10 Best Lakes in Uttarakhand: Explore Beauty and Adventure!

15-May-2019 Divyanshi Dhouni0

Our hurly burly lives have left us within a particular borderline of our work and home. When was the last time you went on a trip to calm your nerves?

According to experts, living near water makes your mind and body calm and stressful. We human need as much as Blue as we need Green. What can be better than visiting an alpine lake in the Himalayas?

Uttarakhand, one of the most beautiful hilly state of India is blessed with a huge amount of natural beauty. It is the home to lofty mountain ranges, lush green meadows, mesmerising lakes and soothing climate. Let’s take a look at the best lakes in Uttarakhand which are perfect for your getaway.

Best Lakes in Uttarakhand

Also known as Devbhoomi, the land of Uttarakhand holds many Himalayan lakes, most of them are of great religious significance. Here is a list of these interesting and beautiful lakes which one should visit.

1. Dodital

Dodital is a freshwater lake in the Uttarkashi district of Devbhoomi Uttarakhand. This serene lake is located at an altitude of 3,024 metres above sea level. Dodital is the origin of the tributary of river Ganga, Assi Ganga which later joins Bhagirathi at Gangotri.

dodital - best lakes in uttarakhand

Dodital can be reached by a trek 24 km trek from Sangamchatti which is in Uttarkashi. Most of the part of the trek is gentle and can be easily done by beginners. For reaching Sangamchatti you have to reach Uttarkashi first. Get a bus from New Delhi or Dehradun for Uttarkashi and then proceed to Sangamchatti which is just 19 km away.

This lake is mythologically very important as it is believed to be the birthplace of Lord Ganesha. There is a temple near the lake dedicated to Lord Ganesha. The place is also called as Dhundital in local language which means Lake of Ganesha.

For stay, here is a forest rest house and a basic canteen from where you can get basic food and tea. One can also camp here near the lake by carrying their tents. One can also trek further to Darwa Top if one wishes to.

2. Deoriatal

Deoriatal, an amazing beauty hidden in the mountains of Uttarakhand, lies on the Ukhimath-Chopta road. The lake is located at an elevation of 2,438 m above the sea level. It has lush green surroundings and the views of snow-laden mountain peaks.

The trek starts from Sari which is a village in Ukhimath. Jeeps can be taken for Ukhimath to reach Sari. From Sari, a small trek of 3 km will take you to Deoriatal. Most of the people do this trek along with Chandrashila peak trek. Camping is not allowed near the lake but one can camp in the nearby forest.

deoriatal - best lakes in uttarakhand

There are a couple of small shops for snacks and tea. The lake is famous for the stunning views it provides of the peaks of Chaukhamba, Nilkantha, Bandarpoonch, Kalanag and Kedar range.

Deoriatal also has a mythological connection to Pandavas. The lake is said to be created by Bheem. Some also believe it to be the same lake from where Pandavas were asked questions by Yaksha.

3. Nainital Lake

Nainital, the beautiful hill station of Uttarakhand is also called as the lake district of India. The other lakes Bhimtal, Nakuchiyatal and Sattal are equally alluring.

The name of the lake is Naini Lake which is due to its closeness with the Naini hills at the North-west. This lake is very popular amongst the traveller for a long time and is one of the best lakes in Uttarakhand. The whole town of Nainital is situated around the Nainital lake.

nainital lake - best lakes in uttarakhand

The lake s divided into two parts- Mallital and Tallital. Malli in Kumaoni means upper and Talli means lower. The beauty of the hills and the town is mesmerising during the boat rides. One can see the complete view of the lake from China Peak also called the Naina Peak. The trees of deodar and oak add on to its beauty!

Nainital can be reached from New Delhi overnight. The nearest railway station is Kathgodam. Buses and taxis are easily available from Kathgodam or Haldwani which will drop you at this amazing place in an hour.

4. Bhimtal

Bhimtal is a lake and also a calm hill station resting in the Kumaon hills of Uttarakhand. It is a part of Nainital district and is just 20 km away from the main town of Nainital. This lake is named after Bhima, one of the Pandavas.

bhimtal - best lakes in uttarakhandThis beautiful town of Uttarakhand surrounds this lake which is C- shaped. The main attraction js the floating island in the middle of the which is now a resort with an aquarium built in it. You can do boating here. The views one get while boating here is amazing.

Bhimtal can be reached overnight from New Delhi. By bus, you can come to Haldwani from where you can get a taxi or bus to Bhimtal. Just a drive of 1 hour will take you to this eye soothing destination.

5. Naukuchiyatal

Naukuchiyatal is another lake in the Nainital district. This lake is just 26 km away from Nainital and 4 km from the lake of Bhimtal. The name of the lake is Naukuchiatal because of its shape that has nine corners. Isn’t it interesting? This lake is said to be blessed with Lord Brahma and it is said that anyone taking Parikrama (A round)  of this lake is blessed by Lord Brahma.

naukuchiyatal - best lakes in uttarakhand

This lake is the deepest of all the lakes of this region. It is surrounded by forest area and one can enjoy bird watching and fishing here. An ‘escape festival’ is held here every year in the month of May. One can reach here by bus or train. The nearest railway station is Kathgodam from where one can easily get a taxi to this less explored and an amazing spot.

6. Sattal

Sattal is a group of seven lakes lying in the lower Himalayan region of Uttarakhand. These lakes are Panna Tal or Garud Tal, Nal-Damyanti Tal, Purna Tal, Sita Tal, Ram Tal, Laxman Tal, Sukha Tal or Khurdariya Tal. Sattal is known for its rich biodiversity. It is one of the Himalayan lakes which are untouched and therefore pure.

sattal - best lakes in uttarakhand

Located at an altitude of 1370 m, It lies at a distance of 21 km from Nainital and around 12 km from Bhimtal. The lake is surrounded by a dense forest of Oak and Deodar. Tourist enjoys camping in this naturally graceful location. One can see a variety of fishes and birds here.

7. Roopkund

Roopkund is one of the mystery lake present in the high altitudes of Uttarakhand. This glacial lake lies at an altitude of 5,029 m surrounded by glaciers and snow-clad peaks in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It is a famous trekking destination.

This lake is covered with snow most of the time. It passes through the mesmerising alpine meadows which are enough to give you a heavenly feeling.

roopkund - best lakes in uttarakhand

Roopkund also embeds in itself a secret. When the snow melts, one can see the skeletons lying at the bottom of the lake. According to the researchers, these skeletons are of the people killed in a hailstorm in the 9th century. This is the reason it is also called as Skeleton Lake in recent times.

This lake can be reached by a trek of 8 days which will definitely be one of the most beautiful routes you would ever see on a trekking destination. The base camp for this trek is Lohajung from where the treks start taking you to the adventure full of beauty.

8. Kedartal

Kedartal is a glacial lake located at an altitude of 4,750 metres. Its meaning is the lake of Shiva and it lies in the Garhwal region of Himalayas. The trek to this lake starts from Gangotri which is a hike of 17 km. One has to climb along the narrow Kedar Ganga gorge. The climb is steep and rocky.

kedartal - best lakes in uttarakhand

The route has a great amount of scenic beauty. This area is also known as Himalayan Birch Forest. It can be dangerous sometimes due to rock sliding and steep ascent. The best time to go to Kedartal is from May to September excluding monsoon times which make the trail more difficult. The lake is said to be blessed with powers of Lord Shiva.

9. Santopanth

Satopanth Lake is located at an altitude of 4,600 m above the sea level near Badrinath in Uttarakhand. This lake is believed to be of high religious importance. The locals of Mana village throw the ashes of their dead bodies here.  There lives a saint near the lake who do not speak to anyone, he is believed to live on only air and sunlight.

santopanth - best lakes in uttarakhand

This lake is considered very pure. Many people say that it is the place where Lord Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh bathe. One can see the birds around it cleaning it which never let the lake get polluted.

The nearest railhead is Rishikesh from where buses and taxis can be taken to Badrinath. Buses are available from all other cities of Uttarakhand to here. From Badrinath, get to Mana village which is the last Indian village. A trek of 18 km from here will take you to Satopanth Lake. Visit this lake and enjoy its spirituality.

10. Hemkund

Hemkund is another lake in Uttarakhand of great mythological importance. This lake is my personal favourite in the list of best lakes in Uttarakhand. Not only this, this is one of the favourite routes of the trekkers trekking this region. It is located in Govindghat which is in Joshimath at an elevation of 4,632 metres.

Hemkund has a Gurudwara Sahib, Hemkund Sahib which holds great importance in Sikh pilgrims. It is believed to be the place where the Sikh Guru Gobind Singh Ji took bathe on the orders of God.

hemkund - best lakes in uttarakhand

This place has become very popular in recent times. Hemkund can be reached by trekking which starts from Govindghat. One can reach Govindghat from Rishikesh and then trek to Hemkund which is 9 km trek.

The path is well maintained but the trail is not easy. It remains closed from October to April due to heavy snowfall. Shelters for pilgrims are made in the Gurudwara or can camp near the lake too.


These were the 10 best lakes in Uttarakhand and reaching these is no less than a blessing. You will not only get that spiritual uplift but also the great feeling of connecting to this land. Confused about which one to choose to go? You can ask us anytime!

Divyanshi Dhouni

Author: Divyanshi Dhouni

I am Divyanshi Dhouni. An avid reader, a keen observer and a versatile personality. In love with words, hills and food. Still learning to write! I believe that optimism and self-belief lead to achievement in life!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *