Srinagar (سری نگر, شرینگر), Jammu & Kashmir, India

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Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir (13 November 2004)

Srinagar (Kashmiri: سری نگر, Urdu: شرینگر) is the capital of the state of Jammu & Kashmir in northern India. This is one of the more out-of-the-beaten-path destinations that we are describing in AsiaExplorers. It's hard to describe Srinagar though. To me, it is like a mediaval city that dropped out of a storybook. A place that has been left behind by time. Srinagar is located in the heart of the Kashmir valley at an altitude of 1,730 m above sea level, spread on both sides of the river Jhelum. The Dal and Nagin lakes enhance its picturesque setting, while the changing play of the seasons and the salubrious climate ensures that the city is equally attractive to visitors around the year.

Street scene in Srinagar
Street scene in Srinagar (12 November 2004)

Guide to Srinagar Hotels

It's never easy finding the hotel that's just right for your stay. Still, by taking a little time to do your research, you increase your chance of getting a good hotel at the best price. Go through the list of hotels in Srinagar which we've put together, with full description, star rating, address, location map and evaluation. Pick the hotel of your choice and view the rates offered by different booking sites. Yes, we show you prices from different websites, so you don't have to visit them one by one.

Two boys crossing Dal Lake (12 November 2004)

Kashmir has a turbulent history, with Srinagar in the midst of it all. Everywhere we went, we saw soldiers with machine guns. Coming in from the airport, we passed through several checkpoints, and even before we could board the plane, our luggage underwent several checks.

The city was founded by Pravarasena-II, and Hiuen Tsang, who visited Kashmir in 631 AD, found it at the same site as it is today. The most famous ruler of Kashmir was Laltaditya Muktapida during the Hindu period, which ended in 1339 AD. King Zain-ul-Abidin (1420-70 AD), popularly known as "Budshah", was a great patron of Sanskrit. Akbar captured Kashmir valley for the Mughals, who endowed Srinagar with beautiful mosques and gardens.

Srinagar's Floating Mini Market (7 November 2004)

The Sikhs overthrew the last Muslim ruler in the reign of Maharaja Ranjit Singh in 1819. In 1846 the Dogras secured the sovereignty of Kashmir from the British under the Treaty of Amritsar, and in 1947 the state of Jammu and Kashmir with Srinagar as its capital, became part of the Indian Union.

Kashmiri Papier Mache Boxes (7 November 2004)

Getting there

It is strongly encouraged that you use a travel agent to plan your visit to Srinagar. Srinagar is not yet fully open to free independent travellers. There are regular flights by Indian Airlines, Jet Airways, Air Deccan, SpiceJet, Kingfisher Airlines, Go Air and Jet Lite between Delhi and Srinagar. The fare is approximately Rs 2500 per way. Security is tight for all flights to and from Srinagar, with your luggage being check and re-checked - you may even be called to identify them on the tarmac. At the airport itself, if you travelling in a group, be sure to provide a list of participants along with their passport numbers and expiry dates. On returning to the airport, you may not be allow to the terminal building without a ready ticket in hand.

Life on Dal Lake (7 November 2004)

Getting Around

Srinagar is served by a battalion of auto-rickshaws that can take you around easily. Always negotiate the price before stepping on board, or else prevent that you know the way.

Getting Accommodation in Srinagar

If you're planning a trip to Srinagar, the Srinagar Budget Accommodation Guide provides a regularly updated list of budget accommodation in the city, showing you an estimated price for each place. If you prefer to say at a hotel, click to view list of Srinagar Hotels.

Srinagar street scene
Srinagar street scene (7 November 2004)

Shopping, Srinagar style
Shopping, Srinagar style (7 November 2004)

Srinagar Spice Market
Srinagar Spice Market (7 November 2004)

A Street in Srinagar
A Street in Srinagar (7 November 2004)

Fruit and Vegetable Vendor in Srinagar
Fruit and Vegetable Vendor in Srinagar (7 November 2004)

Photo Albums of Srinagar

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