Jammu and Kashmir: An Overview

Jammu: A quick overview of places of historical, cultural and religious importance

Jammu and Kashmir map
Jammu and Kashmir explainer series

The Jammu province is hugely diverse in whichever way you want to see. From independent history of its sub-regions -once known as Hill States -to distinct geography and rich diversity of language, culture and religion, Jammu region offers a lot to explore.

Following is a brief introduction to the places of historical, cultural and religious interest within Jammu city and across the Jammu province.

Bahu Fort: It is a renowned historical temple of Goddess Mahakali popularily known as Bawe-Wali Mata. The fort overlooks the river Tawi flowing placidly down the Jammu City.

Mubarak Mandi Complex: The complex is housing 76 government offices and courts. The complex has a history as old as 150 years back. It was a royal residence of Dogra rulers. The palaces are built as a group of buildings around the courtyard. Successive Dogra rulers added to the complex in size. The buildings were used as the residences of the royal Dogra families. The complex has halls and galleries which were used for official functionsand public events.

Amar Mahal Museum: Is a beautiful palace of red sand stone which stands amidst most picturesque horizons of Jammu. Once the residential palace of Raja Amar Singh, the palace has been converted into a museum and is looked after by Hari-Tara Charitable trust. The museum still has the golden throne on which Maharaja used to sit, which is made up of 120 Kg pure. The museum has a gallery of paintings known as the Naldamyant and a library in which about 25,000 books on various subjects and disciplines have been presented.

Dogra Art Museum: It is presently located in the Pink Hall of Mubarak Mandi Complex. The Museum houses about 800 rare and exuisite paintings from different schools of paintings-viz. Basholi, Jammu and Kangra. Gold painted bow and arrow of Mughal Emperor Shahjehan and a number of carpentry tools also make an important section of the museum. The museum also has hand written manuscripts of Shahnama and Sikandernama both in Persian.


Ziarat Baba Buddan Shah: Located in the outskirts of Jammu city at a distance of about 8 Kms towards the aerodrome at Satwari. This shrine is very popular among all sections of society. Baba Buddan Shah was borne at Talwandi in Punjab, and it is said that another shrine of this Peer is located at Anandpur Sahib in Punjab.


Ziarat Baba Roshan Shah Wali: An Arabian faquir in 6th century travelled the Asian penninunsula and came to Jammu to settle at the plateau outside the town in a dense forest. The exceptionally large grave built on the slope of Gumat speaks about his lofty personality.

Ziarat Peer Mitha: In the heart of Jammu city we find a magnificent tomb alongwith a mosque. The Ziarat is popularily known as Peer Mitha. Even the locality around it is named after the Ziarat. The ziarat became popular among the masses as Pir Mitha as he accepted a pinch of sugar among the offerings.

Panch Peer: This dargah is situated at a little distance from the Maharaja’s palace on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway. The place is as known because of the residence of five peers (holymen), lived here and dedicated themselves to the meditation.

Dargah Garib Shah: This dargah is located at Samba. The Peer had immense spiritual powers and he is included in those Muslim saints who had a large number of devotees from all the faiths and religions. Garib Shah’s samadhi is looked after by the local Hindus.

Peer Khoh: This cave shrine of Lord Shiva also known as Jamawant cave is said to be the oldest historic place in the Shivalik region. Located amidst Igenous rocks and acacia jungle in North-East of Jammu city on the side of circular road above Tawi river, the history of the cave is said to be connected with epic-age.

Aap Shambhu Temple Sathrian: Is a temple situated at Sathrian in Roopnagar area of Jammu city. The stone temple has self-made stone Lingam. According to a legend, in the times immemorial this entire place was an uninhabited jungle, the milky cows and buffaloes used to come to the Lingam after grazing and shed entire milk on the Lingam.

Raghunath Temple: Located in the heart of Jammu city, this complex is the most splendid temple complex in Northern India. The main commercial market of Jammu is named after the temple complex. The complex consists of 17 temples. However, it was named after the main temple of Lord Rama, Sita Mata and Lakshman as the Dogra dynasty is believed to be the descendant of Lord Rama. There is hardly any image of diety which is not represented in the temple complex.

Gadhadharji Temple: Maharaja Gulab Singh also constructed a Gadhadhargi temple near his palace (Mubarak Mandi) soon after becoming the ruler of the State. The temple has two life size statues of Narayana and Lakshmi.

Ranbireshwar Temple: It is the biggest Shiva temple in North India. Got constructed by the Dogra rulers, this temple has the biggest Lingam of 7 ft. in black stone. In two big halls, there are 1.25 lakh “bona Lingam” brought from Narmadda. There are huge images of Ganesha, Kartikeya and Nandi Bull. this temple was constructed by Maharaja Ranbir Singh.

Panchbakhter Temple: This is one of the oldest shiva temples of Jammu

Purmandal: It is about 40kms from Jammu city. It is called little Kashi and is located on the banks of holy Devika river considerd as sacred as Ganges. Large number of people visit the place on Shivratri and Chaitra Chaudashi.

Nagbani: It is a historic place and there is a temple of Nagdevta. Presently Maharaj Hari Singh Agricultural Collegiate School is located at the place of Royal Arsenal.

Gurudwara Sh. Guru Nanak Devji: It is situtated in upper bazar near mubarak mandi complex. It has 3ft tall white colored marble statue of guru Nank Devji. Maharja Partap Singh is said to have installed the statue.

Samadhi Maharani Chand Kour: This smadhi is situated at Gumat near River Tawi. This is associated with Maharani Chand Kour who was the wife of Sardar Kharak Singh the eldest son of Maharaj Ranjit Singh. He sat on the throne after the death of Maharaja Ranjit Singh.

Chichi Mata: It is situated near Samba and is popularly known as Pehla Darshan of Vaishno Devi pilgrims.

Churches: The city has also a number of historic churches. Of them, Protestant church on wazarat Road is the oldest Church. Other churches are Roman Catholic Church near Jewel chowk and presentation church of virgin Mary. Another Church is St.Mary Church on G.L.Dogra Road.

Jasrota: Jasrota was founded by Raja Jas Dev of Jammu in 1019 A.D. Jasrotias ruled this state upto 1834 A.D., when it was given to Raja Hira Singh.

Billawar: Tehsil headquarter town of the district is belived to be capital. In earlier times Billawar is known as Vallapura, the hilly state finds mention in the Rajatarangni as capital of the state till 1630 A.D.

Mankote: Was fonded by Raja Manak Dev, a contemporary of Raja Narsingh Dev of Jammu (1272-1314 A.D.). It was renamed by Raja Suchet Singh (1822-43) as Ramkote.

Lakhanpur: Raja Sangram Singh,founded Lakhanpur state. Lakhanapur is known as the gateway of Jammu & Kashmir.

Bhadu: A prominent town of Billawar tehsil. Bhadu town is situated on Bhini nallah, a tributary of Ujh river.

Tirkote: Tirkote Near Jasrota and Jandi near Hiranagar were also important states/principalities in the district.

Thanamandi: This is an important historical place from the time of Mughals who used to stay here during journey from Delhi to Kashmir and vice versa. The climate of this place is very charming and infact a health resort. It is also famous for its artistic wooden products. The famous shirne of Shahdara Shariaf is 6 Kms from this place.

Dhandidhar Fort: It is a historical monument located on a hill in the vicinity of Rajouri town.This fort was probably constructed by Mughal King during the reign of Emperor Jahangir nearly 400 years back.It is just 2 Kms.away from Rajouri presenting panoramic and impressive view of the entire area.

Usman Memorial: Usman Memorial has been constructed at Jhangar in the memory of Brig.Usman who was mainly responsible for freeing the captured area around Jhangar. After having captured this strategic area, Brig. Usman convened a conference of army officers to decide future course of action. Meanwhile, he fell to heavy shelling of the enemy on 3rd July 1948.This great memorial is maintained by the Infantry Unit located at Jhangar. The heroic deeds of army men as well as civilians who died while fighting in this area are commemorated every year on 3rd of July as “Jhangar Day”.

Balidan Bhawan: This Bhawan is a memoir of great sacrifices made by the people of Rajouri during 1947-48.On the night of Diwali in October-November 1947,the Pakistani marauders forcibly captured the town when indian army was operating in other parts of the district.The marauders mercilessly put to death thousands of men and women,old and young,infants and children and plundered the town in lust of wealth and booty.The Indian army liberated the town on 13th April,1948 the day of Baisakhi festival.The Bhawan since then has been dedicated to the sacrifices of those heroes and was given the name of Balidan Bhawan .

War Memorial: It has been raised at Gujjar Mandi Chowk in Rajouri township. Rajouri was liberated by the Indian army on 13th April 1948.Major General Kulwant Singh launched an attack against Pakistani forces who had converted the site of present airfield into a slaughter ground.

Hall of Fame: On the top of the mound,the great memorial Hall of Fame has been constructed in commemoration of the heroic deeds of those who had laid down their lives for the sake of their motherland in the sectors of Rajouri and Poonch.

Buddha Amarnath: Twenty-five Kms.in the north east of Poonch town is situated an ancient temple of Lord Shiva on the left bank of Pulsta stream. The area is known as Rajpura mandi two Kms. above mandi village. This is a unique Shiva Temple which is located on the foot hill and not on the hill top and secondly the Shivaling of white stone is not self-made. The stream which flows near it, is Loran stream but it is believed by the locals the Ravan’s grand father Pulasta Rishi performed his tapasya and thus is known as Pulsta stream. This shrine is said to be older than of Amarnathji of Kashmir. Thousands of people visit on Rakhsa Bandhan.

RamKund: Another well-known shrine located about 68 Kms. from Poonch town is that of Ram Kund. Believed to be of Mahabharat period,it is just 11 Kms.away from Mendhar. The temple was said to be constructed by Raja Lalitaditya while others believe that Raja renovated it,and originally it was constructed by Lord Rama when he was on his way to Kashmir. There are three springs. People take bath on first of bright half of Chaitra.

Ziarat Sain Miran Saheb: Situated in village Guntrian, 10 Kms. from Poonch,the Ziarat of saint Sain Mira Sahib is a popular pilgrim centre, hundreds of devotees visit this Ziarat.

Nangali Sahib: Nangali Sahib Gurudwara is situated on the left bank of Drungli Nallah, which is four Kms. away from Poonch City. This gurudwara was established by Sant Bhai Mela Singh who is said to have visited this shrine in 1810 A.D.when he was on his way to conquer Kashmir.

Ziarat Chhotay Sahib: Located 58 Kms.away from Poonch and 4 Kms.from Mendhar this Ziarat is situated in the village Sakhimaidan. Hundreds of piligrims come to this place every day.

Babore Temples: A very impressive site of Archaeeological importance in the State. Ruins of 06 temples exist in an area of 1 Km. It is around 50 Kms. from Udhampur Dhar road near Manwal. These bear resemblance to the temples built by Lalitaditya, the ruler of Kashmir in the 8th Century A.D at Wangat in Kashmir. Only the ruins of 03 temples have been identified.

Krimchi Temples: These are in the village of Krimchi in the NorthWest of Udhampur town. These temples resemble in shape and pattern of Baijnath and Lingaraja temple at Bhuvneshwar in Orissa. The images of Ganesh, Shiva, Trimurti and Vishnu.

Sheesh Mahal of Ramnagar: This palace was built by Raja Ram Singh in 1885 in Ramnagar. This palace of mirrors is decorated with profusely painted murals, paintings showing scenes from Ramayan, Mahabharat and battle scenes from Suchet Singh and Ram Singh’s life.

Ramnagar Fort: Another historic building near Sheesh Mahal is Ramnagar fort overlooking Mansa Devi Nallah. This is a protected monument taken over by Archeological Survey of India in 1972.

Reasi Fort: It is claimed that this fort in Reasi was either built or associated with greatest Dogra warrior Gen. Zorawar Singh.

Ghora Gali: It is a famous historic place situated aside Gool bazar. Stone carved horses with their riders, mini ponds built of carved stones and many more works of sculptures are the main attractions of this venue.


The Dispatch is present across a number of social media platforms. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for exciting videos; join us on Facebook, Intagram and Twitter for quick updates and discussions. We are also available on the Telegram. Follow us on Pinterest for thousands of pictures and graphics. We care to respond to text messages on WhatsApp at 8082480136 [No calls accepted]. To contribute an article or pitch a story idea, write to us at [email protected] |Click to know more about The Dispatch, our standards and policies