Wular Lake in the Bandipora district of Jammu and Kashmir is one of the largest freshwater lakes in India, and the Jhelum River feeds this lake. The lake’s size varies according to season, from 30 square kilometers to 260 square kilometers (or from 12 sq. miles to 100 sq. miles). This lake was known by the name “Mahapadamsar ” in ancient times.
The Jhulam river flows into the Lake around 40 kilometers from Srinagar city. The Jullam River flows out of the Lake at the southern part of the Lake in Sopur, approximately 35 kilometers northwest of Srinagar. Sopur is around 16 kilometers southwest of Baramulla city. National Highway, NH 1, connects Sopur with Srinagar.
The government of India, jointly with the Jammu & Kashmir Tourism Department and the Kerala State Tourism Department, has recently introduced water skiing and water sports along with boating facilities in the Lake.
Wular Lake is designated as a “Ramsar site” as per the “Ramsar Convention” held at Ramsar (Iran) in 1971, where an international treaty for the conservation and sustainable utilization of wetlands was signed initially by 21 counties. Currently, 168 countries signed this treaty, and around 2000 Ramsar sites exist internationally. The United Kingdom leads the list with 170 ‘Ramsar sites. Bolivia has the Largest Area (140,000 square kilometers) of Ramsar sites.
An artificial island in the middle of the Lake was built in the 14th century. Later, this island joined with the lake shores due to slitting and is a picnic spot.
The Tulbul Project, for which the work started in 1984, is a barrage (partly constructed by India) at the mouth of Wular Lake. The Tulbul Project was planned to control water flow into the Jhulam River to maintain the required water level, mainly for navigation (boating). The project work was suspended in 1987 due to objection from Pakistan on violation of the 1960 Indus Waters Treaty.
What is the Ideal Time to Visit Wular Lake?
Wular Lake is known for dangerous winds and waves! Tourism peaks during June, July, and August; these months are the ideal time to visit Wular Lake.