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Hello Paradise! Kashmir

Tripoto
12th Sep 2015
Photo of Hello Paradise! Kashmir by The Blueberry Trails
Photo of Hello Paradise! Kashmir by The Blueberry Trails
Photo of Hello Paradise! Kashmir by The Blueberry Trails
Photo of Hello Paradise! Kashmir by The Blueberry Trails
Photo of Hello Paradise! Kashmir by The Blueberry Trails
Photo of Hello Paradise! Kashmir by The Blueberry Trails
Photo of Hello Paradise! Kashmir by The Blueberry Trails

This September we are going to Paradise right here on earth, and we are hoping that you will join us on this epic journey to Kashmir. Visit carpet weavers and wood carvers, immerse yourself in their art, head out for Shikhara ride, a walk through the beautiful valleys or head out on a heritage river cruise. This trip is a must-do for all travellers!

Trip essence: Road trip | Culture | History | Valleys of Kashmir | Local food

Trip Highlights:

1. A heritage cruise on Jhelum River that takes you through Srinagar’s Old City.
2. A trek to Nilnag Lake in the beautiful Yousmarg Valley.
Picnic in Doodhpathri Valley, an gorgeous natural wonder, off the tourist track.
3. Carpet making, wooden carving, dhobi ghats, a traditional Kahmiri lunch at a local's home. Experiences where you take home a little of the land that you visit, in form of memories and new crafts
4. Curated stays, from a beautiful guest house perched in a meadow at Aru Valley, to houseboats and homestays in Srinagar, to a resort in Yousmarg.
5. Myriad landscapes: lakes, mountains, dense pine trees, rugged valleys and lush meadows
6. Delicious Kashmiri food throughout the trip

Reach Srinagar by mid morning and settle into your beautiful villa, only walking distance from Dal Lake. The villa set amidst plush gardens is also a homestay, where you can experience true Kashmiri hospitality. For dinner, dig into a delicious home cooked Kashmiri thaali. Meals: Dinner Experience: Stay in a Kashmiri homestay with traditional food Stay: A traditional Kashmiri homestay
We head to Yousmarg, another lovely valley. After a short trek of 4 kms through Yousmarg Valley, make your way to Nilnag which is small turquoise lake, amidst pine trees cradled by mountains. Relax by the lakeside before we make our way back to Yousmarg. Meals: Breakfast Experience: Exploring Yousmarg Valley and trek to Nilnag Stay: JKTDC resort
We make our way to the beautiful Doodhpathri Valley today which off the tourist map and a well kept tourist secret. Doodhpathri will charm you with its carpet like meadows, wild alpine flowers and rolling grasslands. You won’t find a better setting for a perfect picnic. Meals: Breakfast Experience: A picnic in the meadows of Doodhpathri
After an exhilarating trip to Doodhpathri, we return to Srinagar for some relaxation. We return to our homestay and enjoy some Kashmiri hospitality. A visit to Srinagar would be incomplete without exploring the atmospheric and distinctly wooden Old City. What better way to see the Old City than through a cruise along the Jhelum River. It's less hectic than many old cities in India and is home to a number of important mosques that also have a serene energy. Jama Masjid, originally built in 1394 and restored for the last time in 1672, is the largest mosque in Kashmir. It has 378 wooden deodar pillars supporting its ceiling and space for thousands of devotees. See the Shah Hamdan Mosque on the banks of the Jhelum River which is astonishingly ornate. Meals: Breakfast and dinner Stay: A traditional Kashmiri homestay Experiences: A river cruise along the Old City
Head out for a day of sightseeing in Srinagar. We start with Shalimar Bagh, which Mughal Emperor Jehangir built for his wife in 1619. Next, visit Nishat Mughal Garden (Garden of Gladness), which borders Dal Lake. It was constructed in 1634 after Shah Jahan became the Emperor of India. Later we head to Pari Mahal for fabulous sunset views over Dal Lake and Srinagar. On the way we'll pass the Botanical Garden, where the famous Tulip Festival is held every April, and Chashme Shahi Gardens. Meals: Breakfast and dinner Experience: Visit the gardens of Srinagar Stay: A traditional Kashmiri homestay
After breakfast, we head out to Pahalgaum, known as the "Valley of Shepherds”. En route we visit Saffron Fields and the ancient Awantipure Temple. Check into your stay at Pahalgam. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can try your hand at river rafting. Meals: Breakfast and dinner Stay: A beautiful guest house, near the banks of Lidder River in Pahalgam Experience: Visit Saffron Fields and the ancient Awantipure Temple | Rafting (optional)
Wake up to the beautiful sights of Pahalgaum, go for a short drive to Betaab Valley, bask in the beauty of the mountains that surround you. Post lunch head out for another idyllic hamlet, Aru Valley. Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner Experience: Explore Aru Valley Stay: A guesthouse perched in a meadow in Aru Valley
As our trip draws to a close, we make our way back to Srinagar to unwind. You will be staying in a houseboat to make your last night in Srinagar truly special. Later in the evening, we will go hunting for the best handicrafts in town through winding lanes in the old town and meet local artisans to find the perfect keepsake for your journey. Meals: Breakfast and dinner Experience: Walking through the handicrafts section of Srinagar and interacting with local artisans Stay: Houseboat
Make your way back home, with a bag full of memories :) Meals: Breakfast
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