Think boat race. Think God’s own country, Kerala. Now no more. Rajasthan’s Lake City, Udaipur is the place to be for a boat race now in this mild wintry, pleasant sun.
The city also known as the Venice of the East, has been high on the list of tourists with its serene, beautiful lakes, the magnificent City Place, other heritage landmarks and for its unique romantic setting against the backdrop of these lakes. Although these scenic lakes bring in the tourists, they have always been at the background. With this Lake Fest, they now become the centre of activities,
From now on, th ecity may be known for its lake festival. The fest would not just hold the boat race, but many more attractions with floating markets and a light and sound show on the water curtains of the lake.
The first Lake Festival has kicked off from today, Feb 11, and will continue till Feb 14. So Udaipur’s two main lakes Lake Picchola and Fatehsagar would be the cynosure of all eyes for these three days. For the first time today, the Lake City witnessed a boat race at Fatehsagar lake, canoeing, kayaking just after the festival took off with an aarti at the famed Gangaur Ghat.
Other competitions include Kite Flying, Dragon Boat race, Canoe Polo, Wind surfing. Every day at 5 pm the special programmes are Nightglow and Magical Moments that will bring forth a cultural extravaganza with rock bands performing on 11th and 12th Feb.
Floating markets will be center of the attraction at Pichola Lake and also at other ghats like HRH dock and others. Floating markets on the lines of those in Kashmir’s Dal lake, will display the city’s unique handicraft items.
The light and sound show on water would also be the highlight of the festival.
The dragon boats have been brought especially from Bhopal. At least 300 people will participate in the boat races.
Udaipur, the capital of the kingdom of Mewar, has many beautiful lakes like the Lake Picchola, Fatehsagar, Udai Sagar and Swaroop Sagar, Sagar Rangsagar. Pichola is an artificial fresh water lake and the most picturesque lake of Udaipur. Lake Pichola is one of the several contiguous lakes developed over the last few centuries in and around the famous Udaipur city, Two islands, Jag Niwas and Jag Mandir are located within Pichola Lake.
Fateh Sagar lake also known as the pride of Udaipur and one of its most popular lakes, is located north of Lake Pichola. It has three small islands Nehru Park, public park and Udaipur Solar Observatory.
Udai Sagar Lake is another striking lake that falls under the category of five lakes of Udaipur. Udaisagar Lake is located at a distance of about 13 kms in the east of Udaipur. The construction of this lake was started in 1559 by Maharana Udai Singh and got completed in 1565.
Doodh Talai is a small lake that adores the south-east direction of Pichola Lake. Located in the southern side of Shiv Niwas Palace, Dudh Talai contributes to the waters of Lake Pichola. This stream adds to the picturesque triangle in the company of Pichola on one side, Doodh Talai on the second and M.L. Verma Garden on the third.
In several parts of the world, such lake festivals are held annually for holidayers.
In UK, the lake fest at Eastnor Castle is a magical setting that provides a perfect backdrop for a family holiday. And for several years in a row, Lake Festival at Schwarzlsee, Austria has become very popular and now enjoys a cult status with music being part of it.