POKHARA, Aug 16: Begnas Lake has failed to attract tourists despite being as beautiful as the more famous Fewa Lake.
While Fewa Lake attracts hundreds of tourists every day, Begnas Lake remains mostly deserted. On any given day, hardly 10 boats are hired by tourists wanting to relish the magnificent beauty of Begnas Lake.
According to a committee of boat operators, the number of tourists in Begnas Lake is always very low.
“Our situation is very grim,” Tikaram Tiwari , one of boat operators in Begnas lake, says. “It´s next to impossible for us to live of the income from our boats.”
The boat entrepreneurs are of the opinion that this bleak situation is largely due to the apathy of the concerned authorities.
“Regardless of the lake´s serene and natural beauty, most of tourists are unaware of its existence,” said Dhaknath Kandel, chief of the boat operators´ committee. However, he admitted that besides rowing boats on the lake, there are no hotels, restaurants and religious places to attract the visitors around the lake.
“We´ve to first develop infrastructures so that tourists can easily reach there,” said Ram Mani Adhikari, Legal Officer at Leknath Municipality.
According to Adhikari, the municipality is planning to widen Taal Chowk-Begnas road, open a Mandare Park-Sundare Hill track for pedestrians and turn Barahathan located in the lake area into a religious tourist destination.