Lake Phewa is found in Pokhara Valley. It is Nepal’s second largest lake, having an area of more than 4 square kilometers. According to experts, the lake has actually shrunk from its original size of 9 square kilometers. It has a depth of 22.8 meters at its deepest part but its average depth is just 8.6 meters.
The lake holds an amazing 46 million cubic meters of water. It is a major source of drinking water, fisheries, hydroelectricity, irrigation, and recreation in the Pokhara Valley region. Commercial fishing activities are done here.
The lake is most famous for its wonderful reflection of Mount Machapuchare on its waters. This mountain, which is situated about 25 kilometers to the north of Pokhara, belongs to the Annapurna Himal. Its name means “fish tail” when translated in English because its two summits, when viewed from afar, look like the tail of a fish.
If you are going to Pokhara Valley, never pass up the chance to see Lake Phewa. Tourists often go to the north shore where there are small, charming hotels, restaurants, and shops for visitors. However, if you want a good view of the lake reflecting Mount Machapuchare, go to the southeastern part of Pokhara where there are bigger hotels and where the lake can be viewed best.
If you want to have more than a view of the lake, you can go and enjoy a lazy day of boating on its waters. There are many boats for hire on the site. Some travel agencies can also arrange this for you. There is nothing like rowing on a lake’s calm waters with the magnificent Annapurna as backdrop. You may hire a local boatman to do the rowing for you if you want to just relax on the boat. You may also go fishing on Lake Phewa. The fishing rods can be rented in Pokhara, and these usually come complete with bait.
In the middle of the lake, you will see a small island. This island holds an important place of worship, the Barahi Temple. It was built in honor of the god Varahi who had the form of a wild boar and was believed to be the third incarnation of Vishu. People go to this temple and bring animals to be offered as sacrifices to Varahi.
About 1.5 kilometers south of the lake, you will find the Phewa Power House. This is a hydropower facility that supplies hydroelectricity to Pokhara and the nearby towns. People go here not to see the facility but to look at the natural beauty that surrounds it. Aside from Lake Phewa, there are other lakes found in Pokhara. These lakes are Rupa, Begnas, Maidy, Neurani, Deepang, Gude, and Khastey.
You can reach Pokhara by taking a bus from Kathmandu. Buses leave Kathmandu at 5 am. The last trip to Pokhara leaves at around noon. Take a tourist bus for a more comfortable ride. The travel time usually takes up to 8 hours. It may be a long trip but the captivating beauty of Lake Phewa makes it all worthwhile.