Shalimar Bagh is a popular Mughal Garden (one of themany gardens built by Mughal emperors during their reign in India) in Srinagar in the north Indian state of Jammu & Kashmir.
It is linked to the famous Dal Lake through a channel, and is known to be the largest Mughal Garden in Kashmir and the most popular of all the Gardens built by the Mughal emperors in India.
This garden is also known as Farah Baksh (means delightful – a name given by the third emperor Jehangir who established it), or Faiz Baksh (means “bountiful” – a name given by the fourth Mughal emperor Shah Jahan).
Shalimar Bagh’s establishment can be traced to the 2nd century during the reign of Pravarsena II, who founded the city of Srinagar and ruled the state of Kashmir from 79 AD to 139 AD. It is said that he built a cottage near the mesmerising Dal Lake and called it Shalimar, which translates to translates to 'abode of love'. The cottage was destroyed in subsequent years of his death, but the name of this place became popular.
Years later, Mughal Emperor Jahangir built this beautiful garden in this spot and called it Shalimar Bagh after the place, for his queen Nur Jehan. In the 15th century (around 1630 AD) his son and successor Shah Jahan further enhanced and expanded the garden.
Shalimar Bagh garden is built on flat, square-shapedlandwith a 1 mile (1.6 km) long canal connecting it to the Dal Lake which is its water source after various other attempts to making a water source available to it (such as wells) for regular irrigation.
The garden covers a total an area of 12.4 hectares (31 acres) built with a size of 587 metres (1,926 ft) length on the main axis channel, having a total width of 251 metres (823 ft). A channel (which is named “Shah Nahar”) was made the main axis of this garden, going through three of its terraces which also have some pretty water fountains and other add-ons, and added to the square layout of the garden, making it rectangular.
Shalimar Bagh is open to visitors between 9 AM and 7 PM every day, from Saturdays to Thursdays, and is closed onFridays.An entry fee of INR 10 per head is applicable for entering and touring this garden.
Srinagar is the summer capital of the northernmost Indian state Jammu & Kashmir, which is also known as the crown of India. It is well connected to major cities across India. The city can be reached by air, rail or road.