Things to do in Srinagar | Must do activities for tourists in Srinagar

Some places are visited, some are explored, and some are simply lived. But when it comes to Srinagar, it has to be felt. Paradise on Earth is what should come to your mind when you think of Srinagar for the beauty and allure of this city will simply stick on to your memories forever. The snow-covered mountains and the never-ending green meadows of the city have made their way in so many Bollywood movies. Also read about the current situation in Kashmir for tourists. 

But its not only just about visiting the city, it is more about living in the city and doing things and activities to get a gist of the beautiful summer capital of India, Srinagar. From adventurous paragliding to staying full of a luxury night in a Shikara boat, to just about taking a stroll in the city or experiencing the Royal life when you visit the Mughal garden and not to forget the finger licking food, this city has so much to offer other than its beauty. Also read about temples in Srinagar. 

So here is the list telling you various activities and the must-have experiences in Srinagar all year round. This article will give you complete information about everything you need to know and enough fodder to plan your perfect holiday in Srinagar. Here you go with the complete list of things to do in Srinagar. 

  • Shikara Ride
  • Spending the night on a houseboat 
  • Visit the Mughal Garden
  • Gandola Cable
  • Paragliding
  • Trying the Kashmiri cuisine
  • Retail therapy
  • Walk around Old Srinagar 

Various things and activities to do in Srinagar:

Take a Shikara Ride

Known for the most famous shikara rides or you may even call it the houseboats, all you have to do is lay back and simply admire the beautiful Dal Lake along with the distant mountains as the boatman takes you through a ride across the gleaming lake with the sun reflecting on the surface like sequins. Pure serenity and spirituality can be attained, away from all the commotion of the city while on these shikara rides. It might be a perfect backdrop for a photograph, but it also is the perfect backdrop for life. The sound of water softly rippling from the boatman’s oar is a treat for your ears. This is a top thing to do in Srinagar! 

Where to try: Dal Lake in Srinagar

Timings: 6:00 am to 5:00 pm; all days

Cost per person: INR 150-250 (subject to change).

Read our Dal Jheel, Srinagar guide which will provide you with all the details you need to have a wonderful and relaxing experience at one of the most popular places to visit in Srinagar.


Spending the night on a houseboat

Srinagar.

Taking a boat ride isn’t just enough. What is all the more amazing is that you can actually stay the night over in these houseboats docked at the Dal Lake jetty! It doesn’t matter even if you are traveling solo or with friends or even honeymooners, a stay over in these houseboats is something you cannot miss. With a surface area of about 18 sq. Kms, the lake is one of the most stunning ones with just the perfect surroundings, with the city lights on one side and mountains on the other three sides.  Pass through the floating gardens and markets and even local communities living around the lake. This tops my personal list of things to do in Srinagar! 

Where to try: Dal Lake in Srinagar

Cost per room: INR 2900- 6500

Here are some of the many reasons for which you must visit the houseboats in Srinagar. Also, read about 5 star houseboats in Srinagar.


Visit the Mughal Gardens

Have the history books always got you wondering what the life of the royals was like in real? Venture out and go exploring the Mughal Gardens with cascading fountains, terraced lawns, and light and bright flowerbeds which overlook the panoramas of the Dal Lake. Go garden hopping when you visit the Pari Mahal and then Chashma Shahi which is just five minutes away from Pari Mahal. You can then proceed to the Shalimar Bagh and the Nishat Bagh. The gardens are well maintained and are worth the visit.

Along with these gardens, you can also spend some time exploring the Floating Post Office, Tomb of Zain-ul-Abidin’s mother, Jama Masjid, Shankaracharya Hill Temple, Hari Parbat Fort that which are some of the major key attractions of Srinagar. You can also take pony rides in the valley side in Pahalgam, Gulmarg, and Sonamarg.

Where to go: Mughal Gardens, Srinagar

Cost per person: Free of cost.

Read our Travel Guide to Chashme Shahi Srinagar here.


Gandola Cable

Midst of air and clouds, breathtaking view below you, excitement in your body, mountains at 360-degree view. Cable car rides give you the adrenaline rush when taking you for a ride through the valleys of Kashmir from Gulmarg to Mary's shoulder in three different phases to give you a view of all the snow-covered mountains. It is an experience in itself. The view is just splendid and serene. This is a great thing to do in Srinagar. 

The ride takes place in three different phases.

Phase 1: Kongdoori to Apharwat Peak

Phase 2: Gulmarg to Kongdoori

Phase 3: Kongdoori to Mary Shoulder [Chair Lift]  

Timings: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm (Ride) | 9:00 am – 3:00 pm (Ticket sale); all days of the week

Cost per person: INR 600 (Phase I) | INR 800 (Phase II) | INR 300 (Chair Lift).


Paragliding over the gallant valley

Read about offbeat places in Himachal. Out of all the beauty and serenity offered in this place, there is something for thrill seekers as well. Soaring through the snow-capped mountains in the clouds and above the twinkling water of the Dal lake is an exhilarating experience altogether. Paragliding is available in 5 destinations which are Sonamarg, Gulmarg, Bhaderwah, Sanasar, and Srinagar. So get ready to make your heart beat a little faster, make your body pump up with all the rush, and enjoy the solitude of flying in the blue sky. Fly over the kingdom of heaven and be ready to touch the greater heights of the sky. This is the most fun thing to do in Srinagar. Read about how to reach Srinagar by train

Where to try: Sonamarg, Gulmarg, Bhaderwah, Sanasar, and Srinagar

Cost per person: INR 10,000 - 12,500.

Tip: You can also go hot air ballooning at Sanasar.


Indulge in some delicious Kashmiri cuisine

Going to Srinagar and not engaging in some delicious Kashmiri cuisine is like going to Paris and not seeing the Eiffel Tower. Trying the local cuisine is a must when you are in Srinagar. Kashmiri cuisine is well heard about all around the world, Kashmiri tea also known as Kahwa being the most famous along with Lamb Mutton Rogan Josh. But, that is not it. There is an endless number of scrumptious dishes in this cuisine, but the ones that are a must try are Nadroo Yakhni which is a yogurt based Kashmiri curry with lotus stems, Dum Alloo, Matschgand that are minced meatballs cooked in a spicy red gravy, Paneer Chaman, Gushtaba and a lot more. Some restaurants serving the most authentic Kashmiri Cuisine are Ahdoos and Wazwan.

Also, the bakeries in the city are a must visit too so that you can get your hands the freshly baked local bread that is popular amongst the tourists. Try tsot, a small round bread topped with sesame and poppy seeds which make the bread crispy and flaky. Puff pastry known as Sheermal baqerkhani, kulcha and lavas are popular too. You can actually visit the bakeries and learn how these bread are made while you munch on them. Walk down the roads and enjoy the local rustic breakfast amidst the city life hush.

Where to try: Local Eateries

Cost per person: Differs.

We have summarised a list of places to dine in Srinagar for its latest cuisine! Read here for more...


Retail Therapy

Srinagar.

This is exactly the thing to do when you are in the capital city of the state that is known worldwide for its handloom and Pashmina Shawls. Tons of local stores lined one after the other will leave you with overwhelming choices to choose from. You would want everything once you start roaming the streets with a mood for shopping. And it's not just handloom and shawls; you can buy antique copper-ware like samovars, hand-woven carpets known as Namda, expensive but worth it Doda Sapphire and Ferins which are the local garments.

That’s not it! Imagine going for grocery shopping on a boat in a floating vegetable market? Sounds fun, isn’t it? Hop on a boat and buy the freshly grown local vegetables or even snow flowers. It is not about what you buy its actually about how you will be buying it that will increase all the excitement for you.

You don’t want to be that tourist who ends up paying twice the value or making regretful purchasing decisions? Read about our Srinagar Shopping Guide and get the tricks of purchasing!!!


Take a heritage walk around Old Srinagar

It is often said that you need to walk more to learn or know more and it is rightly said in case of Srinagar  With some structures of about 4 centuries old and gardens that are nothing less than anything but paradise, the city has an architecture that is inspired by a blend of 3 exclusively different styles and about 3 different religions. Strolling through the old town is one of the best activities to do in the city. Read about the best time to visit Kashmir. 

These are some of the most fun things to do in and around the mesmerizing Srinagar.


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