51 km southeast of Udaipur, the Jaisamand Lake, measuring 14 km in length and 10 km width, is one of the largest artificial lakes of the world. It was created by Maharana Jai Singh in the 17century. The embankment of the lake is embellished with beautiful domed pavilions and sculpted elephants in the front.
In the centre is the Narmadeshwar temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. On either end is a small water palace which used to be . the summer palace of the Udaipur queens. The highest two of the surrounding bills have palaces on the top-Hawa Mahal and Ruti Rani Palace, worth a visit for their architecture and the View they provide of the lake and the surrounding countryside.
There are eleven islands on the lake, some of which are inhabited by migratory birds of various species. The forests around the lake were once the hunting grounds of the Maharanas of Mewar, where they came to shoot panthers and wild boars in the summer. The animals in their natural habitat can be viewed at close range in the forest around the lake, which is now a wild life sanctuary. Jaisamand Sanctuary harbours sloth bear, leopard, chital, chinkara and wild boar along with a variety of birds. Timing 0800-1700 hr, open all days.