Jhilmila Lake: A Majestic Jewel in the Heart of Nepal

Jhilmila Lake: A Majestic Jewel in the Heart of Nepal

Nestled within the enchanting hills of the Mahabharata mountain range in the Far West region of Nepal lies a hidden gem called Jhilmila Lake. This pristine lake boasts natural beauty, is surrounded by dense forests, and adorned with temples dedicated to deities. Its unique feature of changing colors throughout the day has earned it the affectionate name “Jhilmila,” meaning shining in Nepali. Let’s embark on a journey to explore the captivating allure and mystical legends of this remarkable lake.

jhilmila lake mountain range

The Enchanting Location

Jhilmila Lake is situated 25 kilometers north of Bhimdatta municipality in the Kanchanpur district of Nepal. The lake is perched at an altitude of 680 meters above sea level, making it a haven of tranquility amidst the hills.

Jhilmila Lake

The Mesmerizing Color-changing Waters

The most fascinating aspect of Jhilmila Lake is its water that changes hues three times a day. In the morning, the lake appears golden, while in the afternoon, it takes on a captivating blue shade. As the day draws to a close, the waters transform into a soothing green color. This mesmerizing phenomenon is a delight to witness and has inspired the name “Jhilmila” or shining lake.

Jhilmila lake

Jhilmila Lake in Mahabharat

The allure of Jhilmila Lake extends beyond its natural beauty; it is steeped in legends and folklore that have been passed down through generations. According to the ancient epic Mahabharata, the lake possesses supernatural powers.

Legend has it that during the Pandavas’ exile, Draupadi, the wife of the Pandavas, felt thirsty. Yudhishthira, the eldest of the Pandavas, sent his brothers, one by one, to fetch water from the lake. However, they did not return. Concerned, Yudhishthira himself went to the lake and found his brothers engaged in a mysterious fight. An invisible force emerged from the lake and presented Yudhishthira with a question. Upon answering it correctly, he was granted a wish to save the life of one of his brothers. Yudhishthira chose Nakula, and the supernatural power kept all his brothers alive.

The Divine Presence

Jhilmila Lake is not only a site of natural wonder but also holds religious significance. Pilgrims visit the lake to seek blessings from the deities. One peculiar sight is the appearance of black-bearded fish that come to eat the rice khan chuppa (offering) thrown by the pilgrims. These fish fearlessly coexist with snakes present in the lake, and the divine aura seems to protect them from harm.

Festivals and Celebrations

Maghe Sankranti is a grand celebration at Jhilmila Lake, attracting visitors from far and wide throughout the year. Pilgrims stay awake all night, chanting bhajans and kirtans, offering prayers to the goddess. The lake becomes even more vibrant during Purnagiri Mela or Chaite Dasain when devotees from various cities in India come to offer colorful basans and trishuls to the temple, adding to the lake’s allure.

Reaching Jhilmila Lake

Visiting Jhilmila Lake is an adventure in itself. From Matena in Bhimdatta municipality, a two-hour journey through the Churu forest will lead you to this magnificent destination. Another route is via Tarakot, passing Gahuntani Temple and the stunning Brahmadev and Kalital waterfalls.

Accommodation at Jhilmila

for the accommodation the Bhimdatta Municipality has built infrastructure, including Dhunighar, Pujari Ghar, and Dharamshala, for the convenience of pilgrims and travelers. in which anyone can stay there without paying anything. you have to keep the stuff for dinner and prepare it yourself.


Jhilmila Lake is truly a majestic jewel in the heart of Nepal, enchanting all who visit with its ethereal beauty and spiritual aura. The lake’s shimmering waters, the surrounding lush greenery, and the divine presence of the temples create an experience that lingers in the heart and soul of every traveller.

Map of Jhilmila lake

Is Jhilmila Lake accessible throughout the year?

Yes, Jhilmila Lake is accessible year-round, and each season offers a unique experience to visitors.

Are there any accommodations near Jhilmila Lake?

Yes, Bhimdatta Municipality has built infrastructure, including Dhunighar, Pujari Ghar, and Dharamshala, for the convenience of pilgrims and travelers.

How can I reach Jhilmila Lake from India?

The lake is easily reachable from various cities in India by following the route through Bhimdatta municipality.

Can I witness the color-changing phenomenon at any time of day?

Yes, the color of the lake changes three times a day—morning, afternoon, and evening.

Is Jhilmila Lake considered a sacred site?

Yes, the lake holds religious significance, and temples dedicated to deities surround it, making it a revered place of worship.

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