The culture of Jammu and Kashmir is a comprehensive mingling of customs and practices of its three distinct regions, Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh. Apart from its demographically variations, specific cultural diversions of its elements are what make the culture of Jammu and Kashmir remarkable. Music, dance, cuisine, lifestyle, festivals all these only highlight the diversities prevalent in these provinces. Unity is restored when a common thread of cultural tradition binds them together thus making it a part of Jammu and Kashmir as a whole. Culture of Jammu and Kashmir is therefore an interesting reflection of color, zest, harmony and concord which makes Jammu and Kashmir to stand apart with its distinct features of age old tradition and deep ethnicity.
Jammu and Kashmir has few of the most captivating forms of performing arts in India that has captured the imaginations of one and all. These dances have become a non detachable part of this state’s culture and are performed at almost all festivals and celebrations. There are special dances for almost all occasions like birth celebrations, wedding ceremonies, crop harvesting. Be it the dances of J&K or the music, they have this special aura about them that make you feel as a part of the performance even if you are just a spectator watching it in front of your eyes or sitting miles away enjoying it through media. There are many shows organized as well where you can witness the mesmerizing art forms apart from watching them in festive celebrations. This makes Jammu and Kashmir a hot favourite destination among tourists.
|Fairs and Festivals in Jammu and Kashmir|
|Fairs and Festivals in Leh Ladakh|
Cuisine of Jammu and Kashmir has become world famous for its uniqueness and variety. The most famous Kashmiri non-veg dishes named Wazwan are seekh kababs, tabak maz Roganjosh, Yakhni and Gushtaba, and the renowned veg dishes are Dum Aloo and Chaman. The cuisine is now compared to other international cuisine’s like Continental cuisine, Chinese cuisine and Indian cuisine. Cuisine of Jammu and Kashmir is nothing less than a treasure for the food lovers. The cuisine here is absolutely different from the cuisine of north India. In fact, every region has its own specialty. Unlike in other parts of India, the meals here are highly dominated by non- vegetarian dishes and the staple food here is rice. The variety during festivals is simply unimaginable and this variety brings a new edge to your travel in J&K during festivals. One thing you will never remember about your meal are the number of dishes you had as you will be served with endless amount of courses. The use of spices in every dish is also highly intriguing in Kashmiri food.
Jammu and Kashmir is one of those states that has become famous for its many sided culture. The three regions namely Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh have different people with their diverse culture and traditions. Jammu is dominated by Hindu population, Kashmir has major Muslim population and in Ladakh, most people follow Buddhism. But one thing that is common to people all regions is the love, affection, and tolerance they have for each other. Even tourists are considered as a part of the family. If you ask a locale about a place to stay, you will probably end up enjoying your vacation in his home, and if you like something worn by a locale and ask him where he bought it from, he will probably offer the same thing to you. That is how simple people of Jammu and Kashmir are, far away from artificial feelings, and deception of life. The lifestyle of people is totally different from that of adjoining states. The food they eat, the dresses they wear, the language they speak is all different and unique. Though Ladakh region shows a strong resemblance to Tibet in all things.
The female section in Jammu and Kashmir attire themselves with beautiful jeweler like earrings, necklaces, nose rings, bangles, earrings and colourful dresses whereas the men section feel comfortable in the ethnic wear which is skullcaps, churidar, pyjamas, salwars, and gurgabi. Phiran is a woollen attire decorated with the colourful patches of floral motifs and lot of embroidery work done on it. The dress code of the people of Jammu and Kashmir reflects the true picture of their lifestyle and culture. It also proves that India is stll carrying the legacy of its culture and cultural values.