The Tarsar lake or Tar Sar, shaped like an almond, is an oligotrophic (low in algal production due to low primary productivity, but with quality of drinking water) and an alpine lake situated in the Kashmir Valley, more specifically in the area of Aru, in the district of Anantnag of Jammu and Kashmir. Same goes for Marsar lake, which is famous for its scenic beauty. Both the waterbodies are separated by a 13,000 ft mountain, but since both the lakes share the same characteristics and are so close in proximity they are often referred to as twin sisters. They came to be referred so, after the 16th Century Kashmiri ruler Yusuf Shah Chak mentioned the twin lakes in his poem to his beloved.
Both the lakes are drained in the opposite directions where Tarsar is drained by an outlet stream which flows into the Lidder River at the seasonal settlement of Lidderwat and stream of Marsar is joined by another stream from Mount Mahadev, which is called Telbal nallah (perennial flow of stream) which is considered to be the primary source of Dal lake.
The waters of Tarsar lake is known to change colours during the different parts of the day which ranges between Turquoise green and many shades of blue. It is dotted by numerous meadows with conifer trees, mountains and snow-capped peaks. When Marsar lake is viewed from the top, it is considered to have an aesthetic look with clouds covering the lake and the blue colours of the water that is surrounded by the rocky terrain makes it look picturesque and extraordinary, especially for the nature lovers. They are two most significant and prominent lakes in the district of Pulwama where Tarsar and Marsar are situated approximately 3 and 5 kilometres respectively from the village of Nagberan. A lot of folklores and legends surround the two lakes. Marsar is said to be prohibited from camping due to the frightening stories spread by the locals of the area, where one of them includes a torrential downpour if its untouched waters gets polluted by anyone. Both the lakes are famous for their tourist attractions in the Kashmir Valley of India which goes by the term of Tarsar-Marsar trek, which is a crossover expedition from Aru to Sumbal village of the Sind Valley. The nature lovers can visit the lakes during the time of summer where they will be able to spot a variety of birds like the black bulbul, high-flying coughs and the Himalayan golden eagles. Overall Its quaint and peaceful environment is what makes the twin sisters captivating and delightful.