Dal Lake is in Srinagar, the summer capital of the Jammu and Kashmir. It is a city lake, the second largest lake in Jammu and Kashmir and the most visited place in Srinagar by tourists and locals alike. It is an integral part of tourism and recreation in the Kashmir Valley and is variously known as the ‘Lake of Flowers’, the ‘Jewel in the Crown of Kashmir’ or the ‘Jewel of Srinagar’. The lake is also an important resource for commercial fishing and aquatic plant collection operations.
Dal Lake Srinagar Location
Dal Lake is one of the most famous tourist destinations in the beautiful Kashmir Valley, located in the northernmost part of Jammu & Kashmir. It is known for its breathtaking views, crystal-clear waters, and picturesque surroundings. The lake is surrounded by majestic mountains and is a popular destination for boating and other water activities.
The lake shore, about 15.5 km (9.6 mi), is surrounded by a boulevard lined with gardens, parks, houseboats, and Mughal-era hotels. Picturesque views of the lake can be seen from the coastal Mughal gardens such as Shalimar Bagh and Nishat Bagh built during the reign of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir, and from houseboats cruising along the lake in colorful shikars. During the winter season, the temperature can sometimes reach as low as −11 °C (12 °F), freezing the lake.
Dal Lake Area
The lake covers an area of 18 square kilometers (6.9 sq mi) and is part of a natural wetland that covers 21.1 square kilometers (8.1 sq mi), including its floating gardens. The floating gardens, known as ‘Rad’ in Kashmir, bloom with lotus flowers during July and August. The wetland is divided by dikes into four basins; Gagribal, Lokut Dal, Bod Dal and Nigeen (although Nigeen is also considered an independent lake). Lokut Dal and Bod Dal each have an island in the middle, known as Rupa Lank (or Char Chinari) and Sona Lank.
The beauty of the lake lies in its serene and peaceful environment. The waters of the lake are crystal clear and offer an incredible view of the surrounding mountains. The lake is also famous for its floating gardens, which are unique to this region. These gardens are made of aquatic plants, such as lotus, and are anchored to the lake bed. The gardens can be seen floating on the surface of the water, giving the lake a unique appearance.
Another fascinating feature of Dal Lake is the houseboats. These are traditional wooden boats that have been converted into floating homes. They are decorated with intricate carvings and offer a luxurious stay to visitors. The houseboats are equipped with all modern amenities and offer an opportunity to experience the serene beauty of the lake up close.
Tourism In Dal Lake
The city’s lake is an integral part of tourism and recreation in Kashmir and is called the “jewel in the crown of Kashmir” or the “jewel of Srinagar”. The lake is also an important resource for commercial fishing and aquatic plant collection operations.
Sports Activities at Dal Lake, Srinagar
Dal Lake is also a hub for water sports activities such as kayaking, canoeing, and shikara rides. The shikaras are traditional wooden boats that are brightly painted and decorated with intricate designs. They are a popular mode of transportation on the lake and offer visitors a unique way to explore its beauty.
The lake is also a birdwatcher’s paradise. It is home to several migratory birds, including Siberian cranes, herons, and kingfishers. The best time to visit the lake for bird watching is between October and March when the migratory birds arrive.
Dal Lake Srinagar Depth
The lake is a wide salt marsh whose water depth varies from less than 60 centimeters (24 in) during the dry season to about 3 meters (10 ft) towards the end of the storm season. It has a zone of 190 to 230 square kilometers depending on the season.
Do these houseboats move? No, unlike the houseboats you find in Kerala, these houseboats in Kashmir do not move. They are permanently anchored lengthwise by the lake and give you a stunning view of the lake from your bedroom.
Shikara Rides at Dal Lake
More than 40,000 people live on Dal Lake including Shikara owners, houseboat owners, vegetable growers, handicraft traders and fishermen. Tourism, agriculture and fishing form the backbone of the economy on the lake. There are more than 4500 registered owners of Shikaras
Dal Lake is also surrounded by several important landmarks and tourist destinations. The Mughal Gardens, Nishat Bagh, and Shalimar Bagh are all located near the lake and offer a glimpse into the rich history and culture of the region.
A Shikara ride is one of the most soothing and relaxing aspects of a Kashmir holiday. Shikara are the long boats that crowd Srinagar’s lakes. Dal Lake is famous for its beauty and tourists from all over the world visit Dal Lake during their visit to Kashmir. Dal Lake is the second largest lake in the state.
In conclusion, Dal Lake is a unique and breathtaking destination that offers a glimpse into the natural beauty and cultural richness of the Kashmir Valley. It is a must-visit for anyone traveling to the region and is sure to leave a lasting impression on visitors. The lake’s tranquil waters, stunning surroundings, and floating gardens and houseboats make it a truly unique and unforgettable destination.