Someone once said that roads have answers to every question. So in search of those answers we starting our journey to next destination from our list.
After wonderful and thrilling experience of Gondola ride in Gulmarg, we headed towards next place in our list i.e Srinagar. Gulmarg to Srinagar is about 50km and it took us around 2 hours as traffic on the route was heavy. We reached Srinagar at around 9am as we left early from Gulmarg. But trust me no one wants to come back from Gulmarg, that place is really beautiful.
Srinagar is also a beautiful place to roam around and visit famous places. After reaching Srinagar it was just like an another quite day with no stone pelting news in Srinagar, especially Lal Chowk. We reached Dal lake and stepped towards our first on water hotel i.e Houseboats. We have booked houseboat in advance as it costs us nearly same as Hotel but experience was amazing and memorable.
First you need to take Shikara(like small wooden boats) , it will take you to Houseboat. Houseboats as the name suggests is complete house with fully air conditioned room, kitchen , washrooms & terrace to get beautiful view of Dal Lake. Houseboats can be as large as having 3 bedrooms apart from dinning and living room.These are made of up wood and carved wood panelling.
After little refreshment, we headed towards Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden which is situated around 2km from Dal Lake. Tulip garden is famous for its variety of Tulip flowers. Apart from Tulip there are other varieties of flowers like daffodils & hyacinths. You can easily see same flower with different colors which is amazing.
There are lot of festivals organised by J&K government every months mostly in the blooming season of April.When I visited Tulip Garden there was Tulip festival going on. Tulip Garden not only shows variety of flowers but it also shows the beauty of Srinagar. View from Tulip towards Dal Lake is just breath taking.
After visiting Tulip garden we headed towards Shankaracharya Temple , This temple is situated near to Dal lake & on the top of Shankaracharya Hill. Temple is at the height of around 1000ft. Shankaracharya Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Camera and mobiles are not allowed inside temple premises so you have to leave them outside, its better to visit the temple early morning without taking any electronics gadgets. Shankaracharya Temple is heavily guarded by Indian Army. View of Srinagar & Dal Lake from top of the Shankaracharya Hill is just mind-blowing. One can easily see how big is Dal Lake from Top of the Hill and Srinagar topography. I was not able to capture any pic as mobiles and camera were not allowed inside temple but it was really wonderful experience.
In the evening we booked one Shikara for one full round of Dal Lake & trust me its worth every penny you spend. Shikara can accommodate 4-5 people at once.
This 2 hour long sightseeing of interior parts of calm and magnificent water of Dal lake is one of the best thing you can do in Srinagar. You can also visit Shalimar Garden ,Nagin Lake & Nishat garden using Shikara. Shikara will take you to near-by floating markets of Kashmir where you can enjoy shopping while riding in Shikara.
Dal Lake is a home to white Kingfishers which usually feeds on insects ,frogs and lizards in man-made islands.Beauty of the Dal Lake & feeling of joy is really unforgettable.
I can must say that during the 2 hour ride you will be surprise to see different scenes of Dal Lake during the sunset. View of sunset is also very amazing if you are riding Shikara during evening time.
Check out awesome pics of Srinagar from here.