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Nigeen Lake

Nigeen Lake (The Jewel In The Ring)- Leading from the Dal is the smaller Nagin Lake. Here too, the waters are edged by trees of willow and poplar whose reflection is mirrored in the lake. ‘Bathing boats’ here, as well as on the Dal, hire out water-skis and motor launches. The waters of the lakes are pleasantly cool from mid-May to mid-September. Shikaras can be hired from any of the steps called ‘ghats’ (jetties) leading to the lake. Some rides are fixed and their rates are posted at each ghat as well as opposite the Tourist Reception Centre. Shikaras are a refreshingly novel way of seeing Srinagar by day and at twilight, the gentle soothing motion of the boat, as it glides along the water, is unbelievably romantic.

Nagin lake lies to the east of the city at the foot of the Zabarwan Mountain. The Shankaracharya hill (Takht-i-Sulaiman) is to the south and Hari Parbat on its west. The lake is 6×3 km and is divided by causeways into four parts. Gagribal, Lakut-dal, Bod-dal and Nagin. Lokut-dal and Bod-dal each have an island in the centre, called Rup Lank or Char Chinari and Sona Lank, respectively.

If one wants to really get away from the chaotic city life all then Nagin is a good place to find a house boat and do it the surroundings are much more serene and isolated than on Dal Lake. One can rent rowboats from the camping site here – either to simply row around the lake or to look around for a houseboat.

Since the water in Nagin is deeper and less polluted it’s also good for swimming and there are fiberglass sailing boats available for hire and water skiing facilities. Motorboats are rather low powered for skiing although they make a valiant attempt. If one wants to try water skiing keep a wary eye out for swimmers. Likewise, if one is swimming watch out for the boat drivers.

The Nagin club, on the bank of the lake, has a bar and a tea pavilion. It is a branch of the Srinagar club and temporary membership is available to visitors.

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