Majestic Chinar trees, lush green hillsides and the mesmerising sounds of the Santoor all transport you instantly to the Kashmir of the sixties and the seventies. Back then, no self-respecting Hindi movie could afford to miss shooting a romantic song in Kashmir; newly married couples aspired for a Kashmir honeymoon; and the rich and famous holidayed here. But then came the eighties and political discord resulted in Kashmir slipping off the tourism radar. A thing of the past, I tell you! Because all that flying fur has settled down to a great extent and it is once again time to get away from the summer heat and plan a trip to Kashmir. To add to this is interesting shopping in Kashmir. Yes! Kashmir is indeed a popular shopping destination because of the array of items available that are unique to this region. Not only could you shop, markets in Kashmir proffer local delicacies which are readily available so you can shop and munch at the same time.
With regular flights to Srinagar and safe bus journeys that give you more of Kashmir per eye-blink, the valley is once again sizzling on the holiday makers most wanted charts. Yes, you need to be careful and yes, you must keep the eyes and ears working full time while here, but don't let that stop you from sampling the spoils of one of the most beautiful places on the planet. Visit the temples and dargahs, go skiing and trekking, laze around on a houseboat for an entire day and shop!
Kashmirs Pashmina shawls and stoles have captured the hearts of thousands of shoppers but you could come back with so much more. There are walnut wood carvings, paper“machÃ© knick knacks and the alluring red Kashmiri chillies ât“the staple shopping cart of every tourist. Read on to find out some not so staple items that you should hunt for in the city:
Things to Remember
There are interesting handicrafts shops and bazaars spread across the state where you can pick up beautiful collectibles. However, stick to tourist-heavy places for shopping if you are alone. However, if you do want to venture out to the Old City, do so only with the help of a certified guide and a vehicle recommended by the J&K Tourism Department. Go to Maharaja Bazaar and Kokar Bazaar for spices and the main market area for Kashmiri embroidery objects. Enjoy the delightful markets as you roam around and explore the variety offered by the region. However, don't leave your hotel at odd hours and without proper identification. Finally, know that tourists are some of the safest people in Kashmir today they're the backbone of the ares economy! So enjoy your time and do share your experience with us.