The Rara Lake is located at Chhayanath Rara municipality of Mugu in the Karnali Province. Its splendid beauty has no bounds with mind-blowing greenery in the surrounds.
Located in the lap of dense forest of the Rara National Park, Rara Lake is widely popular as a prime tourist destination of Nepal.
Rara which is situated in an altitude of 2,990 metres from sea level has around 5.1-km length and 2.7-km breadth.
Despite equipped with natural beauty, the unique tourism destination has witnessed explicit lack of physical infrastructures on the way leading to Rara.
The domestic and foreign tourists reaching the panoramic lake also complained of inadequate infrastructures on its way.
Even the tourists are facing problems of food, lodging, electricity, telephone and internet on the way. Dipesh Shrestha, a domestic tourist Butwal who visited Rara, recounted that the tourists had to spend nights under the open sky around the fire in lack of residential facilities.
The Karnali province government has announced the year 2075 as the ‘Karnali-Rara Tourism Year’ with the target to bring in 500,000 tourists this year. However, the development of physical infrastructure is not adequate to materialize the campaign.
Only two hotels, Danfe and Village, are in operation within the periphery of Rara Lake. The two hotels having 28 residential rooms are not adequate to accommodate thousands of tourists every day.
Raju Budhamagar, a tourist from Sindhupalchowk, said that Rara has incredible beauty but inadequate infrastructures have shadowed the subime ambience of the lake.
Importantly, it is not allowed to operate hotels around the Rara and within the premises of Rara National Park. Member of FNCCI Mugu Chapter Ganga Bahadur Shahi said, “Authorities did not permit the operation of hotels in the area though they have made several efforts to that end”.
He said there has been monopoly of hotels being operated in and around the tourism hub.
The problem related to telephone and internet access is also equally pressing. Nepal Telecom and NCell do not work there, said Praveen Kafle, a domestic tourist from Jhapa. He said that there should be a proper arrangement of basic facilities including residence and meal, internet and mobile access to make the tourism hub more systematic.
While announcing the ‘Karnali-Rara Tourism Year’ on last Baisakk (April-May), Tourism Minister Rabindra Adhikari said that necessary infrastructures would be developed in Karnali within the year 2075 BS. Seven months on, tourists reaching the Rara did not get very basic facilities.
The tourists are compelled to spend nights under tent when they did not get proper residence in hotels and local people’s home.