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Geographical Diversity

jammu and kashmir

Tourism in Jammu and Kashmir

Set like a jewelled crown on the map of India, Kashmir is a multi-faceted diamond, changing its hues with the seasons - always extravagantly beautiful. Two major Himalayan ranges, the Great Himalayan Range and the Pir Panjal, surround the landscape from the north and south respectively. They are the source of great rivers, which flow down into the valleys, forested with orchards and decorated by lily-laden lakes.


The Mughals aptly called Kashmir ‘Paradise on Earth’ where they journeyed across the hot plains of India, to the valley’s cool environs in summer. Here they laid, with great love and care, Srinagar’s many formal, waterfront gardens, now collectively known as the Mughal Gardens. Anecdotes of four and five centuries ago describe their love for these gardens, and the rivalries that centred around their ownership. They also patronized the development of art & craft among the people of Kashmir, leaving behind a heritage of exquisite artisanship among thes people and making the handicrafts of the land prized gifts all over the world.


In recent years, Ladakh has emerged as a major hub for adventure tourism. This part of Greater Himalaya called "moon on earth" consists of naked peaks and deep gorges. Leh, the capital, is also a growing tourist spot.


The state enjoys a sharp rise of altitude from 1000 feet to 28250 feet above the sea level, with three different climatic regions Arctic cold deserts of Ladakh, temperate Kashmir valley and sub-tropical Jammu. Jammu & Kashmir is divided in four zones:


  • The Shivalik Ranges
  • The high mountainous part of the Kashmir Valley, Pir Panchal range and its off-shoots (Doda, Poonch and Rajouri districts and part of Kathua and Udhampur districts)
  • Sub-mountain and semi-mountain plain- kandi (dry belt)
  • The middle run of the Indus river comprising Leh and Kargil.

Each zone has a distinctive identity in terms of natural beauty, flora and fauna, culture, food and lifestyle. The region is nurtured by the major rivers- Jhelum, Indus, Chenab, Tawi and Ravi- that flow through the state.
The state has two capitals- Srinagar (the summer capital; famous for lakes, houseboats and Mughal gardens) and Jammu(the winter capital; popular for temples).


Economy

The local people are mostly involved in agriculture. Kashmir is a leading exporter in agricultural products such as apples, barley, cherries, corn, millet, oranges, rice, peaches, pears, saffron, sorghum, vegetables, saffron and wheat. The manufacturing industries for handicrafts, rugs and shawls contribute a major part in the state's economy.
The state of Jammu & Kashmir is situated mostly in the Himalayan mountains, therefore it is frequently visited by the adventure enthusiasts for trekking, rafting and skiing. Some of the major pilgrimage centers of India, including theAmarnath Caves and Vaishnodevi Shrine are situated in Jammu and Kashmir. Therefore, tourism also contributes a lot towards the economy.


Culture

The state (often called J&K) has been a prime centre for learning Sanskrit and Persian since time immemorial. Today, J&K comprises of Hindu, Islamic and Tibetan culture. The diversity can be observed in the life style, architecture, music, dance, festivals and literature of the people of different districts. The people of J&K speak Urdu, Kashmiri, Hindi, Dogri, Pahari and Ladakhi languages.


The best seasons to visit are also categorized according to the climatic conditions, as each part differs greatly in topography. For visiting Jammu, it is October to February, for Kashmir- May to October, and November to February, and for Ladakh, it is Mid June to September.


Tourism by State

 

 

 

 
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