Geography of Srinagar

Srinagar, one of the most beautiful tourist destinations of north India offer some of the most picturesque landscapes for its visitors. The location and geographical features of Srinagar, a place located in the Kashmir Valley, are the reasons of diverse wildlife and beautiful landscapes of Srinagar. Srinagar has rivers, lakes, deep valleys, snow-capped mountains and grassy meadows. Srinagar is “Heaven on the Earth” in true sense as visitors enjoy all four seasons in Srinagar. Saffron Fields during summer and snow-covered trees during winter months delight the tourists coming to Srinagar.  During spring, people enjoy Almond blossoms and during summer ponds and lakes full of lotus sooth their eyes.  Read this document to know more about geographical features of Srinagar.

Geography of Srinagar

Location of Srinagar

Srinagar is located in between two hills, the Shakaracharya Hill or Takht-i-Suleiman and the Hari Parbat. The city got destroyed many times due to natural disasters. The city is located on the two sides of Jhelum River. The total area of Srinagar is 114 square meters and it is located at an elevation of 5200 feet. Srinagar is situated at 34°5’24”North Latitude and 74°47 ‘24” East Longitude.

Climate of Srinagar

The climate of Srinagar is humid and subtropical. The place is cooler than many other places of India. Valley of Kashmir where Srinagar is located is surrounded by the Himalayan Mountains from all sides. Winters are cool and the average temperate becomes 2.5 °C during daytime in the month of January. At night, the temperature may reach below 0 °C. Snowfall ranging from moderate to heavy is experienced in some parts of Srinagar.

Climate of Srinagar

At times, roads get blocked to avalanches. Summers are warm and pleasant. During July, the average temperature becomes 24.1 °C.  The average rainfall in a year is 710 mm. The driest season of Srinagar is the autumn and the wettest season is the spring. The hottest months of Srinagar are July and August. Soil

Type of Soil in Srinagar

The flat shores of River Jhelum are rich in Karewa Alluviam which is also called Old Alluvium. . As the low lying areas get flooded very frequently, they are rich in clay having sandy subsoil. As this type of soil has lesser possibilities of water drainage, this area has marshy lands, ponds and water-logged depressions.

Flora of Srinagar

High areas of Srinagar fall under Alpine Vegetation zone while slightly lower areas have sub-tropical vegetation. During the months from April-June, different types of perennial and annual flowering plants can be seen in Srinagar. Due to favorable climatic conditions and availability of required soil type, different types of medicinal herbs and shrubs are found here. Insectivorous plants and herbs (Vahl) are also found in Srinagar.  Water plants including semi-aquatic ones and submerged ones are also found in this region.

Flora of Srinagar

Trees like Chinar, willows, Silver Oak, Apple, Apricot, Walnut, Alu-bokhara, cherry and Pear are also seen in Srinagar. Reeds of grasses are found in the places where marshes become lagoons. Paddy is the main food-crop grown in Srinagar area and varieties of vegetables like tomatoes, radish, and cucumbers are also grown here. On the mountain slopes, colorful flowers are found in plenty. Numerous types of water lilies are found in the water bodies of Srinagar.

Fauna of Srinagar

The main animal found is the Kashmir Stag. Other animals can be seen in Srinagar and its surrounding forest areas and Dachigam Wildlife Sanctuary is the famous tourist attraction where diverse fauna gets preserved. The species that are found in Srinagar Region are Musk Deer, Leopard Cat, Jackal, Himalayan Brown Bear, Himalayan Black Bear, Himalayan Serow, Jungle Cat, Otter, Yellow Throated Marten and Hill Fox.  Birds that can be seen in the Srinagar area are Babbler, Woodpecker, Wagtail, Black Bulbul, Kashmir Flycatcher, Redstart, Himalayan Monal and Himalayan Ruby throat. Red billed Magpie and bearded vulture are also found here.

Water Bodies of Srinagar

Srinagar is adorned with beautiful lakes. Dal Lake needs no introduction. This is the central attraction of Srinagar City. An extension of Dal Lake is the Nagin Lake which is beautifully fringed by numerous trees. Houseboats are there to stay and tourists can also enjoy boating in these lakes. Another lake of Srinagar is the Manasbal Lake that is located in the north of Sringar. This lake has got its name from the Mansarovar Lake. The main river of Srinagar is the Jhelum. Srinagar is located on the banks of River Jhelum. Jhelum starts from Veinag, a place located 80 KM from Srinagar in its south and takes water from the lakes and canals around Sringar and reached Wular Lake located in the north of Srinagar.

Wullar Lake in Srinagar

Wullar Lake

Wullar Lake is located in the Jammu & Kashmir region of the Northern India. It is in the Bandipora district and it is one of the largest fresh water lakes in India. The name Wullar has been taken from the Sanskrit word ullola which means turbulent. The formation of this lake is a result of tectonic activity and it is a delta of Jhelum River. Few water sports have been launched recently by the Government of India Tourism which is collaborated with Kerala Tourism and J&K Tourism.

About Wullar Lake

Wullar Lake is a great source of the food for many people living nearby this lake and also for the people living in other parts of Kashmir valley as this lake is a big fish habitat. It also provides the employment for many villagers by c-operative societies who deal in fish catch business. Common carp, Rosy barb.Mosquitofish, Snowtrout, Crossocheiluslatius, chushsnowtrout are some of the species who identified in the lake.
Wullar Lake is also a great hub of migrated birds which add a different ambience to its beauty. Golden eagle, chukar partridge, hoopoe, black-eared kite, barn swallow, Himalayan monal are some of the examples of migrated bird which mostly observed around the lake.

Around Wullar Lake in Srinagar

History of Wullar Lake   

Wullar Lake is an accurate example of natural beauty of Jammu & Kashmir. This lake is situated 60 km away from Srinagar and one of the most beautiful and the largest freshwater lakes in India. During the winter, to fulfil the need of the water, a reservoir has been built at the mouth of Wullar Lake which is the result of the flooded water of Jhelum River. There are beautiful mountains and dense forests surround Wullar Lake and give this lake an immense look and also create a great attraction to the tourists. Coniferous pine, apple and walnut are the most commonly seen trees in these forests. History reveals that an artificial island called Zaina Lanka had been set up by King Zain-ul-abidin in 15th century.

Project on Wullar Lake

In 1984, the Tulbul Project has been made at the mouth of Wullar Lake to lock and control the water structure of this lake. Original Indian plan says that it was expected to be with the length of 439 feet and width of 40 feet, and 300,000acre feet of water would be the maximum storage capacity of water.

About Wullar Lake in Srinagar

A dispute has been going on between India and Pakistan over this project since 1987 as Pakistan said that it is a violation of the 1960 Indus Water Treaty. India made this project permissible under the treaty as the Jhelum River below this lake was an important means of transport for goods and people, and it was also important for the irrigation and power benefits of Pakistan.

Best Time to Visit Wullar Lake

The time between June and August is the best time to visit the Lake. You can visit the lake during any time of the day but early morning will be the best.

How to Reach Wullar Lake

From Srinagar, it will take two hours to reach Wullar Lake. At HMT junction you will take right turn where you will be able to see Jhelum River and after crossing this river you will take left turn. There will be Sonmarg on the right side road. On the way to Sofapora straight road go to Wullar Lake.

Manasbal Lake

Manasbal Lake is situated around 30 km from Srinagar. This is famous as summer center of state Jammu and Kashmir. This lake is surrounded by three rural villages they are Kondabal, Jarokbal and Gratbal. Manasbal Lake is said to be ‘Supreme gem of all lakes in Kashmir’. It is deepest lake in the valley of Kashmir.

Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

Manasbal Lake has warm character of its water. Manasbal Lake got its name from Manusarwar a sacred lake on mountains of Kailash. As the Hindus residing in Kashmir satisfied their religious thirst by naming the remote piece of green water as Manasbal.

History of Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

Manasbal Lake is the most ancient lake in Srinagar. But still there is no exact date yet. Near it towards the northern shore there are ruins of fort built in 17th century known as Darogabagh. This was built by Mughals.

Topography of Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

Manasbal Lake is surrounded by Baladar Mountains from east with a lofty plateau called as ‘Karewa’ consisting of various deposits such as fluviatile, lacustrine and loessic. Bounded with the hills of Ahtung from south these are used for extraction of limestone. Down the route of the Jhelum River the Manasbal Lake comes under the third sequence of high height lakes of Himalayas. The significant vegetation done near the Manasbal Lake consists of orchards of apple and mulberry trees. Some Chinar trees and Salix trees are also grown here. Wheat, Maize and Mustard are the chief crops are grown near this lake. At present the lands here are also used for horticulture purposes.

About Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

Flora and Fauna in Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

In the lake we can find flowers in emerged macrophytes, submerged macrophytes as well as floating macrophytes.
This lake is rich in fauna various types of fishes are found here are:

Chhriw with a dark dotted back, white belly and a big piercing mouth. This weighs around 12 lb.
Sattar Gad with also dots of different colors and white sides.
Ail Gad is black in shade.
Chesh Gad with a little mouth and is white in shade.
Rama Gurun a small fish with black bars on it
Parim Gad (Mirror Carp)
Rupit Gad

Sind fishes are high priced than those found in Jhelum. The best time of fishing is considered at the time of rape-seed blossom and the reason behind this is the mirror images of yellow blossom which falls in the lake attracts the fishes.

Things to do at Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

Things to Do in Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

Manasbal has all facilities like restaurants and shops with basic amenities. Jammu and Kashmir tourism hotel is also near the lake. You can enjoy various activities here such as:

Bird watching
Sight seeing
Water skiing
Boating in Doonga house-boat and also in Shikara

There is a small pond near the lake which may be the replica of the Manasbal Lake which is full of lotus plants. The roots of this plant are used as food here. In this pond you can enjoy the Shikara ride.

How to reach Manasbal Lake in Srinagar

Manasbal Lake is almost 30 km away from Srinagar and it takes around 1hr to reach here depending upon the traffic time may vary. Usually tourist prefers to visit a day trip here and go back to Srinagar.
Nagin Lake is one of those many lakes that Kashmir houses and is considered as the most beautiful and attractive one. Go through this document to know more about Nagin Lake of Kashmir.

Nagin Lake

Considered as the ‘Jewel in the Ring’, Nagin Lake of Srinagar is one of the most beautiful lakes. Though it is considered as a separate lake but it is originally a part of Dal Lake. Surrounded by Poplar and Willow Trees, this lake is one of the most preferred and the most visited place by the nature lovers. A causeway separates Nagin Lake from Dal Lake.

About Nagin Lake

Popular for its calm and peaceful environment and unparallel scenic beauty, this lake is visited by tourists and locals for water skiing and boating during summer months. Reflection of trees into the clear blue lake water adds much more elegance to its beauty. It is also a popular camping site for tourists.  Tourists rent house boats to staying for few days or to sail around for some hours.

Tourist Places near Nagin Lake

Tourists get many more places of attractions around Nagin Lake.  Dal Lake is another popular lake of which Nagin Lake is a part. Boating can be enjoyed in this lake as well. It is located about 3.4 KM away from Nagin Lake. Nishat Garden is a popular garden near Nagin Lake. Mughal Garden and Indira Gandhi Tulip Garden are located within 5 KM from Nagin Lake and have beautiful collection of colorful flowers that attract tourists from all over the world. Hazratbal and Jama Masjid Mosque are two religious places near Nagin Lake which are visited by devotees.

Fun at Nagin Lake

Due to its deep water, Nagin Lake is very less polluted. Swimming can be enjoyed here. Boating is also another favorite activity that visitors enjoy here. Motor boats and traditional boats called ‘Shikaras’ are available for boating in the lake.

Beauty of Nagin Lake

Boats can be hired on hourly basis. Water skiing is also done here. Visitors can take temporary membership in the Nagin Club located on the bank of Nagin Lake. This club, a branch of Srinagar Club, has a tea shop and a bar for its visitors. 

Accommodations near Nagin Lake

To enjoy the lake the most, the best accommodations are the house-boats. Luxurious hotels like Lalit Grand Palace, Vivanta by Taj are also there within a distance of 5 KM from Nagin Lake.

Majestic Group of Houseboats
Nagin Lake

Alif Laila Houseboat (2.4 Km from Nagin Lake)
Jacquiline Houseboat (1.1 Km from Nagin Lake)
Peacock Houseboat
Welcome Heritage Gurkha Houseboat

Location of Nagin Lake

Located in the eastward direction of Srinagar City, Nagin Lake is situated at the foothills of Zabarwan Mountain. In the south, the lake is surrounded by Shankaracharya Hill also known as Takht-e-Suleiman and in the west, the lake has Hari Parbat.

Beautiful Nagin Lake

How to Reach Nagin Lake

From Srinagar City, the distance of Nagin Lake is about 9 KM through Hazratbal Road. Auto rickshaws, taxis or buses can be taken to reach Nagin Lake from Srinagar. The nearest railway station of Srinagar is the Udhampur Railway Station which is located 60 KM away from Jammu in the north. Jammu Tawi Railway Station is located about 293 KM from Srinagar and is well connected to rest of India. From Jammu, Srinagar can be reached by bus, taxi or private vehicles via road.

Nearest Airport to Srinagar Town is the Srinagar Airport which is about 14 KM away from the city. All major airlines have their flights from here connecting Srinagar to places like Jammu, Mumbai, and Delhi etc.

Srinagar is well connected through bus services to rest of the state especially Jammu via National Highway 1A.

The best time to visit this lake is from May to October.
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