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Boating in India – 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

If you love the thrill of boating, you’re always in for an adventure. Boating as a fun water…
Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

If you love the thrill of boating, you’re always in for an adventure. Boating as a fun water activity can strengthen relationships and bring people closer. Boating enthusiasts have a knack for spotting the best boats, ensuring a great time on the water. Choose a location, plan your trip, and enjoy a boat ride together for refreshing breaks and quality family time. Picking a place for a delightful boat ride may seem challenging, but it doesn’t have to be.

This article highlights the top boating destinations in India that will make you want to pack your bags and embark on a soothing boat ride:

1. Nakki Lake, Mount Abu

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

Mount Abu, a popular hill station in the Aravalli Range, boasts several tourist attractions. Among these, Nakki Lake stands out due to its historical significance and is a must-visit spot. According to Hindu mythology, ancient gods created this lake using their fingers and nails to protect themselves from demons. Nakki Lake, the first human-made lake, is believed to be 11,000 meters deep and a quarter of a mile wide. Visitors can enjoy boating on Nakki Lake, taking in the serene views. The lake is also notable because Mahatma Gandhi’s ashes were immersed here, and Gandhi Ghat was built in his honor. The fountains in the lake provide a captivating view of Mount Abu life as you enjoy your boat ride. Nearby, you can see Toad Rock, a unique rock formation that looks like a toad about to jump into the lake. After a relaxing boat ride, there are many eateries where you can enjoy a delicious meal.

Timings: 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM

Tickets: No entry fee. Boating charges apply.

2. Gadisar Lake, Rajasthan

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

Enjoy the lush greenery during an early morning or evening boat ride at Gadisar Lake in Rajasthan. This lake is a valuable asset for the locals, preserving heritage and culture for generations. Raja Rawal Jaisal, the first Maharaja of Jaisalmer, built this artificial lake as a water reservoir to address the area’s water crisis. Located in the heart of Mount Abu, boating on Gadisar Lake offers stunning city views, including the famous Raghunath Temple and Maharaja Jaipur Palace nearby. The lake is considered sacred and worshipped by the local Garasia tribe.

You can buy food from nearby stalls to feed the catfish in the lake, which is fascinating and a bit scary. In winter, bird-watchers can spot beautiful migratory birds visiting the lake from the nearby Bharatpur bird sanctuary. When planning a trip to Gadisar Lake, remember to pack binoculars and a camera with a wide-angle lens to capture the beauty of this place.

Timings: 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM

Tickets: INR 100 per person for a two-seater pedal boat.

INR 200 per person for a four-seater pedal boat.

INR 300 per person for a six-seater rowing boat.

3. Bedhaghat, Jabalpur

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

Bhedaghat, a town in the Jabalpur district of Madhya Pradesh, is a natural wonder. This scenic spot, often used as a movie setting, will lift your spirits. The marble rock boating area is stunning, with rocks and stones displaying subtle hues and colors. Over time, the Narmada River has carved a beautiful eight-kilometer gorge. You can rent a rowboat or motorboat for a guided river tour. Before leaving, visit the market area to buy marble souvenirs from the art and craft shops.

Timings: Open from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM.

Tickets: INR 500 for a boat that seats 5 people.

INR 50 per person for boat rides shared with others.

4. Kumarakom Backwaters

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

A trip to Kerala isn’t complete without experiencing the peaceful beauty of the Kumarakom backwaters. This small town in Kottayam district attracts numerous tourists who fulfill their dream of staying on a houseboat in the backwaters. It’s a perfect escape from busy city life, offering therapeutic boat tours. The lush green landscape of coconut plantations and paddy fields provides a soothing sight for visitors. Book your boat cruise in advance to enjoy this serene experience. The houseboats, locally known as Kettuvallams, are built entirely with eco-friendly materials. If you stay overnight, the houseboats remain docked from 6:00 PM until 7:00 AM the next day.

Timings: From 12:00 PM to 10:00 AM the next day (a 22-hour trip).

Tickets: Prices range from INR 9000 to INR 22000, depending on the rooms available on the houseboat.

5. Dal Lake, Srinagar

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

Experience the enchanting Shikara boat ride on Dal Lake, a must-do activity in Srinagar. Enjoy breathtaking views of lush green landscapes, shimmering lake waters, vibrant gardens, and the lively floating market. Shikaras are traditional wooden boats crafted from deodar wood, which are ideal for exploring popular attractions like Shalimar Garden, Nishat Garden, and Hazratbal Mosque around Dal Lake. These boats also play a key role in the bustling floating market, where locals sell flowers, vegetables, and handicrafts. Stay on a Shikara houseboat and shop directly from these colorful floating boats in the market.

Timings: Open from 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM.

Tickets: INR 400 for a one-hour ride.

6. Hoganekkal, Tamil Nadu

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

If you’re looking to visit India’s version of Niagara Falls, head to Hogenakkal Waterfalls in Tamil Nadu, just 200 kilometers from Bangalore in Dharmapuri district. Known for its stunning waterfalls and thrilling boat rides, this popular tourist spot offers exciting coracle rides and boating experiences. The falls are split between Karnataka, featuring multiple cascades, and Tamil Nadu, known for its scenic gorges and boat tours. Avoid planning your trip during monsoon season, as boating is closed due to high water levels.

Timings: Open from 8:00 AM to 5:30 PM

Tickets: Costs INR 200 per person

7. Ganga Ghat, Varanasi

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

The sacred Ganges River is believed to have purifying powers capable of washing away sins. Experience the true essence of Varanasi by gliding along the river during sunrise or sunset. From mid-July to mid-October, boat prices increase due to stronger water currents requiring more effort to row. Explore the different Ghats connected to the land by water channels. Another highlight is the Ram Nagar Fort, across the river, once the palace of the King of Varanasi. Boat tours include a glimpse of the palace, nearby markets, and a 200-year-old Goddess Durga temple. Choose a rowboat tour with fewer than six passengers for a better experience. Carry mosquito repellent when stopping in the river for the Aarti ceremony.

Timings: Open daily from 8:00 AM to 5:30 PM

Tickets: Rowboat rental costs INR 300 per hour

A Yamaha engine boat ride costs INR 3000 for a two-hour session.

8. Naini Lake, Nainital

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

Spending time on the water is one of my favorite things to do in the summer. This lake, shaped like an eye and situated at an elevation of 1938 meters, is a popular attraction for tourists looking for fun activities at the hill station. Tickets can be purchased at the counter for boating here. There’s also a Yacht Club in Mallital where members and tourists can enjoy yachting. Finding available yachts during peak season may be challenging since the lake has limited numbers. The stunning beauty of the shimmering water under the Kumaon Sky is best appreciated through a boating experience.

Timings: Open daily from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Tickets: The Gondola ride costs INR 210

Pedal boat rental costs INR 150

9. Bhimtal, Nainital

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

Bhimtal Lake in Bhimtal Town is one of India’s most famous lakes. In the middle of the lake, there’s an island hosting an aquarium that draws visitors. You can only reach the island by boat. Explore the aquarium, which showcases a variety of fascinating species. You’ll also find the Bhimeshwara Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, on the island. The lake, shaped like a “C,” sits at an altitude of 4500 feet and covers 47 hectares. Its crystal-clear waters are a haven for nature lovers and photographers alike. The lake’s surroundings are well-maintained, with local eateries offering delicious food. Experience the serene beauty of the lake with a peaceful boat ride.

Timings: Open daily from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Ticket: Costs INR 150 per person

10. Unkal Lake, Karnataka

Boating In India - 10 Places You Can Visit To Sail Through The Waters

Witnessing a sunset at Unkal Lake is truly mesmerizing. Enjoy a boat ride and capture the stunning view with your camera to cherish the moment forever. Located in the Dharwad district, Unkal Lake is a 110-year-old scenic spot. In the middle of the lake stands a statue of Swami Vivekananda, accessible by boat. This picturesque destination is perfect for nature lovers and photographers. Additionally, there are recreational facilities for children around the lake.


Boating in India offers a unique way to experience the country’s natural beauty and diverse landscapes. Countless destinations exist, from the tranquil backwaters of Kerala to the majestic Dal Lake in Kashmir. Each location provides a different boating experience, whether the serene waters of Naini Lake in Uttarakhand or the bustling Marine Drive in Mumbai. Visiting these places allows you to appreciate India’s rich cultural and natural heritage from a new perspective. So, pack your bags, set sail, and embark on an unforgettable journey through India’s beautiful waters.


Q1: What are the best places for boating in India?

Ans: Some top places for boating in India include Dal Lake in Kashmir, Naini Lake in Uttarakhand, Vembanad Lake in Kerala, and the Ganges River in Varanasi.

Q2: What is the best time to go boating in India?

Ans: The best time for boating varies by location. Generally, the winter and spring months (October to March) are ideal for most boating destinations due to pleasant weather.

Q3: Are there any safety precautions to take while boating in India?

Ans: Yes, always wear a life jacket, follow the instructions of the boat operator, avoid overcrowding the boat, and be aware of weather conditions.

Q4: Can children participate in boating activities in India?

Ans: Yes, children can enjoy boating activities, but they should always wear life jackets and be supervised by adults.

Q5: Do I need any prior experience to go boating in India?

Ans: No prior experience is needed for most boating activities in India, as trained operators and guides are usually available to assist.

Q6: What types of boats are available for tourists in India?

Ans: Depending on the location, tourists can choose from various boats, including shikaris, houseboats, paddle boats, and motorboats.

Q7: Are there any special permits required for boating in India?

Ans: In most cases, no special permits are required for boating. However, some specific regions or lakes may have their regulations, so it’s best to check locally.

Q8: How much does boating cost in India?

Ans: The cost of boating varies depending on the location, type of boat, and ride duration. Prices can range from a few hundred rupees to several thousand for longer or more luxurious experiences.

Q9: Can I book boating tours in advance?

Ans: Many boating destinations offer the option to book tours in advance through travel agencies or online booking platforms.

Q10: Are there any eco-friendly boating options in India?

Ans: Yes, some locations offer eco-friendly boating options, such as solar-powered boats or paddle boats, which help minimize environmental impact.

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