The land of poets
“One could not count the moons that shimmers on her roofs,
Or the thousand splendid suns that hide behind her walls.”
Tabrizi wrote these lines in glory of the city of Kabul, and that makes me wonder what he would have said about Kashmir. Perhaps, something more beautiful. Jammu & Kashmir stay in the news for reasons that are better left unwritten, for this story is all about Kashmir’s golden sunsets, its warm people and its landscape that I am in eternal love with. If you have not been to Jammu & Kashmir yet, these photos from Kashmir will leave you with travel goals and some serious longing.
If you are not an atheist and believe that gods wanted a place to be their home, this might be it. Hazratbal Shrine in Srinagar looks more of a painting than a reality. This place is much more than a religious attraction, for it has a history that goes back to as far as 17th century. Needless to mention, this place has stood witness of the forever changing times of Kashmir.
Seven Lakes of Kashmir
If you love this photograph, know that this is just one of the seven lakes that await you on the Seven Lakes Trek in Kashmir. An essential for those into trekking, and are waiting to have a lifetime’s experience, this is a place of surreal beauty. Accessible only to the trekkers and the shepherds, these lakes are a far cry from the more touristy lakes in the country. A close call with the wild is assured.
The wonder of Aru Valley
At some 12 km from Pahalgam, this valley is where you once you have said goodbyes to most of the crowd. It is where the base camp for Kolhoi Glacier is set; visit Aru Valley to see all your dreams of Kashmir’s famous meadows come true. I believe that it will make you forget all reasons to visit Switzerland.
Of snow and more
There is something so joyous when you see Kashmir in snowfall that it cannot be put into words. While it makes life slightly tough if you are into sightseeing or a local, there is no denying the fact that a cup of kahwa feels way warmer when you have snow all around. The place turns into a fairy land, going under a light slumber, that you would not want to wake it up from.
Postcards from Kashmir
Far from the madding crowd
Forget taking a package tour when you plan your trip to Jammu & Kashmir; this trip is best left to whims and fancies. Here, you can choose to stay in a luxurious, world-class resort, or a cabin hut that is left unlocked by the shepherds. You choose; we assure that you’ll be far away from the madding crowd.
Pangong Tso, ever so dreamy
If I had to pick the most picturesque lake in India, it would be Pangong Tso. Imagine what awaits you here when pitted against some real stunners, including Chandratal, Gurudongmar, Tso Moriri, Wular, Vembanad and so many more. Its stark blue waters look too dreamy to be true; but then, this is Ladakh and you cannot take dreamy out of it.
Turtuk, paradise regained
Deep in the Ladakh Himalayas, there is a village that very well fits the definition of a paradise. A paradise regained, for the village was a territory of Pakistan till 1971, after which India claimed its control on it. Open to travellers now, Turtuk is where you can get close to all your Enid Blyton dreams, for it is as quaint as it can get in the Himalayas.
Colours of Zanskar
When in Jammu & Kashmir, you cannot skip Ladakh; when in Ladakh, you cannot skip Zanskar. One of the lesser-explored regions of an increasingly touristy Ladakh, this valley is where you can have a date with the Milky Way. A very surreal terrain also makes it one of the best road trip experiences in India.