At the bottom of Chamundi Hills of Mysore city, one of the biggest and most beautiful lakes of Karnataka, the famous Karanji Lake is located. The entire area of the lake is about 90 acres mostly surrounded by well maintained plants & trees. The lake ‘Karanji Kere’ as it is called was a percolation tank built by the King of Mysore 100 years ago to facilitate water supply. But it was converted into a reservoir in the year 1976.
Today when we are facing the problems of global warming and threat to environment,KaranjiLakestands out as an example of wetland ecosystem. It is a habitation for more than 90 different species of resident and migratory birds. The lake attracts the birds of rare species such as pelicans, darters and painted storks and many other birds from aquatic family.
The name of this beautiful lake in local language Kannada is ‘Karanji Kere’, which means Fountain Lake. It is close behind the Mysore Zoo and it is owned and maintained by the Mysore Zoo Authority.
Part of the lake is having a small playing area for children. It’s an open area having a playhouse with lot many toys such as swings, seesaw, sliding board along with a bird house having small, colorful birds, which attract the kids all the time.
The lake has the boating facility. It offers both boating and paddling options. Boating is a joy in the shiny, clean water with full of greenery around, in the most natural atmosphere. It’s fun to watch the bird closely, either flying over the water or trying to catch a fish.
The lake has one of the biggest aviaries in India.The aviary was put up on the side of the lake. The facilities inside the aviary and its maintenance are outstanding. Here you will find more than 50 birds of rare species which includes peacocks, white-peacocks, white & black swans, turkeys, hornbills, storks, sandpipers and the rabbits running around the artificial ponds and fountains. The luckier ones can see the peacocks dance with the elegant plume from very close quarters. Walking through the aviary is an amazing experience. Watching the birds from a closer distance, listening to their chirping makes the atmosphere lively and refreshing.
The Watch Tower
The central part of the lake has a watch tower which offers the best bird watching view.The three story tower is of about 50 m height. It is a treat to the enthusiastic bird watcher to catch the lovely view of the entire park. The large number of sun birds can be seen moving around the watch tower surrounded by the greenery.
At the end of the walking path along the lake is a small island, which can be reached by a narrow bridge. The island is theButterflyParkwhich is solely dedicated to the colorful and rare kinds of butterflies. The butterflies are looked after well by constant botanical support. TheKaranjiLakehas vast collection of variety of plants and species which helps them to attract the butterflies. Reaching to theButterflyParkis a tiring journey but these butterflies of all different sizes, shapes and colors refresh the minds and energies the bodies.