Cradled in the arms of the mighty Himalayas, Kashmir is the jewel of India and the Heaven on Earth. Writing about my visit to Kashmir in 2010 brings back the nostalgia of each day spent there. All across Kashmir you can see the CRPF, Army, and the local police on their toes, ready for action at any moment, guarding every temple, mosque, market and every nook and cranny. Kashmir is the place of contrasts and irony. It is the land of rivers, streams, the Dal Lake, gardens and flowers, old pines and snow covered mountains, Strawberries, Apples and Cherries, the land of Pashmina and Tush shawls and finely woven carpets. On the other hand it is the land of innocent people who lost their family and home to terror and the political turmoil in the valley. I could see houses which once must have been full of life, now vacated and turned to ruins.
In Srinagar, one can experience the hustle bustle of the markets of Lal Chowk and the Boulevard Road while shopping for teak handicrafts and Pashminas and tasting the famous Kashmiri Yakhni. Our tour of the Dal Lake by the Shikara, amidst the house boats was the perfect way for lounging and absorbing the breath taking view. A typical Shikara is brightly colored and embellished with a rainbow of cushions, a canopy on top to protect from the sun and curtains to protect honeymooners from prying eyes. The huge expanse of water glittering in sunlight captivated me. At a glance the mighty mountains in all their grandeur seem to be meditating in silence since times unknown. The silver lining of the grey clouds appeared to be whispering to me that the valley will laugh again one day.
The gondola and the snow covered Gulmarg, the Golf course and the gushing silvery streams of icy waters and densely wooded pines of Pehelgam are a treat for the eyes. The sound of the streams is like children happily reciting rhymes.
Enroute to Kargil, we crossed Zojila Pass. Entirely snow covered, it is one of the highest mountain passes in the...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document