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There is so much to Kashmir that it is impossible to summarize it in any meaningful way, layers of history, culture, conflict and suffering weaved into a land that is breathtakingly beautiful and people that have lived through the joys and trepidations on a land steeped in beauty and conflict. Over the years, a lot has been written, filmed and narrated. Medias from different regions of the world have projected their own versions, and we have read and heard numerous narratives which have continued to evolve in today’s world of social media, algorithm-based feeds and our sub-conscious need to align with and get validation for our own thoughts and beliefs. It is hard to listen to a story that differs from what we have and what we want to believe, so we can forgive ourselves for not opening our minds, but nonetheless we should make an attempt to open up to stories that are different from ours, without the glasses of preconceived truth and judgement, for we all live our own lives in our own little bubble of reality. When we travel and open up our minds, we discover bigger realities, some enlightening, some discomforting, some life changing. The truth is there are more stories to be told and more realities to be encountered!
We were always fascinated by Kashmir and wanted to visit the palace to experience it ourselves. Kashmir is often referred to as the Switzerland of India. Our trip to Kashmir was also propelled by the fact that we have friends in Kashmir who we have known for over two decades and who have always invited us to visit them and experience the real Kashmir while staying with them. We could not resist the temptation of seeing the valley as a guest of local Kashmiri people and explore the beauty of the nature, rich heritage and history and to also enjoy the mouth-watering culinary legacy of the region. This is our account of how we saw and experienced ‘Kashmir’.
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