Iconic Architectures of Srinagar That are too Beautiful to Miss!

Photo of Iconic Architectures of Srinagar That are too Beautiful to Miss! by Shraddha Bansode

If Kashmir is the emerald, Srinagar—the summer capital of Kashmir is definitely it's finest and rarest gem. In this virtual tour of Srinagar, I am sharing some unknown sights that have inspired artists, poets & painters, places of historical significance and much more!

1. Hazratbal

Photo of Hazratbal Dargah Sharif, Srinagar by Shraddha Bansode

Hazratbal Shrine in Srinagar is a famous mosque that holds high reverence amongst Muslims. Known as the holiest shrine in Kashmir, Hazratbal is where a hair strand Prophet Mohammed is preserved. This mosque is an epitome of love and devotion of Muslims for the Prophet.

Hazratbal Shrine due to its popularity is the most visited place in Srinagar and it boasts an impressive architecture. The dome and minaret display the influence of Mughal architecture, the shrine though also has the influence of Kashmiri architecture.

From History Pages

The construction of this white marble edifice with a domed structure was started in 1968 and completed in the year 1979.

The mosque has a deep-rooted history that dates back to the 17th century. The place where the mosque stands today was originally the site of Ishrat Mahal and a garden, which were built in 1623 by Shah Jahan's subedar Sadiq Khan. Upon his arrival in 1634, Shah Jahan ordered to convert the palace into a place for offering prayers. When Moi-e-Muqqadas arrived in Kashmir in 1699, it was kept in the Naqashbad Sahib for some time, before becoming a part of the Hazratbal.

Photo of Iconic Architectures of Srinagar That are too Beautiful to Miss! by Shraddha Bansode

Things to Know Before Visiting

- On Fridays, the mosque is crowded for the Jumma Namaz (friday prayers), thus tourists should avoid going on this day of the week.

- Women are only allowed to the first part of the mosque.

- If you wish to see the relic of Hazratbal Shrine, then it is recommended to plan a visit on the day of the birthday of Prophet Muhammad or that of any of his four main companions, Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddique, Hazrat Umar ibn Khattab, Hazrat Usman ibn Affan and Hazrat Ali. On such special occasions, the hair of Mohammad is displayed in a glass casket to general public.

Photo of Iconic Architectures of Srinagar That are too Beautiful to Miss! by Shraddha Bansode

Opening & Closing Time

09:30 am – 05:30 pm (Daily)

Movie Connect

Hazratbal Shrine was featured in a Bollywood movie Lamhaa, which starred Sanjay Dutt, Bipasha Basu, Kunal Kapoor and Anupam Kher.

2. Khanqah-e-Moula

Photo of Khanqah-e-Moula, Srinagar by Shraddha Bansode

Khanqah-e-Moula also known as Shah-e-Hamadan Masjid and Khanqah, is a mosque located in the old city of Srinagar, on the banks of the river Jhelum between the Fateh Kadal and Zaina Kadal bridges. It is held to be the first Khanqah—mosques associated with specific saints—in the Kashmir valley. The Khanqah is a wooden structure whose chief aesthetic feature is its beautifully carved eaves and hanging bells. The interiors are richly carved and painted, and the antique chandeliers give it an air of opulence. Ancient historical documents and religious discourses are etched on the shrine's interior walls.

From History Pages

One of the oldest Muslim shrines in Kashmir, was first built in 1395 CE, by Sultan Sikendar in the memory of Mir Sayed Ali Hamadani who preached Islam in Kashmir. The shrine gains a special significance on 6th of Zilhaj (last month of Muslim calendar), the death anniversary of Mir Sayed Ali Hamadani. On this day, devotees visit the shrine in large numbers to pay a tribute to Shah Hamadan.

The Khanqah of Shah Hamadan in Kashmir has undergone ruination a couple of times. The year 1480 saw the shrine being ruined in a devastating fire. Later, the shrine was reconstructed and restored by the then ruler Sultan Hassan Shah. Again, in 1493 AD, Khanqah-e-Moula was demolished and reconstructed in two-stories. On 15 November 2017, a fire broke out in the shrine which damaged the spire of the building. Restoration work was immediately started and on 30 March 2018, a refurbished crown was successfully installed on the spire of the shrine

Photo of Iconic Architectures of Srinagar That are too Beautiful to Miss! by Shraddha Bansode

Best Time to Visit

The mosque is open all over the year.

You can plan a visit to Khanqah-e-Molla between April and October. During this time, the weather is delightful, and you can enjoy the peaceful surroundings.

This altar is believed to contain "the secret of Allah". Moreover, it is a heaven for architecture lovers as they can see an excellent example of woodwork inspired by Buddhist, Hindu, and Islamic styles.

3. Pari Mahal

Photo of Pari Mahal, Srinagar by Shraddha Bansode

Pari Mahal or Peer Mahal, is among the most tourist attractions in Srinagar. Nestled in the lap of the mighty Zabarwan mountain range. Pari Mahal is a majestic seven-terraced garden overlooking the southwest part of the Dal Lake.

Pari Mahal in Srinagar reflects the Mughal era's art and architecture. This royal palace houses a library and observatory for teaching astronomy and astrology. This Mughal Garden is a perfect delight for nature lovers and peace seekers. Tourists can rejuvenate and relax amidst the serene environs of this tranquil place. The monument's grandeur can leave anyone awe-struck and offer glimpses of the rich history and heritage of the region.

From History Pages

This seven-terraced garden structure was built by Mughal prince Dara Shikoh, Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan’s eldest son, in the mid-1600s. Prince Dara Shikoh was the heir-apparent, but despite the support of his father, he was defeated by Aurangazeb who then became the next emperor. A patron of the arts, the prince was known well for his collection of paintings and calligraphy called the ‘Dara Shikoh’ which was later presented to Nandira Banu, his wife.

Photo of Iconic Architectures of Srinagar That are too Beautiful to Miss! by Shraddha Bansode

Best Time to Visit

Tourists can visit here throughout the year as the region enjoys pleasant weather all year round. However, April to October is the best time to visit Pari Mahal when the weather is suitable for a comfortable sightseeing tour. The garden blooms with a variety of flowers amidst a serene environment are some of the things that make the visit memorable. During the daytime, the temperature remains balmy and salubrious, making the excursion for families, kids, and couples enjoyable.

Opening Hours

9:30 AM to 7:30 PM

Entry Fees

INR 10 per person

Photo of Iconic Architectures of Srinagar That are too Beautiful to Miss! by Shraddha Bansode

Click here to follow me on Instagram, where I share snippets of my travel-tales.