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Top 5 Must See Tourist Places in Jammu and Kashmir, India

Updated on June 18, 2012

Jammu and Kashmir

The state of Jammu and Kashmir is where nature has generously endowed all her wealth and even a versatile writer will be hard put to adequately express in words the majesty of the ice-capped mountains, the romantic greenery, the verdant forests, the gorgeous rivers, the placid lakes and the overall natural landscape of the state.

The entire State can be broadly classified into three different entities - plains of Jammu, Kashmir Valley and the mountainous Ladakh. These three regions present striking contrast one from another in terms of diverse culture, but all of them vie with one another in scenic beauty.

Houseboat in Dal Lake, Kashmir
Houseboat in Dal Lake, Kashmir

The Wonders of Jammu and Kashmir


Jammu is the southernmost region of the State and is situated at the foothills of the Pir Panjal Mountains. The three gorgeous rivers - Ravi, Tawi and Chenab - wend their way through the Jammu region carving spectacular gorges. Jammu is replete with temples – all of which are associated with age-old myths and Jammu is also home to many quaint forts and splendid palaces. The most renowned temple in this area where devotees throng in such large numbers is the highly revered shrine of the Goddess Vaishnodevi, 48kms away from Jammu.

Leh Palace


In the splendorous valley of Kashmir, the bounteous assumes different captivating forms and hues with every changing season. The romantic Mughal Gardens with the adorable landscape of lily-laden lakes set against the backdrop of the imposing Himalayas – is a wonderful spectacle.

The mountain resort of Gulmarg that lies close to Srinagar at an altitude of 2,650 meters is the highest green golf course in the world and a premier ski resort in the winter. Situated at the confluence of the streams flowing from Sheshnag Lake and the river Lidder, Pahalgam is a charming hill station.

Located at a distance of 46 Kms from Pahalgam, Amarnathji is a key pilgrim center in the region. Devout Hindus undertake the hazardous trek to reach the caves during the months of July-August, where a natural ice-formed icon of Lord Shiva, is seen.

Hemis Gompa, Ladakh


Ladakh is a heavenly place reminiscent of the mythological Kailash – the abode of Lord Shiva. Here snow capped mountains of the mighty Himalayas and the Karakoram ranges reach several thousands feet up to the arch of azure sky. Quaint little hamlets and dilapidated old monasteries are set in the rocky cliffs. The rough winds waft across and the river Indus elegantly meanders through the towering willows and poplars.

Leh is the most significant town in the entire Ladakh region, which serves as the base for mountaineers to explore further towards the treacherous Himalayas. The places to see include Leh palace, Shey Palace, Stok Palace, monasteries of Phiyang, Hemis, Thiksey, Likir, Spituk, Alchi, Lakes of Pangong and Tso-moriri. If you are adventurous, you can also indulge in river rafting, mountain climbing and trekking.

Dal Lake

Dal lake

Dal lake of Kashmir is one of the most enchanting lakes in India and also the second largest lake of Jammu and Kashmir state, Dal Lake is encircled by magnificent mountains on three sides lending it an unearthly charm. Embellishing the banks of the Dal Lake is a number of blooming colorful gardens and gorgeous orchards. Dal Lake is approximately 6 km by 3 km in size and changes its moods, ambiance and scenery after every few kilometers. To further enhance the scenic beauty of the lake are two hillocks that house the famous shrine of Shankaracharya and Hari Parbat temples. Numerous houseboats are afloat in the lake, providing the tourists the opportunity to partake the serene atmosphere and picturesque surroundings.

Gulmarg Gondola


The city of Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, has unique natural beauty unmatched by any other. The Mughal Emperors were completely overpowered by the charm of the city and further adorned the city with many enchanting man-made gardens and today Srinagar verily looks like paradise on earth. There are tourist attractions galore in Srinagar - the breathtaking Himalayas, the placid jade blue lakes, the stately conifers, adorable gardens, romantic scenery and awesome religious places and more.

The quadrangular plots crisscrossed by pathways intersecting at right angles are a delight to watch. A few notable gardens are - Nishat Bagh, Shalimar Bagh, Chashma Shahi Gardens. Lilly-laden lakes lend Srinagar an unearthly charm. Manicured flowerbeds and groves of chinar, poplar and willow overlook the lakes bordered with Shikaras (houseboats). Dal Lake, Nagin Lake and Wullar Lake are not to be missed.

The much talked about Gulmarg, a beautiful hill resort of Kashmir, lies at a distance of 48kms from Srinagar and the road to Gulmarg, lined by tall Deodars and undulating flower meadows offer a rare driving experience. The golf course at Gulmarg, which happens to the highest one in the world, is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Srinagar for many

Visit Jammu and Kashmir

Kashmir is indisputably one of the most charming and scenic places in entire India and has no parallel. Sightseeing in Kashmir is predominantly about appreciating the beauty and becoming one with the bounteous nature. Awesome glaciers, snow capped mountains, lush green gardens, placid lakes and salubrious hill stations - all add to the appeal of Kashmir.


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