Religious Spots in SrinagarYou have heard a lot about the beautiful district of Jammu & Kashmir, Srinagar. We have seen the beauty and glamor of Srinagar so far. It is time we talk about the religious places of Srinagar. Just like Srinagar offers magnificent tourist spots similarly it hosts many religious spots. In this article we will talk about all the religious places in Srinagar. We have classified the places into temples, mosques and shrines hence it will be easier for you to understand.
Temples in SrinagarIn this section of the article we will discuss about the temples that are located in Srinagar. Let us find out what are the important temples of Srinagar.
Shankaracharya TempleThis is considered to be one of the oldest temples of Kashmir. Shankaracharya Temple is located in Shankaracharya Hill nearly 1100ft above sea level. According to legends, this temple was built by Raja Gopal Data in 371 BC.
This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Maharaja Gulab Singh, a Dogra ruler constructed the stairs to the temple. It is since then that the temple has become accessible to many people. Shankarachaya Temple is an important temple as it holds a lot of religious importance.
This temple is also archeologically important as the architecture of the temple is really interesting and it attracts people even today.
This temple offers a magnificent view of the entire place. Watching the beautiful city of Srinagar from this altitude is pure bliss to travelers and devotes visiting this temple.
Architecture of the Shankaracharya TempleThis temple sits on a hard rock. A 20-foot high octagonal base provides support to square building. The porch around the temple is lead by a rock staircase which is enclosed among two walls. A door opposite to the stair case will get you in a small and dark hall. The ceiling also supported with 4 octagonal shaped columns this surrounds a basin which contains a Lingam circled by a snake.
History of the Shankaracharya TempleThis holy place is dated back to 200 BC and the current formation certainly dates back to 9th century AD. This Place was once blessed by the presence of Adi Shankara hence the temple is associated to lord Shiva as The Shankaracharya Temple. It is said the Shiv linga present in temple was placed in 19th century which was the period of Sikh and then worships and services were conducted here on regular basis so it became an active holy place for the devotees of lord Shiva. Previously it was a Buddhist holy place as this place was built in Buddhist era as per some historians. You can also see some Persian inscriptions inside the temple. Persian and Jews call it a Bagh-i-sulaiman which means the Garden of King Solomon. According to primitive past suggestions it says that there was a king named Gopaditya who donated the land below the hill to Brahmins which came from “Araya Versh”. The land donated was named as “Gopa Agraharas”. This King Gopaditya built a temple on the hill as a place of worship of Shiva Jyesthesvara approximately in 371BC. Even though an expert says that this temple is built after 371 BC but at same time many of them are of opinion that the base of temple structure is very old.
It is believed that Lalitaditya Muktapida had repaired the temple. After this Zain-ul-Abideen 1420-1470 AD had also repaired major parts of temple he also repaired or completed the part of kalash and roof which was damaged due to earthquake and then third time it was again repaired by Muslim governor at the period of Sikh rule in Kashmir.
Current Status of the Shankaracharya TempleIt is a one of major pilgrimages of India now. Pilgrims going on Amarnath yatra visit this also. There are around 243 stairs to climb and reach to the temple vicinity. Army secures the hill at the entrance. The temple allows taking darshan till 8 pm therefore it is mandatory to send the last car to visit at 5pm. So make positive efforts to reach there before 5pm. You can see mesmerizing view of Kashmir from the top of the hill.
Best Time to Visit the Shankaracharya TempleFrom September to October or in early winters is the best time when you can enjoy your visit to this magnificent temple.
How to Reach the Shankaracharya TempleThis temple is located near Dal Lake in Srinagar. You can also drive with any local vehicle till footsteps of the hill. The traveling road offers beautiful scenic beauty of nature. Nearest airport is at about 25 km in Badgam Dist. National Highway is also there so you can use any mode of transport which suits you as numbers of taxis, buses are available there.
Sharika Devi TempleThis is one of the holiest places in Kashmir. Located in Hari Parbat in Srinagar, Sharika Devi Temple is an abode of Jagadamba Sharika Bhagwati. The goddess situated inside this temple is an 18 armed goddess. The entire hill Hari Parbat is considered to be sacred due to the presence of this temple in this hill. The days during Hora Ashtami and Har Navum are considered as the auspicious days of the temple. People from different parts of the world come to visit this temple.
The temple of Shankaracharya is located in the district of Srinagar which stands on a hill called as Takht-e-suleiman. It is on a height of about 1100 ft. This temple is devoted to Lord Shiva and it is said that this is the oldest memorial of worship in the valley of Kashmir.
Pandrethan TempleThis is an ancient temple located 4miles away from Srinagar. This temple was actually constructed by Emperor Ashoka. The name of this temple have been derived from the word “purana” which means old and the word “adhisthan” meaning capital. As this place was once the capital of Kashmir. However in the present day there lays a beautiful temple made up of stone in the middle of the spring. Pilgrims get down in the spring water in order to visit this temple. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
Kheer BhawaniKheer Bhawani is a temple which is dedicated to Goddess Bhawani. ‘Kheer’ refers to pudding which is a sweet dish made up of milk. It is believed that pilgrims offers milk to this goddess and hence the name of the temple justifies this belief. Kheer Bhawani, a famous temple of Jammu & Kashmir is located in Tula Mula village which is 25 km away from the main city. To be precise Kheer Bhawani is located in the eastern side of the village. This beautiful temple is situated in an open area with tall Chinar trees surrounding it.
History of Kheer BhawaniAccording to the legend, Lord Rama was a strong devote of Ragnya Devi during his 14 years of exile. When his exile duration was over he asked his very dear friend Lord Hanuman to shift the position of this goddess. Lord Hanuman shifted the position of this goddess to Shadipora at first and later shifted it to Tula Mula village of Srinagar. It was believed that it was Devi Ragnya’s wish to seat in this village. During the rule of Maharaja Pratap Singh in the year 1912 this temple was constructed and named as Kheer Bhawani.
Description of Kheer BhawaniThe entire area of the temple is covered with small stones. Large and beautiful Chinar trees grow in this area. Pilgrims rest and sleep under these trees on the stones. The temple is attached to a spring. The color of the spring is said to be significant. When the color of the spring is dark or black then it is considered to be a bad omen for Kashmir. According to the locals, they have witnessed the color of the spring turn into darkish blue during the murder of Indira Gandhi. Devotes who visit this temple offers kheer to the goddess. Apart from offering kheer devotes also offer flowers or lamps to the goddess. The local people and the priests believe that when you offer kheer to the feet of the goddess then the goddess shows you what is stored for your future by changing the color of the kheer. If the color of the milk turns black then something ominous is waiting in your future.
Annual Fair of Kheer BhawaniA festival surrounding this temple occurs every year during the months of May/June. The eighth day of the full moon is the day of the festival. Devotes perform a fast for the goddess and gather at the temple. It is believed that the spring changes its color during this festival. A fair takes places inside the temple during this festival. This fair is also known as the annual fair of Srinagar. Pilgrims from all across the world visits this temple at this time of the year and offers kheer to the goddess.
Ganesh TempleAs the named suggest this temple is dedicated to Lord Ganesh. The idol of Lord Ganesh that is stored in this temple was saved from the Pathan rulers. Inside the temple there are other two idols of Lord Ganesh which looks similar but they are huge is size. During your visit to Srinagar you can visit this Ganesh Temple.
Bhuteshwara TempleThis temple is believed to have come into existence since 12th century. Dedicated to Lord Shiva Bhuteshwara Temple of Srinagar is a beautiful temple. This temple was constructed by King Jayasimha. The rectangular structure of the temple makes it an attractive temple of the district.
The structure is made up of granite and hence it looks so gorgeous.
Loduv TempleThis temple is located in Loduv Village 4miles away from Srinagar. This temple was constructed in 8th century. The interior of the temple is constructed using really small stones and hence this attracts the attention of the visitors. The interior of the temple is also built on a circular stage. This gives a different and unique look to the temple.
Martand Sun TempleThis temple is located 60km away from Srinagar and is a beautiful temple of Srinagar. Martand Sun Temple is located in a hilly region where the beautiful snow capped Peer Panjal lies in the background of this temple. The breathtaking view of Kashmir Valley is completely visible from this place. The architecture of the place is really beautiful and attractive. The combination of the carved stones, large pillars and arches is perfect. This temple is also a famous tourist spot. Tourists and devotes both visit this temple in order to enjoy the view and construction of the temple.
Mosques in SrinagarIn the previous section of the article we have mentioned about some of the famous temples located in Srinagar. Similarly this section deals exclusively with mosques located in Srinagar.
Hazaratbal MosqueDuring 17th century the Mughal Emperor’s Subedar Sadiq Khan constructed a garden in this location. It was named as Ishrat Mahal. Later in 1634 when the Emperor visited himself he ordered to convert this place into a prayer house. During the reign of Aurangzeb when The Holy Relic arrived in Kashmir it was first kept in Naqashbad Sahib. Since this place was not huge it was later shifted to Hazaratbal Mosque.
Significance of Hazaratbal MosqueThe major significance of this mosque is that it serves as the abode for the hair of the prophet Muhammad. This is generally not displayed to public without any occasion or any special day. This is shown on the days of some religious occasions and fairs that take place in the mosque. Another significance of this mosque is the Friday prayers. People from different parts assemble together in order to attend the prayer. Hazaratbal Mosque is the only domed mosque which is located in Srinagar. All these facts make this place historically significant.
Architecture of Hazaratbal MosqueThe beautiful Hazaratbal Mosque is made up of white marble. White marble make it even more attractive. The construction work was headed by Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah in the year 1968. The overall construction of the Hazaratbal Mosque took eleven years and finally it was completed in the year 1979. The major attraction of this mosque is the beautifully aligned windows which offer a different view of the entire place.
Location of Hazaratbal MosqueThis famous mosque is situated in Srinagar district of Jammu & Kashmir. To be more precise Hazaratbal Mosque is situated on the western banks of the famous Dal Lake. The mosque offers a pleasant view of both the mountain and the lake. Hazaratbal Mosque stands uprights and faces the famous Nishat Bagh. The amazing picturesque of this place gains your attention.
How to Reach Hazaratbal MosqueIf you want to travel to Hazaratbal Mosque via air then it is easier since Hazaratbal Mosque is located in Srinagar and is only 2.5 km away from the Srinagar airport. If you are traveling via train then Jammu railway station is the nearest railway station. If you are traveling via road then it will take you nearly 10 to 12 hours to reach Hazaratbal Mosque of Srinagar. Although the journey will consume time but the beautiful mountainous roads leading to Hazaratbal Mosque will grab your attention. Transports are available from the different parts of Jammu & Kashmir.
This mosque is open seven days a week from 9am to 5pm. You can visit this place anytime during the day. Make sure you do not carry a camera for photography since photography is prohibited inside the campus of the mosque
Roza BalAccording to the locals during the 1st century here lies the grave of Yuza Asaf. As per as the myth says Yuza Asaf was a prophet to the Israel children who was crucified by own people. But he passed through the crucifixion and arrived in Kashmir. The main controversy rises in saying that Yuza Asaf was Muslim by religion though there are enough evidences that prove that Yuza Asaf was none other than Jesus Christ himself. The myths also say that Jesus Christ was not his original name and that his Hebrew name was Yashuah.
Architecture of Roza BalRoza Bal is located near a Muslim cemetery. The building of Roza Bal is a rectangular building with railings and a huge entrance gate. A Muslim saint is buried inside this shrine. The tomb contains a rock that shows the crucifixion marks. This place was maintained by local community previously but now at the present age this place is maintained by the Sunni Muslims.
Present Day Scenario of Roza BalThe major controversy that surrounds this place is that Roza Bal comes under which religion. The local people do not accept the fact that the place contains remains of Jesus Christ. Any researcher who tried to do any research on the place was not allowed to do so by the local people. The locals strongly believe that this place belonged to the Muslim community. Although these controversies are a trending topic of this area this place also attracts tourists throughout the year. Apart from the highly controversial topics that surround this place the enchanting beauty of the place is far more interesting and this attracts tourists.
Location of Roza BalRoza Bal as already mentioned is a renowned shrine located in Khanyaar quarter in Downtown locality of Srinagar district of Jammu & Kashmir. Beautifully surrounded by a lake Roza Bal is one of the controversial monuments located in Jammu & Kashmir. This place is located away from the hustle of the main city.
How to Reach Roza BalThe nearest airport to this place is Srinagar airport which is few km away from this place. Other ways through which you can reach this place is through railway. The nearest railway station to this place is the Jammu Tawi railway station. There are special bus services from different parts of Jammu that connects to Srinagar. You can avail any of these services in order to reach Roza Bal in Srinagar.
This article tried to jot down different important facts about Roza Bal
Pathar MasjidPathar Masjid is considered to be one of the oldest mosques located in Srinagar. Pathar Masjid is situated on the banks of the famous Jhelum River. The exact location of Pathar Masjid is in Nowhatta which is the historic town of Srinagar. According to history, this Masjid was constructed in 1623 under the guidance of the Mughal Empress, Nur Jahan. The entire mosque is built using limestone and hence the name Pathar comes from there. Pathar Masjid is built in the Mughal architecture and this is one of the reasons for it being famous in Srinagar. The beautiful patterns and structures inside this masjid have been attracting people since ages. In the present day, this mosque is a famous place for tourists and travellers across the world visit this mosque of Srinagar.
Jamia MasjidThis important and renowned mosque of Srinagar was built by Sultan Sikandar during 1400 AD. According to history this mosque was built following the order of Mir Mohmmad Hamadani who was the son of Shah Hamdan. After few years the son of Sultan Sikandar, Zain-ul-Abidin got it extended. He also constructed a school near the mosque. This school was run by Lachma Khatoon who was the wife of Sultan’s official. In 885 AD the mosque was burnt due to major fire in the city.
Destruction caused to Jamia MasjidThe magnificent Jamia Masjid of Srinagar has faced a lot of damage since its birth. Not once but this mosque was subjected to fire thrice. After every disaster the vandalism caused was repaired. After the damage in the year 1479 due to fire it was re built. But soon in the year 1503 during the reign of emperor Jehangir the mosque faced another major destruction again caused by fire. After this destruction it was repaired by Malik Haider Chaudara, an historian architect based in Kashmir. The mosque again faced a tremendous damage due to fire during the reign of Aurangzeb and it was reconstructed during the reign of Maharaja Pratap Singh. The most significant aspect of this mosque is that even after getting completely damaged it still stands as a pride for the entire state Jammu & Kashmir.
Architecture of Jamia MasjidJamia Masjid is one of the largest mosques located in Srinagar. The mosque occupies an overall area of 384 ft. Jamia Masjid consists of 370 wooden pillars. The spacious mosque can accommodate over 35,000 people all together. The amazing greenery that surrounds Jamia Masjid gives a splendid look to the entire place. The surrounding lake also adds up to enhance the beauty of the place. The square shaped garden in the centre of the mosque is beautifully maintained. Even after the continuous destruction the mosque looks still the same in the present day.
Rich Heritage of Jamia MasjidJamia Masjid is rich in cultural as well as ancient heritage. The mosque was first constructed in 1400 AD which proves the historical heritage of the place. The mosque depicts the Islamic art in every possible way which shows the cultural heritage of the place. Jamia Masjid is a place where thousands of Muslims visit from different parts of the world. According to the Muslims they believe that offering a holy prayer inside this mosque will help them get rid of their past sins.
Location of Jamia MasjidJamia Masjid is located in Srinagar district of Jammu & Kashmir. This is located in Nowhatta in the centre of the ancient city. Jamia Masjid is one of the sacred places in Srinagar. This is one of the old mosques of Srinagar as well. The presence of Jamia Masjid increases the beauty of this place. A major reason for Srinagar to be renowned in Jammu & Kashmir is Jamia Masjid. Tourists from all across the world visit this place in order to pay a visit to Jamia Masjid.
How to Reach Jamia MasjidThis section of the article contains details about the transportation that can lead you to Jamia Masjid from other parts. The nearest airport is Sheikh ul Alam airport which is nearly 15 km from Srinagar district. If you are traveling via train then you must know that Udhampur Railway station is the closest. This railway station is some kilometers away from this place. There are different government buses that are available
Khanqah-e-MollaKhanqah-e-molla is also known as Shah-e-Hamdan. This is one of the ancient mosques in Srinagar. The exact location of Khanqah-e-molla is in the banks of River Jhelum in the old part of Srinagar. This mosque was constructed in the year 1395 by Sultan Sikander as a cenotaph to Sufi saint Mir Syed Ali Hamdan. According to the Muslim myth, this mosque retained the “Secret of Allah”. Khanqah-e-molla sets an example in the field of beautiful wooden architecture. The wooden structures inside this mosque are worth a mention. The prayer hall is situated in the centre. Women are generally not allowed inside the prayer hall while they can pray from the back walls of the building. These back walls are even more beautiful and gorgeous. Thus do not miss a visit to Khanqah-e-molla during your trip to Srinagar.
Churches in SrinagarAs already mentioned in the previous sections Srinagar offers place for all religion and their faiths and believes. In this section we will talk about the famous churches located in Srinagar.
Roman Catholic ChurchRoman Catholic Church is located in Kothi Bagh of Srinagar district. This is another famous church of Srinagar. During your visit to Srinagar you can definitely visit this church. The entire structure of the church attracts your attention. The prayer hall attached to this church is huge and can accommodate many people at a time.
Holy Family Catholic ChurchThis church is located in Maulana Azad Road in Srinagar. This church came into existence since 1886 and has been one of the major churches for the Christians residing in Srinagar. A school is also attached to this church. Education is provided to under privileged children in this church.
The peaceful ambiance of the church makes it a perfect place for education.
Gurudwaras in SrinagarAs already mentioned Srinagar hosts some of the famous religious spots of India. As we have seen earlier Srinagar is the center for all types of religion. Apart from different temples, mosques and churches there are also gurudwaras in Srinagar. These gurudwaras are specially designed for the Sikh community residing in Srinagar. As a tourist you can also pay a visit to this gurudwaras. Chatti Padshahi Gurudwara is a well known gurudwara located near the renowned Hari Parbat Fort in Srinagar.
Gurudwara in RainwariRainwari is a famous spot in Srinagar which is famous as a religious site. The natural beauty of this place attracts many tourists. Rainwari is surrounded by beautiful hills and the weather condition of this place is pleasant. Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji, who was the Sixth Sikh Guru constructed a gurudwara in Rainwari. A visit to this gurudwara can really be an amazing option for you during your trip to Srinagar.
This article has mentioned nearly all the religious spots located in Srinagar. We hope it has helped you. You can write back to us in case you have some other suggestions.