Lake Rara

lake in Nepal

Rara Lake (Nepali: राराताल raratal) is the biggest natural lake of Nepal. It is in Rara Village Development Committee, Mugu District, Karnali Zone in the Mid-Western region.

Lake Rara
Lake Rara, May 2005
LocationMugu District
Coordinates29°31′33″N 82°05′25″E / 29.525721°N 82.090211°E / 29.525721; 82.090211Coordinates: 29°31′33″N 82°05′25″E / 29.525721°N 82.090211°E / 29.525721; 82.090211
TypeNatural, oligotrophic
Primary inflowsMany small streams
Primary outflowsNijar khola → Karnali River
Basin countriesNepal
Max. length5.1 km (3.2 mi)
Max. width2.7 km (1.7 mi)
Surface area9.8 km2 (3.8 sq mi)[1]
Average depth100 km (62 mi)
Max. depth167 m (548 ft)
Water volume0.98 km3 (0.24 cu mi)[1]
Surface elevation2,990 m (9,810 ft)

The lake has a slightly oval shape and is entirely in the Rara National Park, about 300 km (190 mi) north-west of the capital, Kathmandu.


Lake Rara is at an altitude of 2,990 metres (9,810 ft) above sea level covering an area of 9.8 km2 (3.8 sq mi).[2] The lake has a length of 5.1 kilometres (3.2 mi) and a width of 2.7 kilometres (1.7 mi) with a maximum depth of 167 metres (548 ft). It flows into the Karnali river via the Nijar river (Nijar Khola).[3]

The lake was classified as oligotrophic (an environment that offers little to sustain life) in limnological terms, meaning that is very slightly polluted.[2]


The climate of the Rara National Park, where the Lake Rara is, is a temperate climate with temperatures between 27 °C (81 °F) in summer and −4 °C (25 °F) in winter.[4]

Animal lifeEdit

In the Lake Rara there are three endemic fish species (Schizothorax macrophthalmus, S. nepalensis and S. raraensis),[5] and one endemic frog (Paa rarica).[6]

Many waterfowl spend the winter months in Lake Rara; some of them are gadwall, mallard, northern shoveler, Eurasian teal, tufted duck, common goldeneye, goosander, Eurasian coot and solitary snipe.[2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Lake Rara". World Lake Database. International Lake Environment Committee Foundacion - ILEC. Retrieved 6 July 2016.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Khadka, Madhukar. "Study of Himalayan Lakes in Nepal" (pdf). Retrieved 20 October 2013. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. Upadhyay, S., Chalise, L., Paudel, R. P. (2009). "High Altitude Ramsar Sites of Nepal". The Initiation: 135–148. Retrieved 20 October 2013.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  4. "Rara National Park". HKH Conservation Portal. ICIMOD. Retrieved 20 October 2013.
  5. Terashima, Akira (1984). "Three new species of the Cyprinid genus Schizothorax from Lake Rara, Northwestern Nepal" (pdf). Japanese Journal of Ichthyology. 31 (2): 122–135. Retrieved 20 October 2013.
  6. Ohler, A., Dutta, S., Shrestha, T. K. (2004). "Nanorana rarica". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2010.4. International Union for Conservation of Nature.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)

Other websitesEdit