgam. Paragliding allows travelers to enjoy the panoramic view of the entire valley from the top. Also, one could enjoy exploring the valley every nook and corner of it. Between the month of May and June and also when the climate is surreal during the September and October month.
Tourists considered this as the best aero sport in Srinagar. And paragliding through the hills of Gulmarg gives the tourist ample satisfaction.
6. Local cuisines
Kashmir cuisine is tasty, busted with flavors and aroma. Be it meat or vegetable, each and every dish made here in the mountain valleys have a unique taste. Kashmir Wazwan mainly consists of non-veg, particularly mutton. With dishes like Rogan Josh, how could tourists resist the taste of Kashmiri Wazwan?
The saffron rice is the best combo with any spicy curry made in the valleys of Srinagar. Kashmiri cuisine has a very good reputation in the culinary world making it one of the most sought around the country. Hence when you are in Srinagar don’t miss to relish the mouthwatering taste of Kashmir.
7. Bird watching at Manasbal Lake
If you are looking for a bird paradise then probably you are at the right place. Manasabal is home to many Himalayan birds. Merely watching them and clicking some beautiful pictures will make your trip worth it for a lifetime. The Manasbal Lake is considered the deepest lake in Asia. Apart from bird watching people love boat riding and other activities. Among them, the most loved is the Shikara ride.
Do not forget to take your best camera to lick some wonderful pictures of the place.
Historical places in Srinagar
Each and every place in India has some or other historical significance. And a place like Srinagar is bound to have some beautiful place strongly influencing the past. Srinagar was the favorite place for the Mughals to reside or make it a place solely for vacation. And hence lots of Masjids and palaces refer to those pages of history. Also, there are quite an interesting number of Temples and Gurudwara that can be seen standing proudly in the heart of the city.
- Jama Masjid Mosque
- Pari Mahal
- Khir Bawani Temple
- Shah e Hamdan
- Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara
1. Jama Masjid Mosque
While talking about the historical places in Srinagar, Jama Masjid Mosque has a unique place. It was built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan during his reign. As per the records, Shah Jahan himself recited the Friday noon prayer at this Masjid. This Mosque is not only of historical importance but also of great political significance. As per tourism, people love to visit this place for its amicable Mughal architecture. Tourists are allowed to get entry to the mosque just like any other travel place in Srinagar.
There are multiple entries to the mosque such as Gate 2 and Gate 3 apart from the main entrance. An entry fee is maintained and apart from that, a sum of 300 rupees has to be paid for the camera. Also, an additional amount has to be paid if you are looking forward to exploring the minarets and climbing them.
2. Pari Mahal
Pari Mahal literally means Palaces of Fairies. This palace was built for Prince Dara Shikoh. The palace got its name from the Prince’s wife Pari Begum. It is believed that Prince Dara was an avid reader and owned a huge library inside the Pari Mahal. In a long run, the place is also looked upon as a secret meeting place for top governors and bureaucrats. The architecture of the palace reflects the Mughal rule. Making the place one of the best places in Srinagar with historical significance.
Now the place is converted into an observatory where the majority of astrological and astronomy teachings are conducted.
The beautiful Hazratbal is a holy place as well as a historical place in Srinagar. It is basically a shrine, also called the Dargah Sharif. The Hazratbal Masjid is located in the heart of Hazratbal in Srinagar. With Islamic architecture and ambiance, tourists find it a place with great serenity. While for the Muslims this Masjid is of great importance in terms of religion.
It is said that the Masjid was built in 17h century by the then emperor Shah Jahan. And mainly it was built to conduct prayers. However, this beautiful Masjid near the famous Dal Lake attracted people from different diversities and places. Do you know Hazratbal is the only domed mosque in the entire Srinagar?
4. Kheer Bawani Temple
Historical places in Srinagar are directly or indirectly connected to religious aspects. And without any doubt, Kheer Bawani Temple is definitely standing that part. It was built in 1912 by the very famous King Maharaja Pratap Singh.
This temple is a hit on spot among the travelers. And also one of the most respected places by the Kashmiri Pandits residing in the Srinagar Valley. The wonderful architecture of the place also makes the place worth a visit.
5. Shah e Hamdan
Yet another historical place in Srinagar that allures travelers are the famous Shah e Hamdan. The shrine was built in the 13th-century making it historically significant. The mosque is situated in the heart of the river Jhelum. It is also one of the oldest and most religious places in Srinagar. The Shah e Hamdam mosque is also a heritage place that allows people to explore cultural and traditional diversity.
The death anniversary of the great Mir Syed Ali Hamdani attracts most devotees as well as travelers across the country annually. The interior of the mosque is an alarmingly mesmerizing exhibition of wooden craftsmanship.
6. Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara
We have come across great mosques and beautiful temples. Srinagar has an explicit range of architectural epitomes that goes in the names of temples and Masjids. Now we have one of the cleanest and best historical places in Srinagar. Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara is all about the pure and reflective part of devotion. Sikh people considered this place of utmost devotional and sacred.
The Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara is a must-visit while you are touring Srinagar. There is no timing to visit and seek blessings from this place. Gurudwara is open to travelers and devotees from morning till evening.
Also Read: Top 10 Camping Spots Across India
Srinagar is an amalgamation of beautiful architecture, extraordinary nature and mouthwatering food. All you have to walk through the valley and explore the nook and corner of this unparalleled beauty of the place. Boating in the famous Dal Lake, trekking and paragliding are some of the outdoor activity in Srinagar that pulls the young generation. For those who love to explore the architectural part, Pari Mahal and several religious structures ensure you that. The taste of the mountain food will be hard to erase from your taste buds any soon.
So, let your next vacation be towards the beautiful Himalayan city in Jammu and Kashmir. Visit Srinagar!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Srinagar a good tourist destination?
Yes Indeed! Srinagar is a perfect tourist destination. The lakes, snowcapped mountains architecture and historical background make it the most alluring place of all time.
What is the Area Geography of Srinagar?
The area of Srinagar is 1979 square km with Downtown covering most of the part.
Why is Srinagar so famous?
Srinagar is famous among solo travelers who are looking for adventure and thrill and also among the honeymooners looking for heavenly surroundings. The Himalayan ranges and snow valleys make the place the best summer place also a heavenly winter place as well.
What is the Best Time to visit Srinagar?
The best time to visit is all around the year. People love to visit the place during the summer vacation for adventure and fun like trekking and paragliding. And of course to explore the beautiful nature. However, if you are looking for snowfall and a chilly winter vacation then visit Srinagar during the start of the winters.
How to reach Srinagar?
Srinagar is mostly connected through air and road routes for tourists from other states of the country. Srinagar has the main international airport that connects the place with the rest of the countries.
Is Srinagar best for outdoor activities?
Yes, Srinagar has the best outdoor activities with Paragliding, Parachute flying, trekking, skiing and boat riding.
Things to keep in mind while visiting Srinagar.
Plan the budget prior to your visit for a hustle-free trip. Also, book the hotels and activities too in prior. Take proper clothing according to the weather. Apart from that, there is not much planning needed.
What languages are spoken in Srinagar?
Urdu and Hindi official languages of Srinagar. Dogri is also spoken by the majority.
How safe to visit Srinagar
Srinagar is the safest place to visit as per tourism.
Are there any historical places in Srinagar?
Yes, there are many historically significant places in Srinagar that have influence. The Basilica of Bom Jesus is one of the places that have religious and historical value.
What is the authentic food of Srinagar?
Srinagar is heaven for food lovers. The authentic mountain taste particularly the mutton curry will leave your taste buds tingle.
Can I get cheaper accommodation in Srinagar?
Accommodations are not that cheaper in Srinagar, particularly in the peak tourism times.
Is Srinagar a good honeymoon destination?
Yes! Srinagar is without any doubt popular among honeymooners and couples. The snowcapped mountains, ambiance, surroundings, nature and luxurious stay pave the way to it.
Important Phone Numbers to have while visiting Srinagar.
- Police HQ– 9596770502
- Ambulance – 102
- Srinagar hospital – 91-194-2452013
- Fire – 132