Srinagar Heritage Walk
kashmir handicraft

Srinagar Heritage walk is the rich historical and traditional past of Kashmir. The walk is fully within the old city of Srinagar. It takes the tourists to the culturally and traditionally rich parts of Srinagar. This is a unique experience of ancient buildings, relics of history, bylanes of downtown, busy local markets, ancient shrines, temples, and mosques. It exhibits the fantastic craft and artistry of the locals. The walk goes through the old habitation of Srinagar called Downtown or locally called Shehr e Khaas.

Cliffhangers India’s heritage guides are abreast with the history, anthropology, and geography of Srinagar. They have decades of experience in Srinagar Heritage Walks. They make you relive the past while taking you through the bylanes of Srinagar’s Downtown area.

The downtown area of Srinagar is the oldest habitation in Kashmir. The structures and artifacts represent the golden era of Kashmir’s artistry. And it is here where the essence of Kashmir thrives in buildings, markets, cuisines, and people.

Srinagar Heritage Zone

Srinagar Heritaze Zone is the area around which most of the cultural and architectural activities are concentrated. The place falls in the congested hustle bustle of Srinagar’s Shehr e Khas area. This area stretches between the Jhelum river and Dal lake and concentrates mostly around the traditional and old seven bridges of Shahr e Khas.

The Kashmir Heritage Walk has many branches which one can choose. Here is how we have divided each walk

Shahr-e-Khas Walk

This is the walk through the thickness of Srinagar’s Downtown area. This walk will take you through the busy traditional market of Kashmir. The fantastic and colorful markets exhibit the long-cherished way of local people.

Zainakadal: This is the first attraction of this walk. Zainakadal is the oldest market in Kashmir. It was developed in the 16th century along the banks of River Jhelum. This was the epitome of trade and cultural exchange during the era of king Zain ul Abidin. Zainakadal has the first wooden bridge created in Kashmir over the Jhelum river. You will see the market abreast with a traditional aura. The walk takes you through this busy and congested market full of colors and cultural hustle-bustle.

In the busy yet soothing market of Zainakadal, you will see the Byzantine-styled dome built by king Zain ul Abidin in the 16th century. Towards the bend of the river, you will see an ancient mosque constructed by the first Muslim ruler of Kashmir called Rinchen Shah. This mosque he built-in memory of his teacher Bulbul Shah.

Just in the close vicinity of Zainakadal see the beautiful stone structure called Pathar Masjid. It was built by Mughal empress Nur Jahan. It’s a relic from the 17th century.

Khanqah-e-Moula: Just after the Zainakadal market you will the best relic of Kashmir’s artistry and history. Khanqah-e-Moula is the first mosque of Kashmir and the shrine of Sayyed Ali Hamdani. The mosque is 600 years old and of king Sultan Sikander’s reign. This mosque/shrine is the best exhibition of the architecture and woodwork of Kashmir. It has intricate designs of woodwork and paper mache. Resting calmly at the bank of river Jhelum, Khanqah-e-Moula is the architectural symbol of Kashmir’s past.

Just below the river, Jhelum is the temple dedicated to the Hindu goddess Kali. This mosque and temple are co-existing and thriving together for centuries now. They attract hordes of devotees yearning for peace, tranquility, and blessings.

The walk winds through the old shops of coppersmiths, dry fruit stalls, copperware, spice shops, jewelry shops, embroidery shops along the river Jhelum. The walk makes you see the fantastic architecture of local houses. The houses have wood carving designs. Cliffhangers India’s heritage guide will make you relive the history. Giving you the details about every nook and corner and architecture of this place. The walk ends at Shri Ranbir Gunj. This is the best attractive place in Srinagar Heritage Walk.

Srinagar heritage walk
The local houses on the banks of River Jhelum

Mughal Walk

Srinagar Heritage Walk is incomplete without seeing the Mughal glory here in Kashmir. Srinagar has many reminiscences of the Mughal Era. Mughal architecture is spread across Kashmir in the form of parks, forts, buildings, etc. In this walk, we will see the fantastic relic of the Mughal Era – the Hari Parbat Fort and the surrounding architecture and attractions.

Hari Parbat Fort: This fort is locally called Koh-I-Maran. Originally built in 1808 by Atta Mohammed Khan – the governor of Kashmir during Durrani Rule. This fort is much known for its Mughal Glory. Emperor Akbar was so fascinated with this fort that he fortified and created the wall around the hill of Hari Parbat. The city he wanted to accommodate in and around this fort was called Nagar Nagar. This fort overlooks an entire Srinagar city,

The walk/drive to this fort from its hem is through a soothing jungle with almond bloom and trees surrounding you. While at the top, you get the best panoramic view of an entire Srinagar city. Marvel at the construction of the fort at the top of this hill.

Another fantastic feature of this fort and its surroundings is that you will see the best pluralistic history and past of Kashmir. On the lap of this fort hill is the famous shrine of Kashmir – Makhdoom Sahab. Marvel at the shrine of this Sufi and the design and tranquility you will experience here. Walk through the long corridors of this shrine.

Down to this fort is Gurdwara Chatti Patshahi. This is the most sacred shrine of Kashmir’s Sikhs. Believed to be the place where Guru Har Gobind Ji (the sixth guru in Sikhism) rested for a few days while he was in Kashmir.

Hari Parbat was also known as Sarika Parvata. This fort holds a great religious significance for Kashmiri Hindus as well. As per the legend, this fort was held by a demon called Asura Jalobhava. Parvati Ji upon local populations’ prayers to her, dropped a pebble on the demon’s head. The head grew larger and larger until it decimated the demon. Hari Parbat fort is respected and considered as that pebble of Parvati. There is a temple also dedicated to the Shakti.

kashmir heritage walk
The Delicate Design of Khanqah e Moula

Srinagar Craft Safari

Srinagar Craft Safari is a craft walk to the famous art shops and artists of Kashmir. Srinagar is now the UNESCO-designated creative city with the variety and marvel of handicraft work. This work is thriving here for centuries and exhibits the best of mastery of handmade craft. This is an essential part in the Srinagar walk in which on sees the craft and craftsmen of Kashmir.

In this walk, we will be visiting the best of the artists and their work in Srinagar.

Khatamband: This is the age-old craft of Srinagar in which the intricate designs of geometrical shapes are made from the polygonal shapes of wood. The woodwork creates fascinating designs. This is primarily used for the decoration of the ceiling. You will see that most of the architectural symbols of Kashmir have the Khatamband ceiling. See how local artists create this art form.

Crewel: This design of embroidery is a 200-year-old art in Kashmir. Visit the family that is in this art form for the last 2 centuries. They make the exotic designs of crewel artistry on curtains, sheets, and other wears. The crewel art is mostly done on pure cotton. The cloth comes out gorgeously with different designs and colors.

The crewel curtains, bedsheets, and cushion covers are an attribute to the posh and rich lifestyle across the globe.

Wood Carving: wood carving designs are done on walnut wood. It is an ornamental and intricate craft that is popular across the globe. Woodcarving artists here make the delicate designs of the recurring motifs of rose, lotus, grape, etc. The entire shape of animals and plants is carved out of walnut wood. The surface of the wood is drawn with many wood patterns. with the work on the surface of many patterns. Walnut wood furniture like beds, side tables, coffee tables, etc is a famous walnut product across the globe.

The five popular woodcarving designs here are undercut, open or lattice, deep carving, semi carving, and shallow carving.

Paper Mache: This is the 14th-century handicraft of Kashmir. It is primarily done on paper pulp and shaping them into different forms and colorful patterns. The work is delicate and quite intricate. It sells mostly in the form of vases, ashtrays, boxes, cups, trays, and beautiful ornamental objects.

Pashmina Weaving: This is again a traditional and ancient craft of Kashmir. It is in vogue since the 15th century and is famous thought the world. Pashmina shawls are the symbol of rich taste and luxury lifestyle. While on your journey to this craft safari, experience the best pure pashmina shawls. Also how the artists create shawls from the handlooms and then put the beautiful designs on them.

Carpet Weaving: This is again the delicate and painstaking art of weaving carpets with beautiful designs. The most famous and loved carpets are silk and wool. The carpets are weaved with different shapes and designs imprinted on them and given colorful themes.

This art was first established here in the 15th century. This art of weaving carpets is the finest example of handiwork in the world.

The other forms of artwork that you will see while on this Craft Safari are crewel art, copper handiwork, staple embroidery, etc.

Srinagar Heritage Walk is a must if you are a traveller and want to know Kashmir’s true essence.

srinagar craft safari
Display of Kashmir Carpet

To book your Srinagar Heritage Walk in Kashmir, contact us via our contact page or you can direclty call on +91 8899366900 or email us at info@cliffhangersindia.com

About Author

client-photo-1
Cliffhangers India

Comments

Leave a Reply