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Srinagar – Paradise on Earth | Best of Srinagar

Srinagar is situated at an altitude of 1,600 meters on the banks of the Jhelum River in the Kashmir Valley. It is a city, which has grown around the magnificent Dal Lake. Srinagar is also known as the city of lakes. The city is situated amidst mountains covered with pine, fir and deodar trees. By the lake runs the Boulevard road, lights glistening and reflected in the moonlit water.

According to Kalhanarchit Rajatarangini, (Stein’s translation), the foundation of this city was laid by the Maurya Emperor Ashoka in 245 BC. I did According to this Srinagar is about 2200 years old city. The city built by Ashoka was situated about 3 miles north of the present Srinagar. The position of the ancient city is nowadays called Pandarethan or the ancient place.

The three exquisite gardens, Chashme Shahi, Nishat and Shalimar, laid by Emperor Jahangir during the reign of the Mughals, are the high points of Indian garden laying and its architecture. Terraced, having pavilions, and a water channel flowing along the entire length, running over panels with a cascading effect, spurting through stone fountains, shadowed by stately Chinar trees, these are truly a king’s delight.

History of Srinagar

Around 700 AD, Maharaj Lalitaditya was the famous Hindu king here. Along with expanding the state of Kashmir far and wide, he built many bridges and canals on the Jhelum River. There were many ancient temples in Srinagar during the time of Hindu kings, which were destroyed during the reign of Muslims and dargahs and mosques were built in their place.

The Narendra Swami Temple which was built by Maharaja Narendra II around 180 AD on the third bridge of the Jhelum River. This temple was converted into the shrine of Narpir.

A very grand temple known as the Mahashrimandir temple with five peaks was built by Maharaja Pravarsen II. This temple was built on the southern bank near the fourth bridge of the Jhelum river. On the death of the wife of Shah Sikandar, the ruler of Kashmir in 1404 AD, she was buried in the courtyard of this temple and from that time this huge temple became a mausoleum. The famous Sultan Jainulabdeen, known as Akbar of Kashmir, was also buried in the premises of this temple. This place became famous as Maqbara Shahi.

Temple of Tribhuvan Swami which was built by Maharaj Chandrapadi in 684-693 AD. A pir named Tanga Baba took possession of it and made it a dargah.

A famous temple built by Maharaj Tarapadi in 693-697 AD was demolished by Sultan Sikandar in 1404 AD to build the Jama Masjid and all its materials were used to build the mosque.

According to legend, the Shankaracharya Temple was established by the famous southern philosopher Shankaracharya in the 8th century AD. When Begum Nur Jahan came to Kashmir around 1623 AD with Jahangir, she uprooted the temple of Shankaracharya built on the top of Sulaiman mountain and the pieces of precious stones attached to its foothills and got it installed in the mosque she had built. At present, only the remains of Shankaracharya’s temple now exist as ancient Hindu monuments in Srinagar.

Shalimar Garden Srinagar

Mughals had planted 700 gardens in Kashmir. The beautiful gardens named Shalimar and Nishat of the time of Jahangir and Shah Jahan, and many mosques of the same period are the main historical monuments of Srinagar. It is said that Nishat Bagh was built by Nur Jahan’s brother Asaf Khan. Shalimar Bagh was built by Jahangir and his Begum Nur Jahan.

Places to see in Srinagar

  • Dal Lake
  • Char Chinar (floating garden-cum-restaurant on the Dal)
  • Chashme Shahi
  • Nishat Bagh
  • Shalimar Bagh
  • Nehru Guest House
  • Shankaracharya Temple
  • Hazratbal Shrine
  • Lal Chowk bazaar


  • Wular Lake
  • Amarnath Caves (140 kms)
  • Pahalgam resort (95 kms)
  • Gulmarg resort and skiing center
  • Sonamarg
  • Avantipur (Stone Temple)

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