Asia’s Largest Tulip Garden Srinagar Continues To Attract Tourists

| Updated: 26 March, 2022 4:17 pm IST

SRINAGAR: Almost 40,000 tourists have visited Asia’s largest Tulip Garden, housing over one million tulips, since it was opened to the public on Wednesday.

Chief Secretary, Dr Arun Kumar Mehta, declared the garden open in presence of senior officers from the Floriculture department, Tourism department, J&K Bank and a large number of tourists, who had come from different parts of the country besides locals.

Immediately attracting a throng of tourists, the garden is swarmed by visitors. The Tulip Garden has been cultivated over months by more than 50 gardeners for the upcoming Tulip Festival.

The opening of Tulip Garden, overlooking the famous Dal Lake, marks the beginning of the new tourism season in Kashmir. The Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden, formerly known as Siraj Bagh, was opened in 2008 by then Chief Minister of erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir state Ghulam Nabi Azad.

The idea of the garden, spread over 30 hectares in the foothills of the snow-clad Zabarwan range, was conceived to advance the tourism season in the valley by two months. The garden houses 1.5 million flowers of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and Muscari.

“In the first three days, about 40,000 tourists including locals visited Asia’s largest Tulip Garden in Srinagar,” a senior Tourism official told The New Indian.

According to official data, on the first day of opening on March 23, a total of 11,143 tourists visited Tulip garden, which included 4,391 locals, 6,751 national and one international visitor.

Last year 2.25 lakh people visited the garden.

This year, the department has made provisions for online ticket sales as well to avoid rush at the ticket counter. The average lifespan of Tulip flowers is three to four weeks, but heavy rains or scorching heat can destroy them. The Floriculture Department plants tulip bulbs in a phased manner so that the flowers remain in the garden for a month or more.

“We have been working for nine months and expect more tourists this year,” said Sheikh Fayaz, Commissioner of Jammu and Kashmir’s Department of Floriculture, prior to the garden’s opening.

Anupam Mishra, a tourist from Maharashtra, said that he had planned his trip during this time so that he could see the Tulip garden. “It is my first time in Kashmir. Having seen the Tulip Garden on TV, I always wanted to visit. I am feeling lucky to be here,” he said.

Besides tourists, locals too turned up in good numbers to visit Tulip garden. ” It is always refreshing to visit Tulip Garden. Knowing that this garden remains open for a few days only, I made sure to visit the garden on day one,” said Mushtaq Ahmad, a Srinagar resident.

“I remember Amitabh Bachchan and Rekha singing amid tulips, so I too want to take pictures in those poses,” said Rampal Singh, a tourist.

This time to make this garden more attractive and comfortable, an open-air cafeteria is constructed in the garden, which is the main attraction for the visiting tourists.

“We work hard round the year to give the best facilities to tourists. This time there are 1.5 million tulips here with 68 varieties. We have added some other flowers also to make the garden more attractive,” said Inaam Ahmad, the Garden in-charge.

“Many filmmakers have approached us to shoot their films here. We welcome them. We are expecting 4 lakh visitors in this season and this will be a huge boost to Kashmir tourism,” he added.

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