The summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, Srinagar, is a treasure trove of natural beauty and historical landmarks. The capital city is home to numerous scenic landscapes, including the picturesque Dal Lake, the Zabarwan mountain range, the Mughal Gardens, and the unique floating market.
Srinagar is also replete with numerous attractions, such as the Shalimar Bagh, Jama Masjid and Shankaracharya Mandir. This amalgamation of multiple notable landmarks, pleasant weather, picturesque natural landscapes, and rich culture make Srinagar a revered destination for tourists from all over the globe.
Pari Mahal is one such tourist attraction of Srinagar, which offers the best architectural features and mesmerising views. The palace, which translates to the ‘palace of fairies, ‘ overlooks the beautiful Dal Lake and sits amidst the Zabarwan mountain range.
Reminiscent of Islamic architecture, Pari Mahal Srinagar is a seven-tiered structure with beautiful doorways, arches and landscaped gardens. While the palace’s name depicts it as an abode for fairies, the local legend says evil magicians trapped princesses in this palace against their will.
Also, there were several mythical sightings in this grand structure. Today, however, Pari Mahal is one of the most famous attractions in the beautiful city of Srinagar, with people from all over the world coming to explore it.
- Pari Mahal Timings: 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM (Closed On Fridays)
- Pari Mahal Entry Fee: INR 20/-
Pari Mahal: History
If you’re wondering who built the Pari Mahal, its legacy can be traced back to the mid-1600s. Mughal prince and heir apparent Dara Shikoh, the eldest son of Emperor Shah Jahan, is credited with establishing Pari Mahal Kashmir.
The palace is believed to have been built on the remains of a Buddhist Monastery. After it was built, however, it served as an abode and library for the prince in 1640, 1645 and 1654. The palace’s unique location and height made it into an observatory where the prince learned about astronomy and astrology.
Dara Shikoh was defeated by his younger brother Aurangzeb, who then went on to become the following Mughal Emperor.
Besides establishing this beautiful palace structure, Dara Shikoh was a famous patron of the arts. His extensive collection of calligraphy and painting is highly well-renowned across the world.
Also Read: Places to Visit in Srinagar
Pari Mahal: Architecture And Interiors
Pari Mahal has an exquisite Islamic style of architecture which was prevalent during Shah Jahan’s reign. Unlike other monuments in Kashmir, the Pari Mahal comprises six terraced gardens and intricate arches. The 21 arches adorn the exterior front of the palace and are created in descending order. The entrance to the palace is on the 3rd terrace, and there are two rooms on either side of a hall.
The second terrace of the palace structure has a vast reservoir in the middle, while the topmost terrace consists of ruins of a reservoir also known as a Baradari, as per archaeologists. This structure is a twelve-door pavilion usually used for ventilation through the top of the monument.
The fourth terrace has reservoir ruins, while the 5th terrace has several pigeon holes. A tank is in the middle of the sixth terrace, and octagonal bastions are present on either side of it.
The landscape gardens on the premises are spread over a vast area of 123 meters in length and 63 meters in width. These beautiful gardens are an attraction within themselves as they are home to various colourful flowers, fruit seeds, and a water spring. You can also catch a splendid view of the Dal Lake and the city from the premises of Pari Mahal.
Pari Mahal: Location
Pari Mahal is just a 5 minutes drive from the renowned Cheshma Shahi Gardens of Srinagar and around 10 km from Lal chowk. The palace can be explored in 1-2 hours, and you can later enjoy a small picnic at the gardens here.
As you get ready to explore the beauty of Pari Mahal and the rest of Srinagar, make sure to book a comfortable and luxurious stay. The LaLiT Grand Palace Srinagar is just the right place to be, as our opulent amenities and top-notch hospitality make your stay in the city an unforgettable one.