Pakistan has numerous lakes that are spread across its length and breadth. These lakes serve as a source of freshwater, a hub of biodiversity, and a significant tourist attraction. The largest lake in Pakistan is Manchar Lake. It is situated in the Jamshoro District of Sindh province in Pakistan. Manchar Lake is also one of the largest freshwater lakes in Asia, covering an area of about 100 square miles.
Location of the lake
Manchar Lake is located in the west of the Indus River, in the Jamshoro district of Sindh province in Pakistan. The lake is situated at a distance of about 18 km from the city of Sehwan Sharif, which is a famous religious site in Pakistan.
History of the lake
Manchar Lake is an ancient lake that has a rich history. The lake was formed about 2000 years ago when the River Indus changed its course. The lake has been a source of livelihood for the local communities for centuries. The lake was once used for fishing and agriculture. The people living near the lake used to cultivate crops such as rice, wheat, and cotton. However, due to environmental degradation and climate change, the lake’s ecosystem has been severely affected, leading to the decline of the lake’s biodiversity.
Physical features of the lake
Manchar Lake is a large freshwater lake with an area of approximately 100 square miles. The lake is fed by several streams and rivulets. The lake is shallow, with a maximum depth of about 36 feet. The lake’s water is saline, and its pH level is between 8.3 and 8.9. The lake is also home to several small islands.
Importance of the lake
Manchar Lake is of great importance to the people living in the surrounding areas. The lake is a source of freshwater, and it is used for irrigation, fishing, and agriculture. The lake also serves as a hub of biodiversity, supporting various species of fish, birds, and reptiles. The lake is also an important tourist attraction and a source of revenue for the local economy.
Biodiversity of the lake
Manchar Lake is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna. The lake supports several species of fish, including Rohu, Thaila, and Mori. The lake is also a habitat for several species of birds, such as pelicans, cormorants, and ducks. The lake is also home to several species of reptiles, including snakes and turtles.
Threats to the lake
Manchar Lake is facing several threats due to environmental degradation and human activities. The lake’s water quality has deteriorated over the years due to industrial and agricultural pollution. The lake’s ecosystem has also been affected by climate change and the construction of dams on the River Indus. The lake’s water level has also decreased due to the diversion of water for irrigation purposes, which has led to the lake’s drying up.
To conserve the lake and its biodiversity, several measures have been taken. The government of Sindh has launched various initiatives to clean the lake’s water and restore its ecosystem. The government has also established a wildlife sanctuary to protect the lake’s biodiversity. The local communities are also playing their part in conserving the lake and its surroundings by promoting sustainable agriculture and fishing practices.
Activities at the lake
Manchar Lake offers several activities for tourists and visitors. Fishing is a popular activity at the lake, and visitors can hire local boats and fishing equipment to catch fish. Bird watching is also a popular activity, with several species of birds visiting the lake during the winter season. Visitors can also enjoy a boat ride on the lake and explore the small islands located within the lake.
Tourist attractions around the lake
Apart from the lake itself, there are several tourist attractions located around the lake. Sehwan Sharif is a famous religious site located near the lake, and visitors can explore the ancient tombs and shrines located in the city. The town of Manchar is also a popular tourist destination, known for its handicrafts and traditional embroidery.
Best time to visit the lake
The best time to visit Manchar Lake is during the winter season, from November to February. During this time, the weather is pleasant, and visitors can enjoy bird watching and fishing. The lake’s water level is also high during this time, making it an ideal time for a boat ride on the lake.
How to reach the lake
The nearest airport to Manchar Lake is the Jinnah International Airport in Karachi, which is about 170 km from the lake. From Karachi, visitors can hire a taxi or take a bus to reach the lake. The nearest railway station is located in Sehwan Sharif, which is about 18 km from the lake.
Accommodation options near the lake
There are several accommodation options available near Manchar Lake, ranging from budget guesthouses to luxury resorts. Visitors can choose from a variety of options depending on their budget and preferences.
Manchar Lake is the largest lake in Pakistan, and it is an important natural wonder that attracts tourists from all over the world. The lake’s biodiversity and importance to the local communities make it a valuable asset that needs to be conserved and protected. With the government’s efforts and the support of the local communities, Manchar Lake can continue to serve as a source of freshwater, a hub of biodiversity, and a significant tourist attraction for generations to come.
What is the depth of Manchar Lake?
The maximum depth of Manchar Lake is about 36 feet.
Is Manchar Lake a freshwater lake?
Yes, Manchar Lake is a freshwater lake, although its water is saline.
Can visitors hire boats for fishing at Manchar Lake?
Yes, visitors can hire local boats and fishing equipment for fishing at Manchar Lake.
What is the best time to visit Manchar Lake?
The best time to visit Manchar Lake is during the winter season, from November to February.
Are there any accommodation options near Manchar Lake?
Yes, there are several accommodation options available near Manchar Lake, ranging from budget guesthouses to luxury resorts.