Lake Charvak is the pearl of the Tien Shan Mountains. A reservoir dammed by the Soviet built hydroelectric dam, it’s the most popular recreational area in Uzbekistan. The lake takes a couple of hours to reach from Tashkent and is at an altitude of 3000m meaning it’s a few degrees colder than in the city, and in Winter (which is when I visited) it’s bitterly cold especially at night.
It’s a stunning location, particularly for anyone who is a new visitor to Central Asia as the scenery is quite unique. The lake itself is surrounded by the beautiful Tien Shan Mountain range which border 3 other countries, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Uzbekistan is one of only 2 double land locked countries in the world, but despite similarities with it’s neighbouring states it is quite an individual country and it’s residents are very proud of it’s natural beauty spots such as Lake Charvak. Definitely one of the highlights of Uzbekistan and top places to visit, particularly for outdoor activity lovers.
In Winter you’ll have the place nearly yourself and snow sits on the top of the mountains while the fog & mist drifts around giving an almost eerie feel. In Summer however the lake is full of locals and riruists who rent out the nearby properties at fairly extravagant prices.
There’s a limited amount of restaurants nearby so make sure to bring snacks if you don’t want to pay over the odds. Be sure to stay until dusk as that’s when the lake really starts to look spectacular, with pink clouds over the top of the dam & the mountains.