Valley or Vale of Kashmir is a valley located between the Karakoram and the Pir Panjal Range
in the Indian state of Jammu
and Kashmir. It is around 135 km long and 32 km wide, formed by the Jhelum River. Kashmir Valley is one of the three administrative divisions in Jammu and Kashmir state and consists of Anantnag
, Budgam, Bandipore
districts. Mughal emperor Jahangir called it "Paradise on Earth."
Kashmir Valley features a moderate type climate. Its climate is largely defined by its geographic location, with the towering Karakoram Range in the north, Pir Panjal Range in the south and west and Zanskar
Range in the east. It can be generally described as cool in the spring and autumn, mild in the summer and cold in the winter. As a large valley with significant differences in geo-location among various districts, the weather is often cooler in the hilly areas compared to the flat lower part. Summer is usually mild and with good little rain, but relative humidity is generally high and the nights are cool. The precipitation occurs throughout the year and no month is particularly dry.
The hottest month is July (mean minimum temperature 6°C, mean maximum temperature 32°C) and the coldest are December-January (mean minimum temperature −15°C, mean maximum temperature 0°C). Compared with other plain parts of India
, Kashmir valley enjoys a more moderate climate but weather conditions are unpredictable. The recorded high temperature is 33°C and the recorded low is −18°C. On 5 and 6 January 2012, after years of relatively little snow, a wave of heavy snow and low temperatures (winter storm) shocked the valley covering it in a thick layer of snow and ice.
Kashmir valley is a popular tourist destination for domestic (Indian) and foreign tourists. Among the popular tourist places in the valley are Gulmarg
that has a ski resort, Dal Lake
that has popular house boats, Pahalgam
and Amarnath Temple
.Before insurgency intensified in 1989, tourism formed an important part of the Kashmiri economy. The tourism economy in the Kashmir valley was worst hit.
Tourism in the Kashmir valley has rebounded in recent years and in 2009, the state became one of the top tourist destinations of Gulmarg, one of the most popular ski resort destinations in India, is also home to the World
's highest green golf course.However with the decrease in violence in the state has boosted the states economy specifically tourism.It was reported that 736,000 tourists including 23,000 foreigners visited Kashmir in 2010.
Hill Stations And Mughal Gardens: