According to authors Sophie and Max Lovell-Hoare, the Mughal Gardens are far more than just collections of plants.Read more...
Kashmir - At a glance
Jammu and Kashmir at a glance
Location A state of India located mostly in the Himalayan Mountains. International border with China in the north and east; the Line of Control separates it from Pakistani-controlled territories in the west and northwest.
Area 222,236km2 (85,806 square miles)
Climate Varies from subtropical to mountain desert depending on altitude
Population est. 13m (2013)
Life expectancy 65.8 (male), 68.1 (female)
Capital Jammu (winter), Srinagar (summer)
Other main towns Kargil, Leh
Main exports Agricultural produce, handicrafts
GDP US$12.6 billion (2012–13)
Official language Urdu. English, Hindi, Ladakhi and Kashmiri are also widely spoken.
Religions Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism
Currency Indian rupee (Rs); for up-to-date rates, go to www.xe.com.
National airline Air India
International dialling code +91
Time GMT + 5½ hours
Electric voltage 240v
Weights and measures Metric
Flag Orange, white and green horizontal stripes with a chakra in the centre
National anthem ‘Jana Gana Mana’
Major sports Hockey and ice hockey, polo, water sports, skiing
Public holidays* 26 January (Republic Day), 27 February (Maha Shivaratri), 17 March (Holi), 1 April (Bank Holiday), 14 April (Dr Ambedkar Jayanti), 14 May (Buddha Purnima), 25 July (Jumat-ul-Wida), 29 July (Eid al Fitr), 15 August (Independence Day), 18 August (Janmashtami), 30 September (Bank Holiday), 2 October (Mahatma Gandhi’s Birthday), 4 October (Dussehra), 6 October (Eid al Zuha), 23 October (Diwali), 4 November (Muharram), 6 November (Guru Nanak Jayanti), 25 December (Christmas Day)
* These dates are correct for 2014. As some of the religious festivals are calculated according to the lunar calendar, dates will change from year to year.
(Photo: Srinagar’s legendary houseboats, the beautifully carved cedar wood structures that float romantically on the lively Dal Lake © filmlandscape, Shutterstock)