If you are in Kashmir or planning a trip to Kashmir, you can’t miss the Jewel of Sri Nagar ‘Dal Lake’. Dal Lake is a popular tourist spot of Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir. One of the best ways to enjoy at this place is by cruising on Shikara or a Houseboat and enjoy the view of the great Himalayas overlooking Dal Lake.
Reflection of mighty mountains can be seen in the lake’s water. It is cherished spot, many Bollywood songs and sequences have been shot here. Dal Lake is the second largest lake of Jammu and Kashmir state. It is 7.4 km in length, 3.5 km in width; its mean depth is 1.42 km and spread in area of about 22 km square.
Visitors of the lake love Shikara rides, staying in houseboats. Best time to visit Dal Lake would be from April to September. During winters the lake water often freezes and people are seen ice skating on the frozen lake.
In the middle of lake there is an island called ‘Chaar Chinaar’, it is named after 4 chinaar trees of the island. The island belongs to Jammu and Kashmir’s royal family.
Lake’s shoreline is about 15.5 km, along the shoreline one can see hotels, restaurants and various shops selling Kashmiri Merchandise like Cashmere Shawls, Carpets, capes etc
There is a floating park called Nehru Park, its distance from boulevard is about 55 yards. One can enjoy gorgeous view of mountains, lake and boulevard from here.
According to ancient history Goddess Durga lived in a village called Isbar which is said to have been situated towards the east of Dal Lakh. It was called Sureshwari which was on bank of the lake that was sourced a spring named Satadhara.
Looking at stunning Floating gardens when visiting Dal Lake doubles the joy of the visitors. These floating gardens are called Radh in Kashmiri. The lotus flower blossom and float on the lake making the site even more beautiful. Interestingly melons, cucumbers and tomatoes also grow nicely in these gardens. Looking down the lake one can see them floating on lake water.
Shikara is like gondola or a taxi boat. These are great to take tour of the lake. People prefer taking shikara rides and enjoy amazing view and spend some amazing time in a scenic place.
These beautiful houseboats have sustained the status of being an icon. Stay in the houseboat is highly recommended. The one who stays here overnight can enjoy nature’s beauty from day to night. A normal houseboat has a drawing room, three bed rooms, dining room and a balcony. Some also have a terrace.
To facilitate your stay on the houseboats there are floating markets, where the locals sell the daily need products from houseboat to houseboat.