Dal lake of Kashmir is one of the most beautiful and picturesque lakes. it is named the “Jewel in the crown of Kashmir” & has been to be a part of the poetry by some renowned poets. The second largest lake of Jammu and Kashmir state, Dal Lake is encircled by magnificent mountains on three sides. Adorning the banks of the Dal Lake is a number of blooming gardens and orchards. Five basins and a number of channels well linked with each other are some of the features of the lake. Dal Lake is approximately 6 km by 3 km in size and changes its moods and scenery after every few kilometers.
The embankments of Dal Lake also house a number of Mughal monuments and the campus of the University of Kashmir. Further beautifying the scenery of the lake are two hillocks that house the famous shrine of Shankaracharya and Hari Parbat temples. The other unique features of the Dal Lake are the famous Shikaras and Houseboats. Numerous houseboats line the lake, providing their guests with serene atmosphere and picturesque surroundings. The Shikaras provide ferry rides to and from the banks of the lake to the houseboats.
The Dal lake wetland is divided by causeway into four basin; Gagribal, Lokut Dal, Bod Dal and Nagin (although Nagin is also considered as an independent lake). Lokut-dal and Bod-dal each have an island in the centre, known as Rup Lank (or Char Chinari) and Sona Lank.