Chandra Taal – Moon Lake of India
Chandra Taal, simply referred to as the Moon Lake is a barren yet beautiful lake which is located at a height of about 14,200 feet in Himachal Pradesh, Northern India. The lake comes under Lahaul and Spiti districts of Himachal Pradesh. The lake is situated six km from Kumzum Pass.
Chandra Taal got its name due to its crescent shape. Chandra taal is believed to have been discovered by the traders who came to this region from Ladakh or Tibet. After having an arduous journey, traders rested near this lake before resuming on their journey to Spiti or Kullu.
This sweet water lake is about 2.5 km wide. The lake is the source of River Chandra that merges with River Bhaga to form River Chandrabhaga.
The lake can only be visited during the 3 summer months. For the remaining seasons, the lake is usually frozen and cut off.
Chandra taal is usually blue but it changes its color with that of the sky. Chandra Bhaga mountains range forms a perfect backdrop for this lake.
Even though the place is normally barren and bereft of human settlement, Chandra taal is a very famous camping site during summers. Travelers usually get awestruck by its blue color, bordered by a wide carpet of green grasses coupled with pristine white color of Chandra Bhaga mountain ranges.
According to the Hindu mythology, Chandra taal is the place where the King of Gods, Indra, came down on using his chariot to transport Yudhishthira, the eldest of the 5 Pandavas of Mahabharat. Locals have continued to believe that fairies usually visit this lake at night.
Options to stay in Chandra Taal are limited. PWD rooms and guesthouses that are let out on rent by the villagers at Batal and Kunzum Pass are the major options to stay. During summer, a majority of tourists prefer staying in camp at Chandra atal.
Options to eat in Chandra taal are also limited. There are dhabas at Kunzum Pass and Batal that offer food. The eateries mainly offer Tibetan and Indian food. Do not expect exotic cuisines.
The best time for visiting this lake is from June to September. It will be the best option to visit Chandra Taal in July to August when roads are cleaned up to the very end thus making chandra tal reachable by road.