I love to hang around a water body – then be it a lake, river, sea, or even a small pond. Water just transforms the area around it into a verdant zone rendering nature’s music to your ears and a treat to your eyes. The place gets transformed into a happy hub full of positive vibes, usually with a variety of birds chirping out loud and happy faces taking in the beauty around them.
Sukhna lake is one such vast man-made reservoir at the base of the Shivalik hills. Today, it has become an integral part of Chandigarh’s naturescape offering its residents a liberating space from the throes of city life.
- Located in Sector 1, Chandigarh
- Timings: 5am to 9 pm on all days
- No Entry fee
A Well-Maintained Artificial Lake
The lake was built in 1958 by vegetating an acquired catchment area to avoid heavy siltation caused by stream coming in from the Shivalik hills. The stream later was diverted to prevent siltation and the lake was fed through siltation pots. The damming of the natural stream today provides us with a beautiful promenade on top of the dam lined with trees and a well-maintained garden. A perfect place for jogging or taking leisurely strolls along its promenade; it is also a happening place for various entertainment activities which lends the place a happy ambience to chill in.
Kudos to the civic authorities for they have really maintained the promenade amazingly well. There is an entertainment zone for kids and families at one end near its entrance and then as you proceed further, the chaos there is taken over by the calming waters of the lake.
The lake premises have numerous benches along the promenade to sit and relax along with spectacularly clean restrooms along the way- still a rarity in some parts of our country. It is a popular spot to indulge in boating activities and was once also the venue for the Asian Rowing Championship.
It is Beautiful!
The lake stretches far into the horizon with the Himalayas seen (Shivalik hills) at a distance. One cannot help but notice the sublime beauty of the place during sunrise and sunset. The rising and the setting sun play magic with the shimmering waters of the lake and the surrounding vegetation to give it a tranquil aura. At this hour, one can see flocks of birds flying over these glittering waters in formations to head back home. Sitting by the lake and taking in the beauty and vibe of the place is a good way to spend your evenings. It can get hot during the day but come evening and this spot becomes a hub of activity with the young and old alike. Different migratory birds too fill up the dusky sky in hordes and make for an amazing sight. No wonder, the Government of India has declared it to be a protected national wetland.
The Garden of Silence
The Garden of Silence
The Garden of Silence with a huge Buddha statue is a quiet, meditative space at the other end of the lake. It is a well-maintained garden with rows of lights adorning the place in the evenings. Visiting it from the Sukhna lake gate makes for a good long walk from one end of the lake to the other.
Note: Getting to the Garden of Silence is a long walk of around 4 kms or so. One can get autos from this garden end of the promenade; however, hailing a cab is not that easy due to signal issues. So plan accordingly and visit.
We were really impressed with our visit to Sukhna lake and the Rock Garden. The city had truly wowed us 🙂