Travel: Kashmir

A uniquely captivating region of Northern India with the most extraordinary landscape and natural beauty.

Kashmir (Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh) is bordered by Pakistan to the west and China to the north and east.

 Due to continued instability and conflict in this region, Kashmir feels like it has been preserved in time. The complicated political turmoil has meant there has been little investment in the region and as a result the area feels quite untouched by the modern world. There is a very distinctive style to the decoration and architecture due to the unique geology and climate of the area. The beautiful lakes have a history of featuring the most exquisite hand carved house boats which I had the opportunity of staying in when I last visited. Waking up to the most breath taking scenery, water lilies and king fishers each morning. While the houses feature extremely sloped roofs for the deep winter snows and everything is on stilts to keep it above the snow drifts that arrive each year. They are like exotic Swiss Chalets. 

It is in the winters that a lot of the handicraft is made as most of the craft makers are farmers and augment their income in the winter months producing some of the hand crafts that the region has become famous for. We produce our hand embroidered crewel work here but the area is also famous for papier-mache, hand carved walnut wood, woollen shawls and carpets. The handicraft industry remains an important contributor to the Kashmiri economy.