Kashmir Heritage Tour

Kashmir was romantic, no doubt about it, fertile, with a river down the middle, encircled by mountains, a holy land with miraculous fountains At least, that's the way Rennell describes it. “And the landscape of the deep romantic Vale of Kashmir and the landscape of the valley of the upper Nile seem to have melted into one another in the dream, and the enchanted territory of the poem becomes "holy land."

Srinagar is the summer capital of the state of Jammu and Kashmir and is the ‘Jewel in the Crown’ of the beautiful valley of Kashmir. Bounded by dramatic mountains soaring majestically skyward, the valley is softened by the shimmering waters of the Dal and Nagin Lakes where generations have come to find peace and relax in the beauty of the surrounding countryside. Here you find the timeless gardens of the Mughal Emperors built for sheer beauty and love. The historic city boasts many ancient city centers, shrines and mosques. The most important being the Habba Kadal and Fateh Kadal. Shah-i-Hamdan, came from Persia in the 13th century, and spread the Word of Islam in Kashmir. The mosque of Khanqah-i-Mualla, built in his memory on the banks of the Jhelum, is a stunning example of wooden architecture. The mosque is ornately decorated with papier-mâché. The Shrine of Makhdoom Sahib, Patthar Masjid, Jama Masjid and Pir Dastagir are other significant mosques and shrines in the old city. There are few excellent temple sites along the banks of river Jhelum in the city of Srinagar. The view from any of the old city's bridges is wholly and unmistakably Kashmiri. Kashmiri colours are subtle, almost earthy and reflecting the mellow brickwork and the magnificent colours of the valley in autumn when leaves turn to reds, gold and oranges in a blaze of natures glory. Old brick buildings line the banks and in the muddy water of the River Jhelum ancient doongas are moored along its banks. These boats, with their shingled roofs, are the prototype of Srinagar’s houseboat. These were, at time, the only means of transport in the valley of Kashmir. They are the prototype of the houseboats on River Jhelum, Dal and Nagin Lakes. The essence of Old Srinagar lies in its Medieval heritage – a timeless scene still lingers – the city is dissected by a labyrinth of roads lined with burnt brick coloured buildings - their russet hues mellow in the evening light. Bustling bazaars line the little streets – many dedicated to traditional arts and crafts. Local people, dressed in their traditional garb scurry about their daily life – perhaps lingering to talk to a friend, shop or go to the Mosque for prayer. The old city has many moods – and all are a photographer’s delight! The River Jhelum is spanned by nine bridges and was the catalyst that brought the city to greatness. It was the thoroughfare for commerce and linked the myriad of waterways that brought the lifeblood of trade to all. Walking through the streets of Nowhatta Chowk and Zainakdal will bring to close to a constant chatter of beating copper. Copperware is a necessity for every Kashmiri household. Some pieces are simple and plain whilst others are quite exotic with intricate bas-relief with engraving on them. Well appointed shops sell the famous tapestries, shawls and rugs that are famous throughout the world. At the same time you can buy cocks comb – a natural colourant from the market for your cuisine in addition to Saffron and Kahwa Tea of Kashmir.

Fruits spills out of brimming baskets; strawberries and cherries, peaches and apricots; all the bounty of a fertile land. Pale green paddy fields rise in tiered steps upon the hills. In the high meadows, trout are jumping in rushing, snow-fed streams. The encircling snow-capped mountains provide a perfect setting for a valley that's vibrantly alive.

Heritage Walks Within Srinagar City

Pather Masjid to Jamia Masjid

Pather Masjid– Zaina Kadal - Khanqah Shah-i-Hamdan - Gad Kucha - Vakil Kucha - Mazar Salateen - Saraf Sheikh Mohalla - Saraf Kadal - Qutubuddin Pora - Jamia Masjid

Khanqah Shah-i-Hamdan to Nawa Kadal

Khanqah Shah-i-Hamdan - Zaina Kadal - Mazar Salateen - S.R.Gunj - Kani Masjid - Sheikh Mohalla - Ganiat Menz - Ali Kadal Chowk - Owassi Saheb - Bulbul Lanker - Batyar - Nawa Kadal

Safa Kadal to Malik Saheb

Safa Kadal - Shah Kadal - Nawa Kadal - Khanqah-i-Sokhta - Kanth Paristhan - Haft Yarbal - Malik Saheb

Tankipora to Ali Kadal Chowk

Tankipora - Haba Kadal - Dal Hassan Yar - Malikyar - Kachgar pora - Islam Yarbal - Aeshan Saheb - Gurgari Mohalla - Ali Kadal Chowk

Dasthgeer Saheb to Malkha

Dasthgeer Saheb - Roza Bal - Ranger Mohalla - Naqshbandh Saheb-Bahauddin Saheb - Syedpora Bacchi Darwaza - Makhdoom Saheb - Akhoon Mulla Mosque - KathiDarwaza - Malkah

Sangeen Darwaza to Kathi Darwaza

Sangeen Darwaza - Kalai - Hari Parbat Qilla - Badamwari Pokhribal - Mulla Akhoon Masjid - Makhdoom Saheb - Kathi Darwaza

Madin Saheb to Kamil Saheb

Madin Saheb - Shree Bhat - Gazidhoor - Khushal Sar - Kathmaidan - Zadibal - Mirza Kamil Saheb

UN Office to Amira Kadal

U.N Office - Mazar Shura - Kashmir Golf Course - T.R.C - Emporium - Bundh - Loyd's Bank - Biscoe - Sheikh Bagh - Lal Chowk - Amira Kadal

Amira Kadal to Div Commissioner Office

Amira Kadal - H.S.H Street - Maharaji Bazaar - H.S.H Street - Sherghari - Old Secretariat - Shaheed Gunj - Divisional Commissioner Office.

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