Lake Pichola Udaipur

Lake Pichola Udaipur
Vital Information for Visitors

Lake Pichola, Udaipur, Rajasthan

Open & Close:

Open on all days

Entry Fees:



Approx 2 hours


Gangaur festival


Artificial lake surrounded by historical monuments & dotted with several islands

Lake Pichola is a timeless oasis of tranquility and royal grandeur. Nestled in the heart of the historic city of Udaipur, Lake Pichola stands as a testament to the enduring beauty and cultural richness of this region. Spread across an expanse of approximately 696 acres, this artificial freshwater lake is not just a water body; it's a reservoir of history, legends, and architectural marvels that have shaped the destiny of Udaipur. Lake Pichola owes its existence to the far-sighted vision of Maharana Udai Singh II, the founder of Udaipur. In 1362 AD, he founded the city on the banks of Lake Pichola as a result of a prophetic encounter with a hermit who advised him to establish his capital in the fertile valley guarded by the Aravalli Hills. The lake, initially a small pond named 'Pichhola,' was expanded by Maharana Udai Singh II in 1560 AD, creating the expansive water body we know today.

One of the defining features of Lake Pichola is the presence of two islands. There are two palaces on the islands, on the western side of the city, — Jag Niwas and Jag Mandir— each adorned with architectural splendors that transport visitors to a bygone era. “Indeed I know of nothing that will bear comparison with them anywhere” says Fergusson. Jag Niwas, popularly known as the Lake Palace, is a white marble marvel that seems to float ethereally on the lake's surface. Built by Maharana Jagat Singh II in 1746 AD, it was later converted into a luxury hotel that has hosted dignitaries and celebrities from around the world. Jag Mandir, the other island on the lake, boasts the majestic Jag Mandir Palace. Constructed in the 17th century, this palace served as a refuge for Prince Khurram, later known as Emperor Shah Jahan, during a period of political turmoil. The architecture of both these structures reflects the delicate fusion of Rajput and Mughal styles, showcasing the cultural synthesis that defines Udaipur.

The lake offers a very popular view of the Palace of the Maharaja of Udaipur. Maharaja of Udaipur was the only king who did not accept the invitation of the Queen of England. It was the ruler of Mewar who did not submit to the Mughal even. The reflection of palace in the Lake Pichola at the time of sunset adorns it beautifully. Lake Pichola also offers typical views like women doing their laundry, washing their hair and men taking their bath. A boat ride in the Lake Pichola and viewing Jag Niwas, popularly known as Lake Palace, from a closer distance is a mesmerizing experience. Beyond its aesthetic appeal, Lake Pichola has been a lifeline for the city of Udaipur. The lake is fed by the Berach River, and its waters have supported the city's agricultural activities for centuries. The proximity of the lake has allowed the residents to harness its resources for sustenance and trade, contributing to the economic vibrancy of Udaipur. Lake Pichola serves as the focal point for many cultural festivals and celebrations in Udaipur. The most renowned among these is the Mewar Festival, an annual event that coincides with the Gangaur Festival and celebrates the arrival of spring. During this festival, the lake becomes a canvas for vibrant processions, boat races, and traditional performances, attracting locals and tourists alike.

The history of Lake Pichola is steeped in legends that add a layer of mystique to its serene waters. One such legend surrounds the island of Jag Niwas. It is believed that Maharana Jagat Singh II dreamt of a heavenly princess seeking refuge on the island, leading to the construction of the Lake Palace. The ethereal beauty of the palace and its surroundings seems to validate the legend, creating an enchanting narrative that echoes through the ripples of Lake Pichola.

In the modern era, Lake Pichola continues to be a symbol of Udaipur's cultural heritage and economic vitality. The lakeside is adorned with bustling markets, vibrant cafes, and hotels that offer panoramic views of the water and the surrounding landscape. Boat rides on the lake remain a favorite activity for visitors, providing an intimate experience of the city's grandeur. However, the magnificence of Lake Pichola faces challenges in the form of environmental pressures and urbanization. Increased tourism, pollution, and encroachments pose threats to the lake's ecosystem. Efforts are underway to address these challenges and ensure the sustainability of this cultural and ecological treasure. Conservation initiatives aim to strike a balance between preserving the historical significance of the lake and safeguarding its natural beauty for future generations.

Lake Pichola is more than just a picturesque body of water; it is a living testament to the historical, cultural, and architectural legacy of Udaipur. Its placid waters have mirrored the rise and fall of empires, the architectural genius of eras gone by, and the vibrant spirit of a city that proudly carries its heritage into the future. As Lake Pichola continues to enchant visitors and residents alike, it remains an enduring symbol of Udaipur's royal grandeur and timeless allure.

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