How to chose best HouseBoat for stay during your Kashmir trip? -Peace of Nageen Lake or Hustle Bustle of Dal Lake? Tariffs for Houseboats in Srinagar? and all about Houseboats in Srinagar !

When anyone starts planning for Kashmir Trip, there is always a desire to stay in A HouseBoat and lot of questions pop-up when you think about staying in HouseBoats in Srinagar. Questions like - What kind of Houseboat should I chose?, Which side of Dal Lake should I chose to find a Houseboat?, How people commute to/from these houseboats?, Are there any timings to return back to these houseboats?, Do Houseboat owners provide shikara for reaching road on other side of the lake?, Are there houseboats which are connected to the road without the need for taking a Shikara?, Is Dal Lake better to stay in a Houseboat or Nageen Lake? and a lot more. Apart from answering these questions, we will also provide some insights which will help you in making a conscious call.     First of all, we should understand what a Houseboat is, where are they located, how are they maintained etc. - Houseboats are big wooden boats parked on one of the of the lake which have a home kind of setup with rooms, living area, kitchen, dining area, roof and some of them also have gardens/parks/Lawns. Since there are handful places to stay in Houseboats, it's first choice for most of the tourists coming to Kashmir/Srinagar.

When anyone starts planning for Kashmir Trip, there is always a desire to stay in A HouseBoat and lot of questions pop-up when you think about staying in HouseBoats in Srinagar. Questions like - What kind of Houseboat should I chose?, Which side of Dal Lake should I chose to find a Houseboat?, How people commute to/from these houseboats?, Are there any timings to return back to these houseboats?, Do Houseboat owners provide shikara for reaching road on other side of the lake?, Are there houseboats which are connected to the road without the need for taking a Shikara?, Is Dal Lake better to stay in a Houseboat or Nageen Lake? and a lot more. Apart from answering these questions, we will also provide some insights which will help you in making a conscious call. 


First of all, we should understand what a Houseboat is, where are they located, how are they maintained etc. - Houseboats are big wooden boats parked on one of the of the lake which have a home kind of setup with rooms, living area, kitchen, dining area, roof and some of them also have gardens/parks/Lawns. Since there are handful places to stay in Houseboats, it's first choice for most of the tourists coming to Kashmir/Srinagar. 

Given the weather in Srinagar it's very hard to maintain these houseboats, especially after monsoons.     What kind of Houseboat should I chose?  There are different kinds of Houseboats available to stay around Dal Lake as well as Nagin Lake. and hence they are available in different budgets. If your budget is 8K+, you can chose a good option where you can rely that Houseboat will be well maintained and service will be good. Below this, it can get very unreliable in terms of maintenance, food etc. If you budget is around 3-4K or less, I will strongly suggest to avoid Houseboat and chose a decent hotel in Nishat area which is close to Dal Lake and a nice place to stay.

Given the weather in Srinagar it's very hard to maintain these houseboats, especially after monsoons. 

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What kind of Houseboat should I chose?

There are different kinds of Houseboats available to stay around Dal Lake as well as Nagin Lake. and hence they are available in different budgets. If your budget is 8K+, you can chose a good option where you can rely that Houseboat will be well maintained and service will be good. Below this, it can get very unreliable in terms of maintenance, food etc. If you budget is around 3-4K or less, I will strongly suggest to avoid Houseboat and chose a decent hotel in Nishat area which is close to Dal Lake and a nice place to stay. 


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Which side of Dal Lake should I chose to find a Houseboat?  As shared above, Houseboats are also available around Nageen Lake. So now it depends where would you prefer - Nageen Lake or Dal Lake? Nageen Lake is comparatively calm but there are lesser options on this side. In Dal lake, there are houseboats in area which has hustle bustle and there are some Houseboats on backside as well, which are little far from the road.

Which side of Dal Lake should I chose to find a Houseboat?

As shared above, Houseboats are also available around Nageen Lake. So now it depends where would you prefer - Nageen Lake or Dal Lake? Nageen Lake is comparatively calm but there are lesser options on this side. In Dal lake, there are houseboats in area which has hustle bustle and there are some Houseboats on backside as well, which are little far from the road.  


How people commute to/from these houseboats?  Some of the the Houseboats have roads on the backside so they have 2 options - ask their taxi to pick from back side of the Houseboat or take Shikara to go to other side of the lake. Good Houseboats provide pick/drop with their own Shikara but it can be challenging if it's a big houseboat with multiple guests. In that case you can take private Shikara.     Are there any timings to return back to these houseboats?  Not really, but better to consult with your Houseboat owner. Even if you are staying at a Hotel, recommendation is to be back before it gets dark, so follow the same for Houseboat as well.


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How people commute to/from these houseboats?

Some of the the Houseboats have roads on the backside so they have 2 options - ask their taxi to pick from back side of the Houseboat or take Shikara to go to other side of the lake. Good Houseboats provide pick/drop with their own Shikara but it can be challenging if it's a big houseboat with multiple guests. In that case you can take private Shikara. 

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Are there any timings to return back to these houseboats?

Not really, but better to consult with your Houseboat owner. Even if you are staying at a Hotel, recommendation is to be back before it gets dark, so follow the same for Houseboat as well. 


Do Houseboat owners provide shikara for reaching road on other side of the lake?  Sometimes yes.    Are there houseboats which are connected to the road without the need for taking a Shikara?  Some of the Houseboats are connected to the road on back side.     Is Dal Lake better to stay in a Houseboat or Nageen Lake?  It's a personal choice. I personally prefer Nageen lake due to it's peace in comparison to Dal Lake. Dal Lake also has peaceful sections, so it depends which Houseboat you are choosing.

Do Houseboat owners provide shikara for reaching road on other side of the lake?

Sometimes yes.


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Are there houseboats which are connected to the road without the need for taking a Shikara?

Some of the Houseboats are connected to the road on back side. 


Is Dal Lake better to stay in a Houseboat or Nageen Lake?

It's a personal choice. I personally prefer Nageen lake due to it's peace in comparison to Dal Lake. Dal Lake also has peaceful sections, so it depends which Houseboat you are choosing. 


Final Tip : When you zero down on a Houseboat for your stay in Kashmir, make sure you read it's reviews on multiple platforms as stay is most important aspect and defines the mode of the trip. So spend time knowing upfront about the Houseboat and make a wise choice. 

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