Naranag: Kashmir we know less about

Talking about tourism in Kashmir, will generally take you to Srinagar, Gulmarg, Sonmarg and Pahalgam. No doubt that they are the gems of the valley, but there is still a lot besides these four top spots. Lot many places to see and admire and lot beyond the regular natural beauty spots. Naranag is one of them and it was an altogether different experience for me to visit an archaelogical site in such a scenic surroundings. But equally anguished was I to see such a place in total shambles. Nobody to protect or even take care of such an important site. It has been left to be ruined. I was astonished to see that there was not even a single sign board or a plaque which could give visitors any idea about the site, its history, importance or architecture. Go googling was the only option left.

Naranag is in Ganderbal district of Jammu and Kashmir.  While going to Sonmarg from Srinagar on the Kargil-Leh highway, just before Kangan there is a diversion to west. It takes us to Naranag valley and Naranag village. Naranag has two clusters of temples and historians believe it was built in 8th century by King Lalitaditya. That this was dedicated to Lord Shiva is quite obvious because of the presence of shivlingas here- in the temples and on the carvings. The architecture of the temple is also said to be of that period.

Located on the left bank of the Wangath reiver Naranag is also known for its scenic meadows. It is also base camp for trekkers to the Mount Harmukh, Gangabal Lake and Satsar lake.  There are also long distance treks to Gadsar lake, Vishansar Lake and the Krishansar Lake.

5 thoughts on “Naranag: Kashmir we know less about”

  1. Hope this blog reaches out to the concerned authorities of the government of J&K and the Min of Tourism as well. So aptly written about the place and also it’s condition. Would wish if the local people and the inhabitants take necessary steps to save and restore their pride, these special places..generations next will thank them. I pray. Kudos to the blogger for bringin up the issue more than just posting pictures and info.

  2. Hi, this is satish kumar from bangalore. I have read this and had been to srinagar last week and tried to reach naranag. But due to cut short of time, unable to reach the place. I am very much keen to see the temple. Need to know if any body is performing puja in the temple and if I get their phone number, I can contact them and know about the temple status and we can also take care to build the damage portions of the temple (balalayam). Any body having this information can reach me on +91 9900091218 or +91 9341308596

    1. Hi Satish! Thanks for reading and commenting. Also for the interest in the temple. Actually the temple was in ruins when I visited it a couple of years back. There is no way the situation would have improved as of now. Besides, since the main temple complex is damaged and closed, there is no puja being performed there. So now it is more of historical and archaeological importance then religious one. Decades of militancy has also not helped either in preserving it. Since this complex comes under purview of ASI they will have the best ideas of the way to preserve it. It would be great of course, if there is any way out.

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