The Mughals, other than conquering and ruling, were obsessed with gardens. It was their favourite pastime. These gardens took cues from the Persian design and architecture, were laid out in rectilinear shapes. They had all an emperor would like to wander around: pools, canals, fountains, flowers and miniature waterfalls.
The gardens were carved in different shapes, with stepped terraces and boast of a wide spectrum of flowers from around the world. Once entered, the visitor was overwhelmed with flowing perfumes and charismatic views and serene atmosphere. Even the naming has a definite meaning, like Pari Mahal, Chashme Shahi, Nishat and Shalimar among others.
Kashmir is already known as Paradise on Earth and anything beautiful within is bound to raise the charisma to higher levels. Beautifully laid out these vast gardens bring the distant mountains closer. It looks as if they were part of these gardens and one needs to experience this to believe it.
Though the Mughals have gone, the authorities have managed to maintain the same aura the gardens commanded. A visit to these gardens takes the visitor to the old charm. While Srinagar has the most, Jammu and Anantnag have one each.
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