It was like one of those rare moments when you wanted the scene to continue for a little bit longer. After struggling to get out of bed, to respond to the breeze in the window, I open it to get the most surprising visitor of the day, a flower seller showed up to show off his flower garden. The very sight of the tiny boat, on a serene lake, brimming with a rainbow of colourful flowers seemed like a picture in cinemas coming alive. I checked-in to this houseboat in Nigeen Lake some time back, so I had no idea what views will be gracing my next day.
To this day I struggle to define such a moment in words. Opening the window of the ornate wooden houseboat on Nigeen Lake in Kashmir, I was just overwhelmed to see a shikara full of flowers, emerging out of the foggy mist, boastful of its reflection on the clear blue waters. This canvas being further brightened with misty clouds floating past the mountains. Certain moments like this are treasured and created when you travel without any expectations, but just to unwind yourself. Such moments seem to stretch for hours inside your head. This is when the realisation struck and understood why Nigeen Lake is the poster image of Kashmir.
If only one such experience can blow my mind off, just think how many surprises were there in store for me the entire day at that time? And this brings me to state why you should stay in one of these royal houseboats at least once when you are in Jammu and Kashmir.
When you travel to Kashmir, you actually realise why it is called heaven on earth. As you are gazing at the sky and the pilot announces that you are about to reach Srinagar, you are busy gasping for breath and enjoying scenic views with eyes wide open. The region is filled with Chinar trees, which during autumn season turn this place magical. These trees in fact turn the entire valley yellow and red. And when you are staying in a houseboat, the views are even more mystifying.
The houseboats are strategically positioned so that they occasionally hover on the clear waters of Nigeen Lake. Living in one the houseboats will take you one more step closer to nature. And once you check-in, you get the entire houseboat to yourself (which might be scary for some time like for me it was, but you can live there and enjoy some ‘me’ time for sure), and take yourself away from the chaos of city life
Though the concept of floating hotel is not relatively new, but you should not definitely miss staying on a houseboat while in Kashmir. And it is not without reason that houseboats have always been the favourites of tourists and travellers alike. Book a houseboat for a day or two and try and go by my experience, in fact, create your own fancy and memorable moments.
True! Kashmiri people welcome tourists with open hearts, and once you start staying in the houseboats, you are no longer their guest. You become their family member.
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