Karanji Lake, located in the city of Mysore, is a perfect site for relaxing and celebrating a day out with the family. It is sometimes also referred to as the fountain lake. A lot of people come here to celebrate picnics with their loved ones. Visitors are allowed to bring packed food, and there is a coffee shop as well situated near the lake for the coffee lovers. It is a beautiful place to explore the different species of birds as the lake exhibits as many as 147 species including herons, Asian openbill storks, cormorant, grey pelican, etc. thereby making it a mind drawing place for the bird watchers.
The Karanji lake is said to possess the largest aviary in the country. Its set up cost was nearly 3.8 million, and it measures 20m in length, 50m in breadth and has a height of 60m. There is a waterfall too with two water bodies alongside. The lake also consists of a butterfly park which is home to more than 45 species of beautiful butterflies fluttering their wings and flying around in brilliant colours. Nectar, as well as host plants, have been planted in the park to help the butterflies sustain. The mesmerising lake also consists of a Regional Museum of national history which is situated on the banks of the lake giving out information on the natural environment of South India and how to maintain it.
The enthralling lake was formerly a part of the Mysore Zoo and is under the control of Mysore Zoo Authority. The Karanji lake measures around 90 hectares (out of which 55 hectares is the water area, and 35 hectares was the foreshore area). It was initially constructed by the king of Mysore as a percolation tank and became a property of Mysore Zoo Authority in 1976. The area is adorned with lush greenery and abundance of fauna, making it a top-rated tourist attraction.
Things To Do at Karanji Lake
A stroll around the lake in the beautiful natural setting is sure to rejuvenate your mind and soul. Apart from the breathtaking scenic beauty, Karanji Lake has a lot of facilities as well. They even have a special kid's corner, to keep your children entertained throughout the visit. Visitors can also enjoy the pristine lake by boating here. It is a great picnic spot for families, with a coffee booth present as well. Along with the aviary, Butterfly Park, waterfall and the museum; visitors can just only have their leisure time spent here at peace.
This natural habitat has the largest aviary in the country. It is in the form of a massive net enclosure which reaches as high as a big tree. Visitors are free to walk through this aviary and have a closer look at the various species of birds. The aviary has peacocks, wildfowls, geese and other exotic species of birds. Near the aviary, there is a vast enclosure that houses the Sarus Cranes. These birds are the tallest flying bird in the world and measures up to 6 feet in height.
There is a birdwatch tower overlooking the lake as well. From this watchtower, it takes about 15 to 20 minutes to reach the Butterfly Park. This park is located on an island in the lake. It is home to about four dozen butterfly species. These butterflies are attracted to the rare plants that grow here. You can spot various species flying in the park. Right opposite to the entry of Karanji Lake, one can locate the colonial-style building that houses the Mounted Police Headquarters.
Best Time To Visit Karanji Lake
Winter months experience the most pleasant weather in Mysore. The temperature ranges between 15 degrees and 30 degrees Celcius. Thus, it is the best time for travellers to visit the Karanji Lake.
How to Reach Karanji Lake
Karanji Lake is situated 2 km away from the Mysore Palace. It lies nearly 5 km away from the railway station of Mysore, and one can quickly hire an auto-rickshaw or a cab from the bus station or the railway station which are near to the lake.
It is nestled at the bottom of the majestic Chamundi Hills, which are home to the famous Chamundeshwari Temple. The lake lies at the centre of the city and in proximity to the bus stand; making it very easily accessible.