Srinagar (Photo credit: On The Go Tours)
We left our hotel in Delhi and traveled in very thick fog to the airport for our flight to Srinagar, Kashmir. Delhi’s bright and modern airport puts UK airports, like Gatwick and Heathrow to shame. Our 10.25 AM flight was delayed for forty-five minutes due to heavy fog. This short flight of one hour and a half hours was comfortable and pleasant. The flight into Srinagar, winter capital of Kashmir was extremely picturesque, crossing the snow-capped mountains, which were like a picture postcard, with its hundreds of pinnacles pointing up to the sky. Arriving at Srinagar airport, we experienced very high security – this is apparently normal in what the locals call Indian Occupied Kashmir.
On the lake, we can see a mass of migrant ducks that arrive in December from Siberia and will stay until March. The other attraction is the houseboats that line the edges of the lake. These are popular summer homes for both Indian and foreign visitors, who are not allowed to purchase land or homes here – that privilege for is reserved for Kashmiri people.
The city is also famous for its nine old bridges that connect the two parts of the city.
Srinagar is, of course, also well-known for its Mughal Gardens that were originally developed by the rulers of the Mughal Dynasty -we hope to visit them on this trip. We received this information from our local guide, who had picked us up at the airport and with his driver transported us to our hotel, high in the hills and overlooking Dal Lake and the mountains beyond – here, of course, we have breathtaking views of the area.
We spent the remainder of the afternoon in and around our hotel admiring the beautiful views.
Tomorrow the plan is to visit Gulmarg, a ski resort and translated means Meadow of flowers.
Open this link for some spectacular photos of Srinagar. Our own photos will follow later.