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    • Mithlesh Dhar

      Shiv Khori - a magnificent Cave Shrine in Jammu and Kashmir | Shiv Khodi Cave Shrine of Jammu and...

      Shiv Khori - a magnificent Cave Shrine in Jammu and Kashmir | Shiv Khodi Cave Shrine of Jammu and Kashmir
      Jammu city in India is a land of temples, and today we are going to read about the beautiful Cave Shrine of Shiv Khori, which looks just magnificent from inside and out. There are several myths about this cave as well, so stay tuned to know more...
      • Mithlesh Dhar

        Answer on What is it like to live in Jammu?

        Jammu is a city in the Jammu and Kashmir UT in India. It is one of the few places where you will find several temples and also scenic beauty. Although Kashmir has always been one of the attractions of Jammu and Kashmir region, still...
          Mithlesh Dhar
          Jammu is a city in the Jammu and Kashmir UT in India. It is one of the few places where you will find several temples and also scenic beauty. Although Kashmir has always been one of the attractions of Jammu and Kashmir region, still...

          Jammu is a city in the Jammu and Kashmir UT in India.

          It is one of the few places where you will find several temples and also scenic beauty. Although Kashmir has always been one of the attractions of Jammu and Kashmir region, still there are several places in Jammu that are scenic and beautiful.

          People from different parts of India come to Jammu specifically for Mata Vaishno Devi, which makes it one of the popular religious tourist destinations, and they usually also visit places like Patnitop Nathatop, which are at a bit higher altitude because of which tourists are also able to see snow.

          As most of the southern regions of India don't see much snow and cold during winters, people from southern regions come to Jammu and Kashmir region to spend their vacation time in this part of India.

          Is there any terrorism in Jammu?
          Several people who want to visit Jammu and Kashmir, usually ask me if there is any terrorism in Jammu as such. To every one of you who wants to visit Jammu, there is no terrorism in Jammu City and other adjoining cities or districts, and usually, the place is more secure than any other border state in India.

          Still, terrorism is a global issue and borders are close, there may be some infiltration but most of the time it is a safe place for any tourist.

          You can even be standing on a bus or train station at around 3 or 4 AM and no one will touch you. Even the language is similar to Punjabi, and most people like to speak Hindi as well if there is someone from another part of India to guide them. But it is always a better idea to have some local contacts wherever you go.

          The purpose of writing the above paragraph was to let you know that Jammu is as safe as any place in India, and you should not be afraid to visit. I have several of my relatives and friends from other states that visit the Jammu region every year to visit Mata Vaishno Devi Temple and explore other parts of Jammu as well.

          What all places are there to visit in Jammu?
          Most of the time people that visit Jammu and Kashmir, go for Mata Vaishno Devi Temple, but there are several different places that you can explore in the Jammu region. Below is a list of places where you can visit in Jammu:

          1. Shiv Khodi
          2. Siyad Baba Waterfall
          3. Swarg Ashram in Talwara
          4. Patnitop
          5. Nathatop
          6. Aap Shambhu Temple
          7. Raghunath Temple
          8. Bagh-E-Bahu
          9. Bahu Fort
          10. Aquarium at Bagh-E-Bahu
          11. Hanuman Temple at Rehari
          12. Jaggar Kotli
          13. Sulla Park
          14. Mansar Lake
          15. Hill Sides around Kotbalwal
          16. Salal Dam Project
          17. City Market

          There are several other places also that I will be adding to the above list, and most of the places are nearby Jammu. Although these might not be exactly in Jammu but places like Reasi and other districts.

          Still, most people are unaware of these places and always end up in well-known places, which are always crowded. 

          It is also good to have a local person with you that can take you to these places, and you can also do shopping in the City Market. I will try to mention areas where you can shop for awesome items and clothes.

          From my childhood we used to go to the same market for buying our clothes may be school or party wear. Also, you will be able to find several dry fruit shops nearby the Raghunath Temple that you can explore.

          So, what is it like to live in Jammu?
          Jammu is a beautiful place, and maybe because of the need for more development it looks a bit old, but for people like me that have grown up in areas of Jammu and surrounding cities, it is one of the best places to be in.

          During summer, Jammu is really hot, so it is always better to go there after August or September when the weather starts becoming a bit cool.

          I love the weather in Jammu after August, we are able to see the chillness of winds like nowhere in India and are also able to enjoy those small lanes and roads where I used to walk to go for tuition.

          You will also love the simplicity of the town and will be able to enjoy the weather as well.

          Having said that living in Jammu is like living in the past and in Nostalgia when we had our independent houses that we used to explore in our childhood. Also, walking in the morning at Jammu is a great experience. You usually don't see the same monotonous streets. You see several ups and downs on the roads because of which you are able to exercise your legs in a better way.

          Also, the facilities in Jammu are good, like any other city, although there used to be electricity cuts when I was a kid. We used to have electricity for 4 hours and then there used to be a cut for 2 hours. I think the infrastructure has improved, still, there are some times when electricity cuts happen, so most of us have invertor at our homes.

          Voltage fluctuations are normal, so we usually have huge voltage stabilizers at our home and our fridges and ACs also have stabilizers attached to them.

          The education system in Jammu is also good, and most of the schools and colleges are having good faculties that helped us in becoming what we are today, still, improvements can be made, and I am not sure if the same is being followed after I completed my 10+2.

          Talking about food, initially, it was only about panipuri that was famous, but these days I am able to see several restaurants and dhabas also opened and do sell momos and spring rolls.

          Jammu also is famous for Kandur Wans, which are typical Kashmiri Bakery Outlets, that are famous among Kashmiri Pandits. You should definitely try the breads that are baked in those outlets.

          As a normal life of Kashmiri Pandits in Jammu, we used to take our bags and used to buy Bread two times a day. For breakfast and for evening tea as well. I used to love Katlam and Telwor during evening tea.

          There are different types of bread that are being sold in those outlets like;

          1. Kulcha
          2. Telwor
          3. Katlam
          4. Choch
          5. Gird
          6. Khatai
          7. Lavas
          8. Bagirkhani
          9. Tak Tich
          10. Roth

          These were some of the bread that I remember right now. I will try to add some more as soon as I remember them. Khatain out of those was the favorite of several kids as those were sweet cookies like, but big in size.

          So if you are living in Jammu, you will also love to relish these breads at least 2 times a day.

          It also depends on which area of Jammu are you residing in because if you are more towards Janipr, Durga Nagar, Muthi, and Bantalab, then you will have more Kashmiri Pandits, having said that you will also be able to find more shops that cater to our community.

          When you go more toward Bantalab, Akhnoor, or Kot Balwal, then you will find more open lands and areas with lush green surroundings. It is more like being in a countryside area.

          Most houses are huge with private gardens which are usually used by kids to play sports. This is mostly because the apartment system is not that famous in those parts of Jammu and new apartments have just started coming. Also, because there is less exposure to industries like IT or Cosmetics, therefore for employment most of the youth of Jammu is now moving towards others.

          I also started my career in Chandigarh then moved to Pune for higher studies and now settled in Hyderabad.

          But I usually think of gaining good experience and moving back to Jammu to live a more leisure life. Although hard work is more in terms of electricity and water, still living in a place like Jammu has its own perks.

          You feel more connected to nature and also the culture that surrounds you. You feel as if the whole city is your neighborhood, because Jammu city is not that big, still if you have a nack for exploring surrounding areas, then it is one of the most unexplored areas in India.

          If you own a large farmhouse in Jammu, you can easily make good money through the tourism industry especially in the winter season, because during winter Jammu is one of the best places to explore.

          As Jammu is comparatively a small city, therefore, most of the people you see are always there. You will be able to recognize everyone in the city once you start living there and everyone will know that you exist. It's not like a big metro city where you will not see your friend the next day you travel. You are bound to bump into each other in Jammu no matter what, and this is amazing because you start having trust in the people you see on a daily basis, and this in turn creates a more humble relation with each other.

          When you go to tuition, or school, and then college, you end up seeing everyone every day and you are also traveling in the same buses every single day. Those buses or matadors are always taking their time for a few more passengers and you can even ask the driver to wait as your friend is coming from his home, and they will wait indeed.

          It's not like other cities, where time is a constriant. We know that we will have to take some time in advance because the transport especially the intracity buses or matadors move as per their own convenience. Although you can ask the driver or conductor to drive fast if you are getting really late and they usually oblige as well.

          Sometimes back when I used to travel to tuition and school, we even used to stand on the back of buses on the railings because the busses used to be full inside and there was no other space to stand. So, we used to climb on the stairs at the back of the matador or bus and wait there until the bus stops because we cannot shout and tell the conductor or driver to stop the bus.

          But I believe now it is illegal to do so, as there would have been some accidents also, still, it was a fun part as we were young and it was not considered taboo in Jammu City. This was how it was considered to travel in Jammu City as Normal. Let alone the thought of having seat belts in busses or ACs.

          When buses used to get stuck in heavy traffic, especially in Janipur Chowk, it was suffocating for me as well. If there was someone from another state, they would faint in those busses because they were cramped with so many people that each one of us had only one leg space to stand.

          Travelers were pushed onto buses and the conductor used to climb on the door and kept everyone inside. There were no stops as such and the conductor used to whistle to indicate the driver to stop.

          It was kind of effective as well because they were really good in understanding those signals and used to stop correctly anywhere they found space. They would even come to your house as long as it was on main road. :D

          Last time I visited Jammu it was still the same, but there were some infrastructure upgrades happening and the roads were more connected to each other. Although there was enough work to be done, but the upgrade of the city was on a pace. 

          I bet most of the people who lived in Jammu would be able to connect with the information that is in this blog and maybe able to share similar experiences.

          Jammu is one of the best places to live in India and you should definitely visit this place, but I will recommend you guys to visit it after August or September because before that it is just too hot to deal with the sun.

          You can really have a great retro relish in this city of temples and also be able to gain experiences that many of the travelers are not able to do during their trip to Jammu and Kashmir. 

          Last but not the least, don't forget to eat Chole Kulche or Kaladi Kulche in Jammu City (Old City) at the Sardar Ji's shop. I will add the address soon. :)


          • Mithlesh Dhar

            Mithlesh Dhar

            Safakadal, IndiaHi, I have been working on several projects to connect creators with the world. Feel free to write for any feedback.