I left a piece of my heart in Kashmir!

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I live in Delhi and  all domestic flights would only take you up to 2 hours to get to Kashmir. Since Kashmir opened for tourism I have been to Srinagar almost 7-8 times. I can’t get enough of this beautiful hill station – heaven on earth.

My short vacation in Kashmir this summer was splendid. After a very long journey, having a nice warm cup of tea is what I look forward to. When I was in Srinagar last time, I went to Ahdoos and their vegetable cutlets, masala chai and wazwan made my trip. I stayed at a guest house in Budgam and the view was to die for. The commute to the city was a little long but very scenic and the air was so crisp. It felt like sending my lungs to the laundry.

This time I’ve decided to stay at a more central location. Mahatta Homestay at Rajbagh looked very appealing on Tripadvisor. This place reminds me of my granddad’s house. It has oldish room with Kashmir’s famous tree of life curtains and a huge garden with beautiful flowers in all colours.

I take an auto to get to Ahdoos and get all those things I had been dying to try in months. The tea is just as good. The cutlets are flatter. The gustaba is beautiful. The lemon flavour is beautiful. You can see bits of mint in the curry and the meat is flavourful and absolutely delicious. The Rogan Josh looks really ree but it isn’t fiery at all. The Kashmiri chilli is very mild, it gives the curry a beautiful colour but no heat. The yakhni of the gustaba has been used to make a vegetarian dish, the nadru curry. It’s just a splendid.

The air here isn’t as crisp as Budgam but the proximity to every desirable eatery is why I’m loving this place so much.

I walked on the cold glass for hours.

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The wifi isn’t very strong here but my 3G works just fine. It’s started to rain now and as I sit on my divan I see hear thunder. I am really tempted to make myself another cup of tea!

The second day of my trip is more eventful and I take a car to reach the beautiful Sonmarg. Sonmarg is just as beautiful as it is in all old bollywood movies. If you keep going further up, there is snow and you can also go glacier hiking. Please make sure you know the prices of renting cabs in advance or the locals can ask you for prices slightly higher than what prices must be.

I chose not to take a horse to reach the foot of the mountain where my hike began. Horses don’t cost a lot of money but the path is unstable and I wanted to walk to the mountain so I could get the pictures I needed.

My hike was breathtaking. It was the most phenomenal experience of my life.

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I also found a “Deodar tree branch” on my way up that I brought back to Delhi in my suitcase but I left a piece of my heart back in Kashmir.

Now that I’m done with Kashmir, I’m off to Dubai because I just got some great deals on international flights.

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