PR Release

A Houseboat Experience in Kashmir

Whenever there is a mention of Kashmir, one just can’t help but think about those colorful shikaras and houseboats on the shimmering lakes. It is a dream of every vacationer to Kashmir to spend a couple of days in a boathouse on the Dal Lake.

These houseboats in Kashmir are one of the prime attractions of Kashmir, and your trip to Kashmir remains incomplete if you have not had that one-of-a-kind houseboat experience. You can book exclusive houseboat experiences through reputed sites such as eKashmir Tourism .

So, what is it about Kashmiri houseboats that makes them so special? Read on to learn more.

Kashmiri Houseboats

The history of Kashmiri houseboats dates back to the 13th century, and in earlier days, they were used more for personal reasons and not for tourism. It was a daily style of living among people who built boats to live on the lake. In the early days, only British officials of the East India Company were allowed to build and stay the houseboats as the maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir did not allow the British to buy property. Today, there are more than a thousand houseboats in the Kashmir Valley, and most of them are used for tourism purposes.

The Kashmiri houseboats are floating houses that are anchored along the banks of some of the most beautiful lakes, such as Dal Lake, Jhelum Lake, and Nagin Lake. The houseboats are like a blend of hotel and homestay on the water. The houseboats have been crafted with great care and are adorned with intricate woodwork that displays the exquisite art and fine craftsmanship of Kashmiri artisans.

The plush interiors of the houseboats in Kashmir are inspired by Victorian and Turkish architectural styles of architecture that are featured in multiple cozy rooms. Most wood carvings represent Chinar trees and other integral aspects of Kashmiri life. The traditionally styled ceilings, wood-paneled interiors, and hand-carved cedar paneled walls enhance the cozy space of the interiors. The floors are thickly covered with traditional Kashmiri carpets that keep your feet warm in the cold weather.

Each of the stationary houseboats carries a different name but looks very similar. They carry two or three bedrooms with bathrooms, based on the size of the houseboat. There is a common living area where everybody can spend some time together and a dining area to enjoy some delicious meals. There are provisions to keep the rooms warm within the boathouse.

The houseboats also boast of a front-facing balcony and a sun deck for the guests. Plus, there is a dedicated crew and in-house pantry to serve the travelers. One can expect 3-star facilities, fancy interiors, and all the essential amenities within the Kashmiri houseboats, such as laundry, 100% power backup, Wi-Fi, mini library, and more.

Holidaymakers look forward to enjoying the exclusive experience and plan a houseboat vacation in Kashmir.

The exclusive experience

Houseboat tours are enjoyed by families, groups of friends, and people of all ages. They are regarded as a perfect vacation by honeymoon couples who love to spend romantic evenings in the houseboat.

  • These houseboats are surrounded by tranquilizing nature on all sides, and it means one can enjoy splendid views no matter in which part of the houseboat they are. Experience the splendor of the houseboat and with all the privacy in the world.
  • The princely artifacts, embroidered carpets, and an opulent décor create a luxurious look and experience for you. You might even get tempted to spend all day indoors, enjoying the warmth and hospitality of the Kashmiris. The houseboat allows one to experience authentic Kashmiri life where one is treated not as a gust but like a family member.
  • Stay in spotlessly clean rooms, sleep on king-size beds and enjoy freshly prepared delicious Kashmiri cuisine. Dining on a barbecue dinner or a sumptuous meal within a floating room indeed sounds like a perfect holiday. This is your chance to enjoy traditional home-cooked Kashmiri food.
  • Tourists can enjoy shopping on houseboats as plenty of vendors sail all day long and can buy handicrafts, food items, flowers, and even barbequed dishes. The sailing vendors also known as floating shops sell everything from shawls, carpets, jewelry, paper mache, and more. One can also buy local fruits such as apples, cherries, and grapes, and even dry fruits.
  • While staying on the houseboat in Kashmir, you can take a ride on the Gondolas or the Shikara for an unforgettable experience. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and you can indeed look forward to an unforgettable ride in one of those colorful Shikaras.
  • Enjoy that divine and relaxing feeling of living on a lake. Imagine sipping a hot cup of morning tea, grazing from the window of your houseboat and enjoying the views of the lake and valley. You can keep yourself entertained throughout the trip and during your stay in the houseboat.
  • The houseboat owner keeps a tab on best flights deals and engaging local experiences for you and will arrange the best transport facilities. He will guide you to the popular restaurant, bars, and spas in the city and guide you to the best stores to shop for high-quality handicrafts.

Some tips when choosing a houseboat

Staying on a houseboat is a must-do experience, but the onus lies in you to pick one of the best houseboats. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Pay attention to the location and stay in a relatively uncrowded spot on the peaceful and quiet lake.
  • Check out the access as some houseboats can only be accessed by shikara while others have road access too.
  • The costs of the houseboats can vary based on size and type, and one must try to get the best experience based on their budget.
  • As there are frequent power supply cuts, make sure that the houseboat operates a generator to provide 24-hour hot water, wireless Internet, and television.
  • A family-owned and operated houseboat means more personalized attention and valuable stay. However, read the reviews before booking a say at a houseboat.

A houseboat experience in Kashmir is indeed a lifetime experience as you get to enjoy some memorable moments with your partner or family as well as observe the beauty of Kashmir.


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Printable version | Feb 13, 2022 1:27:15 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/brandhub/pr-release/a-houseboat-experience-in-kashmir/article36353733.ece