A Kashmiri man rows past the shaded windows of a houseboat on Dal Lake.
To take advantage of a loophole in taxation, Raj-era British families built floating homes on Dal Lake. Today the houseboats serve mostly as floating hotels for Indian and foreign tourist alike. On the budget end, paper-thin walls separate sparsely decorated rooms. On the overpriced end, rooms are classed with multiple stars by Srinagar's houseboat owners association.
A bearded Kashmiri man paddles past the deck of a boathouse on Dal Lake.
The Lonely Planet dictates that no trip to Srinagar is complete without a stay on a houseboat. As a result, drooling tourists mindlessly queue up to experience Srinagar's authentic tourist experience ignoring their mid-lake imprisonment (relying on the owner for boat-rides back to shore), mediocre, in-house cuisine while paying accommodation prices that far exceed their on-land equivalent. Give me the freedom of a typical Indian guesthouse over a houseboat any day of the week, including Sundays.
Archived photos (on the weekends) concludes. Stay tuned. Tomorrow, we resume our regularly scheduled Thai island programming.