Srinagar, the city of lakes, lies in the heart of Kashmir Valley. The incomparable beauty of this valley draws in a huge number of sightseers from everywhere in the world. There are India’s most beautiful and most scenic places to visit in Srinagar. Its erratic waterways, unique houseboats, blooming gardens, water-sport activities, and beautiful resorts will fascinate you, to be a part of Kashmir forever.
The Himalayan backdrop and shimmering lakes of Srinagar attracted the Chinese, the Mughals, and then the British. The Shikaras and the grandiose Mughal architecture of the monuments and temples will hook you to this paradise forever.
About J & K’s Srinagar
Srinagar is the largest city and the summer capital of the pleasing Indian Union territory; Jammu and Kashmir. The city lies on both sides of the Jhelum River, which is named Vyath in Kashmir. The river passes and meanders through the valley, and eventually, deepens the Wular Lake.
The word “Srinagar” consists of two Sanskrit words, “Sri” means abundance and wealth, and “Nagar” means a city. Thus, the word Srinagar signifies an area of wealth and abundance. Sri is also the name of the goddess Lakshmi of Hindus. Sri is additionally used for, sun, hence the word could mean, city of the sun.
Jammu and Kashmir’s Srinagar is popular for its nine old bridges. These bridges connect the two parts of Srinagar city. And is doubtlessly famous for its lakes and the unique rows of houseboats floating on them. In addition, Srinagar is famous for traditional Kashmiri handicrafts, exquisite handmade embroidery, and dry fruits.
In fact, the Mughal emperor Jahangir was enthralled by this valley. And he exclaimed in Persian, If there’s a heaven on earth, it’s here, it’s here, and it’s here.
How To Reach Srinagar?
By Air: Srinagar is well connected by air with Delhi and other major Indian cities. There are regular flights to Delhi via Jammu city.
By Rail: Srinagar does not have its own railway station. The nearest railway station is Jammu Tawi. And is 305 km from Srinagar.
By Road: The city connects well to important places like Chandigarh (630 km), Delhi (876 km), Jammu (298 km), etc by road. The main bus station is at Lal Chowk (the city center).
Best Time To Visit Srinagar
Summer (March-June): As the city is the summer capital of Jammu Kashmir, this is the best time to visit Srinagar. The place being at a high altitude will be cool and inviting. You may witness snow and on the other hand, may also explore the greenery of the city at the same time.
NOTE: Expect a crowd and high fares for tickets and hotels during the peak season; summer.
Monsoon (July-September): The city doesn’t experience rain as much. In fact, Srinagar gets orangish during monsoon/autumn. And it is also the best time to visit Srinagar.
NOTE: Monsoon is the picture-perfect season and is also the best time to visit Srinagar. But you will not find snow at this time, so if you want to witness snow too then choose summers 😉
Winter (October-February): The place becomes a beautiful snow land and gets icy cool. The temperature goes in minus due to heavy snowfall. One should avoid traveling to Srinagar during winter especially if you want to explore the city.
NOTE: Unexpected and heavy rainfall may cause roadblocks. Prepare before you leave during the winters. Travel during winter only if you want to experience icy weather and Srinagar snow land.
Top 12 places to visit in Srinagar
The most famous and best places to visit in Srinagar mentioned in this travellingortraveling blog are, the lakes, Mughal gardens, Historical Palaces, Mosques, and temples.
Namely, Dal Lake and Wular Lake, Mughal gardens; Shalimar Bagh, Cheshmashahi Garden and Nishat Bagh, Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden, Harwan, Hari Parbat Fort, Pari Mahal, Hazratbal Shrine, Jamia Masjid, Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara, Shankaracharya Temple, and Kheer Bhawani Temple.
#1 Dal Lake
One of the most famous and best tourist places to visit in Srinagar. In fact, it is a main tourist attraction of the city. Srinagar’s Dal Lake comprises a series of lakes, including Nigeen/Nagin Lake. One can enjoy the breathtaking view of the mountains surrounding Srinagar from this lake through shikaras.
In addition, you can also stay in Srinagar houseboats. And the most amazing feature of staying in a houseboat is that you can shop while staying in the boat from tiny wooded shikaras shops.
#2 Jhelum Lake/Wular Lake
Wular Lake or Wullar is the second-largest freshwater lake in Asia. It is called Jhelum Lake because its inflow source and outflow location is the Jhelum river. The site also offers water activities like boating, water skiing, and other water sports that are provided by the Government of India Tourism in collaboration with Kerala Tourism and J&K Tourism.
#3 Mughal Gardens
The other major attractions of Srinagar city are the perfectly built Mughal gardens. The Shalimar Bagh, Cheshmashahi Garden, and the Nishat Bagh are beautiful gardens in Srinagar. One can take a breath of air amongst these green and gorgeous gardens and enjoy the waterworks within them.
#4 Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden
The largest tulip garden in Asia. It lies within the foothills of Zabarwan Range with the sight of Dal Lake. Tulips are showcased during Tulip Festival. The Festival takes place during the onset of the spring season in the Kashmir valley. It was a step forward for Jammu and Kashmir tourism to attract tourists and is a must-see location.
Harwan Village is 19 km from Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir. There are many places to visit in Harwan namely, Harwan garden, one of the top tourist places to visit in Srinagar, Harwan Buddhist Ruins, which offers a beautiful panorama of the city, Sarband Lake or Harwan lake; a clean and fresh water lake, and a beautiful and serene Chandpora Harwan river.
#6 Hari Parbat Fort
Hari Parbat/Koh-i-Maran is a hill overlooking Jammu and Kashmir’s largest city; Srinagar. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) maintains the fort. Hari Parbat Fort stands impressive with ancient apartments and long pillars.
#7 Pari Mahal
Pari Mahal or the palace of fairy is 12 km from the main city. The word “Pari” means fairy and “Mahal” means palace. That’s why it is called the palace of fairy. There are seven-terrace gardens and is at the highest of the Zabarwan range. It offers the whole view of the city and dal lake.
#8 Hazratbal Shrine
It is a Muslim shrine in Srinagar’s Hazratbal. And is considered Kashmir’s holiest Muslim shrine. It contains a relic that is believed to be the hair of Muhammad (the main Islamic prophet).
#9 Jamia Masjid
Jamia Masjid is the most famous and important mosque in the city. And is among the best places to visit in Srinagar. It lies in the heart of the old city in Nowhatta, Srinagar, Jammu, and Kashmir. Additionally, The architectural style of the mosque is Indo-Saracenic.
#10 Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara
A religious center for Sikhs in Srinagar’s Rainwari. It lies on the southern side of Hari Parbat fort. Visitors can opt to stay here as the shrine’s administering community provides appropriate accommodations. Every day, langar (free and shared kitchen) is organized in the gurudwara, and that everyone can attend it.
#11 Shankaracharya Temple
The temple of Shankaracharya or Jyeshteshwara Temple is an additional important place. Temple worships Lord Shiva. Jaluka, the son of emperor Ashoka, built it in the third century B.C.
#12 Kheer Bhawani Temple
A Hindu temple devotes to Kheer Bhavani. Lies in Tulmulla over a sacred spring and is 22 km from Srinagar. The word “kheer” means sweet rice pudding. There’s a belief, the goddess will fulfill your wish if you offer kheer to her. Therefore, people offer kheer in the spring to please the Goddess.
I think if you came to Jammu and Kashmir and haven’t yet been to Srinagar you are missing something very charming. Give yourself some time and explore the top places to visit in Srinagar. Wishing you a safe and beautiful trip 😉
Are you traveling to Jammu and Kashmir? Check the Best Places In Jammu And Kashmir
Is it safe to travel in Srinagar?
Though there has been a regular terror in Srinagar, the city is very safe, especially for tourists. People are friendly and I would suggest, avoid political talks with locals.
Keep your eyes on the news and check everything before going there. Nowadays, the situation is far better from a tourist point of view.
Which is the best time to visit Srinagar?
The best time to visit Srinagar is during summer (March-June) and monsoon/autumn (July-September). The only difference is you may witness some snow during summers but not during the autumn.
Srinagar will be whitish-green during summer and the city doesn't experience much rainfall and is picture-perfect in monsoon.
You can also visit during the winter (October-February), in fact, the city becomes a beautiful snow land. But if you want to explore the city and not a fan of snow then you must look forward to the summers 😉
What is famous in Srinagar?
Srinagar is famous for its Lakes, Mughal gardens, Historical Palaces, Mosques, and temples. In addition, the city is famous for traditional Kashmiri handicrafts, exquisite handmade embroidery, and dry fruits.
What are nearby getaways from Srinagar?
Getting away from Srinagar can lead you to some of the finest hill stations and religious places in India. You can make the best out of your vacations from the following places:
- Yushmarg (47 km)
- Gulmarg (56 km)
- Pahalgam (86 km)
- Sonamarg (87 km)
- Amarnath (143 km)
- Jammu Tawi (293 km)
- Katra (285-km )
- Kargil (202 km)
- Leh (434 km)