Nepal is a country of so much diversity, especially geographically. After many treks to different regions, I almost believed that I had seen most of what Nepal had to offer. And then I ventured to a different part of the country and was dazzled and amazed by a completely different setting, one of serenity and gentle pastoral pine forests, wild horses everywhere and a beautiful pristine unspoiled lake. This is Rara Lake. It is located in the far western corner of Nepal near the Tibetan Border, in the Jumla and Mugu district. This is not a place where you will find that electric, high mountain energy of Everest Region or Annapurna Region or Kanchenjunga Region. This is a place of quiet peaceful energy, a place to relax and reflect, to sit in a hammock and read a book or write a journal. A place to slow down. It took me a day or so to realize that Rara Lake is special because of that energy. After an exciting edge of the cliff two days jeep ride to the lake along the Karnali highway, Rara was a dreamy little piece of heaven.
So here are five suggestions of what to do at the lake, if just being still and meditating is not enough!
1. Ride a boat in lake
There are paddle boats available, no motorboats here, and a morning ride is like gliding along a mirror.
2. Hike to Murma Viewpoint
There is a lovely hike to Murma Top, a viewpoint that allows you to see the whole lake and surrounding area, and the mountain peaks in the distance. There are some villages around the lake, but none at the waters edge.
3. Take a portrait
Practice your photography here. Local people are very friendly and pleased to have their pictures taken. And the local Nepalese boys love to show off if they know a camera is pointed at them. They are very good at jumping on one of the horses for a wild bareback gallop. No saddles needed for them!
4. Ride a horse
Talk to the local people about riding horse, saddles provided and guides if you need. There is a trail all the way around the lake that is lovely, and going away from the lake are open pastures if you want to take it a little faster.
5. Set the hammock and sleep in tent
Bring a hammock, find a good shady spot, have some beers and relax! And if you don’t bring your own tent, (You want to sleep outside so you don’t miss the millions of stars) there is a hotel by the lake that will rent you rooms or even tents.
Oh, and last of all, yes there is mobile data reception for the Internet a little down the trail from the hotel, but really? Please put your electronics away for a few days, and enjoy! Remember that “Heaven is a myth, Rara is real”