Located in Jumla and Mugu district, northwest of Kathmandu, Rara Lake is deepest fresh water lake in Nepal. Including surrounding wetland the lake covers around 10 square kilometer area. The maximum depth of the lake is 167m.
The founder of GORP Bill Greer in reference to Rara Lake said: "a shimmering blue jewel set in a ring of snowy peaks".
Trekking in Rara Lake is one of the best moments of life. Rara trekking is a popular destination point for trekking in the west with a hidden treasure route. Nepal Rara Lake trekking is one of the most unique and fascinating treks in all the Himalayan range lie northwest of Kathmandu in the remote area of Karnali.The surrounding is so calm that it makes you content. It is kind of peaceful walks to paradise where you find yourself tuned with the nature. The lake is situated at an altitude of 2990m.
Summer of Rara is very pleasant and soothing whereas winter is cold. The best time to visit Rara lake for trekking is in between September to November and March to May.
Rara National Park protects Rara Lake. Rara National Park is the smallest but the most scenic park of Nepal. The Rara Lake is the heart of Rara National Park. The destination is popular for unique flora and fauna. Juniper, pine and spruce are common trees sighted here. Rare species of plants and animals are also found here. Rara trekking is one of the best treks to view Nepal’s wildlife including the Himalayan bear. To protect the Rara Lake from human encroachment and the pollution the then government of Nepal established Rara National Park in 1976. In the premises of the lake more than 1100 species of plants are found. Similarly, More than 50 species of animals and 200 species of birds are noted here.
Three species of fishes namely Schizothorax macrophthalmus, S. nepalensis and S. raraensis are found in the lake. Few migratory birds like gadwall (Anas strepera), mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), northern shoveler (Anas clypeata), common teal (Anas crecca), tufted duck (Aythya fuligula), common golden eye (Bucephala clangula), common merganser (Mergus merganser), common coot (Fulica atra), and solitary snipe (Gallinago solitaria) are seen here during winter.
Agriculture is the main occupation of the people of Rara area. Some people also sell herbal plant for livelihood. Thakur are the main inhabitants of this area. There is a temple of Thakur Baba in the south-east corner of the lake. It is one of the popular temples on Nepal.
Legends say that god Thakur shot an arrow opening the passage of the lake. To save peoples’ life from the flood he did this.