KASHMIR

Kashmir is the northernmost geographical region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term "Kashmir" denoted only the Kashmir Valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal Range. Today, it denotes a larger area that includes the Indian-administered territory of Jammu and Kashmir (which includes the divisions Jammu, Kashmir Valley, and Ladakh), the Pakistani-administered territories of Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan, and Chinese-administered territories of Aksai Chin and the Trans-Karakoram Tract.[1][2][3]
In the first half of the 1st millennium, the Kashmir region became an important centre of Hinduism and later of Buddhism; later still, in the ninth century, Kashmir Shaivism arose.[4] In 1339, Shah Mir became the first Muslim ruler of Kashmir, inaugurating the Salatin-i-Kashmir or Shah Mir dynasty.[5] Kashmir was part of the Mughal Empire from 1586 to 1751,[6] and thereafter, until 1820, of the Afghan Durrani Empire.[5]That year, the Sikhs, under Ranjit Singh, annexed Kashmir.[5] In 1846, after the Sikh defeat in the First Anglo-Sikh War, and upon the purchase of the region from the British under the Treaty of Amritsar, the Raja of Jammu, Gulab Singh, became the new ruler of Kashmir. The rule of his descendants, under the paramountcy (or tutelage) of the British Crown, lasted until the partition of India in 1947, when the former princely state of the British Raj was claimed by both Pakistan and India.
The Ancient Greeks called the region Kasperia which has been identified with Kaspapyros of Hecataeus of Miletus (apud Stephanus of Byzantium) and Kaspatyros of Herodotus (3.102, 4.44). Kashmir is also believed to be the country meant by Ptolemy's Kaspeiria.[13] The earliest text which directly mentions the name Kashmir is in Ashtadhyayi.

Kashmir is an year round tourist destination but if you are still looking for the best time, then the months of March till October are considered as great. During this period the weather conditions in Kashmir are just perfect. Blossomed gardens, chirping birds, alpine meadows and refreshing air is what would welcome you in this land.
This whole period covers three seasons in Kashmir i.e. spring (March-early May), summers (early May-late August) and autumn (September-November). Pahalgam is popular from April to November for activities like rafting and horse riding. From December to early March is the winter season for Kashmir, when the entire valley is covered with a white blanket of snow. Breeze is chilling and sunshine tender. But if you are a winter sport lover, travel to Gulmarg in these months for some of the best skiing and snowboarding. You would be awestuck by the views you would get by Gondola cable car rides at this period of year.

1. Srinagar

Srinagar is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful and famous places to visit in Kashmiras well as in India. From boating to trekking, bird watching to water skiing, Srinagar place has it all. Locally this place is known as the mirror to the mountains, Srinagar is a first stopover for every traveler and there are a long list of places to visit in Srinagar, Kashmir. The largest city of Kashmir, this place is enclosed by the green mountains and the main highlight being the Dal Lake which is the gem of the city. This place gives a close outlook to the Kashmiri cuisine and the state’s culture.
Best time to visit: June to October, and for snow December & January would be the best
Things to do: Stay in the boat house, Visit the Mughal gardens, Take the shikara ride

2. Gulmarg

Famously known as the ‘Meadow of Flowers’, Gulmarg is a treat to the eyes with its spread of vibrant flowers against snow capped mountains as backgrounds. This region of Kashmir is also known as the adventurer’s paradise because of its vast options of skiing in the snow while enjoying the views around.
Best time to visit: June to October, and for snow December & January would be the best
Things to do: Mountain Biking, trekking, Skiing if you visit in winters and Gondola rides for a panoramic view of the valley.

3. Sonamarg

Sonamarg, as the name suggests, is famous as the ‘Meadow of Gold’. An endless stream of stunning flowers and undulated trekking routes are its attractions. Sonamarg has to be in every visitors’ list of places to visit in Kashmir for its mesmerizing aura and breathtaking views.
Best time to visit: June through October, December & January for snow
Things to do: Trekking, Camping and nature walks

4. Pahalgam

Pahalgam is considered as an illustration of the heaven on earth which is situated at an altitude of 2740 m. Situated at distance of 95 Kms from Srinagar and surrounded by dense forests, beautiful lakes and meadows of flowers. Tranquility and serenity are the other names of Pahalgam! This tiny town is known to suck out all the stress of every visitor.
Best time to visit: June to October, December & January for snow
Things to do: Visit to Betab and Aru Valleys, Horseback riding, canoeing

1. Eid ul Azha and Eid ul Fitr

The two most important festivals of Muslims are celebrated in Kashmir in the full-fledged extravaganza. Kashmir being the Muslim majority region, Muslim festivities witness a huge participation. Although Eid is a festival celebrated throughout the world and in the rest of India too, with great buzz, but Kashmir's magic makes Eid here a delight to celebrate.

2. Hemis Festival

Hemis Gompa is the largest and richest monastery in Kashmir, located in Ladakh where Hemis is celebrated with full pomp and show. This day is declared as the state holiday. It is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of Padmasambhava who is known as the founder of Tibetan Buddhism. Celebrated for two days in the fifth month of the year, also called Tibetan lunar month, the festivities take place in a large courtyard of this monastery. Men get dressed up in traditional attires and women also wear heavy jewellery and headgears.

The Lamas perform 'Chaam' dance which is their traditional dance on the beats of drums and horns and cymbals. This performance is very traditional in its way and reflect the culture of Ladakh and is an important part of Tantric Buddhism. The story also speaks of a celebration of victory over evil to remind how Padmasambhava fought valiantly with evil demons and won. If you're ever in Kashmir during this time, the festivities will add extra stars to your trip.

3. Baisakhi

Baisakhi is celebrated throughout the country on the 13th of April and is a prominent festival of the Sikhs. The day is celebrated as the New Year by Sikhs in India. This date embarks the harvesting season in India. This festival witnesses humongous celebrations in the state of Kashmir, because of the population of Sikhs in the region. Especially the embarking of harvesting season in Northern India has huge cultural relevance to the Sikhs of Kashmir.

4. Tulip Festival

With hundreds of Tulip Gardens in all of Kashmir, the state flourishes with Tulips during the spring season. With the largest Tulip Garden in Asia in its bounty, Srinagar plays host to the great Tulip Festival every year. The festival boasts of the variety of Tulips garnered here. During the springs, the sight of the tulips in any of these gardens is a sight to behold, undoubtedly a mesmerizing and breathtaking sight, especially for a non-Kashmiri. Tulip Festival takes place at the Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden in Srinagar, Kashmir. The festival features a showcase of local handicrafts, luscious cuisine, cultural programs and of course, Tulips!

5. Shikara Festival

The lifeline and identity of the Dal Lake in Kashmir, Shikara needs to be celebrated once in a year. To promote tourism, Kashmir's government began this festival in 2016. During the festival, Shikaras are painted and dressed beautifully. Shikaras participate in Shikara Race, Dragon Boat Race and Canoe Polo Match. Other cultural programs are also organised which will give you a glimpse of the culture of Kashmir. It takes place in the months of July or August.

6. Lohri

Celebrated on 13 January every year, Lohri festival marks the end of peak winter celebrates the harvest of crops. It is a festival to celebrate the harvest of sugarcane crops in January. People light up a bonfire, sing songs, dance and eat winter delicacies made of corn, peanuts, sesame and jaggery. It is a popular festival in Punjab and Jammu.

7. Gurez Festival
Around 123 km from the capital of Kashmir, Gurez is the placid valley in the Himalayas at an elevated height of about 8,000 feet. The picturesque valley has a plethora of scenic views as it lies on the ancient Silk Route. Neelum River flows amidst the Gurez valley and is a perfect destination for river rafting activity. People of Gurez play host to the annual festival in which they showcase their handicrafts, cuisines, and culture.

Everyone assembles for the fest which also involves fun activities like river rafting, trekking, zorbing, cycling, etc. Many competitions such as painting and drawing also take place which witnesses huge participation. Many musical programs displaying Kashmiri culture are also a pleasure to attend. Gurez Festival is celebrated at the time of July or August in the scintillating valley of Gurez.

Best Season:June to October and for snow December to February
Popular Location: Srinagar,Gulmarg,Sonmarg,Pahalgam
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Heaven On Earth: Kashmir

8 Days

Kashmir is also known as heaven on earth. It is the most beautiful place for holidays in India. If you are planning to give your family a travel treat, then Travel-B is something which they will love. Kashmir is a travel…

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