If winter comes, can spring be far behind?
Spring is a happy season. It’s that time of the year when the world sheds its winter coat in favour of a more colourful motley. It is also around this time that the valleys of Kashmir start to look like exquisite bouquets.
And it does not end here! Kashmir’s obsession with spring is a whole different definition of ‘colorful’. Here, spring has an all-pervasive impact and even the various water bodies, lakes and reservoirs come alive. The joy of riding a Shikara and slicing through a carpet of blooming lotuses will make you reconsider ever returning to over-populated and over-polluted cities!
Undeniably a floral paradise, Kashmir is a favored child of spring. To top it all, every year around March or April Kashmir hosts Asia’s largest Tulip Festival.
Held in the foothills of Zabarwan Range, the Srinagar Tulip Festival is an experience you must not miss this 2020. Touted as a one of its kind event in all of India, the Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden holds more than 10 lakh tulip bulbs. It is truly a sight to behold!
Hmm… this sounds suspiciously like another very popular tourist city in Europe.
When the gates of India’s first-ever tulip garden were flung open in 2007, tourists and couples thronged to this lovesick paradise to recreate their own “Silsila” moment. If you are a lover of old Bollywood movies, you would have immediately understood that we are referencing the blockbuster hit, featuring Amitabh Bachchan and Rekha in lead roles. A very popular song from this movie, Dekha Ek Khawab, was shot at the tulip garden of Amsterdam. Yupp, that’s the very popular European city we were thinking about moments ago. For a country obsessed with Bollywood, this song was prime fodder and became an anthem for hopeless romantics.
So when India brought Amsterdam to Srinagar, this immediately became the largest attraction. Spread over 12 hectares, the Srinagar Tulip Garden is perfectly lined with rows after rows of tulips in every color you could imagine.
More than 70 varieties of tulips bloom here every year. While you may have seen countless pictures on the internet, believe us when we say that nothing prepares you for the magic of actually being there physically.
As you enter the Srinagar Tulip Garden, you may feel slightly disappointed. There will be only a few beds of flowers, all blooming in different stages and welcoming you in a rather deceptive manner. But hold on! As you explore deeper, the vistas change completely.
With the craggy Zabarwan Range in the background, casting a soothing shadow on the multicolor flower beds lying side by side and smiling beautifully at the blue sky, you will leave the garden quite awestruck. It is hard to fathom a sight that beautiful.
The entire garden looks like a royal bouquet or a scene from a fairytale movie. No exaggeration there! The mind-boggling range of colors will simply take away the pain of being around 1000 unruly tourists who have little or no travel etiquette. Absolutely nothing affects the grandness of the tulip garden.
From the pristine white rows, blazing yellows, perfect peaches to delicate pink, we suggest you take your sweet time in admiring each and every shade here and let only the rhythmic snip snip of gardeners’ scissors bother you occasionally.
A few points to keep in mind
- The flowers bloom only for about 15 days in a year
- The entry fees to the gardens are Rs. 50 for adults and Rs. 25 for children
- The garden is open from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM every day
- Check Srinagar Tulip Garden Website and Jammu and Kashmir Tourism page for more details so your trip is better planned and you can avoid the risk of disappointing yourself with closed buds.
- Book your Savaari taxi in Srinagar for a comfortable commute.